Bled, Slovenia – 10 Best Things To Do
Bled is arguably the most famous place in Slovenia, with its picture perfect lake that manages to look good in every season and weather condition. Situated an hour from the capital Ljubljana and half an hour from the Triglav National Park, there is plenty to do around Bled on the off chance that you are bored of Bled. Even though it is flooded with tourists year around, the town remained a small, modest size with locals coexisting peacefully with the visitors. If you have visited, you will understand the charm of this Slovenian gem, and if you haven’t, you really should pay a trip there. Here’s ten things to do around Bled:
1. Walk around the perimeter of Lake Bled
Lake Bled isn’t very large, and a perimeter walk around it only takes an hour or two. Not only does it make for a nice walk, you get to scout out a good spot to chill later as well as taking photos of the lake from all angles. Score! If you are short on time, then cycling around might be a better option, though it can be quite a dodge-fest on the southern shore of the Lake as the path is more narrow.
2. Visit Bled Castle
Bled Castle is the oldest castle in Slovenia, perched on a cliff on the northern shore of Lake Bled overlooking the entire region. The path that goes up the castle from the town isn’t particularly difficult and the view alone is worth the ticket price. If you are interested in the history of Bled, they also have a comprehensive exhibition on. There is even a souvenir shop selling metal work as well as a restaurant where you can eat and admire the surroundings.
3. Hike up to the Ojstrica
If you want to see the Lake Bled on postcards, then a hike up Ojstrica is the answer.Even though there are plenty of best viewpoints of Lake Bled, this is the classic one and the trail itself is not too difficult to navigate. However, the grounds can get slippery after rain, therefore it’s best to be careful and wear appropriate footwear to go up. The best time to visit is in the morning before everyone else arrives – and the trail can be found near the camping ground southwest of the shore of Lake Bled.
4. Row to Bled Island
A pilgrimage place for many around the region since the Renaissance time, the major attraction on the island is the 17th century Assumption of Mary Church. Its bell tower can be seen from the shore and the 99 steps that lead up to the church adds to the medieval charm. The best way to get there is to rent a boat and row across. You can, of course, get ferried across on one of the many manned plenta on the east shore, but it’s more romantic and fun to row across yourself.
5. Try their famous cream cake
Despite not knowing that Bled is famous for the cream cake, almost every restaurant serves them and you’d be hard pressed not to try one. My favourite restaurant in Bled is Grajska Plaza right by the shore of Lake Bled – right under the looming Bled Castle and in front of the swimming masses.
6. Go Canyoning
There are plenty of tours available in Bled that you can book via the hostels. One of them is Canyoning. If you are not familiar with what it is, Canyoning involves walking, swimming, abseiling and jumping your way down a stream – with licensed guides, of course. It’s a great way to see the countryside as well as getting that rush of adrenaline and ticking it off your bucket list. To be honest, the main reason why I did it was because it rained nonstop for three days while I was there, but it turned out to be the best decision I made.
The ski slopes in the winter and the tobboganing hill in the summer, you can get on the car lift in the southern shore of Lake Bled all year around to get a panoramic view of the lake. Tobboagning is a strangely exhilarating activity and one of Bled’s unique attractions. It involves getting on a small cart and accelerating your way down the slope along the meandering metal tube. The kids love it, the adults secretly enjoy it – it’s probably more popular than rowing to Bled Island.
8. Visit Vintgar Gorge
Only a few kilometers from Bled is the Vintgar Gorge, famous for the canyons cut through by the Radovna River. A wooden trail will take you through the most scenic part ending at the 13 meter high Sum Fall, and the hike is beautiful even in the rain. You can easily walk or cycle there, though many hostels offer a free shuttle service to and from.
9. Go to Lake Bohinj
Lake Bled isn’t the only lake around town. Lake Bohinj is the largest permanent lake in Slovenia and rests in the Triglav National Park only a half hour bus ride from Bled. It makes for a good day trip if you have time to spare, and the water there is even colder than Lake Bled if you fancy a swim. There are also plenty to do around Bohinj as well, such as the Savica waterfall, Mostnica Gorge and Mount Vogel – and I fully recommend spending a few days there as well if you can.
10. Day trip to Ljubljana
The capital of Slovenia is not far from Bled either. Buses run frequently between the two cities and the journey is under an hour. Ljubljana is a small capital that can be done in a day. You have the eccentric Metelkova and the historic castle, as well as the Ljubljanica River and the old town charm.
About the Author:
Nam Cheah is a third culture millennial who spent half her life in Hong Kong and the other half in UK. Planning to make the most out of life, she documents her passion to laugh, travel and eat on her suitably named blog: Laugh, Travel, Eat. When she’s not doing any of that, she’s either catching up on TV while online shopping or writing her novels.