STA, 22 June 2019 - The annual pride parade will take to the streets of Ljubljana on Saturday, a culmination of a two-week festival campaigning against the culture of hate that has become pervasive in society. For the first time ever, a pride parade will also be hosted by Maribor in a week's time.
Maribor is not the only city in the region to host its first pride parade. The Croatian port city of Rijeka, Serbia's second largest city Novi Sad and Bosnian capital Sarajevo will also host their first parades this year, according to Pride Parade Association head and festival director Simona Muršec.
Talking to the press at the beginning of the festival, she said that the first pride parades in these cities will be a litmus test showing whether the society is ready to accept LGBTQ+ people as their neighbours.
This year's parade slogan is Unavoidably Intertwined, with the organisers trying to raise awareness about the pervasiveness of hatred, and about negative and stereotypical portrayal of marginalised groups.
"Our lives are strongly influenced by the society and its dynamics; what is going on in the media and in politics. We've come a long way in 19 years but homophobic and xenophobic abuse, hate speech and bullying at schools remain an everyday occurrence, and this is a part of our reality as well," Muršec illustrated.
Author Nina Perger meanwhile said that hate speech, threats and insults were becoming more frequent and more intense, and were also becoming a part of everyday life.
"We are trying to encourage action and fight, reaction and connection instead of passiveness and silence," said Perger, adding that key players and institutions moved too slow to protect the marginalised groups and human dignity.
Leading up to the parade, the Pride Parade Festival featured some 30 events, including performances, debates and exhibitions.
In the week before the festival the NGO Legebitra issued a handbook, entitled Mavrica (Rainbow), for teachers and others working in education in addressing issues related to gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and sexual expression.
Legebitra head Lana Gobec said at the handbook presentation on Wednesday that LGBT persons remain targets of ridicule, remarks and verbal, psychological and physical violence in society, adding that places for the young must be safe spaces for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals.
A survey by Legebitra showed some 30% of LGBT respondents said that they had been discriminated and harassed due to their sexual orientation while in school.
All our stories on the LGBT community and Slovenia are here
STA, 21 June 2019 - Slovenian home prices grew at an average rate of 0.8% in the first quarter of the year and were up 8.9% on the year before, a sign that rapid price growth is slowing but at a very sluggish pace, show Statistics Office data released on Friday.
The rates are lower than in previous quarters, when annual prices grew at double-digit rates, as the shortage of housing that has lasted for years after the crisis slowly eases with the arrival of new developments on the market.
The prices of second-hand homes, which account for the vast majority of all transactions, rose by 0.9% over the previous quarter and by 9.9% annually.
Used flats were up 8.9% annually and 1.3% at the quarterly level, while houses were almost a percent cheaper than in the previous quarter, even as their prices surged by 12.4% annually.
The prices of new homes, meanwhile, rose by 6.9% at the annual level and declined by 1% over the previous quarter.
Apartments were 9% more expensive than in the previous quarter, but the prices declined by half a percent year-on-year. House prices were up 3.3% over the previous quarter and a percent more expensive than in the same period last year.
STA, 20 June 2019 - Strict restrictions on the use of personal names have been relaxed after the National Assembly passed on Thursday changes to the personal name act that allow citizens to officially have more than two first and two second names. Use of initials and abbreviations in official documents will also be permitted.
According to the government, the restricted number of names proved problematic in practice above all in cases of dual citizens who had to give up some of their names for their entry in the Slovenian civil registry.
Also affected by the changes are divorcees, who will have a year as opposed to six months to change their last name following divorce.
Minors with legal capacity will be allowed to change their name as well, while this will not be possible for those found guilty of a crime and serving their suspended prison sentence on probation.
STA, 19 June 2019 - The latest global study on attitudes towards immunisation shows that 13% of Slovenians believe that vaccines are not safe, almost double the world average.
The majority of Slovenians believe that vaccines are safe (70%), while 80% think that vaccines are efficient. Only 8% do not trust their efficiency, according to data released by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).
Globally, 79% consider vaccination safe, while 14% are undecided. In terms of vaccine efficiency, the shares are similar - 84% agree that vaccines are efficient, 12% are undecided and 5% do not believe they work.
Confidence is at the lowest point in France, where 33% do not trust vaccination, while people in Bangladesh appear to be most trustful, with 97% of respondents there considering vaccines safe.
Among regions, confidence is lowest in Western Europe, where 22% believe that vaccines are not safe. On the other hand, the share of those who do not believe vaccines work is the highest in Eastern Europe - 17%.
The survey, which involved more than 140,000 respondents in 144 countries, was conducted by the Gallup World Poll institute for the British NGO Wellcome between April and December 2018.
Imran Khan of the Wellcome institute said that people from countries with many infectious diseases tended to trust in immunisation more, which was probably the result of seeing the consequences of non-vaccination first-hand, French news agency AFP reported.
According to him, the differences are bigger than expected, with more developed countries recording higher levels of mistrust in vaccination due to more developed healthcare systems, slimmer chances of getting infected or dying as a result of non-vaccination, and the efforts of anti-vaccination groups.
The full report on how the world feels about science and health can be read here
There can’t many easier addresses in Slovenia to remember that Nataraja Studio’s, since its right next to Dragon Bridge on the opposite side of the river to Ljubljana Castle, and you’ve probably walked by the door at least once without giving it a second glance. But up there, on the third floor, is a world away from the traffic and tourists outside. For Nataraja a yoga studio, and one that offers classes in traditional and modern styles, as well as hosting international teachers who’ll take you deeper into your body and self.
If you haven’t tried it then yoga can seem a little woo-woo, but in essence it’s just stretching, along with an acknowledgement that we’re consciousness in physical form, and that one of the best ways to unite the mind and body is through breathing exercises. It’s also one of the hardest workouts you can get.
Inside the studio - where students can use the mats provided if they don't bring their own
I’ve spent much of my adult life trying to induce what can best be termed benign psychosis, with the aim of enjoying a pleasant derangement of the senses. But for the last few years I’ve been more anxious – or relaxed – to turn on, tune in, and chill out on the body’s own supply, and while this has led me to various forms of physical activity it’s yoga that feels like the most important part of my routine.
Books and online videos can show you a lot, but it’s easy to lose focus or cheat when doing it alone or with Adriene. In a class, and with an attentive teacher, you can relax, be told what to do, and corrected when making a mistake.A video showing highlights of a teacher training course in Nataraja Studio
So I bought a yearly membership for Nataraja Studio, with unlimited classes, and have been going there about three times a week for the last nine months or so as a way of avoiding drinking at the end of the workday, and to unlock some of the stiffness and kinks in my body after hours spent huddled over a keyboard. I really enjoy it, it’s been good for me, and so here’s an interview with the owner, manager and headline teacher, Nataša, about how she came to yoga, how she opened the studio, and what people can expect to find there.
Some of the Nataraja team
How did you get into yoga?
I started when I was about 19, 20 in my dance workshop. I went to this winter course, jazz and modern, and they were offering something besides regular dance – drumming lessons, African dance, and so on – and they also had a yoga teacher, so that’s how I first met got exposed to it.
I fell asleep in every class, but something attracted me, and so I bought a book, a very simple one, classical yoga, and I started doing it at home. I found it similar to dance, but calmer.
Then I continued with my dance career, and when I was about 30 I thought I’d reached my peak there, so I moved on. For about a year I almost did nothing, no kind of physical activity, and this was after a whole life of training like a madman. It wasn’t that I didn’t want to move, it’s just I went to Croatia and was working as a make-up artist for a soap opera. So for the first time in years I didn’t have any structured classes, but then I thought “oh my god, my body, my mind, I need something.” Then when I came back to Slovenia I was thinking about what I could do with my life, and that’s when I remembered yoga. So I took some classes and soon realised how much it had changed since I was 20.
Inside the studio
In what way?
Well, I’d just taken those basic classes, and then I worked with a book that was very traditional, Hatha yoga. But when I met modern yoga I saw how similar it was to dance, and I thought, yes, I want to teach this.
Modern yoga means you mix styles and sequences. So you can create your own choreography, there’s a lot of freedom, but you always return to the basics of yoga, which are the asanas along with the breath and meditation.
When did you start teaching?
I’ve been teaching since 2008, and had my own studio since then, too. The teacher who I did my training with was moving out of Slovenia, and she asked if anyone wanted to take over her space, which was a studio and apartment together. At the time there were some other changes in my life, so this was ideal, a new place and a new career.
I got the apartment and the studio, and my teacher gave me a list of 20 people who might be my students. I started alone, and after six months I got another teacher. We started offering workshops, massages and I did lot of training, like yoga for kids, yoga for pregnant women, sport yoga, Pilates, and so on. Things kept growing, and then six years ago I moved here.
Gordana, one of the teachers
What classes do you offer?
On regular basis we offer dynamic yoga 1 and 2, Ashtanga, Vinjasa yoga, yin yang yoga, morning yoga, hot yoga, rocket yoga, yogalates, power yoga, lunch yoga, Hatha Vinjasa with meditation, and Yin yoga with chanting. Once a month we offer Kundalini workshop and Gong bath
What if someone doesn’t know Slovenian?
Nearly all the teachers can teach in English, if you let them know that’s needed, and a lot of the workshops are taught by foreign teachers who don’t speak Slovene, so those are obviously in English.
One of my passions is to bring the diversity of yoga work to the studio, so I organise a lot of workshops with travelling teachers, and sometimes we ask them to come specially for us. A lot of the teachers come from the UK, but we also have ones from India, the US, South America. But I often go to London, and so that’s where I find the most new teachers
The guest teacher Minnar Martinez will be coming to the studio on 7 September, 2019
What are some of the workshops you do, and the teachers you bring here?
We try and have a good variety of guest teachers and different workshops that are all very interesting.
For example, we’ve hosted: Celest Pereira, Adam Husler (Vinjasa workshops), Franz Andrini (yoga for slimming), Ron van der Post (Hatha yoga), Aurora Bowkett, Andrew Rosenstock (Thai body treatments), Marcus Veda (rocket yoga), and Stephen Marks (core flow yoga and yoga nidra), among others.
This autumn (2019) we plan to host: Minnar Martinez (Ashtanga second series and nutritional lecture), Aurora Bowkett, Lidija Poljacek (forest yoga and Buti yoga) and Celest Pereira.
The guest teacher Aurora Bowkett will be there on 21 September, 2019
What else do you offer?
Besides yoga and yoga workshops we also organise Yoga Teacher Training, massages (our specialty is Japanese face, neck and head massage), Gong baths, and dance classes, and we also have a great make-up artist in our team, if anyone’s interested in that.
Plus people can actually rent the studio for any kind of activity that’s connected to yoga, meditation, health, dance, workshops about healthy lifestyle, children’s activities, and so on.
Do you have anything new planned for the future?
Yes, we want to start doing retreats. The first one is actually planned for December, in India. It will be organised by a tour guide and yoga teacher, Tarun Sharma. It’s going to be 18 days. Thirteen days travelling, and then five days of yoga retreat.
And what about classes this summer?
Summer is less busy, because all of Slovenia goes on vacation, but we’re staying open during the quiet period, from 15 July to 15 August, although people should book first, and check the schedule online (here).
June 17, 2019
The international Clown festival Klovnbuf is in now full swing in Ljubljana and will also visit Vrhnika and Murska Sobota by the week's end.
Free outdoor shows are taking place throughout Monday, June 17th, in Congress Square (Zvezda Park) in Ljubljana. The afternoon schedule begins is as follows:
16:30 Hula-hoop Workshop with Eva Cajnko (Slovenia)
17:30 The Ambiguous Vagabond, Gilad Shabtay (Israel)
18:00 Haute Heure, Barolosolo (France)
19:00 Pinball Paranoia, Matthias Romir (Germany)
19:30 Mimicry, Michael Zandl (Austria)
21:00 Pockets Full of Stars, Potočan & Fourklor (Slovenia)
STA, 16 June 2019 - Slovenia ranks eighth among 163 countries in the latest Global Peace Index (GPI), having climbed two spots from last year. Iceland remains the world's most peaceful country for the 12th year running.
This year's GPI report finds that the average level of global peacefulness improved slightly in what is the first improvement in five years. However, the world continues to be less peaceful than a decade ago.
Peacefulness improved in 86 countries, deteriorating in 76, with the average level of global peacefulness deteriorating by 3.78% in a decade, according to the report, released on the website of the organisation Vision of Humanity.
Iceland at the top is followed by New Zealand and Portugal, which climbed a spot to come ahead of Austria, which lost a spot to 4th. Denmark ranks 5th.
Slovenia placed after Singapore in 7th and Japan in 9th. Of the neighbouring countries only Austria ranks higher (4th), while Hungary, Croatia and Italy trail in 21st, 28th and 39th spots.
The index ranks three key factors: societal safety and security, ongoing conflicts and militarisation. Slovenia ranked third in militarisation.
Europe has maintained its position as the most peaceful region in the world, which it has held for every year of the GPI, which was first launched in 2007.
By contrast, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) remains the least peaceful region for the fifth year in a row, although it did become more peaceful last year.
Afghanistan is now the least peaceful country, replacing Syria, which is now the second least peaceful. South Sudan, Yemen, and Iraq are the remaining five least peaceful countries.
Bhutan has recorded the largest improvement of any country in the top 20, rising 43 places in the last 12 years to 15th.
The report is produced by the Sydney-based Institute for Economics and Peace and developed in consultation with an international panel of peace experts from peace institutes and think tanks with data collected and collated by the Economist Intelligence Unit.
The GPI covers 99.7% of the global population, using 23 quality and quantity indicators.
The full report can be found here
Keep up with the daily news in Slovenia by checking the morning headlines here
This schedule was prepared by the STA:
MONDAY, 17 June
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will start its plenary for June with a Q&A session with members of the cabinet.
LJUBLJANA - The Grand Master of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta Giacomo Dalla Torre del Tempio di Sanguinetta will meet President Borut Pahor and parliamentary Speaker Dejan Židan.
LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Infrastructure, Environment and Spatial Planning Committee will debate the emergency bill on the culling of brown bears and wolves.
LJUBLJANA - Infrastructure Minister Alenka Bratušek will speak about her recent visit to China at a press conference.
LJUBLJANA - A concert by the Slovenian Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Spanish tenor Placido Domingo.
LJUBLJANA - The start of the four-day Festival of Migrant Film.
TUESDAY, 18 June
LUXEMBOURG - Foreign Minister Miro Cerar will attend a session of the EU's Foreign Affairs Council.
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will debate amendments to the energy act and the act on drivers as it continues its plenary.
LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Commission for Oversight of Intelligence and Security Services will interview Maj-Gen Alenka Ermenc, chief of the general staff, over the sacking of force commander Miha Škerbinc.
GOSZTOLA, Hungary - Maj-Gen Alenka Ermenc, chief of the general staff, will meet with her Hungarian counterpart, Lt-Gen Ferenc Korom.
BRDO PRI KRANJU - The Chamber of Trade Crafts and Small Business will host its annual summit of small business.
LJUBLJANA - Electricity distributor Elektro Ljubljana will present results for 2018 and challenges in the transition to a low-carbon economy.
LJUBLJANA - A round table debate will be hosted by a civil initiative to discuss changes to the electoral legislation.
PORTOROŽ - The International Conference on Advancements in Nuclear Instrumentation Measurement Methods and their Applications (Animma) will be hosted by the Association of Slovenian Nuclear Experts and the Jožef Stefan Institute; until 21 June.
LJUBLJANA - The 60th Ljubljana Jazz Festival will kick off with a concert by the Big Band RTV Slovenija and Slovenian soloists.
LJUBLJANA - British singer Tom Jones will play in Stožice Arena.
WEDNESDAY, 19 June
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will debate the national crime prevention programme until 2023 as it continues its plenary.
LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Commission for Oversight of Intelligence and Security Services will interview Miha Škerbinc, who was recently dismissed as force commander.
LJUBLJANA - The Education Ministry will present the results of Talis 2018, a teaching and learning survey conducted by the OECD.
LJUBLJANA - Archbishop of Ljubljana Stanislav Zore will celebrate a mass for the homeland ahead of Statehood Day.
LJUBLJANA - The Tour of Slovenia, the country's biggest cycling race, will start with a 171-kilometre stage from Ljubljana to Rogaška Slatina.
THURSDAY, 20 June
BRUSSELS, Belgium - Prime Minister Marjan Šarec will attend the EU summit; until 21 June.
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will examine the annual report of the Human Rights Ombudsman and an emergency bill on the culling of brown bears and wolves.
LJUBLJANA - The parliamentary Commission for Oversight of Intelligence and Security Services will interview Dejan Matijevič, the boss of the military intelligence, over the recent sacking of force commander Miha Škerbinc.
LJUBLJANA - Weekly cabinet session.
SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina - Speaker Dejan Židan will attend a plenary of South-East European Cooperation Process's parliamentary assembly.
LJUBLJANA - Focus, an NGO, and the Jožef Stefan Institute will host a debate on Slovenia's long-term climate strategy.
LJUBLJANA - A group of NGOs and the Government Office for the Support and Integration of Migrants will hold a press conference to mark World Refugee Day.
LJUBLJANA - The Association of German Chambers of Industry and Commerce, the Slovenian chamber and the Slovenian-German chamber will sign an agreement on cooperation.
RIBNICA - A debate with UEFA president Aleksander Čeferin at the Škrabec Homestead.
MARIBOR - The start of Lent Festival, the biggest summer festival in Slovenia.
LJUBLJANA - The Statistics Office will release the latest consumer confidence index.
FRIDAY, 21 June
LJUBLJANA - The National Assembly will vote on a motion of no confidence in Defence Minister Karl Erjavec.
MOKRICE - A business breakfast of the Slovenian-Croatian Business Club will be held to mark Statehood Day. The event will be attended by the Slovenian and Croatian economy ministers, Zdravko Počivalšek and Darko Horvat.
LJUBLJANA - Left leader Luka Mesec will be arraigned in a case brought against him by far-right politician Bernard Brščič.
LJUBLJANA - The Statistics Office will release June business sentiment data.
SATURDAY, 22 June
LJUBLJANA - Pride Parade will be held as the final event of the Pride Festival.
LJUBLJANA - Japan Day, the biggest festival of Japanese culture in Slovenia.
SUNDAY, 23 June
LJUBLJANA - The Kresnik Prize for the best novel of the year will be handed out by the publisher Delo.
If you're not in town for the week of this guide (17 to 23 June, 2019) then you can see all the editions here, and if there's event or activity 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 the basic listings are after the following selection, while a comprehensive PDF of events for the next seven days, as prepared by Ljubljana Tourism, is here.
In town and want to follow the news? Check out our regular morning headlines for Slovenia here.
Ljubljana has some beautiful buildings from the early 20th century, in the Secessionist style, like the one below. Learn where to find them here.
Photo: Neža Loštrek
The June in Ljubljana Festival runs until the 21st, with free events in Kongresni trg / Congress Square – the big square in the centre of town that’s next to Zvezda Park – with a varied programme of music, dance, children’s shows, and so on. Some details are here, but in short Monday is circus day, Tuesday ballet, and Friday World music day.
The Summer in Ljubljana Old Town and goes on until 28 August. This presents classical concerts, many of which are free, in the churches, inner courtyards and squares in the old city centre. The programme is here.
Wednesday the Tour de Slovenia cycling race starts in Kongresni trg. The teams are presented at 10:50 and the race starts in 12:15.
Thursday night Kino Šiška plays host to the French trio Lysistrata., while on Friday the Black Lips play the same venue.
Also on Thursday evening is the opening of a new show by one of the best photographers of the city, Igor Andjelič, on the theme of Bauhaus. It's on at Galerija ŠKUC (here).
Photo: Igor Andjelič. See more of his work here
The 8th annual Japanese Day is on this Saturday, 10:00 - 17:00, in the museum quarter of Metelkova, brining art, music, food, drink and more, and promoted with the following poster.
While the Old Town is quaint, and full of music, where does Ljubljana really shop? One popular answer is BTC City, a vast complex of malls, entertainment facilities and more, including more than 70 different food vendors, offering everything from Slovenian to Thai, Indian to Italian, Mexican to Chinese. Check out my recent visit here.
Volčji Potok Arboretum (Volčji Potok 3) has a rose garden in bloom until 31 August, nature permitting.
Ljubljana Pride Festival continues until the 22nd, when it climaxes with the annual parade before a concert in Novi trg and then various parties around town. Read more about the schedule here.
While the Old Town is quaint, and full of music, where does Ljubljana really shop? One popular answer is BTC City, a vast complex of malls, entertainment facilities and more, including more than 70 different food vendors, offering everything from Slovenian to Thai, Indian to Italian, Mexican to Chinese. Check out our recent visit here.
If you're learning Slovenian then you can find all our dual texts here
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, and this week, starting the 13th, it's the Let it Roll festival of music documentaries.
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.
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 Bar– 80s and 90s throwback nights can often be found here, along with rock-based DJ sets.
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.
Cvetličarna – Regional 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 Castle – Jazz, 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 filharmonija– Classical 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Ljubljana Pride Festival starts on Tuesday, 11 June, and continues until the 22nd. There’s a lot going on, and you can see the schedule here.
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.
Screenshot from Google Maps, showing the location of the Castle vineyard
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. On until 17 November Mighty Guardians of the Past: Castles in the Slovenian Lands, a presentation that delivers on the promise of its title.
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 Castle” here, and “Ten Ways to Enjoy Ljubljana Castle” here.
Most public galleries and museums are closed on Mondays, although not the National Museum, and - as noted at the start
Cankerjev dom – A free to see show called Subterranean Worlds, showing cave photography, runs until June 16th.
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.
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. On until 25 September is Treasures from Russian Museums, an exhibition showcasing more than 80 Russian icons from leading Russian museums.
The Faces of Ljubljana in the City Museum. Photo: JL Flanner
International Centre of Graphic Art – The 33rd Biennial of Graphic Arts runs until 29 September. It's called Crack Up – Crack Down, and is curated by the collective Slavs and Tartars, with a focus satire and the graphic arts. Learn more here.
Ljubljana Castle on until 17 November Mighty Guardians of the Past: Castles in the Slovenian Lands, a presentation that delivers on the promise of its title.
MAO – The Museum of Architecture and Design has much of what you'd expect, along with some temporary shows and a good cafe. On until 19 September is a show called Creators, on contemporary Slovenian fashion and textile design, which is being promoted with the following image.
Photo: Urša Premik
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. On display at the Metelova branch of the Moderna galerija
Alan Ford at the National Gallery
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. The Space Within the Space: Scenography in Slovenia before 1991 will provide a comprehensive historic, stylistic, visual and theatrical overview of Slovenian scenography until 8 September. There’s also a big show on Alan Ford, one of the great comic books of the Yugoslav era, on until 13 October.
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.
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.
Roma Aeterna: Masterpieces of Classical Sculpture - see below
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. Until 29 September there also a retrospective on the photographer Edi Šelhaus, which is being promoted with the following image. Opening 4 June and closing 3 November is Roma Aeterna: Masterpieces of Classical Sculpture. With sculptures from the collection of the Santarelli family in Rome, ranging from the age of the Roman Empire to that of neoclassicism.
Photo: Edi Šelhaus
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. On until September 15 is Petra Šink: The circle between design and nature, in which the award-winning designer takes visitors through the life cycle of useful products for the home which are made from natural biodegradable fungal materials.
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.
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.
Photo: JL Flanner
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.
Photo: Open Kitchen
Photo: JL Flanner
Some view of the city you can only get from the river. If you'd like to take a boat ride then read about my experience here. If you prefer to get in the water rather than on it, then here's a guide to the various open air pools in Ljubljana. Note that it was written last year and so the prices and times may have changed, so do click the links and check.
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,
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.
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.
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.
Photo: maxpixel.net, public domain
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.
Photo: Google Image Search
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.
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.
Photo: JL Flanner
STA, 13 June 2019 - Slovenia is the eighth family-friendliest country among the developed world, according to the latest UNICEF report. The list of 31 developed countries with available data is topped by Sweden, followed by Norway, Iceland, Estonia and Portugal, while Switzerland, Greece, Cyprus, UK and Ireland are at the bottom.
The report ranked countries across the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the EU based on their national family-friendly policies, which include the duration of parental leave at full pay equivalent, and childcare services for children until six years of age.
In the report, UNICEF says that family-friendly policies strengthen the bond between parents and their children, which is critical for the development of families and socially cohesive societies.
"There is no time more critical to children's brain development - and therefore their futures - than the earliest years of life," said UNICEF Executive Director Henrietta Fore. "We need governments to help provide parents with the support they need to create a nurturing environment for their young children. And we need the support and influence of the private sector to make this happen."
Estonia offers mothers the longest duration of leave at full pay at 85 weeks, followed by Hungary (72 weeks) and Bulgaria (65 weeks). In Slovenia, the maternity leave lasts 48 weeks.
The only country included in the analysis with no national paid leave policy for mothers or fathers is the US.
The countries with the shortest maternity leave, up to 10 weeks, are Australia, New Zealand and Switzerland.
The report also finds that even when fathers are offered paid leave, many do not take it. In Japan, the only country that offers at least six months at full pay for fathers, only one in twenty took paid leave in 2017. In Slovenia, eight in ten fathers took paid leave in 2017.
The full report can be read here
STA, 12 June 2019 - The government adopted an intervention bill ordering the culling of overgrown bear and wolf populations on Wednesday. The move comes after a decree with the same order was successfully challenged by an environmental NGO in Administrative Court, leading to a steep increase in wolf and bear attacks on farm animals this year.
The bill stipulates the "removal" of 200 bears, of which 175 are to be culled, while the rest is expected to perish naturally or in car accidents or other incidents. Moreover, 11 wolves are to be culled.
Slovenia is home to 12 wolf packs, each five to ten strong, Agriculture Minister Aleksandra Pivec said as she announced this bill earlier this week. She also said that wolves alone had killed 72 sheep, 19 cows, 15 horses, a donkey and two other farm animals this year.
Slovenia's bear population, which was on the brink of extinction in early 20th century, is estimated at about 1,000, whereas a population of some 400 bears is deemed optimal.
While bear attacks have also caused significant damage in agriculture, with livestock herds decimated in some cases, the government also says that there is a significant risk of bear attacks on humans.
Experts believe that Slovenia's bear population has reached a number that should not be exceeded, underlining that acceptance of big carnivores by the population is key in successful management of their population.
Slovenia has been nearing a boiling point in this respect, with farmers and agricultural associations staging rallies to protest against the government's inaction in the face of their decimated herds.
The bill, drafted by the Ministry of Agriculture, has been filed by the Ministry of Environment, which is in charge of large carnivores management in Slovenia.
Meanwhile, the parliamentary environment and agriculture committees will hold a joint session this afternoon to discuss the attacks of bears and wolves on livestock.