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Slovenia and Venice for 9-10 days: Ideas, please

Slovenia and Venice for 9-10 days: Ideas, please

Old Feb 29th, 2016, 05:15 AM
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Slovenia and Venice for 9-10 days: Ideas, please

We're planning an early September trip using Venice as our gateway. Upon arrival at Venice airport, we're thinking of heading directly to the Vipava Valley (per the recent NY Times article), then elsewhere in Slovenia, ending up in Venice for the last few days. Since we're familiar with Venice, our main concern is how to allocate our time in Slovenia and where we should be focused. Suggestions greatly appreciated.
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Old Feb 29th, 2016, 06:27 AM
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Vipava is situated along the Venice - Ljubljana motorway and can therefore easily be reached by rental car. For the same reason, it may serve as a base for day trips to other parts of Slovenia, to Venezia Giulia as well as to the Kvarner Gulf and the Croatian part of Istria.
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Old Feb 29th, 2016, 07:13 AM
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Thanks. I still need to get some ideas for how much time to spend in the Vipava Valley as well as Lake Bled and/or Ljubljana.
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Old Feb 29th, 2016, 05:12 PM
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Assuming you have 5 or 6 nights to spend in Slovenia, I'd suggest limiting yourselves to just two locations. You could do three locations of 2 nights each, but that's pushing it.

I suggest after two nights in the Vipava region, you head to either Ljubljana or Bled and use that as your base for the remainder of your time in Slovenia. Bled and Ljubljana are close enough that you can select either as a place to stay and explore them both.

I also think it's essential to do the drive from Kranjska Gora over Vrsic Pass and through the Soca Valley.

I didn't spend any time in the Vipava Valley, so I can't comment on that, but I'm sure you won't have any trouble finding information about the best way to spend your time in Ljubljana, in the area around Bled (such as the beekeeping museum in Radovljica, walking around Lake Bled, heading down to Bohinj, and exploring Vintgar Gorge), or in the Soca Valley (including the excellent WWI museum in Kobarid and the historic hiking trail nearby).

I suppose with a sixth night you could stay in or near Kobarid before heading back to Venice.

Here's the route I'd go with: http://tinyurl.com/zzgltta

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Old Feb 29th, 2016, 05:24 PM
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I haven't been to the Vipava Valley, but absolutely loved Ljubljana and Bled! If it helps, I had about 1.5 days in Ljubljana, and would have enjoyed more time there. I had one very very very full day in Bled -- I couldn't have done everything I did if I had to fit in the time to get to and from Ljubljana (instead, I stayed in Bled for 2 nights). I also loved the Škocjan Caves, which are among UNESCO's World Heritage Sites, and Lake Bohinj.

Have you already booked your flights? If not, you might look into flying into or out of Ljubljana; the airport is halfway between Ljubljana and Bled.

FWIW, I found the Rough Guide to Slovenia the best of the several guidebooks I used when planning my time in the area.

Also just FWIW, I don't think you have time for Istria of the Kvarner Gulf, but of course, it all depends on what YOU want to see and experience.

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Old Mar 1st, 2016, 03:25 AM
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First of all, full disclosure: I spent a part of my life in the Vipava Valley and thouroughly enjoyed it, or at least the aspects of life there that tourists get to experience, so I may be a bit biased.

Anyway, moving on to your trip. Having the start and finish in Venice allows you to do a nice loop of the western half of Slovenia, as nocloset proposed.

While the Vipava Valley itself can be worth anything from half a day to a week, depending on the activities you plan on doing, the number of agriturismos you want to visit and the general pace of your trip, the value of staying there is the valley's location. It can be used as a base to visit other interesting sights in the southwest, such as the Karst and Goriska Brda areas, the former noted for its prosciutto, the latter for its wine, both a stone's throw away and both worth visiting, especially the Brda area. The Soca Valley is also very close, however I would see it on the returning side of the loop. Staying in the valley, you can also venture a little further out and visit the seaside town of Piran, about 90 minutes away, as well as Trieste and its Miramare Castle, 45 minutes away. I could easily see spending 4 nights in the Vipava Valley and use it as a base to explore this part of Slovenia. Then, continuing on to Ljubljana, you can stop at either the Postojna or Skocjan Caves along the way, as kja suggested.

Ljubljana deserves from one to two days. Again, nocloset proposed using Bled or Ljubljana as a base, with which I agree, however I would suggest opting for Ljubljana if you enjoy eating out or going for a glass of wine in the evening, the riverside is buzzing in the evenings, whereas Bled is mostly dead after sunset.

Continuing on, should time allow you could drive to Bled using the scenic byway route Andrew, another member, advocates (for good reason). Instead of taking the highway, drive to the medieval town of Skofja Loka, worth a few hours and then continue on to Zelezniki, where you make a right towards Kropa. The part between Zelezniki and Kropa is a narrow road with little traffic but the views are amazing. Halfway between the two towns, there is a hilltop church that can be seen from the road, it's a favourite with photographers.

I think you got some great pointers on Bled, Bohinj, Vrsic Pass and the Soca Valley, I'd just add that the area around Kobarid is buzzing with some great restaurants and the mountains above the valley produce some great cheese (Tolminc), so if you are interested in culinary aspects, do not give it a miss.
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Old Mar 1st, 2016, 06:36 AM
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