I’m back to share more of my adventures exploring Ljubljana and this post is an eclectic one, featuring everything from Roman ruins to the gorgeous Tivoli Park and lots in between! This city really stole my heart so hopefully you enjoy reading all about it as well!
2000 years ago a Roman city called Emona sat where Ljubljana now is so there are remains of Roman walls, wells and sewers scattered amongst the city. It was pretty amazing to be able to wander amongst structures that had been in place for such a vast length of time now just sitting next to apartment buildings and along the side of the road.
I got caught in a pretty impressive summer rain storm while exploring the ruins, but even that didn’t dampen my enjoyment! The main site of ruins I sought out on purpose but there were so many that on other occasions when I was just out exploring other parts of the city and stumbled across more ruins which was pretty amazing.
The Metelkova precinct is an alternative arts hub that was established in a former army barracks by squatters after the Soviet army left town in 1993. They were able to stop the buildings being torn down and instead transformed the site into a home for all kinds of artists including galleries, event spaces, bars and music.
I went for a wander through the precinct one afternoon and explored the pretty amazing street art and sculptures made from all kinds of interesting objects. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to go back in the evening when the whole place really comes to life, but it was worth visiting regardless. I’ll definitely go back for a drink if I find myself back in Ljubljana any time soon!
One of the most beautiful spots in Ljubljana is Tivoli Park, a 5 square kilometre park right near the centre of town. It’s a mix of formal and informal gardens, with a fish pond, lots of flowers and a children’s playground. I spent a lovely few hours wandering through the gardens watching birds and squirrels and snacking on ice cream in the sunshine.
One of the features I loved both at Tivoli Park and in other parks in Ljubljana was the fact they included these little outdoor libraries, complete with deck chairs and each time I walked past one of them they were full of people sitting about reading which I found pretty wonderful to see. I’d love to see that introduced here in Melbourne too!
There are a number of really interesting museums and galleries in Ljubljana, all housed in pretty impressive buildings, and the one I chose to visit was the National Museum of Slovenia. It has artefacts and treasures from all periods of Slovenian history, including a prehistoric flute dating back 60,000 years to Neanderthal times!
I really enjoyed learning more about all the different periods of settlement in Slovenia over its long history including more about the Roman times as well as the Iron Age, Stone Age and Medieval times. There was even an Egyptian mummy dating back to the 5th or 6th Century BC which was incredible to see. Given how little I knew about Slovenia before arriving in the country it was great to be able to get at least some level of understanding while I was there!
The National Museum of Slovenia is open 7 days from 10am until 6pm (10pm on Thursdays and Saturdays) and entry is €6 for adults. There’s free wifi available in the building as well.