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Adriatic Arrival

The smell of salt in the air

sunny 20 °C

Arriving in Slovenia was like arriving in a postcard, greenery and lushness abounds. We arrived in Ljubljana after the drive from Hungary. Having a TomTom in our possession (we call her Mum) she guided us the fastest way, as you do, which involved driving through the corner of Austria to get to Slovenia. This made us feel very global as it meant we were in three, count 'em three, countries in one day. We made it to Ljubljana (the capital of Slovenia) pronounced loob lya na, just after lunch and proceeded to rely on Mum to get us to Hotel Katrca 1905, sounds exciting doesn't it. The area it was in was just outside the main square however all the streets were named the same the only difference was they were numbered. The numbering however was roman, which Mum doesn't recognise, and not in sequential order. You can imagine the fun we had leaning out of the car window oiing strangers to see if they knew where the street was. Adam's opening line was always "Scuse me, do you live 'ere?" (yell it and say it with a twang) followed by a bewildered Slovene trying to help us but not really caring. Thoughtful people the slovenes.

Anyway we found it, bright yellow, on a corner, right where it was supposed to be. Some might say it was hard to miss but we wouldn't say that. Our room was great, location was a bit deceptive and we got called kangaroos, they love that hopping action. We headed into town oblivous to the fact that it was a Labour Day (???) public holiday weekend so not much was happening. We found a bit of restaurant action in the form of a pizzeria (I know, I know pizza again). We were suited to the food situation and huddled inside in a nice cosy corner eating pizza and drinking wine. The next day we ventured out back to the city. Ljubljana is absolutely unspeakably fan- bloody- tastic. We have both decided we would go back there in a heartbeat. It is set right on the Ljubljanica river and has cafes, bars and restaurants all up and down both sides. The population is about 270 000 and the name is actually taken from a poem by France Preseren and from the slovene word ljubljena which means 'beloved'. See we are learning not just eating and drinking. It is the prettiest place, for lack of a better word, and has a lazy ambience with a bit of zest. Very difficult to describe, we are both sitting here, with a wine of course, trying to find the words. Anyway we absolutely loved it and think you should all go.

Ljubljana made way 2 days later for Bled. Bled is a small town built on Lake Bled with the Julien Alps as a backdrop, which cross over into the north of Italy. The scenery is beyond picturesque. Once again, little trouble finding our hotel but we always get our man (we also got addicted to the Crime channel on Cable, probably best we are now without it again). Naturallly our room was on the top floor and there was no lift so as soon as the lovely hotel man offered to help with bags, we were on him like a rash. The sweat patch on his tummy when he finished tells us he may not offer again next time so freely.

Hiring a row boat is the must do activity so we felt we must do it and we did. Well Adam rowed, Angela took the time to continue resting her delicate frame after her vicious food poisoning episode. We made it to Bled Island, rang the bell in the church for good luck and then rowed back again. A lovely time was had by all. Lunch blah blah blah, Dinner blah blah blah.

Last Slovenian stop, the Adriatic Coast in the town of Piran (pop 4430). On the way we nipped into Italy for a coffee in the town of Gorizia. Gorizia is on the border of Slovenia and Italy and we found the plaque in one of the Piazzas where you can be a multinational and have one foot in each country. Very very exciting. The old ladies watching us fiddle with the camera to do self timer shots would have lovely stories to go home and tell.

Piran is literally built next to the water therefore parking is a no go. We had rented a room right in the main square, best location yet and will be hard to beat with its water views, and subsequently had no parking. The story in Piran goes like this, you park outside the city in a public parking garage and catch a shuttlebus into the main square. Easy enough? Sure. Except....we thought we would drive in first and drop our bags and then go back and park. Mum didn't seem to think it was a problem and we were feeling confident. However narrow cobbled laneways in foreign cities don't lend themselves well to turning sharp corners. We turned back minutes after bagging an Austrian woman (it is the Australian way) for quitting on the turn herself. In the end the white flag was raised and we drove to the car park, reassuring ourselves that it wasn't us it was the inadequate engineering of the town design.

Piran was amazing. Emerald green water on one side and pastel coloured buildings with flower pots full of colour and vibrance overlooking the cobblestones of labyrinth (yes a better one) lanes on the other. We fell in love and spent ages walking aimlessly through all the laneways to see what each turn would deliver. It takes you back to that childhood feeling of hide and seek where each corner opens up a myriad of possibilities. We met a friendly waiter while having a waterfront lunch and he delivered some local knowledge on what villages to visit when we next hit the road. While keen to take a dip the water temperature is still just that bit too chilly. Visiting in May was probably too our benefit as in June, July, August it would be overrun with tourists and would ruin the ambience of this tiny seaside village.

So on that note we said Cau (Ciao) to Slovenia. Slovenia has blown our mind with its beauty and the friendliness of the people. Everyone was happy to help us and we never encountered any unfriendliness (aka germans lol.) We are Croatian bound and excited about what comes next. Love to all xxx

Posted by Ange and Adam 06:53 Archived in Slovenia Tagged ljubljana bled piran

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Piran sounds beautiful. Onto the bucket list it goes!!

by feebee

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