Slovenia is one of Europe’s underrated treasures. Blessed with stunning craggy mountain ranges, beautiful shimmering lakes and alpine forest, it almost seems unfair that Slovenia should also be home to a section of picture-perfect Adriatic coast. But possibly its greatest asset is that compared with western Europe, or the likes of its Croatian or Austrian neighbours, Slovenia remains relatively untouched by mass tourism and the crowds have yet to cotton on. Explore Ljubljana, the pretty capital city overlooked by a castle at its centre before delving deeper into the country and visiting the mountains, picturesque Lake Bled, the Postojna Caves and Piran situated on the Slovenian coast.
Fly to Ljubljana. On arrival you are met and transferred to your hotel in Ljubljana where you will spend the next two nights.
Get to know the pretty centre of Ljubljana on a morning walking tour with private guide. This compact capital city is a delight to explore, peppered with fine examples of Baroque and Art Nouveau architecture and easily discovered on foot. Walk from Presernov Square overlooked by statues and over the city’s iconic Triple Bridge to the central market, which bustles daily with people selling fresh produce. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure, taking the funicular railway up to Ljubljana Castle for sweeping views across the town. (B)
You will be met at the hotel by your driver/guide and driven out to Slovenia’s Karst region, known for the Postojna Caves – an infamous 20km long network of passages and chambers cut through by a train that takes you deep into the belly of the caves. You’ll also have the chance to visit the Predjama Castle, perched high over a cliff edge, before continuing to Piran; a Venetian town nestled on Slovenia’s 43 kilometre long coastline. Overnight in Piran. (B)
Spend the morning touring Piran and the popular coastal resort of Portoroz before continuing on to the Secovlje salt-pans and inland to the Lipica Stud Farm to see where the famous Lipizzaner horses of the Spanish Riding School are bred. Continue your journey with a drive through the vineyard region of Goriska Brda, where you will have the chance to sample local cuisine and wines. Dinner and overnight in Goriska Brda. (B,D)
Take a morning drive following the emerald green Soca River upstream, through Kobarid (mentioned in Hemingway’s 'A Farewell to Arms') to visit the interesting WW1 museum. Travel on to Bovec, taking the Vrsic pass (1611m) to reach the high mountain town of Kranjska Gora, before ending the day in the iconic lakeside town of Bled. Spend three nights here. (B)
Embark on a sightseeing tour of Bled to explore the charming town, the stunning lakeshore and imposing Bled Castle, perched on a cliff high above the lake. Continue on to Slovenia’s other Alpine beauty – Lake Bohinj. Return to Bled in the afternoon. (B)
Spend the day exploring Bled at your leisure. Walk the perimeter of the great lake, climb up to the castle for astounding views and uncover a slice of Slovenia’s history, and try the famous local Bled Cake – a custard and cream cake delicacy. (B)
Transfer back to Ljubljana airport for your flight to the UK. (B)