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How to Spend Two Weeks in Slovenia
Written by Travel Writer Kate from Our Escape Clause.
I am obsessed with Slovenia.
This small country has everything: a beautiful (if small) coastline, breathtaking mountains, and a funky, engaging capital city. It’s the perfect size to explore thoroughly in two weeks: two weeks in Slovenia will give you a great overview of the country… while still leaving enough undone to inspire your second trip!
Want to plan a perfect two weeks in Slovenia? Here’s what I recommend:
Day 1: Arrive in Slovenia
Hooray, you’re in Slovenia!
It’s time to start your trip at the coast: I recommend staying in the small town of Piran.
If you’re heading here from either the Ljubljana or Venice airports, you’ll be able to easily catch a bus to Piran.
Days 2-4: Enjoy the Coast
Piran is entirely walkable, incredibly laid back, and picture-perfect. Set on the point of a peninsula, Piran is a place to relax. Our days there consisted of swimming, climbing the town walls for views, and eating a daily gelato by the sea.
Here’s a hint: the best swimming in Piran is not near the lighthouse, where you’ll find the crowds of tourists. The best place to swim is toward the back of the town: follow the directions to the town walls, and bear left along the coast–in just a few minutes, you’ll stumble upon an uncrowded section of coastline with clear water and only a few other people milling around.
If you’d prefer to stay somewhere a little busier than Piran, nearby Portoroz is a larger coastal town and has more of a resort like feel.
Day 5: Head North to the Mountains
It’s time to head into the mountains! Triglav National Park is the pride of the country, and two weeks in Slovenia could not be considered complete without some time appreciating the park and its surrounding areas.
If you are renting a car in Slovenia, this leg of the trip is when it is most needed. If you are trying to keep costs down, consider renting a car at this point rather than when you arrive, to shave a few days off the cost.
Fair warning: Piran has no rental car agencies, but you can pick one up in Portoroz for a fee. We rented a car through Hertz, and they brought one in from their office in Koper.
Not having an actual office in Portoroz caused a bit of confusion for us when trying to find where to get the car, so be sure to confirm the pickup process ahead of time.
Editor’s Tip: The Chasing the Donkey team book rental cars online via these guys.
Days 6-10: Explore the Julian Alps & Surrounding Area
We stayed in the minuscule town of Mojstrana, because the Airbnb that we found there was within walking distance of stunning trails inside Triglav National Park.
Other options include Bled, for a beautiful resort feel; Bohinj, for a slightly less polished lake town as compared to Bled; or one of the many relatively “unknown” towns dotting the map. It’s fairly impossible to go wrong in this part of Slovenia, as everything is close enough to access anything you need and will be situated near incredible views.
Regardless of where you choose to base yourself, these days will be packed with stunning sites.
Some of our favorite things to do in the area include: rowing across (and staring at) Lake Bled, visiting the Vintgar Gorge, chasing waterfalls throughout Triglav National Park and the surrounding area, visiting the Skocjan Caves (the most unforgettable caves we have ever seen, complete with an underground river and canyon), and hiking to whatever viewpoint we can find.
In western Slovenia, you may also want to check out Predjama Castle (built directly into the Postojna Caves!), the Lipica Stud Farm, and white water rafting on the Soca River: these are all things we have planned for our next trip to Slovenia!
Day 11: Travel to Ljubljana
It’s time to check out the capital city! Head into Ljubljana and get settled in. If you have a rental car and are trying to keep costs down, you may want to consider returning it now, as you won’t need it much within Ljubljana’s center.
Days 12-13: See What Ljubljana Has to Offer
The word that I continue to come back to when writing about Ljubljana is “funky”. This is an offbeat, incredibly fun city, complete with bizarre statues across the Old Town (such as statues of kangaroos and humans with tails), brightly painted buildings, multiple styles of architecture mixed together, and unforgettable street art.
The city is small and very walkable, though bike rental is also an excellent way to get around. Don’t miss visiting the street art in the district of Metelkova: it remains one of the most memorable things that I’ve ever seen.
The Old Town is perfect for meandering through, checking out shops, parks, churches, and–most of all–oodles of cafes with decadent desserts.
We found our visit to Ljubljana Castle to be fairly forgettable, but if you want to see the city from above, it is the place to go!
Day 14: The Saddest Day of the Trip–time to leave
Head home, and immediately start planning your return to Slovenia! If you’re anything like us, the moment you leave, you’ll already be dying to go back.
Getting to & Around Slovenia
If you’re flying in and out of Slovenia, you’ll most likely be traveling through Ljubljana. Another option includes flying in and out of nearby Venice–depending on where you are coming from, this could save quite a bit of money!
If you’re entering Slovenia via bus from anywhere east of Slovenia, you’ll likely head directly into Ljubljana and need to transfer buses to reach the coast. If you’re coming from Austria or Italy like we were, you may be able to catch a bus directly to the coast.
While spending two weeks in Slovenia, you will most likely want to rent a car. We rent cars in very few places, but in Slovenia, it was absolutely essential to our trip–especially when we were in the mountains.
Slovenia is compact enough (with the bonus of most tourist attractions being concentrated in the western half of the country) that it’s easy to access just about anything you need within a couple of hours. However, the rural nature of some of the small towns and hiking areas makes bus travel more challenging.
If you’d like to focus your trip more on urban areas and avoid renting a car, I’d recommend basing all of your time outside of the coast in Ljubljana, and taking day trips from there via bus–however, I definitely feel that you’d be missing out some of the best that Slovenia has to offer by doing so!