[Last update: May 19, 2022]. What do the movies Captain America, The Chronicles of Narnia, and Infinite Storm have in common? Yes, they were all shot in Slovenia, at least parts of the movies. The small country which is nestled between Austria, Hungary, Croatia, and Italy, and connects the Alps with the Adriatic Sea, is home to dramatic landscapes, thick forests, and quaint villages.
About 70 vineyards per 1 inhabitant, more than 1,000 local beers, and 5 beekeepers per 1,000 Slovenians make the country a culinary adventure, with the Mediterranean, central, and Eastern European influences. A country whose national dish is a nut cake - the Potica cake - is not to be missed in your travel itinerary.
🇸🇮 Entry requirements for Slovenia
- Visa: You need a visa if you are a non-EU, non-EEA, or not a Swiss citizen, or you do not hold a valid visa for Canada, Japan or the United States.
- Insurance: Travel health insurance that matches the Schengen requirements. Your insurance policy needs a minimum amount of 30,000 Euros of emergency cover.
🌱 Travel health insurance for Slovenia
- Additional note: Covid-related entry regulations are lifted on May 14th, 2022. Please check your airline, train, or bus company for additional required documents.
🏡 How to find a place
- Airbnb: You find good short-, and mid-term (up to 3 months) rentals on Airbnb. As longer you plan ahead, as more options you will have. Prices on Airbnb will be highest between May and September, as these months are considered tourist peak season. You can expect to pay roughly around 1,000 Euro per month for a flat in Ljubljana during the low season between October and April, and about 1,500 Euro during the high season between May and September.
- Facebook: Another platform to use is Facebook. The Facebook group about rentals and apartments in Ljubljana counts more than 3,000 members and is very active. If you have some time to research, monitor their listings.
- Hotels: The average hotel price per night is somewhere between 40 and 70 Euro for a 3-star hotel. For June, you can expect to pay 50 Euro for a bunk bed in a hostel's dormitory. Hotels are good options for short stays under 1 week. For a week try Airbnb, and for a minimum of 1 month monitor the Facebook group for better deals.
- Coliving: Are you looking into ways to meet other nomads? Then check out if Coliving is the type of accommodation that suits you best. In Lubljana, you can find coliving spaces, for example, Kiviju.
✈️ How to get to Slovenia
- Plane: You can reach Slovenia easily by plane from many European cities. Ljubljana has a good connection of direct flights, but also Maribor connects directly to Hannover (Germany), Belgrade (Serbia), Vienna (Austria), and Podgorica (Montenegro), Cardiff (UK), and Budapest (Hungary).
- Train: Slovenia is part of the Eurail, and you can enter Slovenia by train from many European cities. Arrived at the train station in Ljubljana, you can take the taxi, or the bus to your destination.
- Bus: You can enter Slovenia by bus, for example from Austria, Italy, Croatia, and even Scandinavia. Flixbus is one of Europe's largest bus companies with many connections. Check out this map of how to connect European cities with Lubljana.
🚌 Public transport in Ljubljana
You can purchase daily, weekly, monthly and annual tickets for the public transport network in Ljubljana, for example, the Urbana card, a smart card with cashless payment options.
- Taxi: You can find taxis in front of the airport of Ljubljana, in the city, and in smaller towns. Taxis are a safe way of transport and drivers use the meter. A taxi from the airport to the city center of Lubljana is between 25 and 35 Euro.
- Uber: Uber, Lyft, Bolt, and co. are not available in Slovenia.
- Bus: Ljubljana's public transport consists of an extensive bus network. Single tickets start at 1.30 Euro, and buses are included in the Urbana card.
- Hop-on-Hop-Off: When visiting the Triglav National Park, the country asks tourists to use hop-on-hop-off busses instead of renting a car to reduce pollution, noise, and traffic in the sensitive ecosystem. The tours include Kranjska Gora, Bled, Bohinj, and the Soča Valley.
- Bicycle: Ljubljana is a bicycle-friendly city and offers public bike sharing.
🏘 Where to stay in Ljubljana
- Old Town: Whilst the Old Town is formally part of Ljublijana's city center, it indeed does have a unique atmosphere. The Old Town is the oldest part of the city and a great starting point to land, get familiar with the city and cross some sites off your list. A cozy place to land is the Happy Nest, a well-designed studio duplex in the heart of Old Town, located just underneath the Ljubljana Castle, a 5-minute walk to the City Square, the Dragon Bridge, the central market, and the Triple Bridge. With around 70 Euro per night, the Happy Nest is good for a short stay, as the monthly rent is around 2,500 Euro before taxes.
- Rožna Dolina: Opposite Tivoli Park is the Rožna Dolina district, a more budget-friendly neighborhood popular among students as the rents are more affordable. And like many student-friendly neighborhoods, you find some cool bars and eateries here. From Rožna Dolina you can take a short walk to the city center.
- Dravlje: In the north-west of Ljubljana, you find the Kiviju coliving space, which is about 20 min drive (5 km) from the city center by public transport.
🧑🏻💻 Where to work from in Ljubljana
Coworking spaces in Old Town
- MP Coworking: Although the facade looks a bit simple, MP Coworking ticks all boxes when you need a fast and reliable internet connection and a private desk to work from. The space comes with an outdoor terrace. Monthly membership is about 160 Euro plus VAT. Click here for the location.
- ABC Hub: The vivid interior with impressive murals and gaming areas is striking, and so is the list of facilities at ABC Hub. This 2,000 square meter coworking space has more than a dozen meeting rooms, lounge areas, and even a pool. Monthly membership is between around 100 Euro, and discounted 230 Euro for 3 months. Click here for the location.
- Regus: The industrial vibe of the Regus space comes with a working and a social area, high speed internet, an iconic library to chillax and a monthly membership of 110 Euro for the coworking area and 221 Euro for the office area. Click here for the location.
Coffee shops in Old Town
- STOW: If you are serious about coffee, please check out STOW roastery and specialty coffee shop. The futuristic, high black ceilings contrast with the green patches you see from the windows. Apart from the views and highly-praised coffee brews, STOW gives its diners plenty of power plugs and functioning wifi. It is a good place for a productive morning or fruitful afternoon of work.
- Kavarna Moderna: Close to Park Tivoli, Kavarna Moderna's baristas focus purely to serve you the best coffee in town. They also boast snuggly sofas and armchairs for additional comfort.
- Kavarna Nuk: A modern coffee shop in industrial design with individual tables to work from. The café is close to the University of Ljubljana.
- Veganika: From creative noodle dishes to color-popping salads, Veganika is a small vegan gem within Ljubljana’s food scene. They also sell exotic fruit juices and some spectacular dairy-free cakes, if there’s any room left in your belly.
- Le Petit Cafe: Across the street from the University of Ljubljana, this café is popular among students and professors. The café, like many in Ljubljana, has a large outdoor seating area perfect for catching some fresh air while working.
Coffee shops in Rožna Dolina
- Slaščičarna Galerija Grad: A family-owned company, founded in 1992, offers delicious home-made cakes, tasty gelato, rich coffee, to just name a few menu items. This cozy cafe is located a few minutes from the city center and this little place should do the trick when in need of a place to work for a few hours.
Other laptop-friendly coffee shops:
- Pritličje: A little retro café in a vaulted cellar in Mestni district, across the river Ljubljanica.
- Gostlina Vida: To make your trip across the river worth it, check out this café which comes with a lush green terrace to work from in the summer months.
🏘 Where to stay in Maribor
Maribor has an extensive bus network and some lines make great sightseeing tours, for example bus 1, 4, 6, 7, and 10. A single ticket costs 2 Euro and can be purchased at sales booths or with the bus driver.
- Old Town: When staying in Old Town, you have all the historic sites on your doorstep: The Judgement Tower, the Celigij Tower, the Water Tower, Maribor Island, Koroska Bridge, the Old Bridge, the castle square, the castle, the museum, the church of Saint Joseph and its fountain, the town hall and many restaurants, bars, shops, and services.
🧑🏻💻 Where to work from in Maribor
Coffee shops in Maribor
- my Cafe: A traditional café that might remind you little bit of a Wiener Kaffeehaus (a traditional coffee shop in Vienna).
- Plaza Cafe: A modern designed café which looks a bit like a hotel lobby.
🚊 How to travel around Slovenia
- Train: Slovenia also has a railway system with the highspeed InterCity Slovenia train (ICS) that connects Lubljana with Maribor and international cities, the InterCity trains for long-distance domestic train rides, the EuroCity, which connects Slovenia with other European countries, regional trains (R), and local trains (LP). A train ride from Ljubljana to Maribor cost between 11 and 15 Euro and takes 2 hours. Tickets can be booked online.
- Bus: The small country has an excellent bus network with various connections offered by a good number of bus companies. A bus ride from Ljubljana to Maribor takes about 1:40 hours and tickets cost between 10 and 20 Euro.
- Rental car: For maximum flexibility, it is also possible to rent a car, which is a great way of transport, if you want to see more of the countryside, drive to remote villages, or nature spots which are not connected to public transport. However, car rentals come to a higher price, you can expect to pay between 35 and 60 Euro per day.
🎖Must see in Slovenia
- Lake Bled: A day trip from Ljubljana is Lake Bled. Located in the Julian Alps, Lake Bled is located north-west of Ljubljana. The iconic church on the Bled Island might be one of the most photographed places in Slovenia. From Avtobusna postaja Ljubljana take the bus to Unior at Lake Bled. The bus trip takes 1 hour and tickets cost between 3 and 16 Euro. From Lake Bled you can also explore Vintgar Gorge.
- Kranjska Gora: When staying at Lake Bled, you can take the bus (1 hour) to Kranjska Gora, near the Austrian border, a mountain region with lots of outdoor activities from paragliding to rafting, hiking, and farm stays.
- Piran: If you feel like having a beach break, take the bus (3 hours, tickets between 7 and 20 Euro), or the train (3:30 hours, tickets between 11 and 33 Euro) to Piran, a historic town at the Adriatic coast. Once part of the Venetian Empire, you can find Venetian architecture, and cultural heritage in Piran.
- Koper: Once part of the Venetian Empire and known as Caprea, the coastal town of Koper remains an important part of Slovenia's infrastructure. Koper is a nice day trip from Piran, a famous holiday destination at the Adria. The bus takes 45 minutes and tickets cost between 2 and 5 Euro.
💡Good to know
- Internet: The median fixed broadband internet speed in Slovenia is 68 Mbps download and 28 Mbps upload.
- Sim card: When traveling to Europe and changing countries often, consider buying an e-sim card - if your phone is set up for it. If you need a standard prepaid sim card you can choose between Telekom, Telematch, and A1. Telematch comes with the best 4G/5G network but with limited prepaid packages. A prepaid package from Telekom for a 5G plan valid 30 days is about 10 Euro. Please note that there is no free roaming to other EU countries and sim cards are only useful in Slovenia.
- Safety: Slovenia ranks 5th in the Global Peace Index with an index of 1.3, and is therefore as peaceful as Austria and Portugal. In general, the crime rate in Slovenia is very low and the country is a safe travel destination.
- Digital nomad community: Slovenia's capital Ljubljana has not been on the nomads' radar but it is among the rising stars of European nomad hotspots. Another hidden gem is Maribor. Both cities are accessible via train coming from other European countries, by bus or by plane to the international airports in Lubljana and Maribor.
- Ljubljana: The biggest digital nomad community can be found in Ljubljana. The capital offers some coworking spaces, but also a good variety of coffee shops to work from. Check out meetup.com for upcoming events, from Bitcoin events to art workshops, expat events, or meetups on storytelling for UX designers.
- Cost of living: In Ljubljana, you can expect to pay between 1,000 and 1,500 Euro monthly rent, when booking short-term and through platforms like Airbnb. With more time invested, you will be able to find better deals, especially when looking longer-term. You can expect 1,500 to 2,000 Euro for cost of living.
- Currency: Slovenia uses the Euro.
- Climate: The best time to travel to Slovenia depends greatly on your preferences but when considering the weather, you should come between June and August, the typical summer months of many European countries. However, please bear in mind, that summer is the peak and high season for the Slovenian tourism industry with high prices for accommodation and transport. If you don't mind visiting Slovenia in less traveled seasons, try out fall and spring instead. The climate of Slovenia is a continental climate with hot and dry summers and cold winters.
- Festivals: Ljubljana hosts many festivals, for example, the Ljubljana Jazz Festival, the Bled International Music Festival, and the Ljubljana Marathon. Check out this site for big events.
🚧 What to avoid
- Slovenia is not Russia: Slovenia is neither a part of Russia nor do Slovenians speak Russian by default. The country is a cultural mix of Germanic, Romanic, Slavic, and Uralic linguistic origin with its own very beautiful language, culture, history, architecture, music, and cuisine.
- Visiting caves in summer outfits: The country has some stunning caves you can visit. Even in the summer months, the underground adventure will be chilly.
🚴🏻♀️ How to stay healthy
- Hiking the Juliana trail: In the middle of the Julian Alps, between forest, rivers, and mountains, you can find the Juliana Trail, a 270 km long trail network that leads you to one of Europe's oldest National Parks Triglav. The spiritual summit of Mount Triglav is the place of many national myths and legends. The trail is divided into 12 stages, you can find a detailed description here.
- Hiking the Walk of Peace: The Walk of Peace is a hiking trail that connects the Alps with the Adriatic Sea. It runs through the picturesque landscape, dramatic mountainous scenery, quaint villages, and along the river Soča. The Walk of Peace is protected by UNESCO, and you will pass many historical sites along the way, and walk through Goriška Brda, a Tuscany-like vineyard region in the Soča river valley.
- Mountain biking trails: Slovenia is a paradise for mountain bikers. You can choose between difficult routes around Lake Bled, or easy paths near Mount Polovnik, moderate routes that combine Alpine landscape with alms, farms, and vineyards. Have a look here for more details on different mountain bike trails in Slovenia.
- Walking: When in Ljubljana, check the sightseeing points you want to visit on Google Maps and create your own sightseeing tour, and if possible walk all of them or the majority. Or take the bicycle if the distances are too long. Ljubljana is a relatively small capital and ranks high in walkability.
- Water quality: In general, you can drink tap water in Ljubljana.
- Air quality: The air quality in Ljubljana is generally good to moderate.
⚓️ Long stay
If you intend to stay longer in Slovenia, check out the following possibilities. Please note that at the moment, there is no digital nomad visa launched in Slovenia. We will update here, once the country launches such a visa.
- Long-stay visa: This visa, D-type, is an authorization for entry and residence for a period between 90 days and 1 year. As a D-type visa holder, you can directly apply for a resident permit but this type of residency can not be extended. So the maximum period is 1 year. For this type of visa, the Schengen required medical insurance with a cover of 30,000 Euro is mandatory.