Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Christmas in Ljubljana

Christmas holidays are upon us and cities are filled with holiday spirit that we look forward to so much. Buildings are covered in lights, trees in ornaments and everything suddenly became more romantic. Our capital city is no exception as it shines in all its beauty.

Christmasy Ljubljana
The look on Ljubljana in Christmas time is certainly worth your time to visit it. If that doesn’t convince you, they arranged a series of events that would be a shame to miss. We can visit many concerts, workshops or see a play or an exhibition or we could just enjoy a cup of mulled wine or a plate of hot stew that you can buy on many stands on Prešeren Square or while walking by Ljubljanica river. ‘’Christmasy’’ atmosphere began with an event ‘’People, Turn On the Light’’, the peak of the events will happen on 31st of December with many New Year’s Eve parties. There is 64 km lights across Ljubljana, in front of Zois Mansion there is also a Christmas crib made of hay. On 4 places there are also Christmas markets. If you would like to celebrate New Year’s eve in Ljubljana, you will also not be disappointed as there are many celebrations outside, as well as in clubs where you might have to buy the ticket before as it can be sold out.

If you want to spend the night in Ljubljana, there’s a lot of choices. HI Hostels are all around the city so you can choose the nearest hostel from where you’ll spend the longest night in the year. There are 4 HI Hostels in Ljubljana – Youth Hostel Ljubljana, Youth Hostel Tabor, Youth Hostel Tresor, and Youth Hostel DIC which isn’t open in Christmas time. Hostel Tresor is right in the centre of Ljubljana. It used to be a home to bankers which is also seen in furniture. All hostels have free wireless internet, luggage room, kitchen and quick access to buses.

Christmasy Ljubljana
What can we actually see in Ljubljana? Old city centre is beautifully decorated in lights and worth seeing in day and in night. We can see city hall there, SASA (Slovenian Academy of Science and Art), University Library, Križanke Theatre, Ljubljana Castle, Triple Bridge, churches, etc. Every sight has its own story and history and is therefore worth seeing.

Ljubljana Castle is located on top of the hill. It was first mentioned in 1144 as a seat of Duchy of Carniola. Today it has a wide cultural programme. The observation tower is in Christmas time opened also in the evening. You can walk to the castle or you can ride with funicular railway. In December a project Stories of Ljubljana Castles began when you can visit all 4 Ljubljana castles and find out more about their history, visit museums and connect the stories of all 4 of them.

Ljubljana Triple Bridge is a place where people crossed Ljubljanica even in medieval times as it connected City Square with the left hill. Bridges were damaged by many accidents – there was a fire, floods, etc. Jože Plečnik gave it the look that it has today. Bridges were reconstructed and closed for traffic in 1992.

Christmasy Ljubljana
Prešeren Square is the heart of Ljubljana. It is named by France Prešeren, a Slovene poet and it arose from medieval crossroad in front of the city door. In 1905 there was also a railway that was leading through the square. After the war the square was rearranged by Jože Plečnik.

Holiday Ljubljana is giving us many choices but a walk by Ljubljanica river and mulled wine or tea is a must in this time of the year in this city. You can also buy a hat or a souvenir on one of the stands to finish your trip. Holiday lights and ornaments are unforgettable.

Kaja Kren

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