The Definitive Guide to Traveling to Slovenia in Summer 2021

Ljubljana | best places to visit in Slovenia

2021 is time for a fresh start! After a year at home, wondering if we would ever travel again I am here to tell you that we will. If you are vaccinated and ready to jump on that plane or train you should consider Slovenia for your summer plans.

Why? Because Slovenia has everything.

Slovenia has not just any mountains, but the Alps. It has not just any sea, but the Mediterranean. It has thermal waters, breathtaking views, and once in a lifetime experiences surrounded in unspoiled nature. I didn’t even mention the world-renowned chefs, wines, and food that are shockingly accessible.

Don’t sleep on Slovenia. This emerald gem will be your next favorite getaway.

I created this guide out of love for this country (my second home) and to help visitors get the most out of their time here. There is a lot to do and see. Can you believe that I have nearly 50 articles all about Slovenia?! It has been a labor of love and I hope that you will find something inspiring.

Traveling to Slovenia? Don’t forget to check out these guides.

This post contains affiliate links which means I may receive a commission on purchases made through the links. This is at no additional cost to you and helps keep the site running.

Protecting yourself and others while traveling

Please check local regulations, follow the rules, stay safe, and be kind. Here are some resources available in English with the latest travel information.

Republic of Slovenia Offical Website

Slovenian Police Department

Republic of Slovenia Border Crossing During COVID-19 (includes countries on red list)

Keep 1.5 meters distance between people, and wear a mask while inside any public transport, when you enter restaurants, and other inside spaces as they are mandatory.

Disinfectant is at every single door before you enter a restaurant, store, hotel, etc, and also found in many bathrooms. Don’t be shy, use it.

Summer Festivals and Events in Slovenia

Below I will be adding interesting events or opportunities for tourists throughout the summer. Using Ljubljana tourism events page is a great way to see what events are taking place including temporary exhibitions at museums.

Jump ahead to…

JUNE JULY | AUGUST | SEPTEMBER

If you would like to see your event here, reach out at admin [at] wanderinghelene.com

ALL SUMMER

Open Kitchen (Odprta Kuhna)
Ljubljana | TBA

Every Friday throughout the summer in the beautiful Pogačarjev Square you will find rows of stands each one with delicious offerings. You can explore Slovenian cuisine, Turkish, Iranian, Chinese, vegetarian, and more at this highly popular event.

Check the official Site for updated times and vendors.

Open Kitchen market in Ljubljana

JUNE

Love Goes Through the Stomach (Ljubezen gre skozi želodec)
Ljubljana | April 22nd-June 13th

A temporary photography exhibit at the Ljubljana Castle that celebrates Slovenia’s status as the European Region of Gastronomy for 2021. The photos explore contemporary history of food throughout Slovenia.

Read more at the official site.

Open Wine Cellars (Dnevi odprtih kleti) 2021
Goriška Brda | June 12th-13th

A yearly wine festival celebrating Rebula (Ribolla) in Goriška Brda with 34 different vineyards participating. It is hosted by Kontrabant. The day is spent wandering around vineyards, taking wine cellar tours, and of course wine tasting. 🍷 Read about my experience at DOK.

Facebook event page.

Lent Festival
Maribor | June 25th-July 3rd

One of the oldest and largest open-air festivals in Central Europe, the Lent Festival is held in Maribor every year with stages across the city hosting various events. It is a multi-cultural and multi-genre event with performances in pop, jazz, ballet, comedy, circus acts, yoga, and workshops (to list a few!). Read more at the official site.

JULY

Gin and Brin Festival
Dutovlje | July 2nd-7th

A summer festival dedicated to gin! Try local producers’ products, see presentations, and eat traditional Slovene dishes made street food style.

Facebook event page.

Film Under the Stars (Film pod zvezdami)
Ljubljana | July 15th – August 7th

A 24-day event takes place at the Ljubljana Castle. Watch movies under the stars with Ljubljana beneath you. Films are screened in their original language with English subtitles. English spoken films will have Slovenian subtitles.

Check Kinodvor’s event page for the schedule.

idrija zlikrofi

AUGUST

Floating Castle
Snežnik Castle (Stari trg pri Ložu) | August 1st-2nd

A several day event that centers around Snežnik Castle with music performances, visual art installations, food and drink stalls, seminars, workshops, puppet shows, and much more. The festival proclaims it is an ethno/folk/fusion experience in nature.

Check the facebook page for updated information.

Teran and Prosciutto Festival (praznik terana in pršuta)
Dutovlje | August 7th-15th

A food and wine festival celebrating one of Slovenia’s beloved wines, Teran, along with their other love, prosciutto. The festival has been taking place since 1970 and is the largest of its kind in Karst.

Read more 🍷 about exploring the Karst region in Slovenia and tasting its delights!

Street Food Market Maribor
Maribor | August 27th-29th

A festival of food trucks and food stands in the center of Maribor.

Check their Facebook event page for more info.

Idrija Žlikrofi Festival (Praznik idrijskih žlikrofov)
Idrija | August 22nd

Žlikrofi originates in Idrija and Idrija žlikrof was the first Slovenian dish to be awarded protected geographical status in 2010. Every year the town of Idrija has a festival to celebrate their beloved dish.

Check the official site for the latest information.

Sad that you will miss the žlikrofi festival? 🤤 Check out this food and hertiage tour you can take in Idrija year-round.

Hotiza Fishing Days
Hotiza | TBA

Life along the Mura River means fish is a pretty important staple in your diet. Here you can have fish prepared in the traditional way done in the village of Hotiza for more than a century.

Check the official event page for more information.

Bogračfest
Lendava | TBA

Bograč is a type of goulash from the Prekmurje region. It is prepared with three types of meat in equal parts of onion among other ingredients. Each year in Lendava they have a cooking competition lining the street with large cauldrons slowly preparing this delicious treat.

Check the official event page for more information.

vineyard in Brda

SEPTEMBER

Lendava Grape Harvest
Lendava | TBA

Check the official event page for more information.

The Old Vine Festival
Maribor | Sept 30th – October 3rd

A wine festival to kick off the wine season in Slovenia. Explore and taste various Styrian and Slovenian winemakers’ products at this multi-day festival in the place where the oldest grapevine in the world still lives today.

Check the official site for the latest information.

view of piran slovenia

Things to Do In Slovenia

Now for the fun stuff! I’m sharing some of the best things to do in Slovenia during the summer months. These are some of my favorite places and at the top of my recommendations list.

Seaside and Swimming Experiences

There are no shortages of water in Slovenia with over 300 lakes, more than 50 rivers, a coastline to the Adriatic Sea, and mineral waters with healing properties throughout the country. Here are some of my personal suggestions:

Trip to Koper and Piran 

Piran is my favorite seaside town in Slovenia with the colorful Tartini Square, breathtaking views, and fresh seafood this Venetian influenced town gives you a taste of the Adriatic. Koper is often overlooked next to Piran, but I adore the Medieval center and Tito Square. It is also a great place to get some fried calamari from the market! Both are relatively small places and can be visited in one day.

Visit the Velenje Castle and Beach

Velenje is underappreciated by tourists but known and enjoyed by locals. The Velenje Castle is a treat for castle lovers and history buffs with incredible collections you will not see anywhere else. Saying beach is misleading, but this is what it is called in Slovene. Velenje Lake offers swimming, food stands, diving board, restroom facilities, and more for a fresh swimming adventure.

Take a Dip in Lake Bled

Sure Lake Bled is famous for its Lake, Bled Island, Bled Castle, and especially kremšnita but did you know that you can swim in the lake? There is a designated area called Grajsko kopališče (Castle Bathing Area).

Cool off in Alpine Lakes

Head up into the Alps to visit Lake Bohinj, Lake Jasna, or Zelenci Nature Reserve for crystal clear waters and dramatic backdrops.

Adventure Sports at Soča River

One of the crowned jewels of Slovenia is the Soča River. With striking blue-green color and 138 kilometers long, the Soča River is a must-see. For the active and adventurous you can go rafting, kayaking, SUP, fishing, canyoning, and more.

Triglav National Park

Hiking and Nature Experiences

Visit Triglav National Park

Triglav National Park is the only national park of Slovenia and without a doubt worth a visit. Here you will find hiking trails and water sports during the summer. Some highlights are Kranjska Gora, Bohinj, and the Triglav Lakes.

Idrija potica

Food and Wine Experiences

Slovenia was announced as the European Region of Gastronomy for 2021 and 6 restaurants were just awarded Michelin stars, including 2 to famed Hiša Franko.

Cuisine and wine shift colors, taste, and smell as you travel throughout the country. Neighboring countries, climate, and most certainly the landscape have influenced Slovenian dishes immensely.

Brezica Castle in Dolenjska

City Breaks and Castles

If city breaks are more your style and you fill your days with wandering streets, window shopping, stopping in cafes, browsing museums, and more then these itineraries are for you.

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