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Best Castles in Slovenia
Slovenia offers visitors many treasures waiting to be explored, including castles scattered throughout the country. All are within no more than a ninety minutes’ drive from Ljubljana, making them perfect day-trip options with the capital city as a home-base. There are about 500 castles, ruins and manors in the country of Slovenia many of which have been restored to galleries, house museums, restaurants and even five star hotels.
A true castle lover should head to one (or all) of these magnificent castles in Slovenia.
Bled castle is one of the most iconic images of Slovenia. It is situated on a steep cliff rising 130m above Lake Bled. Drink a glass of excellent wine or indulge in a bite of traditional Bled cream cake on your arrival to the castle. By climbing the 99 steps of the castle, you can see a beautiful view of the surrounding Alps and the lake.
Zuzemberk Castle is among the lesser known castles of Slovenia. It is a 40-minute drive from Ljubljana and offers stunning scenery and great views. Getting here is a great one day trip to the Dolenjska region of the country. The castle now currently hosts various events and programs every year.
Štatenberg Mansion is a 90-minute drive from Ljubljana is one of the biggest mansions in Slovenia. It boasts a unique style which you will not find in other castles from the area. Since it offers various outdoor activities and walking treks, it makes an ideal place for a one day trip.
Predjama castle is known worldwide as the largest cave castle and is entered in the Guinness Book of Records as so. The impressive thing to be noted about this castle is that the fusions between the natural cave and castle walls were made by humans. Adventurous visitors can climb up and tour the Erazem’s cave tunnel or can visit the karst cave during the months of May to October.
The Sevnica Castle will take you to the past and fill you with the energy of the earth. The castle is surrounded by a garden rich with energy points. Many couples come here to commit their love and faithfulness to each other. Guided tours and coffee from the castle’s café are also available.
Celje Castle, also known as Old Castle, is considered to be one of the largest medieval castles in Slovenia today. The castle has still not been fully preserved yet is breathtaking due to its atmosphere and appearance. Take a guided tour to hear the about the myths and legends surrounding the castle. A small admission fee of 4 euros is required to tour the property.
Fuzine castle has been permanently been housed as a museum of architecture dedicated to Joze Plecnik, a great Slovenian architect. It is an easy trip on bike from Ljubljana for those who want to get outdoors.
Skofja Loka Castle
Skofja Loka is a great medieval town that is easily accessible from the capital city of Slovenia. The castle has an extensive museum that displays objects of the medieval times. The castle also houses a bar too.
Make sure you don’t miss out on the 900 year old Ljubljana Castle when you are traveling in the capital. Found on castle hill in the center of the city, you can easily see the structure from any part of town. At the top, check out the virtual museum to relive the castle’s history and make sure to enjoy the great views of Ljubljana.
As the name suggests, the Bistrica castle can be found in Slovenska Bistrica, right in the old town center from Maribor. The castle also has a park that is declared as a cultural monument.
The Bogenspark Castle is a renaissance castle from the 16th century found in the middle of the country. Even if you are short on time and do not have an entire day to spend, do visit the Bogensperk castle. With unique exhibitions and history of the country, this castle is great for adults and kids always love to explore it. It was a home to one of the famous Slovenians, Johann Weichard Valvasor and the castle is an excellent place to learn about this man.
The Ptuj Castle is 90 minutes away from Ljubljana and 30 minutes away from Maribor, the second largest city in Slovenia. What is important to know about this castle is that it was built for the needs of defense and military and now has been made into a museum exhibiting objects from different eras of Slovenian history. The tower of the castle dates back to the 9th or 10th centuries whereas the rest of the castle has been changed over time.
When trying to escape from the capital city, head out to the Tivoli Mansion. Not only is it home to the International Center of Graphic Arts that organizes several displays but it also boasts lovely woods and gardens behind it.
The Betnava mansion is another house located in Maribor on the northern part of Slovenia and is one of the most beautiful baroque houses in this area. The estate is surrounded by an English park with stream and pond.
Otocec Castle is the only castle in Slovenia that is built on a river island. What visitors like the most about this castle is that there is a restaurant and a 5-star hotel situated inside. It is one of the most romantic places to plan a wedding.
The only question now, is which castle is calling your name?
Main photo credit: Erin Johnson