Two dragons perched low by the Ljubljanica River bridge appear menacing. But they may as well be smiling, given Ljubljana’s charm and ease. It may just be the mellowest capital city in Europe, with only 280,000 people. The city’s river, castle, museums and old town are not close to the biggest, even in Eastern Europe. This helps to make Ljubljana the perfect city to just enjoy without doing anything.
CAFES, BARS, SQUARES & A RIVER
Open air bars and cafés flank the small, meandering river, seeming to show a bit of cultural influence from Slovenia’s western neighbor, Italy. The city has many beautiful squares, such as Pogačarjev trg Square, with a vibrant daily market and events, including Open Kitchen and the Pivo & Burger Fest.
The city owes much of its charm to Slovenian architect Jože Plečnik, who is referred to as Ljubljana’s version of Antoni Gaudí from Barcelona. The city’s iconic Triple Bridge, numerous river embankments, market and plazas are a result of his thoughtful and creative design.
THE SLOW GOOD LIFE
Wandering twisting old cobblestone roads, ducking in and out of beautiful cafes and bars surrounding the river, it is nearly impossible to get lost. Like many European cities, an overhead castle and central river help to orient you. As you settle in, Ljubljana invites you to just sit outside and live the good slow life.