Visiting Ljubljana, yes. But Christmas is a particularly good time to do so. So, if you’re planning to go somewhere for the festive season and enjoy a lively, magical atmosphere, we recommend you visit Slovenia.
In the rest of this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about Ljubljana at Christmas. Enough to whet your appetite? We hope so!
Is it worth visiting Ljubljana in winter?
Ljubljana is a small town. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be one of Europe’s most beautiful capitals… Especially at Christmas time. It’s almost like opening an old storybook.
When it snows, the city reveals all its charm. The cobbled streets, the slightly fanciful architecture – there’s a real sense of enchantment, a real magic… which is further enhanced by the Christmas markets located throughout the city.
So, in our opinion, visiting Ljubljana in winter, at Christmas time… is well worth the effort. One thing’s for sure, if you’re the kind of person who appreciates the magic of the end of the year, you won’t be disappointed.
What to do in Slovenia at Christmas?
Are you in Slovenia for Christmas? There’s no shortage of things to do. First, head for Ljubljana, where you can enjoy the banks of the Ljubljanica River… which will probably be frozen solid.
Have brunch on the spot, discover the city and its many small stores. If you get the chance, don’t hesitate to take part in a free concert. Many events are organized outdoors… But don’t forget to wrap up warm.
Bled, Maribor and Radovjlica
But Slovenia isn’t just the capital. If you’re here for several days or more, we strongly recommend you try out the following:
- Radovljica Christmas market;
- Bled Christmas Market;
- Maribor Christmas Market.
There are numerous stalls selling mulled wine, sweets and candies, as well as creations by local artisans. In some cases, an ice rink may even be available nearby. Perfect for getting a bit of exercise, warming up and shedding those extra pounds.
A third option is to head for Lake Bled. In addition to sumptuous scenery, you’ll be able to enjoy a number of amusing shows, from curling matches to… salsa dancing on ice (yes, you read that right). For those who enjoy a more brutal sport, ice hockey matches are organized on the lake if it’s frozen solid.
Finally, a very popular activity in Slovenia is walking down the street with flaming torches. A sort of torchlight retreat. This is particularly popular in Vrtovin, above Lake Bohinj. In short, the options are endless and you can be sure of never getting bored once you’re there.
Is there a Christmas market in Ljubljana?
Yes, there is a Christmas market in Ljubljana. It takes place on the city’s main square, Prešeren Square. You’ll be amazed by the work done on the lights.
What’s more, the large Christmas tree overhanging the market and the square creates a striking effect of grandeur. So don’t forget to bring your camera.
The Ljubljana Christmas Market opens its doors from November 25 to January 2. As everywhere else, sweets, mulled wine and objets d’art or decorative items, generally made by local craftsmen, will be on sale.
Good to know
The Christmas decorations have been created by local artist Zmago Modic. You can take part in illuminating them on the opening day of the Christmas market. We heartily recommend that you don’t miss a thing!
In addition to the Christmas market, there’s the famous “Ice Kingdom” directly on Kongresni trg. This is actually a hall where works and sculptures on ice have been created by Slovenian and international artists. It’s the perfect place to discover ice and snow from a very interesting artistic angle.
Where to stay in Ljubljana in December?
Are you looking for a simple, inexpensive solution or a place to sleep in the very heart of the Slovenian capital in December, during your visit to the Christmas markets? Discover our article on the best hotels in Ljubljana. You’ll find a great selection of quality hotels, with exceptional services… Accessible to all budgets.
Ljubljana Christmas markets
Visiting Slovenia and organizing a trip there (whether in the form of an organized tour or otherwise) is the best way to discover a European country that’s still relatively unknown, and to have fun with the Christmas markets.
It’s also a guarantee of memorable days out. Drop off your belongings at the hotel, enjoy the local atmosphere, party with the locals and drink fine traditional wines. An exceptional experience in a destination still relatively unknown in Europe.