Lifestyle

14 May 2019, 10:30 AM

STA, 13 May 2019 - The National Assembly passed on Monday legislative changes delaying the next round of mass property appraisal for about a year. Under the government-proposed changes, the appraisal will be completed by the end of March 2020 and not the end of July 2019, as initially planned.

The delay was deemed necessary by the government to allow more time to find consensus about what sort of appraisal model to use in the future.

To allow the extension and prolong the validity of the current system, the government drafted changes to the act on mass appraisal of real estate and the real estate records act, with the National Assembly passing them today.

Slovenia introduced the real estate appraisal system in 2006. After the Constitutional Court raised an issue with parts of the legislation in 2013, it was amended at the beginning of 2018.

The changes define the system more closely and stipulate ways in which the values can be used for tax purposes. The changes also allow the public to participate in the creation of valuation models and allow appeals by owners.

Finance Ministry State Secretary Natalija Kovač Jereb told the MPs before the vote that the government wanted to reach a high level of acceptance of mass appraisal and want to dedicate more time talking to experts and municipalities.

In autumn, a trial appraisal will be conducted and appraisal models will be presented and the final models will take into account the comments from the public.

Coalition parties supported the delay, while the opposition, including the minority government's partner, the Left, expressed disagreement with the delay.

The Democrats (SDS) said that the government had not presented sufficient concrete reasons for the delay, adding that the original legislation must have been drafted poorly.

All our stories on property in Slovenia are here

13 May 2019, 15:56 PM

May 13, 2019

In March 1938 a small stream called Nevljica was being regulated and a bridge was planned to be built across it at Nevlje, near Kamnik. Mayor Nande Novak supervised the works at the construction site, when one day the workers complained that they’d hit an obstacle – tree stumps, they said.

The mayor looked at the “stumps” and recognized them as bones but had no idea what kind of creature they once belonged to. He stopped the works and sought advice from Josip Sadnikar in Kamnik.

Josip NIkolaj Sadnikar (1863-1953), a veterinarian by profession, was an enthusiastic collector of antiquities since his years in high school. In the “stumps” that were brought to him he recognized an extinct mammal, a mammoth, which had died about 20,000 years ago.

Sadnikar informed the museum workers about the finding, who immediately began with excavations. The digging lasted for about two weeks in an area of about 180 square meters, and resulted in the finding of nearly an entire skeleton of an exceptionally large male mammoth, a tusk measuring 2.7 meters in length.

The mammoth, 40 years old when it died, was most probably killed by Stone Age hunters, who also left behind some of the tools and probably broke into the skull of the animal to get at the soft tissue inside in search for food, which is why the skeleton is missing some skull bone.  

Although findings of tusks and parts of mammoth bones are relatively common, whole skeletons are not. The mammoth’s bones are now exhibited in the Slovenian Museum of Natural History.

Mammoths, however, were not the oldest elephant-like creatures whose presence has been confirmed by excavations. Since the late 19 century, several findings have proven that several much older species stomped these lands, known under a common name of mastodon.

In 1871 a whole mastodon skeleton was found near Ljutomer, but it fell apart during excavation. In 1888 parts of a head and skeleton of the species called Tapirus hungaricus H. v Mayer were found in Šaleška dolina.

In 1890 a fragment of a tooth was found in Velenje, and other small fragments were also found near Radgona, and near Slovenska Bistrica in 1942. After the war, fragments of mastodon were also found near Slovenske Gorice and Čentibske Gorice, and finally, in 1964 in Škale near Velenje, where four mastodon sites were discovered.

The most interesting one consists of a skull with teeth and two tusks. The left tusk is 2.3 meters long and is completely preserved, including its root still stuck in the bone of the head.

mastodon's tusks at skale.jpg
Photo: I. Ozebek
 

From the findings they have identified three specimens of two different species of mastodon, who lived approximately 1.7 million years ago.

Mastodon’s lived much earlier than mammoths, they had a longer, stocky body and head and forward pointed tusks.

Mastodon remains are exhibited at Velenje Museum.

Source: Kladnik Darinka: Slovenija v zgodbah, Cankarjeva založba, Ljubljana, 2015

13 May 2019, 09:11 AM

Inspired by the renovation of Novo mesto’s Main Square, we took a trip the archives to pull out some postcards of the same place in years gone by, as well as the city in general.

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Postcard from 1899

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Postcard from 1910

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Postcard from 1917

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Postcard from 1918

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Postcard from 1919

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Postcard from 1910s

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Postcard from 1919

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Postcard from 1928

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Postcard from 1930s

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Undated postcard

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Undated postcard

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Postcard 1945

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Postcard, 1966

All our posts with old photos can be found here

13 May 2019, 12:00 PM

STA, 11 May 2019 - Following a push from the Traffic Safety Agency and a number of NGOs to lower the permitted alcohol level for drivers, Interior Minister Boštjan Poklukar expressed his disagreement with this proposal on Friday. He believes that the existing rules are good and that Slovenia should address alcohol-related issues as a broad social problem.

 

The minister was asked about his position on the proposal at the sidelines of a business conference in Portorož last night organised by the Chamber of Craft and Small Business (OZS), which has previously expressed opposition to the proposal.

The OZS believes that the initiative would damage the country's tourism industry and worsen the situation of hospitality businesses, already aggravated by several restrictive acts, including the new ban on trans fats and the tobacco act.

Related: Slovenia Launches Project to Reduce Drinking, Consumption Highest in EU

The alcohol limit for drivers in Slovenia is 0.05% of alcohol per litre of exhaled air, while the agency wants it to be reduced to 0.02%.

The proposal has been backed by a number of NGOs, many of which see it as the first step to gradually lowering it to 0.00%.

"Problems related to alcohol are not only limited to the roads. This is a general social problem that requires serious conversation. But I believe that current legislation is not bad," said Poklukar.

"Let's think whether this change is really necessary. I'm for 0.05%," he added, according to a press release released by his ministry today.

He also said that for the first time ever the number of road casualties dropped to below 100 last year.

12 May 2019, 14:00 PM

STA, 8 May 2019 - Druga Godba, a festival of world music, will kick off in Ljubljana on 21 May and run until 25 May, when it will move to Maribor too. The event will feature 16 concerts of various music genres performers from eleven countries, including the acclaimed US experimental guitarist and composer Yonatan Gat and popular Ukrainian folk quartet DakhaBrakha.

Visitors will also be able to enjoy the beats of the London-based Afrobeat band Kokoroko or groove to the sounds of the leading Polish jazz musician Maciej Obara.

The 35th international festival will also see a return of the South African performance art ensemble The Brother Moves On, which will perform with the Slovenian pianist Bowrain.

Upon Druga Godba's initiative, the Helsinki-based futuristic jazz band Mopo will share the stage with Finland's saxophone star Jimi Tenor.

Another highlight will be a performance of the Brazilian band Liniker e os Caramelows and its charismatic lead singer Liniker, getting visitors moving with their funky soul Afro-Brazilian beats.

The Ljubljana-based events will either take place at Kino Šiška, the Cankarjev Dom arts centre or at AKC Metelkova.

The festival will move to Slovenia's second largest city on 25 May. The programme there includes a number of events in Maribor's former minorite church and the city puppet theatre's auditorium, such as a performance of the traditional Polish band Sutari, the Slovenian group Bakalina Velika and the South-African indigenous genre band BCUC.

Having bought the tickets for the Maribor-based events, the visitors from Ljubljana will be also entitled to a free return ticket to Maribor.

Druga Godba provides an opportunity to experience the fusion of traditional folk and contemporary music, cross-genre productions, aspiring as well as established musicians.

"Druga Godba is designed to inspire curiosity, broaden horizons, urge people to go listen to unfamiliar music acts. That has always been our aim and that remains the case this year," said the head of the festival's programme Bogdan Benigar.

The English website for the festival is here, while you can also follow it on Facebook

https://drugagodba.si/en/jazz-connective/

https://www.facebook.com/druga.godba.3

12 May 2019, 10:35 AM

STA, 10 May 2019 - Novo Mesto, an idyllic town in the south-east, has joined an ever longer list of places in Slovenia closing their centres to traffic. Following nearly two years of renovation that revealed numerous archaeological artefacts, the Main Square was reopened in a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday.

Ahead of the ceremony, Environment and Spatial Planning Minister Simon Zajc said that the country would see more similar projects in the future. These will give "towns a new and more beautiful image and inspire a new way of life".

He praised the new traffic regime, which only allows pedestrians and bicyclers to the Main Square, while cars and other vehicles will only be permitted during limited delivery periods.

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Back to the future. Postcard of the square in 1919. Source: Wikipedia, public domain

The renovation cost nearly EUR 7 million, with EUR 4.6 million coming from the EU cohesion funds.

A month ago, the Novo Mesto-based Dolenjska Museum opened an exhibition dedicated to the archaeological finds uncovered during renovation works.

The excavations that preceded the renovation works found proof of settlement in the Novo Mesto city centre dating back as far as prehistory.

Archaeologists found ceramics and the remnants of a road from prehistoric times. Cobble stones from the 17th and 18th centuries were uncovered, as well as remnants of a paved road from the Roman era.

The excavations also produced four Celtic and Roman coins, amphora fragments, Roman building remains, as well as several bronze fibulea from the 2nd and 1st centuries B.C.

11 May 2019, 16:05 PM

Keep up with the daily news in Slovenia by checking the morning headlines here

This summary of the week ahead is provided by the STA:

MONDAY, 13 May

        LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will debate amendments to the real estate records act and the opposition's allegations about political pressure on the judiciary.
        BRUSSELS, Belgium - Foreign Minister Miro Cerar will attend a session of the EU's Foreign Affairs Council. He will also attend an event marking the 10th anniversary of the Eastern Partnership.
        BEIJING/HANGZHOU, China - Agriculture Ministry State Secretary Jože Podgoršek will attend a meeting of farm ministers of the 16+1 initiative and a forum on agricultural and trade cooperation between China and Central and Eastern Europe.
        LJUBLJANA - President Borut Pahor will receive members of the first Slovenian expedition to Mount Everest upon the 40th anniversary of the feat.
        LJUBLJANA - The Association of Journalists and Commentators will host a panel on changes to the umbrella media law.
        LJUBLJANA - The Charm of Wood, an exhibition dedicated to wood design, will open at the Cankarjev Dom; until 18 May.
        LJUBLJANA - The start of the National Volunteering Week; until 19 May.

TUESDAY, 14 May
        LJUBLJANA - Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex will start a two-day visit to Slovenia at the invitation of President Borut Pahor.
        LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Home Policy Committee will debate Schengen border protection at the request of the Democrats (SDS).
        CERKLJE OB KRKI - Slovenian Armed Forces Day will be celebrated with a display of Slovenian military gear, with keynotes by Defence Minister Karl Erjavec and President Borut Pahor.
        BRUSSELS, Belgium - Agriculture Minister Aleksandra Pivec will attend a session of the EU's Agriculture and Fisheries Council while Defence Ministry State Secretary Miloš Bizjak will be on hand for a session of the Foreign Affair Council.
        KLAGENFURT, Austria - National Council President Alojz Kovšca will visit Carinthia to meet members of the Slovenian minority and Governor Peter Kaiser.
        LJUBLJANA - AJPES, the agency for public legal records, will present cumulative data on the performance of companies in 2018.
        TEL AVIV, Israel - Slovenian Eurovision entrants Zala Kralj and Gašper Šantl will perform in the first semi-final of the song competition.

WEDNESDAY, 15 May
        SKOPJE, North Macedonia - Agriculture Minister Aleksandra Pivec will start a two-day visit to North Macedonia.
        LJUBLJANA - The Agriculture Committee will debate allegedly questionable financing of a campaign for the promotion of Slovenian food.
        CELJE - Chemical company Cinkarna Celje will release its Q1 financials.
        LUXEMBOURG, Luxembourg - The board of directors of the European Investment Bank (EIB) will decide on the planned EUR 250 million loan for the Koper-Divača rail project.
        LJUBLJANA - Slovenian Book Days; until 18 May.
        LJUBLJANA - Laibach will perform songs from the last album, The Sound of Music, at Cankarjev Dom.

THURSDAY, 16 May
        LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Defence Committee will debate the status of the Poček military training grounds.
        LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Finance Committee will debate the Left's proposal for a tax on digital services.
        LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Commission for Slovenians Abroad will debate direct representation of the Slovenian diaspora in the National Assembly.
        LJUBLJANA - Weekly government session.
        BRUSSELS, Belgium - Finance Minister Andrej Bertoncelj will take part in a Eurogroup session.
        HELSINKI, Finland - Foreign Minister Miro Cerar will take part in a two-day session of the Council of Europe (CoE) foreign ministers.
        BRUSSELS, Belgium - Foreign Ministry State Secretary Simona Leskovar will attend a meeting of the EU ministers in charge of development.
        LJUBLJANA - Public broadcaster TV Slovenija will host two EU election debates, respectively with the candidates of parliamentary and non-parliamentary parties.
        LJUBLJANA - A debate on digitalisation of cultural heritage organised by several museums and ministries.
        LJUBLJANA - Insurer Zavarovalnica Triglav is expected to release preliminary Q1 results.
        LJUBLJANA - Insurer Sava Re is expected to release preliminary Q1 results.
        MARIBOR - International circular economy conference Circular Change; until 17 May.
        PODČETRTEK - Slovenia Incoming Workshop, the biggest event for tour organisers in Slovenia; until 18 May.

FRIDAY, 17 May
        LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will hold an emergency session to debate the Democrats (SDS) proposal to exclude healthcare and the army from the single public sector pay system.
        LJUBLJANA - Energy group Petrol is expected to release preliminary Q1 results.

SATURDAY, 18 May
        RAVNE NA KOROŠKEM - Slovenia will mark World Bee Day with an event featuring exhibitions, workshops and speeches by officials.

SUNDAY, 19 May
        LJUBLJANA - Parliamentary Speaker Dejan Židan will receive his Swiss counterpart Marina Carobbio Guscetti for a three-day official visit.

11 May 2019, 12:26 PM

If you're not in town for the week of this guide (13 - 19 May, 2019) then you can see all the editions here, and if there's event you want to promote in a future edition of What's on in Ljubljana please get in touch with me at flanner(at)total-slovenia-news.com or try and find me on Facebook. As ever, links to venues are after the following selections…

Jump to listings

The Castle’s the city’s main attraction, and Saturday and Sunday see the annual Castle Days, with a medieval camp, workshops, mock fights, free tours and more, including free entrance to the Tower. You can read about it here.

Starting Thursday and running until mid-June is Svetlobna gverila / Lighting Guerrilla. This is a free festibal of light-based art at various locations around town, each opening at different dates. The first takes place at Galerija Vžigalica and other spots nearby Križanke / French Revolution Square. This is usually very beautiful, but obviously best enjoyed after dark.

Pop music highlights over the next seven days include Laibach playing The Sound of Music at Cankerjev dom on Wednesday (15 May), Morcheeba at Kino Šiška on Thursday and Benjamin Clementine at the same venue on Friday. Saturday the biggest name in town in Tom Jones, playing Ljubljana for the first – and perhaps the last – time, so head to Arena Stožice if you want to hear the all the hits and perhaps a story or two about Elvis.

K4 15 years from 4ka on Vimeo.

With regard to clubs, K4 is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, with a documentarmy made for its 15th shown above. The big day is really May 25, but the 30K4 Festival begins Friday, 17 May and runs until the 31st.

Sports meets acrobatics with the Dunking Devils live show, bringing basketball and trampoline to Hala Tivoli on Friday and Saturday, 19:00.

Friday also sees the annual Maturantska Parada, an “almost graduated” dance routine / prelude to a party by local high school students. This will start at 12 noon on Slovenska cesta, with an after party at the Next Level Festival.

The weather’s getting better, so the number of outside events and performances is increasing. Starting Saturday and continuing through the summer are two art markets. ARTish is in Gornji trg square, the far end of the Old Town, where you can buy works from Slovenian artists (09:00 – 18:00). Around the same time, but ending 16:00, there are more local artists along the nearby Breg Embankment, on the other side of the river, under the banner of the Ljubljana Art Market. (While Sunday mornings, same location, see the regular flea / antique market.

The Festival Lezbična četrt, or the Lesbian Quarter Festival, runs until 18 May and has lots of different events around town, from talks to workshops, DJ sets to dance performances, guided tours to film screenings. The Facebook page has all the details, in Slovene and English.

In town and want to follow the news? Check out our regular morning headlines for Slovenia here.


Contents

Cinemas and films

You can read about all the cinemas in town here, while a selection of what’s playing this week is below, and note that kids' movies tend to be shown in dubbed versions, while non-English language movies for older viewers will have Slovenian subtitles.Parents should also pay attention to Kinobalon, which is Kinodvor's regular weekend series of film screenings and events for children, from babies on up, with special parent/child events, "first time in a cinema" screenings, and babysitting. Learn more about it here, and see the current schedule here.

Kinodvor –This is an arts cinema, not far from the train station, that shows new features as well as hosting the occassional festival.

Kinoteka – And not far from Kinodvor you can find this revival cinema, which shows art house classics along with some deep dives in the archives.

Kino Bežigrad - A relatively small theatre, but one which usually has the biggest of the new releases.

Kolosej -The multiplex out at BTC City Mall shows all the big movies, with well over a dozen titles on the schedule, although note that there are far more movies than screens, so some of the older ones mayonly be playing once or twice a week.

Komuna – The cinema in a basement behind Nama department store shows two or three different features a week, usually including the biggest titles.

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Clubbing

Compared to some European capitals it can seem that nightlife in Ljubljana ends rather early, especially along the river, but there are still bars that stay open late and clubs were you can dance until dawn, and perhaps the best place to stumble across something interesting is the legendary Metelkova. Be aware it's a grungy kind of place and not for all tastes, but also that there's considerable variety to found within the various clubs there, from death metal to electropop, gay cabaret to art noise. You can read "the rules" of the place here. And if you're curious about how the place started then read our story, and look at some pictures, about last year's 25th anniversary.

Božidar - DJ events aren't too common here, but when they happen they often have a big name.

Channel Zero – DJs shows here include regular dub nights as well as electronic music.

Gala Hala – Another Metelkova venue, you can sometimes hear bhangra and Bollywood here, but more often funk, hip hop, breakbeat and so on.

Klub Cirkus – The more commercial end of clubland, and a venue that aims to serve the student party scene. Expect house, anthems, and bangers.

Klub K4 – The home of techno, old and new, along with various other electronic genres,

Koncertna Dvorana Rog– There are irregular DJ sets at this underground (not literally) venue at the far end of Trubarjeva cesta, and they range from techno to goa to drum'n'bass.

Orto Bar80s and 90s throwback nights can often be found here, along with rock-based DJ sets.

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Live music

Balassi Institute – Free Hungarian music, when available, from the Hungarian cultural institute just a short walk downriver from Dragon Bridge.

Cankerjev dom – The main arts venue in the country hosts classical, opera jazz, folk and occassinally pop.

CvetličarnaRegional pop and rock concerts can be found here.

Channel Zero – This Metelkova venue sees live shows from punk and rock bands, as well as others.

Gala Hala – Another Metelkova venue with indie bands of various styles.

Kino Šiška – One of the top live venues in the city, with a varied programme that include indie, rock, pop, experimental, hip hop, and so on.

Klub Gromka – Live music is often metal, from sludge to stoner, death to thrash, while punk bands also appear, as do others.

Križanke – The venue that hosts the Ljubljana Festival often has classical music, and some rock, in the open air.

Ljubljana CastleJazz, funk and pop every Friday night.

Orto Bar– The home of live rock, metal, punk and other guitar-based genres.

Pinelina dnevna soba – LIve music is rare here, but it does happen.

Slovenska filharmonijaClassical music in the centre of town.

SNG Opera and Ballet - As the name suggests, here you'll find the best of opera and ballet in the country.

Španski borci - While dance is more common here, they also have some contemporary and experimental music shows.

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Theatre and dance

Cankerjev dom- The main arts venue in the country always has something of interest going on.

Gledališče IGLU - IGLU Theatre – Saturday night this group is usually putting on an English improv show somewhere in town, but it’s generally promoted after this is written, so check the Facebook before putting on your shoes.

Kino Šiška – One of the top live venues in the city also hosts some dance performance, often of the more experimental variety.

Mini Teater Ljubljana –The English schedule of varied performances, for adults and children, for the month is here.

Ljubljana Puppet Theatre - Puppetry has a long and noble tradition in Slovenia, and you can see performances for children and adults (including non-puppet shows) drawing from the Theatre's rich repetoire as well as new productons.

SNG Opera and Ballet - As the name suggests, here you'll find the best of opera and ballet in the country.

Španski borci - The home ofcontemporary dance(and the EnKnapGroup) in Slovenia.

Pocket Teater Studio– There are regular flamenco evenings at perhaps the smallest venue town, but note that the number of seats is very limited, and thus you should make a reservation via This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 070 325 522.

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Harm reduction and drug testing

Drogart is an organization that aims to minimise harm on the party scene, and offers drug-testing services and reports on their webpage. It’s in Slovene, but you can Google translate it or work things out yourself, and our story on the group is here.You can find the latest warnings on fake drugs and high strength pills and powders (in Slovene) here. However, be aware that all the usual drugs are illegal in Slovenia.CBD is legal, though, and our retailer of choice can be found on Trubarjeva cesta - read more about Sena Flora here.

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Things to do with children

You can find our Top 12 list of things to do with kids in Ljubljana here. If want to read more about the philosophy behind the wonderful House of Experiments look here, while our trip to the Museum of Illusions is documented here, and there’s always riverside walks, pizza and ice cream. With regard to the latter, take a look at our guide to six places that serve good ice cream in winter, and thus are serious about the dessert.

Mini Teater Ljubljana – The season sees a lot of puppet performances for children, in Slovene, at this theatre not far from Križanke. The English schedule for the month is here.

Ljubljana Puppet Theatre - The puppet theatre near the Central Market and next to the Castle funicular has a full programme or shows, for children and adults, with the schedule here.

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LGBT+ Ljubljana

If you want to learn more about Ljubljana Pride, then take a look at our interview with its president here. If you're looking for more general links on "gay Slovenia", including a history of the scene and various projects, then you can find that here, while our stories about the community can be found here.

Klub Monokel – Thislesbian barin Metelkova is open every Friday, although sometimes there are other events

Klub Tiffany –And the gay bar next door is also open on Fridays, while every Monday until June 2019 there'stangoat 18:00. Other things coulds also be planned, so click on the name to find out.

Pritličje – This seems to be the only "always open" LGBT-friendly cafe / bar / events space in town, and perhaps the country, so it's a good thing it's such a good one, open from morning to night, and with fliers and posters letting you know what's happening outside the narrow confines of, say, a general interest online what's on... guide.

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Screenshot from Google Maps, showing the location of the Castle vineyard

Ljubljana Castle

The city’s main attraction is said to be the top tourist draw in the country overall, and to my mind it earns a spot near the top just for the history and views. But beyond that the current owners, the City of Ljubljana, have laid out a varied, interesting and enjoyable programme of events, one that rewards regular revisits.

I try and get up there every Saturday morning to clear my head and move my feet on the trails, and never tire of that end of the hill. At the other end, where the Castle sits, there’s a lot more than fresh air on offer. There are guided tours, restaurants, a café, Castle museum, puppet museum, a Watchtower you can climb to the highest point in the city, art shows, dances, live music, movies under the stars, festival days and more – enough to reward multiple trips up the hill through the year. All of these activities and events can be found on the Castle website, while on TSN you can see “25 things to know about Ljubljana Castlehere, and “Ten Ways to Enjoy Ljubljana Castle” here.

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Museums and galleries

Most public galleries and museums are closed on Mondays, although not the National Museum, and - as noted at the start

Cankerjev dom –The 13th Slovenian Biennial of Illustration is here until May 19th, while a free to see show called Subterranean Worlds, showing cave photography, runs until June 16th.

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Plečnik's desk. Photo: JL Flanner

Plečnik’s House is worth a visit if you want to learn more about the architect who gave Ljubljana much of its character, and it's also in a really nice part of town, Trnovo, just a short walk or cycle upriver. Read about our guided tour here.

Balassi Institute – The Hungarian culture centre hasInterlacement – exhibition of Éva Farkasvölgyi and Žiga Okorn, showing tapestries and paintings on until June 14th.Free to enter, this venue is next to a Spar and Hofer, and not far from Dragon Bridge, and always has something interesting going on. Learn more here.

City Museum – The Museum in French Revolution Square an interesting permanent exhibition on the history of Ljubljana, from prehistoric times to the present day, with many artefacts, models and so on that bring the story alive.You can read about my visit here.

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The Faces of Ljubljana in the City Museum. Photo: JL Flanner

International Centre of Graphic Arts – Starting March 22 and running until May 19 is Photographic Images and Matter: Japanese Prints of the 1970s and Japan, Yugoslavia and the Biennial of Graphic Arts: Documents of Collaboration. One of the images promoting the show is shown below.

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Kosuke Kimura: Present Situation – Existence A, colour and silkscreen, 1971.

MAO – The Museum of Architecture and Design has much of what you'd expect, along with some temporary shows and a good cafe. UntilMay 19 there's Tendencies: Architecture and Urban Planning in Celje, 1955–1985.

Moderna galerija – The main branch of this gallery, to be found near the entrance to Tivoli Park, has a good collection of modern art, as well a nice café in the basement. Opening Thursday, April 25th, 20:00, The Visual Arts in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, 1929–1941, which then runs until September 15th 2019. This offers “an overview of painting, sculpture, printmaking, drawing, photography, and film from the time the king's dictatorship was set up (6 January 1929) to the beginning of World War II on Yugoslav soil (April 1941)” - you can read more about it here. The museum's Metelkova branch also has a big new show, runing until at least September 2019, an the art of the Non-Aligned Movement, with an example shown below.

Rafikun Nabi -  Poet, 1980, print, 96.5 x 110 cm. Courtesy of the Contemporary Art Center of Montenegro.jpg

Rafikun Nabi: Poet, 1980, print, 96.5 x 110 cm. Courtesy of the Contemporary Art Center of Montenegro. On display at the Metelova branch of the Moderna galerija

National Gallery – The country’s main gallery has “the best” of what’s on offer from the Middle Ages to non-contemporary modern visual arts, and is in a great location for exploring other areas, just by Tivoli Park and opposite the main branch of the Moderna galerija. You can read about our visit to the room containing sacred art from the Middle Ages here.

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JL Flanner

The real Robba Fountain can be found in the entrance to the National Gallery - the one you see in the Old Town is a genuine fake, as seen below and reported here.

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Photo: JL Flanner

National Museum of Slovenia – There’s plenty to see in the permanent collection here, from Roman times, Egypt and more. Meanwhile, the museum's Metelkova branch, located between one branch of the Moderna galerija and the Ethnographic Museum has some rooms on Church art, furniture and weapons, with the latter including more guns than you'll see anywhere else in town, and quite a thrill if coming from a nation where such objects are not household items.

Natural History Museum – On until the end of June 2019 is Our Little Big Sea, which takes a look at the oceans.

National Museum of Contemporary History - Tucked away in park Tivoli, in addition to his permanent collection will be showingIn Search Of Freedom: 1968-2018 until 16 August.

Slovene Ethnographic Museum – The museum currently has a temporary show on Bees and Beekeeping, on until June 16 2019, as well two permanent exhibitions. One of these is called Between Nature and Culture, and has a great collection of objects from Slovenia and around the world, well worth the trip up to the third floor to see it (as recounted here). From April 18 until October 19 (2019) you can also see a show calledShamanism of the Peoples of Siberia, from the Russian Museum of Ethnography, Saint Petersburg. The place is located near the newer branch of the Moderna galerija and Metelkova. You can read about this fascinating show here.

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Union is "the Ljubljana beer", but now both it and Laško are owned by Heineken. There are many local brews on offer around town, though, if you want to explore IPAs, stouts, wheatbeers, sours and so on Photo: JL Flanner

Union Experience – The Ljubljana-based brewer has a museum showing the history of the company, with the ticket also including access to part of the factory and a few samples of the product. You can read about our visit here.

Volčji Potok Arboretum - Running until 3 November you can see a large collection of cacti here.

It's not a formal museum, but if you're interested in "Yugo-stalgia" then you'll enjoy a trip to Verba, a small, privately run space that's crammed with objects and pop culture items from the era, and is conveniently located at the start of one of the short walks to the castle. It's also a great place to take pictures, if you leave a donation, and you can read more about it here.

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Verba. Photo: JL Flanner

Alternative Ljubljana isn't a museum or gallery, as such, but instead turns the city streets into a museum and gallery. Learn more about their tours of street art, history and LGBT Ljubljana here.

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Photo: JL Flanner

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Other things to do in Ljubljana

Learn more about Ljubljana with "25 things to know about Slovenia's green city of dragons", or take a look at our guide to spending from four to 48 hours here.

Open Kitchen brings market stalls selling food and drink from some of the best restaurants in town every Friday, from 11am to 11pm, in the square between the cathedral and the river - just follow your nose and the crowds. Read more about it here.

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Photo: Open Kitchen

If you'd like to spend an evening painting with others, then take a look at Design with Wine, which organises painting parties on Trubarjeva cesta,

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If you want to see some antiques, then check out the wonderful Antika Carniola, as discussed here. The man behind it, Jaka Prijatelj, has a fine eye for life on this street, as you can see on his Facebook account.

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Photo: JL Flanner

If you’re in town and want to go jogging or walking in nature, why not take another look at the Castle, with a brief guide to the trails here. If you want something bigger, head to Tivoli Park.

And if you're bored with the Old Town, why not take a walk, cycle or boat ride to nearby Špica and enjoy the riverside life. Learn more about that here.

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maxpixel.net, public domain

Want to stretch and breath? Then check out our list of drop-in yoga classes for tourists, visitors and the uncommitted. If you're heading to the coast, check out our interview with a yoga teacher who offers breakfast sessions there, while if you're staying in town (or nearby) and want to try some "family yoga" then you can learn more about that here and maybe get your kids to calm down a moment or two.

Prefer to have someone else stretch you? The check out the totally legit massages you can get from Sense Wellness - either in one of their spas or in you home, office or hotel. (And - to repeat - these are legit and non-sexual in nature)

There are some golf courses near Ljubljana, but even ones further away are not far, as seen in our list of all the golf courses in Slovenia.

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Photo: maxpixel.net, public domain

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Daytrips

Most of Slovenia is only a few hours from Ljubljana, and you can easily visit Lake Bled, Lipica Stud Farm, Postojna Cave, Predjama Castle, the coast and other locations, while if you'd like to take a photo of from that bench in Bled, then you can learn how to get there here. If you’re looking for something more ambitious, then check out our recent guide to the 17 members of the Association of Historical Towns of Slovenia. We've also written guides on spending from four to 48 hours in Bled and Piran.

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Photo: Google Image Search

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Getting around & miscellaneous

If you want to get a Ljubljana Tourist Card, which gives you travel on the city buses and entry to a lot of attractions, then you can read more about that here, and if you want to use the bike share system, as useful for visitors as it is for residents, then you can learn more by clicking this. Visitors with reduced mobility will be pleased to find that downtown Ljubljana is generally rated as good with regard to accessibility, and that there’s a free, city-sponsored app called Ljubljana by Wheelchair highlighting cafés, attractions and so on with ramps, disabled bathrooms and Eurokey facilities, which you can read about and download here. Manual wheelchair users can also borrow, for free, an attachment that will motorise their equipment, as reported here.

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Screenshot from a Twitter video

If you’re driving into town and don’t know where to part, our guide to how to park in Ljubljana is here.

There aren't many places to eat after midnight, and most of them are by the train station, as reported here.

Want / need cigarettes but the stores have closed? Here's an incomplete list of bars downtown that will satisfy your craving for the demon weed. While if you’re having trouble with the ATMs then here’s a guide to the Slovene you’ll see on screen. If you get a hangover then find out where to get paracetamol (and prescription drugs) in Ljubljana here, while details on emergency birth control can be found here.

Ljubljana is a small and relatively safe city, but if need to contact the police then there’s a special number for foreigners, and that’s 113.

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Photo: JL Flanner

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10 May 2019, 15:12 PM

STA, 8 May 2019 - Commemorating the liberation of Ljubljana at the end of the Second World War, tens of thousands will take a walk along a marked gravel path surrounding the city on Saturday. A barbed wire used to trace the path during WWII, when Ljubljana was occupied first by Italian and then German forces.

The 63rd Walk along the Wire event will kick off already on Thursday, when kindergarten children will set out to conquer a part of the hike, followed by primary and secondary school children on Friday.

The commemoration's highlight will be Saturday's hike as well as the run of three-member teams, which is not about winning, promoting solidarity and participation. The time of a third member or the weakest link is thus recorded as the team's finishing time.

The running event is also an opportunity for a few laughs, with last year's teams running under witty slogans, such as Turbo Snails, Rolling Stones and (Un)Tamed Shrews.

Instead of stamps the event's organisers would like to gradually introduce a mobile application tracking the teams' progress.

The three-day event is expected to attract more than 30,000 participants, even more than last year, when almost 25,000 hikers and some 5,000 runners participated in the memorial walk.

The accompanying cultural programme will kick off on Saturday morning with a performance of the Partisan choir, honouring the WWII resistance movement. Ljubljana Mayor Zoran Janković will then address visitors, marking Ljubljana Municipality Day, followed by a concert of the Slovenian pop singer Lea Sirk.

The full programme, in Slovene and English, is here

Unlike at the Ljubljana marathon, there will not be many roadblocks, particularly not on Thursday and Friday, with some minor ones and city traffic detours in Ljubljana's centre on Saturday.

A barbed wire was put around Ljubljana in February 1942 by the Italian occupying forces to stop supplies to the Partisan resistance movement.

Ljubljana was the only European capital at the time to be locked out in such a way, with the regime lasting 1,170 days until the end of WWII in 1945 - Ljubljana was liberated on 9 May.

09 May 2019, 18:27 PM

May 9, 2019

Environmentalists warn of imminent drinking water pollution for people living in the municipalities of Bled, Gorje, Žirovnica and Radovljica, whose water source is situated at Ovčja jama water protection area in Pernik.

 

Water originating from Triglav National Park is, or rather, should be, among that with the best quality in the entire country. Nevertheless, water coming from Pernik now has added chlorine since contamination with faeces was discovered several years ago due to the spread of farming on Mežakla and cutting down of the forests.

This April, a passer-by noticed a loaded truck from a construction company from Kranj driving up in Mežakla and unloading what appeared to be construction waste soil into a sinkhole in the otherwise pristine nature of a protected water area.

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Bled Environmental Protection Society immediately informed the relevant authorities. The same day an inter-municipal inspector managed to catch the driver in action, and prevent any further dumping of the problematic soil.

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When a few days ago the camera team of the national broadcaster headed to the site to take footage of the waste, the owner of the land first almost ran over the journalists with an excavator, then jumped out and scare them away with a pickaxe. The journalists called the police while the landowner and his son allegedly spent the night in a psychiatric ward in Begunje, claiming insanity.

The inspector ordered the problematic waste soil to be removed by the company that brought it there, while special supervision of the company’s activities has also been launched.

The problematic soil, which includes plastic, plaster, adhesives, concrete, asbestos plates and asphalt, according to the Bled Environmental Protection Society, for now remains where it is. However, according to colourant marker studies, conducted by the Faculty of Natural Sciences and Engineering of the University of Ljubljana, water from the problematic area in Mežakla can trickle down the karst floor to the drinking water wells area in a mere 13 hours.

08 May 2019, 10:01 AM

With Slovenia an official European Region of Gastronomy for 2021, and the tourist board putting its weight behind the promotion of the country’s food and drink offerings, the gourmet traveller or resident can expect to be bombarded with recommendations over the next two years of dishes to try, and places to go. While some of these lists will be thrown together by people who’ve just scanned a review website, or paid a fleeting visit to the country to tick off the most famous names, the same cannot be said for The Slovenia Restaurant Awards (TSRA).

The best fine-dining restaurants in Slovenia

Started in 2016, the winners of TSRA are chosen by an expert panel of Slovenian gourmets and foodies, who know the scene well and are always on the lookout for new talent, as well as returning to acknowledged leaders in fine dining. There’s also a popular element to the selection, with a public vote for the best restaurant in the country.

This year’s winners were announced on Tuesday evening, with the top three, as chosen by an expert panel, being named as Gostilna pri Lojzetu in Vipava, Hiša Franko in Kobarid and Vila Podvin in Radovljica. Hiša Franko – home to perhaps the most famous Slovenian chef, Ana Roš – also won the popular vote.

In addition to the three overall “best in Slovenia”, the event also gave awards by region with, unsurprisingly, some of the same names also appearing.

Alpine region: Hiša Franko, Kobarid

Mediterranean and Kras regions: Gostilna pri Lojzetu, Vipava

Pannonian lowlands region: Hiša Denk, Zgornja Kungota

Central Slovenia: Restavracija JB, Ljubljana

The pick of high-end Slovenian gastronomy

The best hotel restaurant award was given to Restavracija Grad Otočec, while Domačija Belica in Medana was declared the best newcomer. The Best Service Diners Club Exclusive award went to Ljubljana’s Restavracija Cubo, that for Best Social Profile to Družina Bazilika, in Ljubljana. Finally, the blog Jernej Kitchen, run by Jernej Zver and Maja Galuf (with lots of recipes, in English), won the Best Foodie Influence.

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