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Sightseeing in Lake Bled, Slovenia

There's a huge variety of ways to spend your time when you take a holiday in Slovenia, yet countless holidaymakers from every generation swear by the fantastic beauty of Lake Bled. From the fairytale chapel to the captivating scenery all around, it's rightfully earned its place as one of the most appealing places to enjoy your Slovenian escape.

What's more, there are plenty of local tales and legends that add an extra layer of mystique to Lake Bled. We've put together a guide to how to make the most of every element of Lake Bled's experiences, so see if it helps you structure your days in this splendid location.

Fall in love with the lake

Vast and serene, Lake Bled has developed a thriving tourism community that has struck a good balance in also keeping tradition and unspoilt natural beauty in place.

The water is surrounded on all sides by thick forests and cute white buildings peppered along the shore. In the centre of the lake is the famous islet, perched atop which is the chapel where countless couples have tied the knot among these fairytale surroundings.

A good first move when you arrive at Lake Bled is to get your bearings and distinguish which parts of the large yet well-connected area you want to explore first. To that end, a trip on a boat is a good way to while away a morning, afternoon or sunset on the water. Those wooden boats, known as pletnas, are similar to the gondolas of Venice as they're steered by friendly hosts called pletnars, who stand and row you across the water to the tiny island in the lake's heart.

If you'd prefer to follow the trail around the lake than to hop aboard a floating vessel, you can't go far wrong with a romantic horse drawn carriage tour. Steeped in tradition, the fijakers, or coachmen, follow the winding trails of old. It promises weaving paths through trees as much as hilltop routes that boast breathtaking vistas.

Step back in time

The majesty of Bled Castle is yet another way in which this area seeps an almost fantasy-movie level of beauty from every corner. White walls topped by rust-hued rooftops cluster around a central courtyard, and the entire building rests atop a cliff topped with vibrant green grassland. Visiting Bled Castle is a must during your time in Lake Bled, although you'll find it more humble than you might have thought. There are no palatial halls here, as it was built in the 12th century purely for its defensive capabilities.

Enjoy lunch at the on-site restaurant and admire the view while dining on home-cooked Slovenian cuisine, then explore this medieval domain to its full. There's a museum that depicts how life was back in the castle's most active days, together with an exhibit showcasing how manual printing worked. There's also the chance to bottle wine for yourself in the cellar, as well as apply your own wax seal of approval to the tipples.

In summer, Bled Castle comes to life with re-enactments, from the blacksmith workshop to archery contests, as well as the occasional visit from the costumed king himself.

In harmony with nature

Once the major experiences have been savoured, there's still plenty to enjoy at Lake Bled and in its wider surroundings. If you're in need of rejuvenation, the mountainous environment has made Lake Bled rich in thermal springs, many of which are piped into local hotels.

Adventurous summer visitors can snake down the Straza hill on a toboggan kart, and nature lovers can take the hike through unspoilt hinterlands and across wooden bridges over the waterfalls and ravines of Vintgar Gorge. Wherever you roam, take your camera. Lake Bled's brilliance is something you'll likely want to capture from every angle.

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