Zivjo! Welcome to Slovenia. Known as ‘Europe in Miniature’, tiny Slovenia has a huge heart and a wealth of diversity. The soaring Julian Alps capture a touch of Switzerland, the radiating coastline oozes Mediterranean charm, and Bled’s island church appears to have come straight out of a fairytale. The mountainous backdrop, stunning lake, and impressive cliff-top fortress all combine to make Bled a wonderful place to visit and a delight of Slovenia. Ease into things with a welcome meeting (usually taking place at 6pm – please look out for a message near reception), where you’ll get acquainted with the rest of the group. The evening is spent at leisure exploring the streets of Bled. Sit back and take in the postcard-perfect views before you get active this week. Tonight perhaps head out as a group for a meal at a traditional restaurant.
After breakfast, join the group for an orientation walk (1hour) through the picturesque town of Bled. With its emerald-coloured lake, complete with a church on an island right in the middle of it, dense green mountains and rocky cliff tops. It’s hard to take a bad photo here. In the late morning take a short bus journey to Lake Bohinj (approximately 30 minutes), the largest permanent glacial lake in the country. Here you’ll take the cable car to the top of Mt Vogel, located within Triglav National Park. The upper station lies above 1,500 metres, from where you'll enjoy a hike along lush trails, looking down to the valley where deep green meets endless blue. Depending on weather conditions you will head south towards the peak of Šija. In Bohinj are quite a few restaurants with good traditional food to try for lunch. We return to Bled for the evening. Notes: The trail will be chosen according to weather conditions and the ability of the group.
Start the day with a hearty breakfast before heading to Vintgar Gorge. The journey takes 20minutes by local bus. The Radovna river cuts the Vintgar gorge deep between the hills of Hom and Boršt. The gorge is flanked by steep slopes overgrown with beech forests. We take a walk around the gorge as the trail leads us over wooden bridges and Žumr’s galleries. The scenery is breathtaking. Depending on the group wishes we can have a picnic at the gorge or a late lunch back in Bled. Back in Bled in the afternoon, soothe weary bones with a trip to the Živa Wellness Centre for three hours of divine bliss, soaking in the thermal pools.
Today is a free day for you to explore all that Bled and the surrounding area has to offer. Still want to be active? Perhaps cycle the 6 kilometre bike path that circles the lake. This scenic ride passes some impressive villas, mostly from the beginning of the 19th century, including the former residence of ‘soft dictator’ Josip Tito. Perhaps enjoy an Emerald River Adventure within Triglav National Park, or try your hand at canyoning. Maybe wander around Bled at your own pace and take a dip in the lake. An option not to be missed is a Pletna boat ride (a wooden, awning-covered boat rowed by a special oarsman) to the island on Lake Bled – climb up the 99 steps to St Mary's Church and ring the wishing bell. Be sure to seek out the famous Bled cream cake, which isn’t hard; nearly every cafe and cake shop in town claims that theirs is the best.
Travel by private minivan to Lipica where we visit the home of the famous Lipizzaner horses, explore the grounds of the famous farm and be captivated by their stories and the importance of the Lipizzaner horses in Slovenian history. After lunch we will head to the Postojna Caves, a wonderfully impressive cave network, the second longest cave system in Slovenia and is without a doubt one of the most impressive cave systems in the world. It's 24 kilometers of passages, galleries and magnificent halls offering a unique experience of the underground world. We view this magnificent cave via train. The temperature in the caves is around 8 to 10 degrees Celsius so dress appropriately. We will return to out hotel in Bled for the evening.
Pack your swimming gear and towel for a rafting trip on the Sava Dolinka River. After a short drive from Bled you will enter the river at Piskovca. A professional river guide will lead the group through rapids, gates and pools. You’ll spend around 1.5 hours on the beautiful water of the river that diagonally crosses the whole country. You’ll pass alpine scenery, cypress tree, and navigate giant moss-covered boulders and fun rapids all the way down river to Lancovo. No doubt you’ll want to jump into the fresh water. From Lancovo it’s a short drive back to Bled. After your active morning, maybe reward yourself with another cream cake. Invented in the kitchens of Hotel Park in 1953 by Ištvan Lukačevič, chef of the hotel's confectionery store, more than 10 million kremsnita have been baked at the hotel's patisserie since its invention. Later, maybe dine on sausages or fresh fish with a side of the local vino. Luckily, Slovenia only exports a small amount of their wine, keeping the best local.
After breakfast take part in an exciting Escape Room experience in Bled. This relatively new phenomenon is where groups of friends or families enter a room and need to solve clues to discover the key that will allow them to escape! It's a great opportunity to work together as a family to see how quickly you can get out. The afternoon is free to discuss tactics, debate who cracked the puzzle first and who deserved to stay locked in the room, perhaps over another of Bled's sweet delicacies.
This trip comes to an end after breakfast. If you would like to extend your stay in Bled we are happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). Please speak to your booking agent.