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A 2024 Guide for Visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia

  • Post last modified:January 18, 2024
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One of the most magical places in all of Europe is Lake Bled in Slovenia. But why is Lake Bled so famous? Slovenia certainly isn't the most-visited country in Europe by any means, but Lake Bled has been bringing more and more visitors each year.

The first time I went to Lake Bled in Slovenia I was completely blown away by its beauty. It was over a decade ago, and there were hardly any tourists! This past summer we paid another visit, and found it to be much more popular amongst tourists.

In this guide we're going to share everything you need to know for visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia, from the best things to do in the area to the best hotels to stay at.

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Why is Lake Bled So Famous?

Lake Bled is not only famous for its outstanding beauty, but it actually became famous due to the folklore tales that come along with it. There are two different tales told about how the lake was formed, which give the area so much more to look forward to.

One of the stories is about dancing fairies, and another famous one is known as the the legend of the sunken bell. These aren't the only ones actually though! There are quite a few, and part of the magic of visiting Lake Bled is speaking with the locals and hearing their version of the story.

We won't spoil the details- we prefer to leave you with the wonder and joy of hearing the stories yourself!

Lake Bled in Slovenia

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Where is Lake Bled in Slovenia?

Lake Bled is located in the north west of Slovenia, at the base of the Julian Alps. Slovenia is located in south west Europe, separating western and Eastern Europe. Its ideal location makes Lake Bled in Slovenia easily reachable from various areas across the continent. You can even reach there by day trip from a number of different countries!

where is Lake Bled in Slovenia

Lake Bled is in the north west of Slovenia.

How to Get to Lake Bled in Slovenia

Lake Bled is just 55 km for the capital of Slovenia (Ljubljana), and only 35 km from the Ljubljana Airport, which is the main airport serving the country of Slovenia. This makes Lake Bled very accessible for visitors, and it can be reached in a number of ways.

Here are the different options for visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia:

  • Rent a car from the Ljubljana airport
  • Take a taxi from the Ljubljana airport to Lake Bled
  • Take the local bus from Ljubljana or Ljubljana airport to Bled
  • Take a tour from Ljubljana to Lake Bled

How Much is a Taxi From Ljubljana to Lake Bled?

Taxis from Ljubljana Airport to Lake Bled are around 60 euros, or 80 euros for a minivan up to 8 people, with a journey of about 40 minutes. Taxis from Ljubljana city are also around the same price, and take about the same time. 

Taking a Bus to Lake Bled

Another cost-effective option (if you are traveling alone or with one other person) is to take the local bus. You can either take a bus from the airport, or from the city center of Ljubljana to Lake Bled.

Buses from Ljubljana airport can be purchased online in advance starting at $22 USD, and buses from Ljubljana city start at 60 cents- 2 euros, and take around 1 hour to get to Lake Bled. 

Renting a Car to Go to Lake Bled

If you are in a group, or want to explore extensively around Lake Bled, then it may be worth it for you to rent a car at the Ljubljana airport. Cars are typically between 40-60 euros/day and are best if reserved in advance.

Tours to Lake Bled in Slovenia

There are plenty of tours that are available visiting Lake Bled for a day trip from Ljubljana. This is the easiest option for those that want to experience the highlights of the lake without having to worry about the logistics. We would suggest this options for those that aren't picky about the timing, or don't necessarily care to do a ton of activities there.

Here are some popular tours from Ljubljana to Lake Bled in Slovenia:

Not only can you take a tour from Ljubljana, but you can also visit Lake Bled in Slovenia on a full-day tour from Zagreb, Croatia, Vienna, Austria, or Trieste, Italy.

Here are a few of the tours you can book from Zagreb to Lake Bled in Slovenia:

Here are tours that we found from Trieste and Vienna visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia:

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Things to Do at Lake Bled in Slovenia

Now that you know how to get to there, here are the best things to do in Lake Bled, Slovenia.

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Lake Bled in Slovenia pin
Lake Bled in Slovenia pin

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #1: Rent a Boat

One of the most popular ways to enjoy Lake Bled in Slovenia is by Pletna boat, which are the typical wooden boats dating back to the 16th century. You can easily find the different boat rentals right along the lake in front of the Starki Heritage Hotel.

Boat rides are typically 1 hour, visiting the island of Lake Bled for around 30-40 minutes, and are 12 euros/person (keep in mind this rate may change).

boat rentals at Lake Bled in Slovenia

Lake Bled is known for their Pletna boats.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #2: Take a Clear Kayak Around the Lake

Another way to enjoy the lake is by touring to the lake via kayak. They actually have clear kayaks for two people that you can take for a guided tour in the evening. This activity is available from mid March until the end of October, and is an hour and a half long.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #3: Rent a Stand Up Paddle Board

Here is yet another fun activity to do if you are visiting Lake Bled during the warmer months. This guided SUP tour teaches you how to paddle on a two hour excursion, and includes paddle games for the group.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #4: Go For a Swim

Looking for a fun and free activity at Lake Bled? Go for a dip! In the summertime the lake is open for swimming in designated areas, and if you dare you can even swim over the the island! (We would never make it- but maybe you could).

Lake Bled in Slovenia

There are small beaches where you can go swimming at Lake Bled

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #5: Visit the Island

The Island of Lake Bled is certainly one of the reasons that the lake is so famous! With a church and castle on it, it's a great place to go and explore. The only way to get there is by boat, or if by some way you can make your way there swimming.

Lake Bled Island

Lake Bled Island is home to a couple of attractions.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #6: Climb to the Most Epic Viewpoint

Our absolute favorite place to enjoy the views of Lake. Bled in Slovenia was on a short trail right next to Bled Camping.

Mala Osojnica is an extremely short and rewarding hike, as just a 5-10 minute walk through the forest leads you to a completely magical view of Lake Bled. We went for sunrise, and it was certainly worth the early wakeup call.

Lake Bled in Slovenia viewpoint

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #7: Hike Around the Lake

Lake Bled is pretty big, and has a ton of beautiful views to admire it from. One of the most popular ways to experience the different perspectives is by hiking around it, which takes about an hour and a half.

Lake Bled in Slovenia
Lake Bled in Slovenia
Lake Bled in Slovenia
Lake Bled in Slovenia

Lake Bled in Slovenia has a variety of beautiful angles.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #8: Take an E-Bike Tour

Another incredible way to enjoy the views of Lake Bled and the landscapes around it is by taking a bike tour. On this E-Bike tour you can explore all around Bled in a sustainable way, where the local guide brings you around for 4 hours with a 45 minute picnic included! This is the perfect way to immerse in the local cuisine and stay in shape at the same time.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #9: Check Out Bled Castle

Other than Lake Bled Island, Bled Castle is the next biggest tourist attraction to see in the area. Sitting on a cliff above the lake, it is simply stunning to see from a distance, and it can be visited daily from 8 am to 8 pm.

Tickets are 17 euros for adults, 11 euros for students, 7 euros for children 14 and under, and 14 euros for seniors or disabled visitors.

Lake Bled Castle in Slovenia
Lake Bled Castle in Slovenia
Lake Bled Castle in Slovenia
Lake Bled Castle in Slovenia

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #10: Go Rafting

Ready for some more adventure? Well, one of the most fun activities that you can do right next to Lake Bled is to go rafting on the Sava River. You can either choose a 3-hour excursion, or you can get one of the excursions that combine with canyoning for a full day adventure.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #11: Go Iceskating

While many of the activities we've mentioned so far are more geared for the summer, there is also plenty to do around Lake Bled in the winter!

While it doesn't happen every year, many years the lake actually freezes over, and the government allows people to go iceskating right on the lake! This is always dependent on the conditions, but it is definitely one of those things to add to your winter bucket list.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #12: Go Ice Climbing

Join the professionals on a special tour that allows you to learn how to ice climb, and even go up a giant frozen waterfall! 

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #13: Enjoy Other Winter Activities

Lake Bled does a great job of making the winter enjoyable, and has a variety of activities available such as sledding, skiing, and snowboarding. Lake Bled is nearby a number of resorts, and you can even get a Julian Alps Ski Pass that gives you special access to 15 resorts across 3 countries!

Don't want to do the research? There is also a Julian Alps ski tour that you can sign up for!

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #14: Visit the Bled Christmas Market

Another great reason to visit Lake Bled in the winter is its adorable Christmas Market. It's not quite as big as the one in Ljubljana or other Christmas Markets in Europe, but it is super authentic, and something to look forward to if you plan on visiting Lake Bled in December.

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #15: Check Out the Different Churches

Being located in Europe, it's no surprise that Lake Bled has its fair share of churches. Dotted all around the area, you can find a lot of adorable churches to check out! Some of them you can pop into, and some of them even allow you to go up to the top for great views.

church near Lake Bled

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #16: Dive Into the Wine Culture

On this wine tasting tour you can try 7 different types of wine from various wine regions throughout Slovenia. It is also held in a 100-year old wine cellar, making it an extra special activity for the wine lovers out there. 

Things to Do at Lake Bled, Slovenia #17: Experience the Nearby Attractions

Lake Bled has a ton of great activities right on the lake, but there are also some really great places that are just around the corner! Just minutes away you can visit Vintgar Gorge, Waterfall Pericnek, and Zelenci Nature Reserve, which are all just north of Lake Bled.

Pericnik, waterfalls in Slovenia
Zelenci Nature Reserve, things to do at Lake Bled
things to do in Lake Bled

Lake Bled has a lot of cool nature just north of it.

Amenities at Lake Bled in Slovenia

Unlike some other lakes around Slovenia, Lake Bled is certainly properly prepared for tourism. You can find plenty of restaurants, cafes, and even a small supermarket to shop at that is right across from the lake.

Go into the town itself and you can find the most budget-friendly options for shopping and eating, or you can opt for convenience and find dining and shopping right along the shores of Lake Bled.

While options are a bit limited, we did find a few places that we particularly recommend:

  • Rose Cafe: stunning cafe in a garden with luxury decor and cappuccinos with printed photos on them
  • Bar Planincek: a cozy cafe where the locals go- it also has a great bakery next to it!
  • Public & Vegan 
  • Restavracja 1906: an upscale restaurant with beautiful views and delicious food
cafe at lake bled in Slovenia

Bar Planincek is frequented by locals and is super cozy.

Make sure to try the Bled cake which is particular to this area of Slovenia!

If you're looking for a quick snack, you can also stop by the cart that's right inside the parking lot of Bled Camping. They serve fresh breads, pastries, and local Slovenian specialties.

pastry cart Lake Bled in Slovenia

This cart is a great place to stop for an early morning snack.

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Is it Worth Staying in Bled?

There is so much to do in and around Lake Bled that we definitely think it is worth staying! That being said, if you are on a really tight budget, you may want to consider looking for hotels in Ljubljana.

Lake Bled is a beautiful place to stay, but doesn't have super budget-friendly options. Hotels start as low as $80, and average around $100-$150/night. If you are able to splurge a bit, then we would definitely recommend getting a hotel at Lake Bled.

Where to Stay at Lake Bled in Slovenia

Here are a few of our top recommendations for hotels in Lake Bled, starting from the most budget-friendly options to the most luxurious and unique stays.

Camping at Lake Bled in Slovenia

If you have your heart set on being located at Lake Bled, but don't have the budget to stay in one of the hotels, you're in luck! Right next to Lake Bled there is a massive campsite. Bring your tent, stay in your camper van, or stay in one of the affordable eco-friendly accommodation options. 

We don't have current prices, but do know that they are affordable and there is typically plenty of availability, so you can email them for quotes or to reserve in advance.

Camping at Lake Bled in Slovenia

There is a camp site right next to Lake Bled.

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How Do You Get Around Bled Slovenia?

Now that you all of these great things to do at Lake Bled, let's cover the basics about getting you around to see all of them!

Can You Walk Around Lake Bled in Slovenia?

The circumference of Lake Bled is around 6 km long, and it's actually quite popular to walk around it. The walk itself takes around an hour and half, and many of the nearby activities are able to be reached on foot.

Do I Need a Car in Lake Bled?

If you plan on visiting a lot of places in a little amount of time, then having a car will certainly be helpful. We decided to rent a car for our road trip around Europe and were able to visit a number of incredible places in Slovenia.

If you are just visiting for a quick or not-so-intense trip, then renting a car may not be necessary. But if you are more of an adventurer, and would like to explore nearby locations like Lake Bohinj, Zelenci Nature Reserve, and the Soca River Valley, then we would highly recommend renting a car in Ljubljana.

Rent an E-Bike at Lake Bled

If you'd like a more sustainable and healthier way to explore Lake Bled and its surroundings, another fantastic wake to get around is by renting an E-bike! Rentals are for a full day, and it'll allow you to really explore more areas if you are in town for a short amount of time.

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Is Lake Bled in Slovenia Safe?

Lake. Bled, as well as most places throughout Slovenia are extremely safe! Whether you are traveling with your family, or are a female solo traveler, there is nothing to worry about in regards to safety. People are also extremely friendly, and Slovenias in general were very welcoming every we went.

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Other Things to Know About Visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia

Now you know almost everything you need to know for visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia. But don't go anywhere just yet! We have a few other details to share with you.

Weather at Lake Bled 

Lake Bled experiences all 4 seasons, with hot and sunny summers, and frigid, snowy winters. Being located in the mountains, it is defiitely chillier overall at Lake Bled, so nights can be cool even in the summer months.

The Best Time to Visit Lake Bled in Slovenia

Lake Bled is stunning year round, and has different reasons for visiting in each season. Here is what you can expect:

  • Summer: the best for swimming and long days (but also the most crowded)
  • Fall: beautiful colors, pleasant temperatures, & less crowds (our personal favorite)
  • Winter: the chance to see the lake surrounded with snow which is super magical. There are also winter sports and activities offered, as well as a small Christmas market. This is when Lake Bled in Slovenia has the least amount of people.
  • Spring: pleasant temperatures and beautiful flowers blooming around the lake

Packing For a Trip to Lake Bled in Slovenia

Here are a few things we would suggest you to bring on a trip to Lake Bled in Slovenia:

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Is it Worth Visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia?

It is absolutely worth visiting Lake Bled in Slovenia! While it is certainly a bit more touristy than other places around the country, it really is beautiful and worth checking out.

Our tip is to wake up super early before the crowds get there, that way you'll be able to enjoy the beauty of the lake without it feeling like a tourist trap.

Lake Bled in Slovenia

We suggest starting early to beat the crowds.

How Many Days Do You Need at Lake Bled?

You can easily do Lake Bled in one full day, packing in all of the activities that the area has to offer. Many people decide to do day excursions from Ljubljana, as it is so close to the capital. However, we definitely would recommend at least spending one night in the area, and if you are a slow traveler and really want to relax, then it's a great place to stay for 2 nights.

If you are an adventure-lover, or want to try all of the different activities in the area, then we would suggest spending a full three days in the area.

Lake Bled in Slovenia
Lake Bled in Slovenia
Lake Bled in Slovenia

Lake Bled in Slovenia is definitely a place to add to your bucket list, and one that should be the top of your list for epic places to visit in the country.

Want to see other cool places to visit around the country? Make sure to check out our complete Slovenia travel guide, our Ljubljana travel guide, and our list of 36 awesome places to see in Slovenia. Additionally, we have over 100 other Europe travel guides to check out for nearby destinations.

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