It’s been said that exploring the storybook landscapes of timeless Slovenia is like discovering “Europe in miniature.” Slightly smaller than New Jersey and often referred to as "the sunny side of the Alps," the number one reason to have a landscape photography adventure in tiny Slovenia is that it is ridiculously pretty!
Surrounded by Austria, Hungary, Italy and Croatia plus a short stretch of Adriatic coastline, it is the place in Central Europe where the Alps meet the Mediterranean. Slovenia lies at the nexus of four major European biomes—Alpine, Mediterranean, Pannonian lowlands and Dinarides mountains. The country has one of the highest levels of biodiversity in the European Union and currently 13 percent of its territory is protected through nature parks, reserves and natural monuments, while almost 60 percent is covered by forests.
As we photograph our way around Slovenia, we encounter a patchwork of spectacular lakes, majestic mountains, striking waterfalls, alpine meadows, vineyards, bucolic farms and architecturally picturesque villages. To top it off, there seems to be a photogenic fairytale castle perched on every available promontory.
Our group photographs Lake Bled and its iconic church on Bled Island. Lake Bled is one of the most popular places to visit in Slovenia and is arguably one of the most beautiful spots in the whole country. If ever there was a picture postcard setting, this is it!
With a photogenic backdrop of the Julian Alps we capture the tranquil beauty of Lake Bohinj—Slovenia's largest lake—with plenty of time to soak in the dramatic alpine surroundings. We shoot creative long exposures to photographically accentuate the water of fast-flowing rivers and waterfalls at Vintgar Gorge, and travel Slovenia's pastoral scenic byways to shoot traditional hayracks—often artistically designed, handcrafted and regarded as a distinctive form of Slovene architecture.
|COMBINE THIS TRIP
|This trip can be combined with our Croatia photo tour Apr 28–May 10, 2018.
We linger in the Logarska Valley to photograph the wealth of wildflowers that bloom in May, drive the scenic mountain road overlooking the highest peaks of Kamnik-Savinja Alps, explore the Adriatic coast, and shoot the Secovlje saltpan landscape where we witness production of salt harvested in the time-honored way. Finally we visit the historic capital Ljubljana. From Roman ruins to baroque palaces, the pedestrian-only historic city center provides imagery of its past as well as today's café culture, vibrant riverfront and bustling markets.
Join us on this compelling 11-day Slovenia photo tour to capture an impressive overview of the very best of this small country’s rich landscapes, architecture and culture.
Depart from home. (D)
Day 2 (May 11)
Arrive in Ljubljana, Slovenia airport and transfer to our hotel at Lake Bled. Dinner at one of the nearby fine restaurants. (D)
Three days photographing in the picturesque Julian Alps featuring extensive landscape photography of beautiful Lake Bled and environs. At what is, perhaps, the most beautiful scenic location in Slovenia, our attention turns to Bled Island surrounded by the emerald green mountain lake. The 17th-century baroque Church of the Assumption crowns the little island, its bell tower and red shingled roof juxtaposed against the photogenic Julian Alps. The impressive and highly photogenic 11th-century Bled Castle is perched on a sheer 430-foot-high cliff that soars up from the lake. The strategic position of this medieval fortress was once a key stronghold for Napoleon. Bled Castle was obviously built when defense, aesthetics and opulence trumped modern architectural priorities like easy accessibility.
We visit Vintgar Gorge with sheer canyon walls carved by the Radovna River. Here is a great location to experiment with slow shutter speeds to accentuate water movement as we "shoot the rapids."
Our second spectacular glacial lake is Bohinj—the largest lake in Slovenia. This is another Slovenian postcard location where alpine shepherds and cowherds still head into the mountains to graze their cattle, and charming wooden houses and iconic hayracks compete for pixels in our cameras. We have plenty of time to explore this area to capture stunning natural landscapes as well as bucolic scenes of rural life. (BLD)
Following breakfast, a scenic mountain drive allows our first photo session with the lovely Kamnik-Savinja Alps. Our first stop will be Jezersko with its beautiful lake and surrounding alpine scenery. We enjoy lunch at nearby mountain lodge and travel onward to the Logarska Valley. (BLD)
May is the best time to visit the green Logarska Valley as there is an abundance of photogenic wildflowers and the sun angle illuminates the north side of the mountains. Those who wish can hike to Rinka waterfall or explore small mountain streams in the valley. Our afternoon drive follows a scenic mountain road that overlooks the highest peaks of Kamnik-Savinja Alps. (BLD)
We travel south to the coast of Slovenia. Our late afternoon arrival at Piran—one of the best-preserved historical towns on the Adriatic—is in time to capture sunset over the ocean. The following morning we start our day by capturing sunrise above Piran—a classic Adriatic photo experience. Later we shoot the historic city walls as well as its Venetian Gothic architecture. The photogenic Secovlje saltpans in the Secovlje Salina Nature Park contain one of the oldest saltworks on the Adriatic dating back to the 13th century. Here we see the production of salt in the traditional way. These interesting saltpans provide great opportunities for unusual landscape photography, especially in the glow of late afternoon sun. (BLD)
With the coast behind us, the journey continues on to Ljubljana. The town is dominated by the majestic Ljubljana Castle on the hill overlooking the Ljubljanica River that splits the town in two. Here we wander the charming streets of the old city—camera in hand—and capture the delights of Ljubljana including baroque churches, diverse architectural details, the bustling marketplace, street artists and the cafes crowding the river.
Day 12 (May 21)
Following breakfast we transfer to the Ljubljana airport for flights home.