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Slovenia

Short review
A former Yugoslavian republic , Slovenia , lies in the southern part of Central Europe, bordering with Austria in the north, Italy in the west, Hungary in the north-east and Croatia in the south. Its capital, Ljubliana (290,000 inhabitans) is situated only 100 km from Triest, 240 km from Venice, 80 km from Klagenfurt, 465 km from Budapest and 135 km from Zagreb. Slovenia covers 7,820 square miles, around 50% of the Slovenian territory is covered by forests. According to the data from 1998, Slovenia has 2,09 million inhabitans. The official language is Slovene. 82% Slovenians are Roman Catholics ; the rest are protestants and other religions.

Visas
Visa is not required from the citizens of West European countries, Hungary, Czech republic, Poland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, USA, Canada, Australia and Israel Getting to Slovenia
National air carrier "Adira" and many world- known airlines link Ljublijana with a big enough number of destinations in Europe, such London, Paris, Frankfurt, Rome, Madrid, Copenhagen, Prague, Istanbul, Athens, as far as Tel- Aviv, Larnaca and others. International trains contain "Venzia Express" which runs between Zagreb to Munich via Ljublijana ; "Mimara", between Zagreb and Leipzig via Ljublijana and Munich. All of trains run throw Austria. There are several domestic trains which link Slovenia with Italy, Croatia and Hungary. International buses not only arrive in and depart from Ljublijana, you can catch them from around the country. Buses departure daily from Ljublijana to Gorizia, Trieste and Venezia. From Koper to Trieste (about 15 times daily). A huge number of international and local buses to all of parts of Croatia, including Dubrovnik (there are discounts up to 30% for students and people under 26 for 2nd- class travel). Daily buses departure to Hungary. Take into account, that all fares will be reduced by 20-50% if you buy two-way ticket. Getting into Slovenia by private or rented car is very easy and quickly. There are no any fees or taxes. In resent years many new roads and highways were built in the country, on part of them you will have to pay small fee for using, but it still much less than the same things in Austria and Italy.

Traveling in Slovenia
The rail system of Slovenia, in resent years, been extended and modernized. There is good internal rail service for such a small country. The main railway line is between Ptuj to Koper via Ljublijana with number of "branches" around. The best way to travel in Slovenia is by bus, which is extremely good developed. A regular and frequent bus service can reach all tourist resorts.

Ljublijana
This characteristic capital city of independent Slovenia, in a green plain surrounded by hills, almost looks like a collection of film sets for some Austro- Hungarian period epic. Ljublijana has managed to preserve some relics from it's past, The original, good preserved town center, squares, baroque facades, narrow streets and uneven roofs. Some places are worth to visit: Franciskanska cerkev (Francisscan church) from 1646, the town hall (Rotov), Robba Fountain, Ljubjiana cathedral, Ljubjiana castle with its interesting museum.

Piran
An ancient peninsular town with a big number of old churches; the cathedral on a hill, which has fine view of the bay of Trieste; A bronze statue of Tartini. There is picturesque harbour and greatly preserved old town. Regular buses to Postoroz and Koper.

Bled
The most famous Slovenian mountain resort is situated some five kilometers nearby Austrian border. With year round appeal as shimmering Trout Lake, spa, walking center or rich base for skiing Bled has been a scenic resort since well before 20th century. Special features are Bled's castle on the Rocky Mount above the lake and a church on the small island.

Bohinjsko Jezeri (lake)
Beautiful wooded valley in national park Triglav, about 30 km. From Bled, with its clean, blue glacial lake surrounded by adjacent mountains. Sightseeing can include the nearby Savica waterfalls, Hudicev bridge on the river Mostrica and to climb by the cable car station on mount Vogel. There are a number of the ski resorts around the village of Bohijni.

Postojnska Jama (Postojna caves)
There some of the world's most beautiful underground caverns, which runs for 27 kilometers surrounded by their magnificent galleries. Parts of the caves are toured by electric railway, which takes in illuminated halls, abysses, fantastic stalactites and stalagmites, and underground steams. Postojna caves are open all year round. The temperature inside the caves is a constant +8 degrees.

Prejkamski Grad (castle of Predjama)
An impressive castle, perched in the middle of a high perpendicular cliff, is 8 kilometers from Postonjna caves. There is an interesting permanent exhibition, which includes old weapons and furniture. A castle hangs dramatically in the middle of a 125 metre cliff . It does not take much imagination to see how Predjama castle would be the ideal stronghold for a wilful, rebelious knight - and indeed just such a romantic legend survives : the story of the robber baron Erazem, who is today commemorated by the by the recently - opened Erazem's Passage.

Slovenian castles
Slovenia is the paradise for "Castle lovers". There are hundreds of different medival castles and fortifications here. The most famous of them are : Ptuj castle, Podsreda castle, Brezice, Ljublijana castle, Bled castle, Velenije castle and many others.