Top Ljubljana Attractions
The Old Town part of Ljubljana lying on the east bank of the Ljubljanica includes the majority of the most notable historical sights within a very compact area allowing you to explore them in a convenient way even by walk.
Ljubljana Castle also stands in the old town part perched high on top of a hill.
Ljubljana - The Town of Bridges
Despite Ljubljana's smallness the town boasts a several lovely Bridges that span the Ljubljanica river.
The middle section of the bridge dates back to 1842 when it was created in place of a wooden bridge to connect the Old Town with the newer part of ljubljana.
The two side bridges designed by the famous architect Joze Plecnik were added in 1931 dding a triangular shape to the whole structure.
The Triple Bridge is a perfect spot to admire the lovely cityscape of Ljubljana and take some nice photos.
The Dragon Bridge is another well-known sight in Ljubljana that connects the two banks of Ljubljanica river east of the Triple Bridge, just off Vodnikov Trg.
The Dragon bridge has a enchanting story behind its name: the Greek mythological heroes Jason and the Argonauts arrived in Ljubljana (through the Danube, Sava and the Ljubljanica rivers on their way to the Adriatic sea) on their ship Argo after they stole the golden fleece form the king of Colchia. Here they found a monster in a lake -the Dragon of Ljubljana - that Jason slew.
Whether the story has historical facts or not dragons can be found eveywhere in Ljubljana (not real ones, though who knows?) in form of statues and other artworks. A dragon seats at the top of the the Town Hall of Ljubljana and the town's coat of arms also features a green dragon.
The Art Nouveau brige was completed in 1901 in place of the former Butchers' bridge according to the designs of Jurij Zaninovich. The 4 bronze dragons guarding the bridgheads look fearful with their spiked tails and mighty wings. According to an urban legend the beasts wag their tails whenever a virgin crosses the bridge.
The Shomakers'/Cobblers' Bridge (Cevljarski most) is perhaps the widest of all Ljubljana bridges. The bridge that was built in 1932 by Plecnik received its name after a group of local shoemakers who set up stalls on the predecessor of the current bridge to sell their products.
Preseren Square (Presernov Trg)
Preseren trg lies in the heart of the town between the newer Ljubljana Center and the Old Town.
The statue of the suqare's name giver France Preseren (1800-1849) Slovenia's national poet, who wrote the country's anthem, stands in the middle of the lovely plaza flanked by historic buildings and terraced cafes.
The Central Pharmacy (Centralna Lekarna) at No 5, to the east of the preseren statue is a
The most conspicuous sight is the dark pink Franciscan Church of the Annunciation on the northern side of of the square. The church was built in the mid-17th century: The main altar by the Italian sculptor Francesco Robba is worth taking a look at.
Preseren square boasts two other architectural gems are the Secessionist Urbanc building (today it houses the Centromerkur department store) on the corner of Miklosiceva cesta and Trubarjeva cesta, and the so-called Ura building (aka Hauptman House) at No. 1 the only building that survived the 1895 earthquake.
Urbanc-Ljubljana's 1st department store
Peep in Wolfova ulica that opens from the square and in an alcove you'll see a head stucco of Preseren's love Julija, looking towards the statue of her admirer. Isn't it romantic?
TIP: Cantina Mexicana at Knafljev prehod 3 - a small passage opening from Wolfova street - is a great restaurant serving tortillas (cc. 8-12 €), fajitas (cc. 8-13 €), tex mex dishes (cc. 8.50-17 €) and other Mexican specialities.
Actually the passage that links Wolfova ulica and Slovenska cesta has a couple of other restaurants like the elegant Gostilna As (Ace Inn) specializing in authentic Slovenian dishes and seafood (main dishes are around 17-25 €).
Preseren Square is teeming with tourits and locals alike in almost every season, but the place is the busiest during summer where a range of concerts and other events are held there.
Old-style tricycle on Presernov trg, Ljubljana
Christmas is also an active period on and around Preseren Square. Read more about Christmas in Ljubljana.
Ljubljana Castle (Ljubljanski Grad)
The Castle of Ljubljana sits atop of Castle Hill (Grajska Planota) and you're going to spot the fortress several times during your walks in the town.
Romantic widing lanes lead up to the Castle from Old Town (3 streets take you there: Studentovska ulica, the steepest route is the Reber ulica from Stari trg, and Ulica na Grad from Gornji trg -the stroll takes about 15 minutes).
Although various fortifications have stood on top of the hill since the Celtic era the most of the current castle dates from the 16th century as a result of a rebuilding project after the 1511 earthquake.
The castle have been nicely renovated in recent years and today it hosts concerts and other cultural event.
Opening hours: 9.00-22.00 May-Sept, 10.00-21.00 Apr-Oct, admission is free
You can climb up the Viewing Tower via wrought iron steps (open: 9.00-21.00, May-Sept, and 10.00-18.00 Apr-Oct, admission: from where you can admire the great panorama of Ljubljana. The Viewing Tower houses the Virtual Museum with a 20-minute 3D video shot introducing Ljubljana and its history (included in the ticket price of the Viewing Tower).
Cathedral of St Nicholas
The twin-towered St Nicholas Church on Pogacarjev trg behind the Central Market dates from the early 18th century. At first glance the cathedral is nothing interesting but if you take your time to reveal its history and see the many intriguing details of this temple.
A sacred site - a church stood here since at least the 13th century at the place of today1s St Nicholas Church
Like the impressive bronze sidedoor created to commemorate Pope John Paul II's visit to Slovenia in 1996, or the pieta outside on one of the walls.
Old Town Squares (Mestni Trg, Stari Trg and Gornji Trg)
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