There are some places in the world where you want to return again and again! For me, Slovenia is exactly such a place – the country of incredibly beautiful nature, very nice climate and inviting atmosphere.
45 km from Slovenian capital Lyublyana, at the foot of the Julian Alps, there is an amazing lake Bled with a small island in the middle and the old castle on the top of a steep rock over the lake.
You can get there from Lublyana by train, bus or a car, and there are also direct flights from Moscow, Venice and Verona.
Photographer on Lake Bled
What to see on Lake Bled
The Chapel of St. Mary on the Island
Right in the middle of the lake there is an island with St. Mary Chapel.
You can reach the island by a traditional Slovenian boat called “pletna” for 14 €. There are 99 steps from the waterline up to the church.
The church on the island is considered the main landmark of Lake Bled. Many couples choose this pace for their wedding, so, wedding ceremonies are very frequent in St. Mary Chapel.
Following the old tradition, the groom should carry the bride along all the 99 steps to prove his readiness for the marriage.
There is a “wish bell” in the church. To move the bell you have to pull the rope tied to the bell clapper.
According to legend this bell was made by the order of the Pope of Rome after he heard the story about the widow, the mistress of the castle. In her grieving she spent all her gold to make a small golden bell for the Chapel on the Island. But when it was being carried over the lake to the island it sank together with the boat during the storm. After this accident the poor woman went to Rome to stay in a monastery and that’s when the Pope was told this sad story.
Rising right from the top of a cliff, there is an ancient XI-th century castle. It is not easy to walk up there, but, trust me, it is worth it.
The castle had been reconstructed and now houses a museum, few souvenir shops and cafes, but the most exciting is, that from the castle walls, there is a fabulous view on the lake and surrounding lands.
Wine cellar at Bled Castle
On the territory of the castle there is a wine cellar, where a monk sells a homemade wine.
In this wine cellar, you can personally fill in a bottle of wine from a barrel, seal it and have a certificate confirming the origin of the wine and the date of bottling, with a real sealing wax seal. Very interesting and exciting process!
You can either fill in a bottle of wine from a barrel yourself (15 € for white and 18 € for red), or you can just buy a bottle of Slovenian wine:
Sparkling wines - 15 €
White wines - from 8 to 30 €
Red wines - from 7 to 30 €
Old Printing House in Bled Castle
While walking around the lower courtyard of the castle, you should definitely visit an old printing house, where you can watch and even participate in the printing of texts, using an ancient technology with wooden press machine.
You can even personally print a certificate confirming your stay in the castle on the ancient paper, which is made using this medieval technology.
This process is not only a great pleasure, but also an opportunity to get a wonderful souvenir for long memories!
Bled Castle restaurant
A great way to finish your walk around the Bled Castle is a dinner on the terrace of the restaurant that offers a magnificent view of the lake and the Alps.
They serve modern interpretations of traditional Slovenian dishes and drinks. And I should say that their desserts are just amazing!
Table reservation is possible only in advance. It is not possible to book the table at the same day.
The restaurant is open daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Address of the restaurant in Bled Castle
Grajska cesta, 61
Booking a table in the restaurant
+386 (0) 4 620 34 44
What to taste in Bled
Blejska kremšnita. Kremna rezina.
Once you are in Bled you cannot miss out tasting the traditional dessert "Blejska Kremna Rezina" or "Kremshnita".
The word "resina" is translated from Slovenian as "slice". This cake is made of two types of cream and puff pastry and resembles the "Napoleon" dessert.
For the traditional "Kremshnita" the puff dough should be rolled out 7 times and left overnight, so that in the morning it becomes even softer. The bottom layer of the dough is smeared with custard boiled for 7 minutes and combined with whipped egg whites. On top of this cream there is a layer of whipped cream and puff dough.
You can try "Kremshnita" in any restaurant or cafe.
They are absolutely the same everywhere since they are made in the same bakery and are delivered to all the cafes and restaurants in Bled. The price would be different only depending on the level of the place.
Things to do in Lake Bled
Summer sledding in Straza Bled park (Poletno sankanje Straža Bled).
If you are looking for some delightful impressions, I recommend you to visit the extreme park Sentinel Bled and have a ride on a sled.
If you have never did sledding before, it is better to take at least 2 trips, because one time is only enough to understand how to manage the sled.
This type of attraction is not scary at all, but more like a great fun, offering a beautiful view of the lake as well. The sled has a lever that allows you to control speed and brake, if needed.
Both children and adults ride on sleds. After the trip, you can buy a photo of your ride at the ticket office, indicating the speed of your sled.
April-May - on weekends from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
June - daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
July-Aug - daily from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
+ night sledding Thu-Sat from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m.
Sep-Oct,15 - on weekends from 11 a.m to 5 p.m.
1 trip: adults 9€, children 6€.
2 trips: adults 13€, children 8€.
3 trips: adults 16€, children 10€.
Night sledding is 1€ more expensive.