What brings luck to Slovenians?

Depending on the culture, there are many beliefs that certain things bring luck, while other bring bad luck – it is the same for Slovenians.

Holding a button when meeting the dimnikar brings luck

Dimnikar (chimney sweeper) is a very important profession in Slovenia, because many house burn logs as a main source of heat. Therefore, it is important that the chimney is cleaned and inspected.

I’ve been told that if I hold a button when the chimney sweeper comes, then something good will happen on the same day! Unfortunately, I always forget to wear something with a button when it’s time for inspection… (lol).

Seeing a spider in the house brings luck

Personally, I do not like  pajki (spiders) at all, especially inside the house. I just have this pressing urge to smack them right away. Until one day, as I was about to get rid of one, my Slovenian mother-in-law told me that spiders found in the house were believed to bring luck for a short period of time.

All I can say is… the spider got really lucky on that day.

Hearing the cuckoo brings money

One year while on a walk with my Slovenian mother-in-law, we heard koo-koo koo-koo and she told me that she doesn’t have a coin with her. I was like… uh? Apparently,  there’s a belief around that too.

If you have a coin in your pocket the first time of the year that you hear the sound of the cuckoo, then you will have enough money for the upcoming year!

From now on, for the sake of luck and money, are you going to always wear something with a button, let spiders make webs in your house or carry a coin with you? Do you know any other similar beliefs? If you so, you are welcomed to share them with me via comments!

Until next lucky round,

Vuč u Vodo in Tržič

March 11th is the eve of St. Gregory’s day in Slovenia, a special celebration called Vuč u Vodo (luč v vodo in good Slovene) – which means “light in the water”, takes place in Tržič, a town near my home.

St. Gregory the Great

Pope Gregory I, later known as St. Gregory the Great, was recognized for his talents in writing – one of his most famous works is the Gregorian chant. He was Pope from September 3rd 590 (his new Feast day since 1969) until his death on March 12th 604 (his old Feast day).

In Slovenia, St. Gregory’s day, Gregorjevo is the Slovenian version of Valentine’s day – the day of lovers. Old folktales told by grandmothers, babice, say that birds get married on March 12th and announce the arrival of spring. Bird is a symbol of love. Old beliefs say that on St. Gregory’s day, the first bird that an unmarried girl will see as she looks up the sky will tell her who her future husband will be. Believe it or not?

Love Birds for St. Gregory's day

Love Birds for St. Gregory’s day

Vuč u Vodo in Tržič

For more than one hundred years, Vuč u Vodo has been celebrated in Tržič, the town of Shoemakers.

Back in the days, when there was no electricity, special candles were used by shoemakers to light their workshops. As spring approaches, daylight gets longer and candles are no longer needed. The shoes-making apprentices were especially happy about it and to celebrate the longer day, they decided to clean the workshops, like a huge spring cleaning.

Wooden shreds were place into small baskets, lit and put into the stream of Tržič Bistrica.

Nowadays, there are not a lot of workshop to clean, but the tradition remains and is still celebrated. Every year, the kindergartens and schools in Tržič build many little houses as an important pedagogical activity. During the eve of Gregorjeva, everybody will gather in the old town, a parade will start toward Tržič Bistrica – parents and children, with their little houses in hand, will walk to the river, light the house (or the candle) and let it go in the water.

Adorable Small House built for Vuč u Vodu

Adorable Small House built for Vuč u Vodu

This year, Tržič tried to set Guinness Record: 950 houses were built for the occasion. Unfortunately, the event was considered too “local” and it didn’t met the requirement – still an absolutely beautiful sight to see!

Beautiful and Colorful Small Houses in Tržič

Beautiful and Colorful Small Houses in Tržič

Vuč u Vodo is a great way to celebrate the (soon) arrival of spring. Another interesting festival in Slovenia is Pust, a parade that chased winter away.

How is the arrival of spring celebrated from your part of the world? Please share it with me via the comment box! 😉

Until next time,

Lake Bled – the Fairy Tale Island

Lake Bled is one of the most popular touristic attraction in Slovenia. It’s famous for the astonishing fairy tale-like view of the Church of the Assumption standing on an sole island in the middle of Lake Bled. On top of the hills is one of the oldest castle in Slovenia: the Bled Castle – Blejski grad.

Yesterday, we had a very nice weather, so we decide to go to Bled for a short trip and the view was fa-bu-lous.

We didn’t take the highway and on the way, we were able to catch a beautiful sight of the highest peak in Slovenia: Triglav (the three heads mountain). Triglav is an iconic symbol of Slovenia.

Triglav on the way to Bled

Beautiful Mountain Triglav on the way to Lake Bled, Slovenia

Lake Bled and the Church of the Assumption

The town of Bled is a well-known point of interest in the Julian Alps, which Triglav is part of, in the north-west side of Slovenia, known as Gorenjska (the mountain region).

It has a beautiful lake and a sole island: Bled IslandBlejski otok – which is only reachable by small boat. During winter though, when the lake is frozen and the ice strong enough, you can walk to the island.

There’s also walking paths all around the lake. It is worth it to take a walk to admire the views and to take beautiful photos.

Bled - the Island

Beautiful Church of the Assumption reflecting in Lake Bled, Slovenia

On Bled Island, stands the Church of the Assumption – a very popular destination for weddings. It has a stair with 98 stones steps, and it is believed that if the groom carries his bride all the way up on their wedding day, ring the bell and make the wish, that they will have luck in their marriage.

Believe it or not? I still think that it would be a very romantic thing to do!

Bled Castle on the Hill

From the lake, you can climb a good amount of stairs to reach the Bled Castle, which is sitting on top of a rock hill – but there’s also a road for you to drive up.

Bled Castle is one of the oldest and most visited castle in Slovenia, due to its location, I presume.

There were also a medieval actors in the castle when I visited it, in 2011 – a wine master, a forging master and paper craft master, if I remember correctly. Quite interesting, especially for children.

I think that people visit the castle mostly for the astonishing views it gives on Lake Bled and the Church of the Assumption

Overview from the Castle | AnnainSlovenia.wordpress.com

Overview from the Castle


…and the kremšnita.

Famous Dessert from Bled: Kremšnita

If you like light cream pastry, Kremšnita (cream slices in Slovene) is for you.

Kremšnita from Bled Castle

Delicious Slovenian Cream Cake, Kreamšnita, in a Paper Boat in Castle Bled, Slovenia

You can get Kremšnita in many Slovenian pastry shop, but they are particularly good and famous in Bled. So, if you do pass by Bled, make sure to try it!

Thanks for enjoying the wonderful day at Bled with me. We’ve also took the opportunity to take photos with my new camera, you can look at them in my Gallery.

Until next post,

Saint Nicholas Day is Coming!

The weather is getting colder and snow is falling – winter is coming. For the children, the most awaited celebration of the year is just around the corner.

In Canada, I celebrated Christmas with gift exchanges and family gathering, around December 25th. Here, in Slovenia, Christmas is also celebrated, but Saint Nicholas Day, which is on December 6th, seems to be more popular and traditional celebration.

It does make sense, since Slovenia is mostly Catholic.

The magic takes place the night before Saint Nicholas Day, on December 5th.

Saint Nicholas – Miklavž, and his devils – parkelj, is said to go around the houses and visit the children. Gifts will be given out to the children who have been well-behaving during the year, and for those who haven’t been, the parkelj would leave a rod on their doorsteps, for their parents to use to punish them.

And if they have been very naughty, rumors say that the parkelj would put them in a bag and take them away from their parents… which can be pretty scary for small children.

Some villages keep the festivities authentic by having a small group of people, disguised into Saint Nicholas and his parkelj and actually go visit children. Although, catching a glimpse of them doesn’t seem to be easy (as I haven’t seen them yet), but they are said to be pretty impressive – so it’s worth the hunt!

Happy Holidays Preparations! Have you been a good or naughty child this year?

Until next post,

The Full Moon in Slovenia

Full Moons are often associated with Werewolves in tales and such – in Slovenia, Full Moon – polna luna is actually a real thing.

As the moon reaches its full phase, you can notice how some Slovenians

  • become more forgetful,
  • tend to drive more aggressively,
  • experience incredible mood swings and more.

All these strange symptoms happen without any tangible and explainable reasons – but they do occur every full moon.

Strange, isn’t it?

The Lunar Effect

Some people (around the World) believe that the moon has a special effect on fertility, human’s behaviors or odd incidents – the lunar effect.

Some theories…

  • The full moon’s attraction has an effects on large body of water. Our bodies are mainly composed of body fluids. Therefore, some believe that the moon has an attraction on our body fluids, thus causing some of us to behave unusually.
  • Others think that the brightness of a full moon affects our sleep patterns, resulting in irritability and mood swings.

Although, scientists found no trivial correlation between full moon and the human behaviors – no increase rate of bad luck, failed surgery or oddness in the Emergency Room.

The Moon has often been a subject of mystery in tales and believes – good or bad.

Slovenians tend to believe a lot that the Moon does have some influences on the behaviors or… the Moon is just an easy excuse out.

If something odd happens in Slovenia, it wouldn’t be unusual to heard that the cause is the Full Moon – polna luna.

So, believe it or not? Share your thoughts on it.

Until next post,