Ljubljana City Guide

Consider what you know of European capital cities.  Crowded, expensive, dirty, full of tourists, intimidating? In comparison Ljubljana is a breath of fresh air. A capital city that is tourist friendly yet lacking hordes of tourists; a city that’s full of things to do and places to explore yet can be navigated on foot and even condensed into a long weekend; a city that’s modern and cosmopolitan yet retains its own individual charm and character. Though it’s often described as ‘Prague in miniature’ such comparisons don’t do justice to Slovenia’s capital; few stag groups come this way and those that do tend to come to enjoy a mixture of the outdoors life and the relaxed friendly atmosphere of Ljubljana’s old town rather than strip clubs and drinks promotions.

If there was an exam for a capital city Ljubljana would pass with flying colours. But then lots of capital cities have history, culture, good food and great hotels in abundance, so what makes Ljubljana so distinctive? Partly it’s the youthful vitality of the city: during term times the population of Ljubljana swells by ten per cent as thirty thousand students come to study at the city’s university. Young entrepreneurs are starting to make their mark on the city with new start ups in all sectors but especially in new media, design and hospitality.

Metelkova Mesto is an ‘alternative culture centre’ housed in a former barracks. In 1993 a group of young activists campaigned to stop the buildings from being torn down and persuaded the municipal authorities to allow them to use the complex for cultural purposes. Today the district contains bars and night clubs, concert venues and rehearsal rooms, artists’ studios and exhibition space, as well as Celica, a youth hostel in a building that was formerly a prison. Described as a ‘centre for free thinking’, Metelkova Mesto is worth a look if only for the weird and wonderful art that adorns the buildings.

A strong sense of historical heritage and tradition also sets Ljubljana apart: a series of cultural, gastronomic and sporting festivals and events punctuate the year and these are observed and enjoyed as much by the city’s older inhabitants as the young. In November the country comes to the city as Martinovanje is celebrated: this is when the must – the first pressing of the grapes – can officially be called wine. More generally this is a time to give thanks for the produce of the autumn but the biggest buzz is when the new wine arrives in the city’s bars and restaurants. At home families get together to eat a meal of roast goose, red cabbage and mlinci, a kind of thin, dried flat bread which is cut into strips and cooked in broth. It’s becoming more popular now to eat out on St. Martin’s Day and there are lots of restaurants in Ljubljana where tourists can join in the celebrations.

February 8th is Prešeren Day: Franc Prešeren was a nineteenth century Romantic poet, widely acknowledged as the greatest ever Slovene writer. A square in central Ljubljana is named in his honour and on 8th February there are concerts and theatrical performances across the city to commemorate the man who wrote what would become the country’s national anthem. It’s a particularly good day for tourists because admission to all museums and galleries is free. In early March comes ‘the Welcoming of Spring’ when artisans launch wooden clogs containing burning candles onto the Ljubljanica river to gave thanks for no longer having to work by candlelight.

The summer is packed with a varied calendar of events, many of them taking place in the open air; with so many handsome city squares and parks, Ljubljana is the perfect city for such events. The Ljubljana Festival is the summer’s chief event and it has been going for over 60 years. Between the end of June and the beginning of September there are theatrical performances, art exhibitions and musical concerts in venues throughout the city. If this event has a somewhat highbrow feel, then August’s Trnfest might be more appealing; this free of charge arts festival takes place on the streets of Trnovo, a bohemian district on the north bank of the Ljubljanica River and has a relaxed, alternative vibe.

They might have culture by the bucketful but Ljubljana’s active population likes to play hard too and for many that means cycling, hiking or running. The city holds a traditional running marathon as well as a similar event for cyclists. To the north of the city centre Tivoli Park is the green lungs of the city, and every Sunday you’ll see plenty of walkers there tackling the twin hills of Cankar Peak and Siška Hill which together are known as Rožnik. Just forty minutes away by road, Krvavec is the closest ski resort to the capital; it’s also only quarter of an hour from Ljubljana’s Brnik International Airport which means keen skiers can be on the slopes almost as soon as they arrive. Spectator sports are popular and September 2013 saw Ljubljana’s brand new Stožice stadium play host to the final stages of the European Basketball Championships.

With such a high student population it’s only natural that Ljubljana has plenty of places to grab cheap eats but the city’s restaurant scene is buzzing with new restaurants opening all the time. There are increasingly more international cuisines represented but some of the best restaurants are serving traditional Slovenian fare, often re-interpreted with a contemporary twist. Vegetarians, who would once struggle, restricted to a diet of pizza or deep fried cheese, now have lots of choice with several completely meat free eateries in the city. Slovenian ingredients are highlighted in seasonal menus and a number of gastronomic festivals take place annually.

Ljubljana is a city of cafes and in the summer months the whole of the old town becomes one giant pavement cafe as the owners bring out the chairs, tables and sunshades. Slovenians love to stop for a coffee, a wine spritzer or even a beer and to catch up on the gossip; it’s a way of life that’s easy to get used to. On Sunday mornings in summer it feels like the whole town has come out for a walk along the Ljubljanica; after a stroll round the flea-market it’s time to stop for a coffee and an ice cream.

Comparisons with other European cities are easy to make. A wealth of elegant secessionist and baroque buildings gives Ljubljana much in common with other central European cities but Ljubljana has one thing the others don’t have: Jože Plečnik. Born in Ljubljana in 1872, Plečnik studied architecture in Vienna and worked initially in Prague where, among his commissions, he re-modelled the city’s castle. It’s said that the Czechs didn’t take too kindly to this Slovene upstart who came and landed all the best jobs. On his return to Ljubljana in 1921 he was made Professor of Architecture at the university, and set about re-designing the city: as well as some completely new buildings, he oversaw the re-design and renovation of some existing ones, most notably the famous Triple Bridge. Plečnik used the elements of classical architecture such as columns and balustrades and interpreted them in a new way: after only a short time in the city, visitors can usually identify his distinctive style. Highlights of Plečnik’s body of work include the former national stadium at Bežigrad, the magnificent Žale cemetery and the Križanke Summer Theatre, the latter being a former monastery and seat of the Teutonic Knights, and today the headquarters of the Ljubljana Festival. Plečnik’s house, in the Trnovo district, has been preserved as a museum and provides a fascinating insight into the man and his work.

In Ljubljana the old sits comfortably with the new. Building conversions are largely successful and sympathetic, nowhere more so than in the old town. A modern glass funicular links the old town with the castle while a glass footbridge connects Petkovskovo Nabrezje with the market halls, something Plečnik always had in mind but failed to accomplish because of the Second World War. The charm of this little city lies in this peaceful co-existence of the old and new: modernisation continues apace but the old traditions are still important.

Increasing numbers of foreigners live in Slovenia; the university hosts several hundred international Erasmus students each year and the British School of Ljubljana, which teaches all classes in English, has pupils from thirty-eight countries on its roll. English is widely spoken but there are lots of opportunities for foreigners to learn Slovene if they wish, including intensive courses run by the University of Ljubljana. Daily flights between Ljubljana and the United Kingdom make the city a realistic option for re-location or for those thinking about buying a property for holidays. There are also connections to many other major European cities. The city is increasingly popular as a venue for international scientific and academic conferences and international trade fairs meaning that rental potential for investment properties is good. Properties available include classical old town apartments, renovated villas and modern family homes. There are also opportunities to purchase land for building.


If you would like to know more about Property in Ljubljana, you will find more info on this site and as a Regulated Realtor,  we can help you find, the property that best suits your needs in one of the most charming and beautiful cities in Europe

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News headlines

  • Adria to launch Ljubljana to Kiev route

    The Slovenian national carrier Adria Airways is to launch regular flights to the Ukrainian capital from Ljubljana Brnik airport, The route will launch in October and there will be three flights a week on Thursday, Friday and Sunday, with the return flights being on Monday, Friday and Saturday.

    As well as providing a useful link with Ukraine, the route is also expected to be an important springboard to other European destinations from Kiev. 

  • Luton Town to Come to Slovenia for Training Camp

    The English football league club Luton Town, known as the Hatters, are coming to Slovenia in July for a week-long training camp. They players and coaching staff will be based just outside Maribor, at the same place where Scottish side Celtic was based for preseason training.

    Slovenia, and especially Maribor, has been keen to promote itself as a great location for such training events with excellent facilities and accommodation and additional attractions such as sports physio services and wellness centres, in particular, those available at the country’s numerous spa centres

  • Slovenian Music Superstar to Play in the USA

    Vlado Kreslin, one of the best known and most popular Slovenian musicians will play a convert in Cleveland, Ohio on 3rd December. Kreslin, who is often referred to as the ‘Slovenian Bob Dylan’ first came to prominence in the Yugoslavian days, as a member of the 1970s rock band Martin Krpan but his solo incarnation veers more towards the genres of folk-rock. 

    While Kreslin is in the States on a short concert tour, the Cleveland date is particularly special because around 40 percent of Slovene Americans live in the state, the greatest concentration od them in the US, and of them the majority live in the Greater Cleveland area.

  • Ljubljana to Amsterdam flights from April 2017

    Dutch budget carrier Transavia is to launch three weekly flights connected Ljubljana with Amsterdam from April 2017. Tickets are already on sale and start at €29 one way. The flights will take place on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays.

    As well as being an attractive destination in its own right, Amsterdam is a useful hub for flights to destinations all over the world, and especially for those looking for easy access to regional UK airports. 


  • Lendava to bid for European Capital of Culture title

    Lendava in the far east of Slovenia is making an ambitious bid to win the title European Capital of Culture for 2025. 

    Slovenia’s Minister for Culture has endorsed the bid, saying that it represents an important chance to decentralise culture and spread it to small towns, not just to concentrate it in the bigger cities.

    Campaigning proper will begin in earnest in 2019 but a conference has just taken place in the town to get the ball rolling. Organisers say that Lendava will make the bid along with partner towns, citing Croatia’s Čakovec, Austria’s Bad Radkersburg and Hungary’s Szentgotthard as possibilities. 


  • Celtic Football Club Coming to Slovenia

    Despite the Euros being in full swing, it’s that time of year when football supporters start thinking about the new season. How many new signings will their side make and how will those players fit into the existing team? Will they have a good run in the cup, or will they be fighting for survival once again?

    Following an age-old tradition of pre-season tours, this year Glasgow Celtic, one of Scotland’s biggest clubs has chosen Slovenia for its short trip abroad. The brief tour will kick off in Celje on 30 June before heading over the border to play Austria’s Sturm Graz on 3 July. The Bhoys, as they are known, will return to Slovenia to play Olimpija at Ljubljana’s Stožice Stadium on 6 July and the final match will take place at the Ljudski vrt in Maribor on 9 July.

    Celtic have met NK Maribor already: in 2014 they faced each other in a play-off for entry to the Uefa Champions League, and after the two legs Maribor came out the victors, winning on aggregate 1-2.

    This time, Celtic will be led by their new manager Brendan Rodgers who previously managed Liverpool FC.

  • Slovenia Estates Comes To Kobarid

    We’ve opened a new Slovenia Estates office in Kobarid, in the Soča Valley. This beautiful area has long been popular with Slovenian families as well as holiday makers and second home owners, and we are delighted to be able to based in Kobarid so we can better meet the needs of sellers and buyers in the far west of Slovenia.

  • Plečnik chair sells for 40,000 Euro

     A chair designed by Slovenia’s most celebrated architect Jože Plečnik has been sold at auction for over €40,000 and returned to its original home at the same time.

    Plečnik is usually associated with Ljubljana, having overseen the redesign of the large parts of the city in the first half of the twentieth century and his distinctive style is easy to spot. However, he was also responsible for a major reworking of Prague Castle in the Czech capital between 1921 and 1934 and this chair was part of that project, having been designed to sit in the study of the President at the time, Tomas Garrigue Masaryk.

    Plečnik actually had three of these chairs made but only one managed to stay in Prague Castle throughout the Communist period. In fact, for a long time curators there thought that chair was one of a kind until a second chair was returned to Prague Castle in a bad condition in 2006, and they were delighted when this third chair turned up at auction. 

  • Ljubljana to Warsaw Six Flights Weekly

    From 1 March flights will commence between Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport to Warsaw. There will be six flights weekly and they will be operated by Polish carrier LOT. Flight time is less than two hours and Warsaw gives Slovenian passengers a useful connection for onward travel to a variety of destinations including northern Europe and Scandinavia and even the United States.

  • New Bled Office

    We have opened a new office in the centre of Bled. This will serve as our base in the Bled/Bohinj/Kranjska Gora areas. The office is situated in the main shopping centre on the first floor next to Gallus Pizzeria. Lots of lovely properties from the area are displayed in the window!

  • We have opened an office in The Old Town

    We are pleased to annouce we have opened a new office in the heart of Ljubljana’s Old Town on Gornji Trg 1. We have shop front space so lots of lovely properties in the window. Please come and visit us whenever you can!

  • Slovenia real estate increases in popularity

    This year we have seen a marked increase in foreigners interested to buy Slovenian rela estate. Buyers from both the West of Europe, Russia and the US are taking advantage of low real estate price due to the Crisis in Europe before any rises are seen. Most popular areas are Ljubljana, Bled & Portoroz and with more and more sellers becoming very flexible on asking prices its fast becoming an attractive overseas destination for foreigners looking for both their own property as well as a secure long term investment

  • Slovenia Property Blog page

    We have now set up a new Blog page with news articles on Slovenian real estae, topical issues, news and featured & bargain properties. We will be updating the page each week with stories, so please check the page out for up to date information on Real estate in Slovenia. Click HERE to go to the page


  • Ljubljana Apartments moving faster

    This year we have noticed a marked increase in the both the number of enquiries about Ljubljana real estate as well as overall transactions, we ourselves have sold more this year than last and while generally it is still the foreign buyer who is buying enquiries from locals have also increased slowly. The feeling locally is prices in the city may have reached their low point and with faint signs of a recovery in Europe generally that feeling may well be borne out.

  • Slovenia real estate bargains

    There is more and more excellent value real estate in Slovenia now, with local owners unable to finance renovations or improvements themselves, there is a good supply of property in need of renovation at some very attractive prices. With Slovenia Estates project managing renovations, a project need not be a headache but a very worthwhile investment. Contact us for the best bargain real estate in Slovenia on the market.

  • We have moved

    We have moved to lovely new offices in Prule, the Old part of Ljubljana. With increased space, interiors designed by JVBdesignworks, and a fantastic shop front location we are looking forward to welcoming new & old faces to Žabjak 2, Ljubljana 1000.

  • Slovenia Self Catering

    Slovenia self catering accommodation is extremely popular and gaining more popularity as competition increases amongst available self catering houses and apartments and quality rises. We have some delightful self catering properties in Slovenia for vacation rental. They can be found here . We also know of many more available so contact us if you wish to rent a house or apartment in Slovenia for an unforgettable holiday.

  • Ljubljana Apartment Sales

    Further to the recent News we posted on “Ljubljana Sells Best” we wanted to provide more information on Ljubljana real estate. The sales are nearly always apartments and always in the centre of town. The demand from foreign buyers for houses in Ljubljana is low as they want to be located very centrally and this means apartments. Ljubljana villas in for example the Rozna Dolina area are also priced at a level that is too high for most Slovenia real estate investors.

  • Ljubljana Sells best

    This year we have sold more real esate in Ljubljana than any other year. It seems investors from various parts of the globe see Ljubljana as perfect place to buy. Small, neat and improving year on year, with a fabulous centre and old town and with prices at a very competitive level. The most popular areas being the historic old town and the centre, and despite no cars being allowed in the old town, buyers seem to accept this with the positives that come with that. See our Ljubljana real estate section for more details.

  • Portoroz real estate on the up

    We are experiencing a marked increase in enquiries and sales of real estate in Portoroz. The buyers are mainly from Russia and Ukraine, wanting Villas with sea views. Prices of Portoroz real estate remain high but have come down considerably over the past few years. Real estate in Portoroz is in short demand and quality property goes fairly quickly if priced correctly.

  • Luxury Hisa Zeenia for Slovenia holiday rental

    We are pleased to announce the availabilty of this wonderful, magical House for rent in Slovenia. Hisa Zeenia is a truly magnificent house available for a Holiday rental in Slovenia all year round. With outdoor Natural swimming pool and 7 bedrooms, landscaped gardens and all located in the stunning Soca Valley its one of the best holiday properties to rent in slovenia. Click here for more

  • Prekmurje Property

    We are seeing a marked increase in the Prekmurje region again. Both Slovenians and foreigners are enquiring about property in Prekmurke, especially old style houses with some land. Renovation projects remain popular and views a must. Prices have come down since the crisis and with the Euro falling it has become a very attractive area to look at.

  • New section here

    As you can see this is a new section we have just added, to keep our customers up to date with whats going on with Elite and real estate here in Slovenia. It will be regularly updated.

  • A Bargain!

    Does it get any cheaper than this for a renovation project, a lovely village, a quiet street, some land all for €25000! Click here

  • New Properties added

    We have been out and about over the past few weeks seeing and adding new properties to our website. Over the next few weeks many more will be added so its a good idea to register for updates if you wish to be kept informed of whats new in Slovenia real estate.

  • Another Beauty – Karst Project

    We are pleased to announce another superb development in the popular Karst region. Beautiful, modern villas in a rural setting, super views and highly energy efficient, these represent Slovenia real estate at its best. For details click here, a full presentation of visuals will also be found here. For more details just contact us.

  • Lipica Villas

    Together with a partner agency we are soon to be launching a beautiful new development in Lipica, just opposite the entrance to the famous Lipica Estate where the famous Lipizzaner horses are from. This represents Slovenia real estate at its finest…Click here for a sneak preview

  • Summer Here!

    The good weather has arrived just in time for the holidays and the three public holiday days here in Slovenia. Blue skies 26 degrees, everything green its a very beautiful time!


  • Good Weather means enquiries

    Its always interesting to see the corallation between good weather and increased enquiries for Slovenia real estate. Over the past few weeks when its been cold and rainy enquiries were low, now people see the sun is coming back and the enquiries have risen. Forget the moon! We are ruled by the sun!

  • Success in Moscow

    We are happy to report that our attendance at the Moscow Real Estate fair was a great success, we were the only representation Slovenia had and that proved effective. There was much interest in Slovenia especially in the €150-€250,000 price range. Many of the visitors to the Croatia stands were also coming our way so its good to know that many consider Slovenia as an alternative to Croatia.

  • Soca Interest

    Interest in the Soca region of Slovenia has reached the highest level in two years. People have always loved this area for Slovenia real estate for its beauty but it seems people are really seeing all the benefits of this popular area and preferring it to other areas.

  • Karst Interest, new stone villas

    We have seen a marked increase in enquiries for the Karst (Kras) region of Slovenia, we will soon be selling stone villas in a new exclusive development in Lipica, home of the famous Lipizzaner horses. We will publish more information once we start the marketing campaign

  • Moscow Fair

    We will be promoting 4 fabulous new developments at the fair as well as all our beautiful properties on our books. As well as meeting all the agencies we work with and several we will hopefully be working with in the future.

  • New Site Comments

    We have recieved many kind comments about our re designed site, Thank you to all those that sent emails with such great comments. We also received some great suggestions about what people would like to see on the site and we will be working on including many of these suggestions!

  • Katja to get Licence

    Our Office general manager Katja Keber is studying for her real estate licence, let’s hope she gets it soon!

    Katja has been with SE for 4 years and has a great understanding of how Slovenia real estate Market works so we expect her to pass first time!

  • Off to Moscow

    The SE team will be attending the International Real Estate Fair in Moscow in April, we will be promoting selected properties and projects on our books.

    The show is Russia’s largest real estate show and in the past Slovenia real estate has not been presented before, so a first for Slovenia and Elite!

Contact us

    +386 (0) 51 622 444

We are at your service regarding any real estate related questions. Feel free to call us between 8am and 5pm.