Visiting more at a lesser cost, looking for free/low-cost activities alternatives is what motivated me to write my series “Slovenia on Budget”. It’s for people with a car, that like to visit many highlights and spend less. I don’t include accommodations or transports in this post.
If you want, you can first read
Day 3 – Predjama Castle, Lipica & Piran
Today, we’re going to the southwest part of Slovenia, visiting two regions: (Coast-Karst and Notranjska-Karst. Don’t forget your camera, sun cream and your brilliant smile! Let’s go!
Predjama Castle above a Cave
The simple view of the 800 years old Predjama Castle is astonishing. It holds the title of the largest cave castle in the world. Its position is also peculiar: in the middle of a 123 m cliff and above a cave.
The ticket to visit the Predjama Castle is 11€, but we preferred to take photos from outside. After all, some sites are prettier from the outside
We didn’t go inside the Postojna Cave or Predjama Castle due to our tight schedule.
Lipicanec, the Noble Horse
I’ve always been fascinated by horses, therefore, Lipica near Sežana was a must-must-go for me. In Lipica, the horses roam “freely” within very large pastures. You can therefore walk from the parking lot and easily admire them for the whole day (and for free).
You can also go inside the Lipica Stud Farm with a guided tour (12€) and learn about their history. It is good to mention that the Lipica is the oldest stud farm in Europe that breed only one breed of horse: the Lipicanec, a breed of noble dressing horses from the 16th century.
Nowadays, all modern Lippizans trace their bloodlines to only 8 stallions and 35 mares. The Lipicanec are born dark and as they grown, they gradually become grey (not pure white as some might think) with white hair.
If you choose your day of visit well, you will be able to see a 45 mins presentation of the Lipica Classical Riding School combined with a guided tour (19€). From April to October, every Sunday at 3pm. From May to the end of September, every Tuesday, Friday and Sunday at 3pm.
My parents were happy by photographing the Lipicanec from the pastures (for free) and they do come very very close, so you can pet and take selfies with them!
Piran, the Sea Coast
Slovenia only has a 46 km long coast along the Adriatic Sea, the main cities in that region are Piran, Izola, Portorož and Koper. Walking by the sea, smelling the salty air, taking a good dose of Vitamin D, watching the boats, suntanning, swimming, eating ice cream… is so relaxing.
Piran is the last town, at the edge of Slovenia and it attracts a lot of tourists every year. Driving to Piran, you will pass by some very pretty streets sheltered by tall trees. Finding a parking in Piran is a bit tricky, that’s why we park at Fornace, which is about 800 m from Piran main square – Tartini Square. There’s also a free shuttle bus between Fornace and Tartini Square.
The streets in Piran are very smalls and paved with stones. It gives a feel of being in Venice, Italy. The architecture of the houses is also very similar.
You can easily visit the St-George Church and have a very nice view at the Adriatic Sea. You can also walk up to the Piran Town Walls and climb it for a mere 1€ , from there you can easily see the amazing peninsula of Piran.
If you’re looking for a souvenir, make sure to visit the store Piranske Soline, Slovenia is famous for its gourmet salt, which is called Solni cvet – Fleur de Sel or Flower of Salt. (More information: Traditional Salt-Making in Slovenia.)
BONUS: Slovenian Caves
Indeed, the World Famous Touristic Cave in Slovenia is Postojnska Jama, with its train across the cave do attract a lot of people. The admission fee is not for free (22.90€), although you can get a small discount if you get combined package (details).
The Škocjan Cave is a good alternative, it is part of the UNESCO’s natural and cultural world heritage protected sites since 1986. The admission fee is (varies from 6 to 16€, depending on which path you choose to go) and it’s a walking path.
When visiting caves, please dress warm as the temperature are much colder (8-10°C) and wear a very good pair of shoes, as the terrain will be quite slippery.
Don’t forget to check the weather before you go, especially if you’re going to be outside for the whole day! Don’t forget to bring your sun cream and let me know how you enjoyed your day, via the comment box below!
Have a look at my Gallery and our next destination: Day 4 – Tolmin & Around.