Ljubljana, Slovenia Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Ljubljana, Slovenia

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Not Ljubiana, Lubjana, but Ljubljana!

Ljubljana lies between the Alps and the Mediterranean Sea. The Ljubljanica river runs through it and, at the centre of the city, lies Castle Hill - named after the beautiful castle on top of it.

This capital city, with over 850 years of tradition, offers lots more than one would think. The city's Roman ruins are testament to its origins (the local province was known as Emona). More recent additions and hotspots include Ljubljana's famous skyscraper, the Ljubljana dragons, Tivoli park and, of course, the castle on Castle Hill.

The People

The people of Ljubljana are astonishingly kind and will often help foreign visitors; this is the real treasure of Ljubljana. American writer Steve Falloi said of the city: '... Ljubljana mantains a human face long lost by other European capitals'.

In Slovenia (therefore also in Ljubljana) the official language is Slovene (Slovenscina), but many of the locals speak at least a little bit of English. Certainly, you won't need to teach yourself Slovene to travel around the country, but if you at least try to learn how to order a beer, everybody will love you for it!

Things to Do

Ljubljana hosts cultural events throughout the year including an annual summer festival, a festival of street theatres called Ana Desetnica and the Trnfest festival.

Partying in Ljubljana revolves around pubs. Ljubljana has over 300 pubs and bars, and among them you will certainly find one that you will enjoy. To quench your thirst, you must try the local beer, Union, or any wine from Slovenian vineyards. Clubs usually close around 2am, but some of them are open throughout the night. The best rock club is definitely Orto Klub. Live acts perform there twice a week and it has a great atmosphere.

If you come to Ljubljana, you certainly won't go hungry. One of the city's most famous restaurants is Figovec (a place where Slovenia's premier poet, France Presern, ate in his time). It serves delicious food, and you'll be able to sample national specialities. Ljubljana is also well regarded for its pizza. Among the best pizzerias are Foculus on Soteska Street and Trta on Grudnovo Nabrezje.

Getting There

Ljubljana is only 249km from Venice, Italy; 430km from Munich, Germany; 395km from Vienna, Austria; and 491km from Budapest, Hungary. You can get there by car, by train, by plane - or, eventually, by foot. A note for all hitchhikers: hitchhiking is still very popular in Slovenia, and you are sure to get a lift in no time!

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