A Walk Around Lake Bled on Halloween

Hey guys,

while for most of us, October 31st is Halloween, in Slovenia, it is Reformation Day, a religious and public holidays. It is celebrated in remembrance of the Protestant Reformation.

Like many Slovenians, we took advantage of the day off and went for a beautiful “family” walk around Lake Bled. We parked at train station and started our nice walk around Lake Bled.

The weather was cold and cloudy – a typical autumn day (unfortunately, not the best day for photography).

Some courageous visitors took a Pletna boat ride to the Bled island. Other decided to rent a canoe and went by themselves. Many fishermen were stationed around the lake in hope of catching some fishes.

It was my first time walking all-around (I usually walk about half of it) Lake Bled, and at a leisure-pace, it took us approximately 3 hours. It was a very easy, family-friendly and nice walk. There was also a special Halloween event for children at the Bled Castle.


Afterward, in preparation for tomorrow’s Remembrance Day of the Dead, we went to the graveyard with floral arrangements and candles.

I had a great day and enjoyed spending time with family 🙂

Until next time,
Anna.

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Day 2 – Bled & Bohinj

I’m writing this post as being part of my series “Slovenia on Budget”, for those who likes to drive around and visit places but at an affordable price (or for free). Please note, this is about Places to Visit, and not accommodations or transports.

You can also read my previous post

Day 2: BledBohinj

Today we’re travelling to the Gorenjska region of Slovenia, situated in the Northwest part of the country. The biggest town is Kranj, but we’re not heading there this time.

Bled, the Fairy Tale Island

If you were visiting Slovenia with a tour bus, your guide will certainly bring you to Lake Bled. The view is simply breathtaking: a castle sitting on a rock hill, looking down on a lake with the sole island of Slovenia, topped with a Church. Isn’t it just simply beautiful?

Although, being such a touristic emplacement, spending will be hard to avoid, especially if you want to do the “normal” tourist routine: visit of the Bled CastleBlejski grad (9€), going to the Island with the Pletna boat (12€) and ringing the Bell in the Church of the Assumption (6€)…

We walked around the lake and took amazing photos, my parents were thrilled. We visited the Bled Castle because the view from above is a “must”, especially when you get a 50% off (we uses our Spar Discount Card). Once you’re in the castle, you MUST try the famous Slovenian Kremšnita, which is a cake pastry with layers of light cream. Yummm!

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

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

If you must pick one activity around Lake Bled, I would recommend that you go visit the Bled Castle and enjoy a Kremšnita (4€) while admiring the panoramic view of Lake Bled. Also, with your admission ticket, you get 1€ discount on food and in souvenir shop.

(For more details, you can check my post Lake Bled – the Fairy Tale Island.)

Bohinj, the Glacial Lake

Situated in the heart of the Julian Alps, Bohinj Lake is the largest natural lake in Slovenia. It’s perfect location for water activities: canoeing, rafting, kayaking, swimming and so on, although the water is usually colder than others lakes. Around the lake are hiking paths. All these activities are for free (if you have your own equipment)!

The Savica Waterfall is also close by, and it’s known to be the source of Sava Bohinjka. For a small fee of 2.50€, you can access the path to the Savica Waterfall.

Church of St. John the Baptist and Bridge

Church of St. John the Baptist and Bridge

You can also visit the 700 years old Church of St. John the Baptist, which is just next to the bridge.

The statue of the ZlatorogGoldenhorn, the legendary white chamois, can be find next to the Bohinj Lake. A summary of the Legend can be found on Wikipedia: Goldenhorn. Basically, the horn of the Zlatorog is the key to a hidden treasure in the area. A greedy hunter tracked down and shot the Zlatorog, but he revived by eating a magic flower, then he revenged himself and killed the greedy hunter.

A little Red Ant Climbing Wood in Bohinj, Slovenia

A little Red Ant Climbing Wood in Bohinj, Slovenia

My parents were satisfied just by walking around the lake, admiring the landscape and taking beautiful photos. Just being in the nature is such a wonderful feeling!

Bonus: The Stone Castle

On the way from Tržič to Bled, you can see Mount Triglav, one of the symbol of Slovenia. You will also come across a hidden little germ at the entrance of the Draga Valley in Begunje na Gorenjskem: the ruins of the Kamen Grad, the Stone Castle. You can see the skeleton of the castle, which was built in the 12th century.

It’s a little excursion, although, the visit of the premise is at your own risk, so be careful if you decide to pass by.


Activities at Lake Bled or Lake Bohinj can easily take one whole day, but I usually decide to go to both lakes during the same day as they are “in the same area”.

So, did you have a swim in Lake Bled or Lake Bohinj? Let me know via the comment box, and thanks for reading my post. You can follow me to the next stop: Day 3 – Predjama Castle, Lipica & Piran, and be sure to look at my Gallery as well!

Let’s travel,
Anna.

Slovenia on Budget in Pictures

 

These photos were taken all around Slovenia, when my parents came visit me, at the end of August 2015.

Photo Hunting with Foto Klub Tržič

At the end of May, I’ve participated to a Photo Hunting, Fotolov, activity organized by the Foto Klub Tržič.

I was pretty nervous in meeting new Slovene-only speakers and actually wondered if I would understand them at all, but everything turn out awesome. People were impressed that I spoke Slovene and I got to meet and learn from awesome and passionate photography lovers!

The activity was called Zahajajoče Sonce, which means Sunset, and it was all about finding the natural lighting. We went to various places for the activity.

Beautiful Wild Flowers with Lake Bled and the City in the back

Beautiful Wild Flowers with Lake Bled and the City in the back

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First stop, we went to a spot that overlook on Lake Bled, the view was fantastic! It looked like a little hidden spot for photography lovers, and despite the hot weather, in the attitude, it was pretty cold (wearing a parka is advised!).

I practiced my Composition, which means how to arrange elements in your photo’s frame. There’s a lot of rules, but what’s important is how you feel about what you want to photograph.

There was many lovely right flowers were I was standing, then I could see the forest, Lake Bled and the Church of the Assumption, the city, the mountains and the sky.

Looking up the Trees above the Blueberries Field

Looking up the Trees above the Blueberries Field

Second stop, we went to a blueberries clearing in Pokljuka. Another secret spot, I would say! Apparently, a lot of people go up there to collect blueberries during the summer.

Nice spotlight next to a Tree in a Blueberries Field

Nice spotlight next to a Tree in a Blueberries Field

There I practiced my Lighting and started to play with my Exposure settings for the first time (yes, I’m a big time beginner at Photography! But hey, practice makes perfect – eventually!). The place just seemed perfect for testing the different effects while using different exposure settings.

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I’ve also tried using different angles, depending on what I wanted to demonstrate.

For example, here’s a photo of our teacher Aleš Zdešar, who had the kindness to guide us all around.

At first, he looks buried into the blueberries field within the tall tree, right?

Actually, he was sitting on a rock and not into the field. I used an angle so that the blueberries (in the front) would hide the rock and make him look like he’s engulfed in the field.

Knowing how to use the correct angle to photograph what you want to show is indeed crucial, and I still have a tons to learn!

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Third stop, we drove to a plains up in the mountain, a Planina.

During summer, cows are putting in there, but some people also go there for a small holidays, that’s what the cabins are for. It is also free to access, so any visitors are welcomed.

We practice photographing in Macro the flowers on the plains, while waiting for the sunset. I didn’t like the macro function somehow, so I mostly used the Focus to take photos. I’m pretty happy with the result.

Green Field with Beautiful Purple Wild Flowers with Sunshine in Planina, Slovenia

Green Field with Beautiful Purple Wild Flowers with Sunshine in Planina, Slovenia

Unfortunately, I didn’t bring my tripod with me (I know, totally silly me…) and I wasn’t able to take good photo of the golden hour (the short moment before sunset – or sunrise) at all.

Last stop, to conclude the Fotolov, we went to Lake Bled for a night shoot of the Church of the Assumption.

Beautiful Evening View and Reflection of the Church of the Assumption in Lake Bled, Slovenia

Beautiful Evening View and Reflection of the Church of the Assumption in Lake Bled, Slovenia

I didn’t bring my tripod, but a very kind person lend me his! 🙂 He also took the time to teach me how to shoot in Manual Mode and how to set the Speed to increase the exposure time for night photography. And… surprisingly, I think the result was fantastic!


Despite my worries at the beginning of the activity, I truly enjoyed myself and met some awesome people, who loves photography with passion! I learnt a lot and can’t wait for next time.

More photos of my photo hunting can be found in my Gallery.

Until next time,
Anna.

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).

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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

alternate textFrom 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

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…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,
Anna.