Slovenia Travel Guide and Itinerary: An Affordable Destination in Europe
- by Ari Travels
Slovenia ~ One of the most underrated countries in Europe. I spent less than $40/day on accommodation, activities, and food during my time here. Slovenia is one of the most affordable countries in Europe, and it’s an outdoor enthusiasts' dream- full of magnificent lakes, hiking, waterfalls, and rivers. I never planned on coming to Slovenia, but sometimes you just have to hop on a random train and end up at an unexpected destination, which I am glad I did!
There is a reason why I decided to extend my trip not once but twice. This free guide and itinerary will cover everything you need to know and how you should plan on spending your time in Slovenia so you can have the best trip while spending little to no money. Don’t hesitate to contact me if you want to travel the world on a budget but don’t know how to get started.
Things to Know About Slovenia
You can easily take a Flix bus or a train into the capital called Ljubljana. The capital is tiny and easy to navigate. It’s also super safe, making it an excellent destination for solo female travel.
Bus transportation in Slovenia is 75% off on weekends!
You can use your credit card in Slovenia, but be aware of foreign transaction fees. Use a card that doesn’t charge them, such as the Capital One Journey card. You should still have cash on hand for paying for the public transportation services or if machines are not working. Sign up for a Charles Schwab Debit card to avoid all ATM fees. They reimburse all ATM fees and no annual charge.
Bring a reusable water bottle. Slovenia is one of the most sustainable countries in the world, and they have water refill stations everywhere.
I would highly suggest getting the Airalo App and downloading an eSim Card before you visit Slovenia. Airalo is an app that allows you to have affordable cell data plans worldwide without needing a physical Sim Card, which makes using your phone without wifi extremely convenient. Use my code ARIAHN516 for $ off!
Make sure you have the proper travel adaptor for electronic use. You cannot use plugs in Slovenia without it.
Grocery stores are closed on Sundays.
Where to Stay in Slovenia
Ljubljana (the capital) is a great hub for the most popular spots around Slovenia. I stayed at two different hostels. It’s a small city and close to public transportation (both the airport, train, and bus station). They were called Most Hostel and Tresor Hostel. They were both wonderful and affordable at only $25 per night, which is cheap for peak season in Europe.
Hostel Recommendations in Ljubljana (click for more)
Most Hostel: 5 min walk from bus and train station, 5 min walk to the city center
Tresor Hostel: 10 min walk from bus and train station, in the city center
Hotel Recommendations in Ljubljana (click for more)
For any hotels in Ljubljana, booking.com has very affordable ones.
New Rooms and Apartments: $24/night ($12 per person)
Fuzzy Log: $26/night ($13 per person)
Appartment Bezenica: $39/night ($19.50 per person)
Villa Megapolis: $39/night ($19.50 per person)
Day 1: Ljubljana
You will most likely arrive in the capital of Slovenia, which is called Ljubljana. Make sure you make time to see this charming city.
Things to do in Ljubljana
Take a walking tour
- There are many free walking tours available to see the charming city of Ljubljana. Most hostels and hotels have pamphlets available for times of tours happening.
Have some Gelato
- Cacao is the best place to have Gelato in all of Ljubljana. It gets hot here, so it's nice to have a little cool-down treat.
Visit four bridges
- Four bridges are the most famous landmark in Ljubljana.
Coffee at Nebotičnik Skyscraper
- There is a cafe here located on the first floor, and it has a stunning 360° view of Ljubljana and beyond (including the Alps). This Coffee shop has some of the best views in the city.
St. Nicholas’s Cathedral
The Town Hall or the Franciscan Church
Day 2: Lake Bled
Lake Bled is Slovenia’s most famous landmark for many reasons. Lake Bled is a must to see when visiting Slovenia.
How to get to Lake Bled
There is a direct bus that runs every hour to the lake. It takes about an hour and 5 mins to get here. All you have to do is head to the Ljubljana bus station, which is located next to the train station, pay your tickets in cash, and then hop on the next available bus. This is a popular destination, so to guarantee a seat on the bus, go early. Busses start running at 6 am.
To get back to Ljubljana, you can buy tickets for the bus at the same station you were dropped off at. These run every half hour until around 8:00 pm.
A round trip will cost around $12 USD.
Tip: I wish I could stay in the Lake Bled area, but to do this, you have to book very far ahead of time as the cheaper hotels and hostels fill up very fast. If you can plan your trip to Slovenia ahead of time, book a place in Lake Bled and spend the night.
What to do in Lake Bled
Make sure to pack a picnic lunch so you can enjoy the whole day with your friends!
Start by hiking around the lake. The hike takes about an hour and is very flat. as you are hiking, you will find plenty of places to go for a swim. The lake is warm and refreshing for swimming, so pack a suit.
There is a hiking observation point that will give you areal views of the lake.
You can even take a rowboat to the famous landmark in the middle of the lake or rent paddle boards or kayaks.
Day 3: Lake Bohinj
Another favorite day trip of mine is a trip to Lake Bohinj. This lake is sandwiched in-between two mountains and makes for another refreshing yet great outdoorsy day. There is lots of hiking and swimming that can be done here, which makes for yet another perfect day in the wilderness.
How to get to Lake Bohinj
There is a direct bus that runs every hour to the lake. It takes about an hour and 30 mins to get here. All you have to do is head to the Ljubljana bus station, which is located next to the train station, pay your tickets in cash, and then hop on the next available bus. Again, I would recommend going early to get on a bus at a decent time.
To get back to Ljubljana, you can buy tickets for the bus at the same station you were dropped off at. Ask the worker at the bus station before leaving for Lake Bohinj what bus times are available as only a few go back to Ljubljana- plan accordingly.
A round trip will cost around $14 USD.
You can also get here from Lake Bled. It's about half an hour on a bus.
What to do at Lake Bohinj
Visit the bridge at St. John the Baptist Church
Swim in the crystal clear lake water
Paddle board rental
- You can rent them right in the main area near the bus stop
- 45 min hike
Day 4: National Park Day Trip
Triglav National Park is Slovenia's hidden gem. Lake Bohinj is apart of the national park, but you cannot see multiple destinations in one day because the national park is vast. That’s why I suggest you plan Bohinj for one day and somewhere else for the next.
Where to go
There are many day trips offered in Slovenia. You have two options: renting a car or going with a company.
You can rent a car with Sixt for only $50 per day. This is perfect if you plan on having a group to split the rental with. Then you have the freedom to drive around and see as much as you want.
I will insert some popular day trips below, along with where to book them if you decide not to rent a car.
Slovenia is one of those places I plan on coming back to so I can get the chance to explore the entire country because I feel like it has so much more to offer than what I was able to accomplish seeing during my time here. For now, though, I am thankful for the amazing time I had here. For any questions or trip planning assistance, you need for Slovenia, feel free to book a call with me.