Slovenia’s slow reopening continues along with its vaccination program and those of its neighbours. At present (6 May) outdoor drinking and dining is possible, along with indoors under certain conditions, as set by set by the National Institute of Public Health. Hotels, hostels and B&Bs are also open, albeit currently limited to offering 30 rooms, and visits to galleries, museums, and so on can be made. Moreover, with the EU making plans to enable international tourism, there’s every expectation that the country will have a relatively busy summer season, as people take advantage of their new freedoms to do things they once took for granted.
Of course, when it comes to Slovenian tourism one site stands out above all in the promotional literature – Lake Bled, its island and castle, which reopened for business a few weeks ago – along with the views that surround it.
The oldest and largest golf course in Slovenia
It’s this backdrop that helped Royal Bled win the honour of being added to the World of Leading Golf’s list of “Best and Most Beautiful” courses in 2018, based on the high quality of service, excellent golf courses – both 18- and 9-hole – and the fact that golfers rated it as well worth revisiting.
In February 2020, just before the world shut down, Royal Bled gained further renown when it joined golfscape’s top 100 courses in the world. The oldest and largest course in Slovenia came in at #86, just after The Blue Monster at Trump National Doral Miami, USA, and before Golf de Spérone, France. Unsurprisingly, it was again the beauty of the area that caught the imagination of the authors, with the report noting “the course is flanked by towering mountains and the impressive valleys of the Alps. With excellently manicured grounds, many hail it as one of the most beautiful courses in all of Europe.”
But can you enjoy Royal Bled today, with the epidemic still not over? The simple answer yes, Royal Bled’s golf courses and restaurant are open for business, as is the luxury accommodation that’s available in the King’s House – originally built for King Alexander I of Yugoslavia – and the Lake House, with special “Play & Stay” packages available to ensure comfort, convenience and full golfing pleasure (details here)
Golfers who plan on staying elsewhere can book a tee time online for the 18-hole championship King’s Course (€155), or the 9-hole Lake’s Course (€55), and clubs, trolleys and carts can be rented. Note that the handicap requirements to play on the King’s Course are 29.0 for men and 36.0 for women, with an HCP certificate needed to prove this. There’s also a dress code for both club and restaurant, with details here.
The tournament season at the club begins in June, with the Royal Bled International Pro Am running from the 10th to 13th, open to a maximum of 22 teams of four players including one professional, with more details here. July then sees the 47th Golden Lion Trophy on the 17th, while the 28th to 31st is the 48th Golf Week, sponsored by Tesla, Castrol, Optisis and SK Golf, all played with those beautiful views.
In short, if you’ve spent the last year trapped at home and dreaming of wide open spaces, great natural beauty, and a good walk enhanced with a game, then now’s the time to visit the Royal Bled website and plan your trip to one of the best golf courses in Slovenia.
Golf Resort Royal Bled, Vrba 37a, 4248 Lesce, Slovenia
How many golf courses are there in Slovenia?
At last count there were 14 golf clubs in Slovenia, offering both 9- and 18-hole courses. Lean more about them here.