Top 10 must-see attractions in Bled
Bled is one of the destinations which has always a lot to offer. Whenever you take the time to visit, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views, friendly locals and plenty of activities that won’t leave you indifferent.
Check which of the 10 attractions found its way onto our list. You may already be familiar with some of them; however we have prepared some tips and interesting points for each one that will brighten up your visit and help you plan your next trip or vacation.
1. Lake Bled
© Jošt Gantar
Lake Bled is one of the most picturesque and visited lakes in Slovenia. This emerald green body of water lies at the foot of the Julian Alps, which offer an amazing scenery. There is an island with church in the middle of the lake, which may be accessed by boat. The lake was formed by the Bohinj glacier, which carved out a deep depression. In some parts, Lake Bled is up to 30 metres deep, making it a hot spot for divers. During warmer months, it is also a popular destination for swimming and fishing. In the summer, the lake reaches temperatures up to 25°C, and in the winter the temperature drops to 4°C. Occasionally, the lake also freezes over. Lake Bled is home to 19 different species of fish, such as carps, catfishes and lake trouts, and magnificent swans and mallard ducks show off on the surface. Whether you want to spend a relaxing day by the water or head out on a longer scenic hike around the lake, Lake Bled has something for everyone. Discover its magic!
2. Bled Island
© Tomaž Sedej
The Bled Island is due to its uniqueness one of the most popular symbols on postcards and in catalogues about the treasures of Slovenia. Already reaching it is a one-of-a-kind experience, since in order to get there you have to ride on a special boat, called the “pletna”. The picturesque Church of the Holy Mother of God awaits on the island, which has a long and rich history. A renowned staircase leads to the church, consisting of 99 stone steps and is particularly popular among newlyweds, since the groom is supposed to take the bride up to the foot of the church for their marriage to be a happy one. When visiting, don't miss the wishing bell, which chimes high above the nave and proverbially makes wishes come true. Right next to the southern staircase stands the sexton’s house, where the sexton used to live. The source of a spring, which flows into the lake, is located by the northern shore of the island, where the stone chapel of Our Lady of Lourdes, has been dug into the bank since 1888.
3. Bled Castle
Bled Castle is a charming castle perched on top of a cliff with a view of Lake Bled. It is the oldest castle in Slovenia, which will inspire many with its rich history. You can explore the entire castle estate, which includes a museum, chapel and watchtower. A breathtaking view of Lake Bled and the Julian Alps opens up from the castle estate. A museum is located by the upper courtyard, presenting the history of Bled, and you can also visit the castle chapel, printing works, wine cellar and gift shop. A restaurant operates in the castle, where you can pamper your taste buds by enjoying dishes from traditional Slovenian cuisine. Numerous cultural events, among which the medieval days are very well-known, take place on the castle courtyard in warmer months.
© Jošt Gantar
You can reach the foot of mount Straža by car or by simply walking there, since it is just a few minutes away from the centre of Bled. Then you begin to ascend on a nice footpath embraced by woods in order to reach the 646-metre-high viewpoint with one of the most beautiful views. A chairlift will also take you to the top. Visiting Straža is suitable for a nice, leisurely stroll and for summer and winter activities. In the summer, the most popular activity is adrenaline sledding on a 520-metre-long run on the hill slope, and in the winter the run turns into a ski slope with organised ski courses and night skiing. Adrenaline junkies can also visit the Bled Adventure Park on top of Straža, and sports enthusiasts can use the Bled fitness promenade.
© Jošt Gantar
Ojstrica was named after its sharp shape and the ascend to the mountain is short, but steep and takes approximately 20 minutes. You can start ascending left of the Zaka Camp and follow the marked trail leading through a forest. On top, you will be rewarded with an amazing view, since a romantic bench, facing Lake Bled with the steep castle cliff, awaits you there, and the view reaches all the way to the long ridge of the picturesque western Karavanke mountain range. Those of you who have already been on Ojstrica and know the path well, can add the final touch by heading to the top early in the morning and admire the sun rising.
6. Mala Osojnica
© Jošt Gantar
Mala Osojnica is suitable for a semi-demanding trip, since getting to the 685-metre-high top requires 45 minutes of walking on a steep forest path. From there, only 20 minutes of additional walking separates you from the 756-metre-high Velika Osojnica, where the most beautiful views of Lake Bled and its surrounding area will await you, just like those from the most famous panoramic shots of Bled.
7. Vintgar Gorge
© Jošt Gantar
The Vintgar Gorge is one of those sights that will remain impressed in the memory of all those who walk through it, since it is one of the most charming and picturesque gorges. The gorge was carved out by the Radovna river, which on the length of 1.6 kilometres plays with magnificent waterfalls, pools and rapids, along which you can also take a walk. An educational footpath, which ends with a majestic 13-metre-high Šum waterfall, runs through the gorge over wooden bridges. The path is not demanding and is also suitable for families with children and is circular, which means that you can return to the starting point by taking one of the possible routes.
8. Pokljuka Gorge
© Jošt Gantar
Not far from Bled, in the Triglav National Park, lies the Pokljuka Gorge, which is known for being the largest fossil gorge in Slovenia. It was carved into the limestone rock approximately 10,000 years ago by water flowing from the Pokljuka glaciers. The gorge will excite you with a lush forest, natural bridges, caves and narrow passages between 50-metre-high walls, and arranged paths will lead you to the most beautiful central part of the gorge. A circular path leads through the gorge, which enables you to admire this natural landmark in all its glory. During rainy days, the 22-metre-high waterfall will pleasantly surprise you, and there are numerous natural attractions to view along the entire gorge, such as the large 24-metre-high natural bridge above the bottom and narrow and rounded plains called “vrtci” (eng. kindergartens) by locals.
9. Church of St. Martin
© Jošt Gantar
The Parish Church of St. Martin in Bled will present the rich history and the works of the greatest Slovenian architects and artists. The current neo-Gothic church was built in 1905, and the present-day look of the church combines many styles and time periods. The interior of the church boasts stunning frescoes, which were painted by the academic painter Slavko Pengov between 1932 and 1937, and Jože Plečnik, the greatest Slovenian architect, designed the garden signpost in front of the church in the years before WWII. You can also see the preserved wall of the church, which dates back to the 15th century and is a reminder of the era of Turkish invasions.
10. Exhibition in the Triglavska roža Bled Infocentre
© Aleš Zdešar
Regardless of your age, it is undoubtedly worthwhile visiting the Triglavska roža Bled Infocentre, which will enable you to discover the nature, tastes, views and events of the Slovenian countryside. You can relax your eyes by admiring the magnificent nature at the permanent photo exhibition of theGorenjska region, the areas of Natura 2000 and the Triglav National Park with a rich multimedia presentation. You can also stop in the shop with a wide range of products of local origin, unique gifts, natural history literature and maps. The Infocentre is open every day and the staff will gladly answer all you questions and provide additional tips on what else is worth visiting.
Regardless of which activities you choose, Bled is definitely one of those places that you fall in love with in an instant and are happy to return to.