Ever since seeing a snowy photograph of Lake Bled, I’ve wanted to visit it. Slovenia has always seemed like one of those faraway places that you read about but aren’t quite sure exactly where it is. Well, we now know, living less than 15 minutes from one of the border crossings from Croatia into Slovenia. We’ve visited Ljubljana – and loved it – a few times, and even hop across the border to do supermarket shopping when we fancy a change.
So, as it’s now so close and definitely no longer faraway, we decided, after a weekend in Ljubljana, to head a little futher north and visit Lake Bled. One thing that we absolutely love about Slovenia is that it is like one big national park – the main roads cut through amazing landscapes of pine forests, mountains and alpine style villages. It is a stunning landscape. And the journey up to the lake does give you an idea of the beauty that lies ahead.
Slovenia is a very outdoorsy country – if you’re into walking, cycling, hiking, swimming, skiing, this is the country for you. All around Lake Bled, your every outdoor whim can be catered for. But sometimes we all need a little bit of luxury and luckily, Slovenia seems to do this with the same ease as it does sporting pursuits. So, the very cute town of Bled, right on the shores of the lake, is the perfect place if you want to combine the two. Cycle routes loop around the lake. A variety of boating activities take place on the lake – kayaking seems to be very popular, but if you prefer your rowing to be done for you, then there are numerous pleasure cruisers (of the small variety) ambling up & down the lake.
The shores of the lake are also lined with beautiful hotels and restaurants – if this was Lake Como or Lake Garda, we’d have felt a bit out of place, and most definitely put off by the eye watering prices. But this is Bled, in Slovenia – and it would seem everyone is welcome. We ate at Vila Prešeren, overlooking the lake, and had some seriously good food and wine for just over 30 euros. While we were there, a group of Austrian bikers arrived, people on bicycles just parked up outside, and people who were seriously wealthy (the cars gave them away!), all sat on the terrace, enjoying the amazing views.
We visited a few weeks back, in early September, so it was still warm and sunny – no snow capped peaked this time. But we were so impressed that we’ve booked a two night stay in early November, so who knows? We may waken up to the view in the first picture above…