What to see in Ljubljana in one day

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Martí Micolau
@martimicolau
SOURCES CONSULTED:

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Ljubljana is not simply the European city with the highest rate of young people, it is also the European Green Capital 2016: entering the city of dragons you will be welcomed in a sparkling and eco-sustainable atmosphere.
The old town can be easily explored on foot, admiring unique architecture and immersing yourself in the true Slovenian culture: Ljubljana is one of the few capitals to be truly experienced by its citizens. Take advantage of a break in a bar for exchange a few words with the locals: you will meet really friendly and helpful people.



Index

  1. One day itinerary in Ljubljana: Morning
  2. One day itinerary in Ljubljana: Afternoon
  3. One day itinerary in Ljubljana: Evening
  4. User questions and comments

One day itinerary in Ljubljana: Morning

1 - Prešernov Square, Franciscan church of the Annunciation of the Virgin

The historic center of Ljubljana is as charming as it is small: you can easily walk around it without any rush.
Start having breakfast at Zvezda Cafè, a pastry shop that will delight you with exquisite cakes served in slices. One person's breakfast is around € 5 and the location is truly exclusive.
After your meal, you can quickly reach the town's main square, Prešernov, the meeting point of city life. Inside the square you will find the Franciscan church of the Annunciation of the Virgin, easy to locate thanks to its characteristic salmon pink color: the visit is free and will allow you to discover its 6 altars and an exceptionally large choir.

2 - Triple Bridge and Central Market

The exit of the square is the famous Triple Bridge on the Lubljanjca river, elegant access to the oldest part of the city. The bridge was built in 1824 and in 1929 the two side wings were added to allow better traffic flow. Today it is completely pedestrianized and you can walk along it as you wish: on the other bank of the river you will find the central market, an explosion of colors and scents. Visit the central market because it is very characteristic and still populated by the locals. Inside you will also find a scale that customers can use freely to make sure the seller hasn't cheated them! The market consists of an uncovered part and a covered part, which also has a portico where you can eat, and is a real window on Slovenian life and customs: it is worth spending time wandering among the stalls and among the typical scents of area.



In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 500 m / 6 min
  • places visited: Prešernov square, Franciscan church of the Annunciation of the Virgin, Triple Bridge, Central Market
  • Walking Tour and River Cruise in Ljubljana
  • where to have breakfast: Zvezda Cafè, Wolfova ulica 14

One day itinerary in Ljubljana: Afternoon

1 - Funicular to the Castle

Dine at Ribca, a restaurant located in the basement of the Plecnik colonnade, near the fish market and the Triple Bridge. It offers typical Slovenian cuisine based on fried fish in a simple and genuine atmosphere. For a shrimp soup and girglia squid you spend less than € 20 per person.
After enjoying your lunch, take the funicular that will take you to the castle: if you don't suffer from vertigo, start enjoying the view already on the way up! The castle of Ljubljana it can be disappointing when compared to typical Italian medieval castles, however the view over the city is well worth the climb. Buy the ticket for the guided tour of the structure and the tower directly at the funicular ticket office for only € 10 and you will have the climb up the hill included.

2 - Cathedral of San Nicola, Bridge of Dragons

Go down from the Grajska Planota hill and get ready to visit St. Nicholas Cathedral, the best example of Baroque art in all of Slovenia, easily identifiable by the large green dome and its two twin bell towers. The cathedral was designed by Andrea Pozzo as a Latin cross, with a central nave and side chapels, while the dome was added later. Inside there are fascinating paintings and sculptures.
Come back to the river and admire the bridge of dragons, one of the first reinforced concrete bridges in europe. The bridge is so called because it is guarded by 4 winged dragons, a symbol of the city since, as legend has it, Jason first had to kill a dragon that lived in the swamp near the source of the river to be able to found Ljubljana. A more modern legend has it, however, that dragons move their tails when the bridge is crossed by a virgin girl ...



In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 2 km / 33 min
  • places visited: Castle (€ 10), Cathedral of San Nicola, bridge of the Dragons
  • Walking Tour and Funicular to the Castle
  • where to have lunch: Ribca, Adamič-Lundrovo nabrežje 1

One day itinerary in Ljubljana: Evening

1 - Dinner and Along the River

After crossing the Dragon Bridge, walk along Petskovskovo nabrezje and stop for dinner at Most. This place offers modern cuisine that combines Slovenian tradition with Mediterranean dishes, combining different flavors in the creation of unique dishes. The atmosphere is refined and a dinner is around € 30 per person.
In front of the restaurant you will find the bridge of the Butchers (you will recognize it by the padlocks attached to the balustrades) which will take you back to the other side of the Ljubljanica. The riverside of Ljubljana is packed with places to have an aperitif or enjoy an after dinner: perfectly integrated with the architecture of the historic center, they enliven the city rather than deface it.

2 - Piazza Mestni

You can decide to walk a little longer and reach the nearby one Mestni square, seat of the town hall, with a clearly Venetian-inspired facade dominated by the clock tower, and many buildings of extreme beauty, such as the Haman house, the Souvan house, the Lichtenberg palace. The Fountain of the Rivers is also very beautiful, consisting of an obelisk and between figures holding three vases from which the three Carniolan rivers flow: Krka, Ljubljanica and Sava.



In summary:

  • Distance traveled: 650 m / 9 min
  • places visited: along the river, piazza Mestni
  • Food Tour in Ljubljana
  • where to dine: Most, Petkovškovo nabrežje 21

Before leaving: useful tips

  • Wear walking shoes: comfortable shoes adapted to the season they will allow you to walk around the center without effort.
  • Dress in layers: to meet the different hours of the day, we recommend dress in layers, so that you can maintain the correct body temperature throughout the day
  • Bring a resealable umbrella or k-way, to take out in case of rain
  • If you are interested in museums, buy the Ljubljana Card which includes admission to many attractions, a small guided tour, access to city wifi and use of public transport
  • If you decide to extend your stay and enjoy Ljubljana by night, you can consult our offers for accommodation in Ljubljana.

What not to see: the attractions that are better to give up

Having only one day at your disposal is good give up visiting museums, which requires time to devote to each single work and above all entrance queues. Reluctantly, therefore, we advise you not to visit some sites that, with a few more days at your disposal, would be really interesting:

  1. NUK, National and University Library
  2. TiFlights Park
  3. Slovenian Ethnographic Museum
  4. MSUM Museum of Modern Art Metelkova
  5. National Gallery
  6. Modern art gallery
  7. Ljubljana civic gallery
  8. Museum of illusions

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