A friend of a friend emailed me. He and his wife were going to Slovenia for a holiday and he would be grateful for any suggestions. The Visit Ljubljana website is excellent for places to go and things to do, but I think personal recommendations are better for restaurants and cafes (beats TripAdvisor hands down to actually speak to someone).
Last week an other friend of a relative said he was going to Ljubljana and Bled and asked for suggestions. So here are a few thoughts on restaurants in Ljubljana. For information on Bled, I have written this book “Firsthand Guide to Bled Slovenia”.
So, for future reference, here are a few ideas. Comments are open for your suggestions.
My wife’s favourite place for coffee is Cacao [Map] [Website]. It’s a modern place with great cakes and seating outside beside the river.
Sometimes she prefers Slaščičarna Lolita [Map] [Website] – a more traditional Viennese style coffee shop. Slaščičarna is my favourite word in Slovene – “cake shop” is just not enough “patisserie” is too French. Slaščičarna is just right. I don’t get too worked up about coffee shops much though.
My favourite restaurant is Druga Violina (Second Violin) [Map] [Website]. As I understand it, the restaurant is run by a community who work with people with learning disabilities. The menu is Slovene, short and to the point. I also understand from time to time guest chefs work with team, there. The food is simple but often superb. It is popular to very popular with locals. And very cheap. (A main course costs about the same as a Tesco sandwich in the UK.)
A friend in Ljubljana Tourism introduced us to is Restavracija Most (Bridge Restaurant) [Map] [Website]. It is a great place for lunch on a sunny day under the natural shade of trees on the riverside walk by the Merarski Most (Bridge).
There are three restaurants in the old town almost adjacent, which Lonely Planet like, consequently popular with tourists. And very good they are ; Valvas’or, Marley and Me and Juliana [Map] – of the three we prefer Julija All are good for lunch, but are probably better in the evening if you want a long dinner under the canvas umbrellas (which work perfectly well in a downpour as we discovered).
If you like fish, my highest recommendation is Vodnikov Hram [Map] [Website]
If you are there on a Friday, Open Kitchen (Odprta kuhna) in Pogačarjev trg in the shadow of Ljubljana Cathedral [Map] [Website] is wonderful on a sunny day (picture).
A bit further out and well worth the walk is Restaurant Manna [Map] [Website] ] which is near the very interesting Sax Pub [Website] on Eipprova ulica.
We are on the way out of the tourist area, although I think there are some young hostelers here. Also in the area – on the same street or just off it is the Plečnikova hiša (Plečnik House) [Map] [Article]. He was the architect who built large parts of Ljubljana, Kranj and cities in this part of the Austro-Hungarian empire.
The Visit Ljubljana website is always useful. Follow on Twitter @visitljubljana