Quite a few people I know have been pestering me to check out Slovenia. They keep telling me that the Adriatic coast is fantastic, and the old cities are really really nice. I’d always say “Yah, yah, but I don’t have time to go these days, I’m busy.” This summer I finally had a long weekend free and thought… I’m in Villach, Austria on business, why not head down and see what it’s all about. Wow, I’m glad I did!
The trip down was a lot shorter than I’d imagined. The easy route was from Villach straight to Ljubljana, and then across to Piran and Portoroz. You could also get there easy from the Italian side via Trieste. Anyway, the trip down was fast and easy. The motorways in Slovenia are excellent, but you do have to be sure to pick up a 10 day vignette for the car before you cross the border. The motorway ends in the town of Koper, and then you only have a-roads the rest of the way out onto the peninsula and Piran. The streets can be quite narrow at times and maybe even a bit confusing as I’d swear some follow the old footpaths from 4000 years ago, but a good sat-nav and you’re there without any trouble.
One of the first things that struck me as I drove into Piran and Protoroz was the incredible medieval architecture. The buildings and even the streets themselves made me fell like I was travelling back in time to a simpler era, and I knew immediately I was going to really like this town. I did plan ahead a little and booked into the Grand Hotel in Portoroz which looks out over the Adriatic. First though, since it was early in the day, I wanted to explore the town of Piran a little.
The main square in Piran is known as Tartinijev trg, and it’s simply beautiful. Right close by is the Cerkev sv. Jurija or Church of St. George. It’s wonderfully decorated inside, and the interior walls are so white. The Venetian influence on pretty much every stone in every building is clearly evident everywhere you look. Couple that with the amazing sunny day, and I felt like I had discovered a paradise.
I slowly made my way over to my hotel, stopping to photograph a few things that caught my eye. The weekend progressed with one thought forming, I have to come back again, and I have to tell everyone about this place. OK, that’s two ideas, but I should be allowed to say that. I really hope you have a chance to visit Piran and Portoroz. If you’ve been there, please leave a comment here about it, as I’d love to hear about your experiences.
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