Slovenia

Despite have lesser pull and power than its neighbors, Slovenia is country that is beautiful and enticing in its own right, without ever even making an effort to be so. The country lies between tourism heavyweights Austria, Italy, Croatia and Hungary, and yet, manages to hold a class – and flock of tourists of its own. 

The natural scene in Slovenia is very eclectic – from its lush green valleys and sunny plains, to glacier-laden lakes and snow-topped mountains. Its structures have quite the influence of its neighboring countries surrounding – from the baroque-style architecture of the ancient castles, to the western European inspired cuisines. That being said, it also retains its Eastern heritage – which visitors can see in the Slavic languages and cultural norms followed in rural villages.

Slovenia was the first country that came out of the former Yugoslavia and joined the EU, and this progressive thinking is in fact its spirit. The capital, Ljubljana, is a prime example of this. Dominated by academics and home to universities, spotting youthful resident academics with their diversity and bohemian lifestyle is not a rarity here. It is perhaps for this reason that the city is filled with different styles of restaurants, cafes and small, independent shops that sell everything from essentials to quaint trinkets. However, unlike most capital cities in Europe, Ljubljana maintain a calm and laidback atmosphere, instead of the chaotic bustle that one would expect from any major city – let alone a capital one.

Some facts about Slovenia:

  • Honey and hives are very popular in Slovenia. So much so, that they are practically called a religion there! Of its total population of 2 million, over 90,000 are employed as beekeepers.
  • Slovenia is home to Kranjska Gora – famously known as Europe’s cheapest luxury resort.
  • The Hostel Celica in Ljubljana used to be a jail.