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One of the Most Underrated Countries in Europe: Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting

  • Post last modified:February 15, 2024
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Slovenia is worth visiting for a number of reasons, and has become one of our favorite countries in the world!


Green rolling hills, vibrant blue waters, and picturesque mountaintop chapels are just some of the incredible things you can find in this underrated country. Throw in friendly locals and delicious food, and you've got yourself a true gem of a destination.


Not only are we going to share why Slovenia is worth visiting, but we're going to share all of the details you need to know for when you go there. Our complete guide is here to inspire you, as well as help you have an unforgettable trip in this incredible country.

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Where in Slovenia in Europe?

Slovenia is located in the heart of Central Europe, connecting Western Europe and Eastern Europe. It borders the alps, hugs the Mediterranean Sea, and borders a few different other countries as well.


Slovenia shares borders with Italy on its west, Austria in the north, Hungary to its north east, and Croatia to its south east.

where Slovenia is located

Slovenia is located in the heart of Europe.


What is the Best Way to Get to Slovenia?

The best way to get to Slovenia is by getting a flight, train, or bus to Ljubljana, which is the capital of Slovenia. We really think Slovenia is worth visiting by car, so taking a road trip is also a great way to get there.

 

What Airport Do You Fly Into for Slovenia?

In order to get to Slovenia via flight you'll have to fly into Ljubljana. The airport of Ljubljana is a small one, with limited flights. The cities which fly direct to Ljubljana include Amsterdam, Belgrade, Brussels, Cologne, Dubai, Farnborough, Frankfurt, Geneva, Groningen, Istanbul, Kalamata, Leipzig, Linz, London, Munich, Nis, Paris, Pisa, Podgorica, Prague,  Sarajevo, Skopje, Venice, Vilnius, Warsaw, Zurich, and Zweibrucken.


Other nearby cities you can fly to in order to easily get to Slovenia are Treviso, Venice, Trieste, Rijeka, Zagreb, or Graz.


Taking a Bus to Slovenia

If you do plan on flying to another airport outside of Slovenia, here are the buses you can take from each city:

How Do You Get to Slovenia From the US?

As there are no direct flights to Slovenia from the US, the easiest way to get to Slovenia from the US is by flying into Venice. You can then take a 3 hour bus ride from Venice to Ljubljana, or you can rent a car in Venice.


Taking a Bla Bla Car to Slovenia

The first time I went to Slovenia I actually took a Bla Bla Car, which is a carpooling app that is very popular in Europe. If you are coming from a small city, then this can be a good option, as drivers are often offered by the app to stop along their way to pick up passengers. This can save you both time and money!


Renting a Car and Driving to Slovenia

This last time visiting Slovenia we were doing a road trip around Europe, and were coming from Venice. You can easily rent a car from any airport that you fly into. Just make sure that you purchase a vignette, which is a pass needed to use the toll roads in Slovenia.


Vignettes are needed in various countries in the area such as AustriaSwitzerlandHungary, and Slovakia. So make sure to purchase your vignette online before going, to avoid any fines.


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Entry Requirements for Slovenia

Now that you know how to get to Slovenia, let's quickly cover the entry requirements for going.


Visa Entry Requirements for Slovenia

As Slovenia is part of both the EU and the Schengen Zone, there are the same rules and regulations as the other countries in these areas. People who are from the EU have free access to work and travel in Slovenia without any issues. Those who are not a part of the EU, but don't need a Schengen Visa, can enter without paperwork, but will need to adhere to the 90/180 rule.


The 90/180 Rule

All countries who belong to the Schengen Zone have free travel amongst eachother. That means that tourists can visit a total of 90 days within the Schengen Zone. This is important to know, because if you go to other countries that are in the Schengen Zone before Slovenia, you will have to subtract those days of travel allowance.


For example: you are going on a road trip, and spend 75 days traveling through France, Spain, and Italy (which are all in the Schengen Zone). This means you now only have 15 days left in the Schengen Zone, or days that you could stay in Slovenia. After leaving Slovenia, if you have used all 90 of these days, you will then have to spend 90 days outside of all Schengen countries before you can re-enter. The 90/180 rule states that you are able spend 90 days in the Schengen Zone within a 180-day period.


We spend a lot of time in Europe each year, so we always use the Schengen Visa Calculator to make sure that we stay within the allowed time period. (It is a serious offense if you even spend 91 days within a 180-day period, so it's crucial that you make sure to stay in compliance).


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Local Adjustments for Visiting Slovenia

When traveling to a new country (especially around Europe), things can get pretty confusing! That's why we always add a "local adjustments" area to each of our guides, which share some of the relevant details for visiting, such as the language, currency used, or how much you should tip. Here's what you need to know for visiting the country of  Slovenia.


What Language is Spoken in Slovenia?

The official language in Slovenia is Slovenian, which is a Slovak language. If you travel to some of the Balkan countries such as Croatia, Serbia, or Montenegro, you will notice they sound very similar, and that they have a lot of the same words in their languages.


Is English Widely Spoken in Slovenia?

We found that a lot of people do speak English throughout Slovenia, particularly in Ljubljana and touristy places. The only places where people didn't really speak English were in the very small villages. People are very friendly though, and we had no issues getting help from locals when we needed it.


Currency: Do They Use Euro in Slovenia?

The currency used in Slovenia is the euro.


Is Slovenia a Cheap Destination?

Slovenia is a pretty cheap destination! While countries like Austria, Italy, and Croatia seem to keep raising their prices, Slovenia remains quite affordable. Most tourist attractions are either free to visit, or have just a small fee to enter, and you can also find budget-friendly hotels and places to eat. This is another reason that we think Slovenia is worth visiting!


Outlets: What Plug Type is Used in Slovenia?

Slovenia uses the same outlets as the rest of Europe, which are for plug types types C, E, & F. The standard voltage in Slovenia is 220 V with a frequency of 50 Hz.


Is the Water OK to Drink in Slovenia?

The tap water in Slovenia is perfectly safe to drink. We suggest bringing a reusable water to fill up, and to ask for tap water in restaurants rather than purchasing bottled water.


Tipping Culture in Slovenia

The tipping culture in Slovenia is not one that is set in stone. Locals sometimes simply leave the change, but you can tip up to 10% of the bill if you feel like you have received really good service.

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The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia

Now that you know the basics for visiting, it's time to show you why Slovenia is worth visiting.

Don't have time to read the whole article and want to save it for later? Just pin it!

Why Slovenia is worth visiting pin
Why Slovenia is worth visiting pin
Why Slovenia is worth visiting pin

Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting

Before we jump into the best places to visit in Slovenia, we'll give you a quick insight to why we love this country so much.


Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting Reason #1: The Landscapes

Slovenia is a gorgeous country! It has turquoise waters, beautiful mountains, and rolling green hills. You seriously can't drive for more than a few minutes without incredible views.


why Slovenia is worth visiting
why Slovenia is worth visiting
Zelenci Nature Reserve, why Slovenia is worth visiting
why Slovenia is worth visiting

Slovenia is worth visiting for its stunning landscape that it has to offer.


Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting Reason #2: The Food

While the neighboring countries around Slovenia are known for their food (Italy and Croatia for example), Slovenia really has some incredible food as well! To learn more about the cuisine, keep reading, or you can also skip to that part directly.


Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting Reason #3: The Prices

The nearby countries to Slovenia are all pretty pricey! Italy, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Austria, and Croatia are all much more expensive than Slovenia. Out of the entire region, this country has the most affordable rates for meals and activities.


Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting Reason #4: The Accessibility 

There are so many fun things to do in Slovenia, and so much of it is very easily accessible. Driving distances are short, and have parking lots right next to them, or only requirea 5-10 minute walk. This makes exploring Slovenia super easy, and you can see a lot in a little amount of time. It's also a bonus for those that are e that aren't in great shape, are short on time, or have limited mobility.


waterfall in Slovenia
Why Slovenia is worth visiting pin
Zelenci nature reserve

Each of these places take just 5 minutes to reach!


Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting Reason #5: The Lack of Crowds

While some of the neighboring countries are completely packed with tourists, Slovenia has remained kind of under the radar. We even visited certain places and had locals utterly shocked that we were there! Having a lack of crowds really allowed us to enjoy some places much more, and it made our experiences feel much more authentic.

why Slovenia is worth visiting - the lack of crowds

Slovenia is much less crowded than the surrounding countries.

Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting Reason #6: The People

Meeting locals is one of the best parts of traveling, and we had so many positive experiences with Slovenians! Some people in the neighboring countries tend to be much grumpier, particularly in the touristy areas. This is because they are stripped of their culture and quite frankly get sick of over tourism.


Luckily we never felt that way in Slovenia, and people were genuinely so sweet and helpful, even those that didn't speak English!


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia

There are so many great places to visit in Slovenia! We're going to write a whole new article to detail each waterfall, viewpoint, and hidden gem to look out for. However, here is a general list of the best places to visit in Slovenia, so you can start planning an epic trip.


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #1: Ljubljana

Ljubljana is the capital of Slovenia, and is the perfect place to base yourself for a trip to Slovenia. Located in the center of the country, it's super easy to do day trips to most of the highlights in the country, and it's the best place for nightlife and a variety of restaurants.


The city center itself is super small, and can easily be done in just one day! That being said, we definitely think it is worth visiting Ljubljana, and even if you don't want to base yourself there, it's still. great place to start or end your trip around Slovenia.

Ljubljana, best places to visit in Slovenia
Ljubljana, best places to visit in Slovenia
Ljubljana, best places to visit in Slovenia
Ljubljana, best places to visit in Slovenia

Ljubljana is one of the best places to base yourself while visiting Slovenia.


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #2: Lake Bled

Lake Bled is the absolute icon of Slovenia, and definitely the most famous spot in the entire country. This stunning lake itself makes it worth visiting Slovenia.


The fairytale lake is known for it's notable island in the middle with a church. There is a castle overlooking lake Bled, a beautiful viewpoint from a short hike, and you can also rent boats around it. If you have one day in Slovenia, then let it be a visit to Lake Bled.

Lake Bled, why Slovenia ia worth vsiiting
Lake Bled, why Slovenia is worth visiting
Lake Bled, why Slovenia is worth visiting

Here are a few popular tours to Lake Bled:


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #3: Lake Bohinj

While tourists always flock to Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj is just around the corner, and just as beautiful! The first time I visited it was simply mesmerizing with the snow surrounding it. Unfortunately the second time we went the weather wasn't in our favor. Apparently waiting until the late morning though is when the clouds typically clear, so make plans to go closer to midday.

Bohinj, Why Slovenia is worth visiting

Here are some tours that go to Lake Bohinj:


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #4: Lake Jasper

One of the most underrated lakes in Slovenia is certainly Lake Jasper. With deep blue waters and mountains surrounding it, this place is extremely magical.


There is actually an incredible hotel located right on the lake which is beautifully lit at night, and also the perfect place to enjoy a peaceful morning.

Lake Jasper, why Slovenia is worth visiting

Lake Jasper is the most underrated lake in Slovenia.

The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #5: Soca River Valley

One of our favorite places in Slovenia is the Soca River Valley. The river running through it has a bright turquoise color, and there are plenty of places you can go for a refreshing dip, or even jump off small cliffs if you dare.


There are a ton of fun places to enjoy the beautiful nature in the Soca River Valley. We had to do a ton of research to find the best spots through. Buy us a coffee and we'll share the exact coordinates of three of our favorite Soca River Valley locations!


Soca River Valley, why Slovenia is worth visiting
Soca River Valley, why Slovenia is worth visiting
Soca River Valley, why Slovenia is worth visiting


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #6: Piran

Piran is the prettiest town on the Slovenian coast. With it's bright orange roofs contrasting the turquoise waters, it looks very similar to a lot of the beautiful coastal towns of Croatia, and is definitely one of the best places to visit in Slovenia.


The Best Places to Visit in Slovenia #7: Maribor

Maribor is the second largest city in Slovenia, and is located quite far from the rest of the top places to visit in the country. The beautiful old town perched on a riverside and the wine culture are two reasons to add Maribor to your Slovenian bucket list.



Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting: Local Food & Drink

Another reason that Slovenia is worth visiting is for their great food! It has an interesting mix of flavors, with a lot of similarities to Austria and Hungary.


Slovenia has a lot of great stews, soups, meats, and pastas. Pumpkin oil is a big staple in the country, as well as different types of honey and truffle. They also have a lot of delicious desserts, with each region having their own specialty.


Another thing we loved, is that unlike Italy, Austria, and some of the countries nearby, Slovenia actually serves a proper breakfast including cheese, bread, eggs, and vegetables!


breakfast in Slovenia
cake in Slovenia

Getting Around Slovenia

Now that you know the best places to see in Slovenia, let's dive into the best way to navigate around the country.


What is the Easiest Way to Get Around Slovenia?

Slovenia is worth visiting and experiencing by driving. This is because there are so many places out in nature that would be difficult to get to without a car, and a car will allow you to really enjoy the hidden gems off the side of the road. Slovenia is super scenic, so it's incredible to simply drive around and stop whenever you want.

 

Is it Easy to Get Around Slovenia Without a Car?

If you don't have a car, you can definitely make it by public transportation to some of the major tourist hot spots. However, if you don't have a car and want to experience some of the hidden gems of the country, it may be a bit more difficult to do so.


Here are a few popular buses around the country you can take:

Another option is to base yourself in the capital, and then sign up for tours that leave from there visiting other areas of Slovenia.


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Where Should I Base Myself in Slovenia?

Slovenia is a small country, so you can actually base yourself right in the capital and do days trips from Ljubljana. This is a great idea for those who don't want to move from place to place, and be able to appreciate the nights in the capital. Ljubljana is also located in the middle of the country, making it no more than a 1-2 hour drive from pretty much anywhere in the country.


We decided to spend each night in a different place, to be able to save on gas and experience each area more in depth. If you'd like to do this, then some of the other places we would suggest staying are Lake Bled, Lake Bohinj, or Lake Jasna. Piran is also a nice coastal town near Croatia, and Maribor is a great base for those wanting to explore the north east of the country.


Unique Places to Stay in Slovenia

Here are a few fun places to stay around the country to add to your bucket list:

Lake Bled.where to stay in Slovenia

Why Slovenia is Worth Visiting: Safety in the Country

When traveling somewhere new, it's always important to know about the safety. We definitely think another reason Slovenia is worth visiting is because it is a super safe and friendly country.


Is Slovenia Safe for Solo Female Travelers?

Slovenia is completely safe for solo female travelers! In fact, the first time I went I was traveling as a solo female and I not only felt super safe, but met a ton of great people around the country.


Is Slovenia Friendly to Tourists?

Unlike the neighboring country of Austria, Slovenia is super friendly to tourists! The locals were so sweet and helpful everywhere we went, really making Slovenia worth visiting even more. We loved the people of Slovenia, and felt such a difference when traveling there.


Whenever we would go places outside the typical tourist hot spots, the people working would be so intrigued, wondering why we were visiting. We met some of the best people of our travels throughout Slovenia, and we really feel that they embrace tourism, rather than taking advantage of it.


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Other Things to Know About Visiting Slovenia

Now that you know all of the amazing reasons that Slovenia is worth visiting, and the details for getting around, let's dive into the final things you should know!


What is the Weather Like in Slovenia Year Round?

Slovenia experiences all four seasons, and each one has a different reason for why Slovenia is worth visiting at each time of year.


Summers are hot and sunny and winters are cold and snowy. The spring experiences pleasant temperatures with flowers blooming, and the fall sees beautiful colors from the leaves changing.


Slovenia has a lot of mountains, so it can definitely get a bit colder in certain areas, and early in the mornings there is a lot of fog and dew (particularly in the autumn).


eerie morning in Slovenia
eerie morning in Slovenia