Prepare for a trip of your dreams
Do you want to travel to a country where you can climb a mountain in the morning, discover something new in a museum after lunch and swim in the sea in the evening? And in the meantime, you can explore caves, forests or shores of lakes and rivers. Slovenia is perfect for you. It lies in central Europe and is smaller than the smallest Chinese province. Enjoy its beauty and let your time stop for a while.
To feel Slovenia’s rhythm, watch a movie about SLOVEnia, a country that has love in its name. It offers a lot of love to all its visitors. Now let me introduce you Bled as the first tourist destination. The island in the middle of the lake will charm you and soon you will daydream while watching the sun shine on the castle hill. You can take a walk around the lake or hike to one of the hills nearby. To cool down, you can jump in the lake and talk to the swans. Not far from the lake in the village’s centre is hostel Bledec where you can stay the night (or two, or three...). You will find out more in the short films.
Let’s stay in the mountains. The whole Slovenian Alps wait for you to discover them. Hiking in forests and high mountains, and after that, lakes and rivers where you can cool down. Lake Bled and even bigger Lake Bohinj are definitely worth a visit, and behind the mountains, there is also an emerald source of river Sava. You can sleep in hostel Barovc in Kranjska Gora, or go over the famous mountain pass Vršič and sleep in Youth Hostel Bovec and see for yourself that it’s as beautiful as in the film.
After the mountains, it’s time for the sea. Go to Piran and admire the Venetian architecture, pick your favourite street and then go to Sečovlje saltworks and see how they make salt. The best spot for swimming is waiting for you under the tall cliffs or you can sail away on the bora wind waves. In the evening, head for a party in Portorož. Hostels that will provide an amazing accommodation are HI hostel in Portorož and a hostel in another sea-side town Koper. Before visiting the Slovenian coast, watch this video.
Somewhere between the high mountains and the sea lies the valley of river Soča, a river of many colours, from blue to green. You can go rafting or just sit on a rock and admire its beauty. Important battles happened in the mountains that rise over Soča, which you can see in the museum in Kobarid or in the mountain ridges. Tolmin is known after many festivals for every taste and after the great hostel Paradiso. Before the visit you can see all its beauties in this video.
The next destination worth a visit is Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia with 250.000 inhabitants. Ljubljana is a green city with lots of amazing bridges. Above Ljubljana is Ljubljana castle, which offers beautiful view over the city. You will feel Ljubljana’s beat while sitting in one of the bars next to the river. A great night of rest is waiting for you in hostel Ljubljana which also has great reviews. Now let the moving pictures talk.
It’s time to take you to the underground. Let’s go to Postojna cave, the most visited European cave. A mini train will take you below the ground and soon an amazing new world will open in front of you. An olm, with Latin name Proteus, is something to be looking forward to in Postojna cave. Hostel Proteus will be welcoming you near the amazing cave. You can also watch the video and see what’s waiting for you in the Slovenian underground world.
Karst is also an amazing place to discover the underground world. One of the most famous caves are Škocjan Caves, which are also part of UNESCO’s world heritage, and Vilenica cave, the oldest tourist cave in Europe. This video will invite you to this part of Slovenia. Visit the white horses in Lipica. In the middle of caves and villages is Ajdovščina, where you can sleep in a great hostel.
Slovenia is the third most forested country in Europe, which you can see on every step. You can discover the amazing forest paths and always find a shadow under the treetops. In the biggest forest in Kočevje, you can even meet a bear and take a photo of it if you’re with a guide. Ljubno ob Savinji is also surrounded by forests and lies near Logarska valley. Here you will find a great HI Hostel. Slovenian forests are being explored in the next video.
Last but not least, there is the east of Slovenia with Pannonian Basin. Endless plain of fields and cart tracks and cute hills invite you to take out your bicycle and get moving. Soon you will be greeted by the oldest Slovenian city Ptuj, which is known after carnival masks, “kurent”. Jeruzalem and Slovenske gorice are the place to be if you want to enjoy some wine and sun. And for a complete relaxation, you can go to one of the Slovenian spas. Next to the Austrian border is spa Radenci and a hostel with the same name. HI hostel and a spa are also in Ptuj.
Slovenian youth hostels
Quality sleep is one of the most important parts of travelling. Slovenia has more than 30 HI hostels, which are all around the country. Every HI member also has 10% discount on accommodation in HI hostels. Some were already mentioned in this article and here are some of the most unique hostels. You can book the hostel via Hostelling International Slovenia’s website where you will also find all the information about the hostels. Hostel Tresor is located in Slovenian capital and lies in the city centre in the building that used to be a bank. Tresor is a home of creative people, as are the rooms. Each room is different than the other.
In the second biggest Slovenian city Maribor, there is hostel Pekarna, which lies near Magdalena Park near city centre. It is a part of a cultural centre Pekarna and in the past, in time of Austrian-Hungarian empire, people baked bread for soldiers here. Guests can also stay in apartments or in a studio with a terrace.
For all nature lovers and active souls, we recommend staying in the biggest hostel in Slovenia, in Hostel pod Voglom. Hostel is located near Lake Bohinj among the forests and right next to the adrenalin park. In the hostel there is a Pac Sports Outdoor Agency, the home of adrenalin sports. You can rent a bike, a paddle board or go kayaking.
You can also sleep in a Renaissance castle from 1634, which is home of Youth Hostel Radovljica today. There’s a cake shop, a coffee shop and a nice cellar where they organize Linhart’s feast, dress up and light candles and take you back to the 18th century.
Hostel Alieti is located in one of the old city houses in the middle of old fishing town Izola. All rooms have air conditioning, and the prices vary depending on the season. The hostel is surrounded by charming medieval streets with a lot of excellent restaurants. A beach and a market are also closeby.
In Koroška region, there is Youth hotel Punkl. It is the first Slovenian hostel, which is designed as low-energy building and is completely built of Slovenian wood. The main goal while building and now using the hostel is minimizing the impact on the environment, which they achieved by clean technology and other actions. Koroška’s dialect words named the rooms.
Discounts for Hostelling International members
Hostelling International members have discounts with their membership card in the whole world and Slovenia’s no exception. Read below and see where you can get the best discounts.
In Karst there is Lipica Stud Farm, one of the oldest stud farms in the world and the birthplace of white horses, the Lipizzaner. The tradition of breeding horses goes 400 years in the past. HI members can get a student discount on the guided tour of the stud house where you can learn about the stud farm’s history and everything about the horses. You can also get the discount on a magical performance Story about Lipica, which represents the Lipica’s riding school. You can also get a discount on the event Experience the Lipizzaner horse, where you can see how they train the horses.
If you’re an adrenalin junkie, you will be amazed by the discounts in Bovec Sport Centre. HI members get 20% discount on many sports activities nearby and on Soča river. Go kayaking, rafting or hydrospeeding or canyoning. And if you don’t like the water and prefer solid ground, go cycling or ride a scooter.
Travel to the past. Board the old museum train and treat yourself to a panoramic ride between Jesenice and Nova Gorica. The charm of the ride are the tunnels. The longest is 6327 metres long. The views on many gorges and lakes will amaze you. The route is more than 100 years old and the members get 10% discount on the train ticket.
We have good news for everyone who wants to discover Maribor. You get a 10% discount on wine tasting in the Old Vine House. The most important is the old vine which grows by the house. The vine is more than 400 years old and is the oldest vine in the world. Picking grapes from this old vine is a real celebration. Besides wine, you can also taste excellent Slovenian chocolate in the house. HI hostel UNI will be an excellent choice of accommodation after the wine tasting.
Visiting the underground is always special. Slovenia offers a lot of option to discover the world below the ground. One of it is Škocjan Caves Park, located on the south-western part of Slovenia. Its cultural and natural heritage is so unique that is has been part of Unesco’s world heritage since 1986 and is also part of Ramsar Convention as underground wetland. You can admire the power of water and the mighty Škocjan Cave with a student discount. HI hostel Ociski Raj is nearby for you to stay after a tiring day.
The Idrija Mercury Mine is also located in the underground of Idrija. It used to be the second biggest mercury mine and is enlisted in UNESCO’s world heritage list. We enter the mine through Antonij’s tunnel. Idrija mine has produced a total of 147,000 tons of mercury in 500 years, which is 13% of total world production. Discover the production of mercury and lives of the miners.
In the middle of forests in the south of the country, there is Snežnik Castle which got its final form in 19th century. Walk through the rooms of the castle, full of old furniture. After seeing the castle, take a walk around it and explore the nature. You get a 10% discount on the entrance ticket. Close to the Snežnik castle and Snežnik hill is hostel Ars Viva.
We also wanted to make your visit to Ljubljana easier. Each HI member gets 10% discount on guides around Ljubljana, provided by Ljubljana Tourist Board. You will visit every important attraction in the old city centre. After that you should take a boat that takes you under the Ljubljana bridges or ride a funicular to the castle. You can also take a tour of the town hall. Hostel Vila Veselova is located in a villa and will only make your trip more exciting.
You should also visit The Museum of Illusions, located in Ljubljana’s city centre, which will challenge your brain. There are pictures, installations and special rooms that turn your head. Each object has an explanation in Slovene, English, German, Italian and allows you to discover the science while playing a game. You will get a 5% discount on the ticket with your HI membership card.
Welcome to Slovenia. Everyone has an opportunity to experience a perfect holiday in this small country. Slovenian mysteries are easily accessible, and you can visit them all year round. It all depends on your wishes. Do you want to swim in the sea or sled down the snowy hill? Discover Slovenian charms and return home full of new memories.