The Slovenian city of Ljubljana is one of the smallest European capitals – but what it lacks in size, it makes up for with a vibrant food scene, historical sites and beautiful surroundings.
Compact and easy to navigate, stay in the medieval Old Town and visit the sites on foot or with a hire bike (BicikeLJ) found in 32 docking stations around the city.
To lay your head somewhere very different, book into Hostel Celica, which comprises 20 converted prison cells. Don’t worry, you won’t get the full Porridge experience – each cell has been transformed into a themed work of art for a truly unique night’s rest.
Famed for its gostilna restaurants, which serve up traditional dishes, Ljubljana is a great place to enjoy a true taste of Slovenia.
Savoury kranjska klobasa sausage and thinly sliced dry-cured pork leg (or kraški pršut) are high on the list of must-try foods, as well as sweet cakes such as potica with a range of fillings and toppings.
On a Friday, pop by Central Market where the Open Kitchen street food vendors sell the best local cuisine.
Slovenian wine is fast becoming a top tipple. Vinoteka Movia is a fantastic bar and shop, where staff can guide you through an extensive list.
After a few too many the night before, make the most of the local’s love of Turkish coffee.
Café Lolita boasts stylish interiors and fresh cakes, while Cafe Čokl serves up cold brew, chemex and aeropress coffee, as well as organic beer.
Hop on the funicular to visit Ljubljana Castle, where you’ll find spectacular views across the city, two permanent museum exhibitions, two restaurants, a café, and a nightclub. Tickets cost €13.
Walk across Jože Plečnik’’s famous Triple Bridge before visiting Plečnik House to discover more about the architect’s life.
And no trip would be complete without marvelling at the Church of St Nicholas. Built in 1701 after the site’s original basilica was burned to the ground, the cathedral houses exceptional wall paintings.
And the National Gallery holds more than 600 pieces of Slovenian and European fine art.