UK - Ljubljana - Ptuj
Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service collects you from home for your flight to Ljubljana. On arrival we drive through beautiful scenes as we travel to Ptuj in Slovenia’s eastern province of Styria and the Grand Hotel Primus (4T). Enjoy a welcome drink with time to relax before dinner this evening.
Ptuj is the oldest documented settlement in Slovenia, and equals the country’s capital for historical importance. This morning we take an included sightseeing tour of its beautiful historical core; a compact medieval quarter of monasteries, towers and the 5m-tall Orpheus Monument, a Roman tombstone which became the centre of public punishment in the Middle Ages. Our tour includes Castle Hill, where a collection of red-roofed houses were assembled in the 14th-18th centuries on the remains of a Roman temple, to create the majestic Ptuj Castle. As you enter the courtyard you will see the red marble tombstone of Frederick IX, the last lord of Ptuj. The afternoon is at leisure; or you may choose an optional excursion to explore the surrounding wine region, taking in the idyllic countryside and one of the local cellars.
Spend a day exploring Ptuj’s rich heritage at leisure, or choose an optional excursion to Maribor, Slovenia’s second largest city. This charming medieval city is worthy of exploration, with medieval towers, the remains of a city wall and, in the Lent district, the world’s oldest grapevine. This much celebrated vine has leant against the Old Vine House since the 1500s and still produces plump grapes. And beneath you lies one of central Europe’s oldest cellars, Vinag, with musty tunnels that stretch around two miles under the city.
Ptuj - Ljubljana - Portorož
After breakfast we depart Ptuj for Slovenia’s capital. Despite being one of the smallest and youngest capitals in Europe, Ljubljana is well known for its rich medieval heritage, as well as a wonderful selection of Renaissance, Baroque and art nouveau buildings. We take a guided tour of the city and take time to explore independently, with opportunities to take the funicular up to Ljubljana Castle where you can enjoy magnificent city views. Endless cafés line the river, making an idyllic spot to rest before our journey continues to the Slovenian coast and our hotel, Grand Hotel Portorož (4T), in the town of Portorož.
Explore the Slovenian coast this morning from the bow of a boat. Our cruise takes in stunning views as we sail to Piran, one of the best preserved historical towns on the Adriatic, with its picturesque scenes of Venetian Gothic architecture and winding alleyways. This lived-in city sits on a narrow peninsula and you are never more than a few steps from the sea or a seafood restaurant. Returning to Portorož, you have the choice of an afternoon at leisure or an optional excursion for a taste of the old Slovenian way of life. Visit the salt fields (a protected national treasure) and the museum, see how the best olive oil is produced and sample some wines and dried ham, produced in this region.
Spend your day in the ‘Port of Roses’, a modern town which has been a spa destination since the 13th century. Alternatively, take an optional visit to magnificent Postojna Cave, considered one of the world’s most beautiful and most visited cave systems. An electric train takes you into the caves for a guided walk through the most interesting sections, where the stalagmites and stalactites create beautiful naturally-occurring patterns. On your return to Portorož, stop in Trieste, where you can stroll through streets for Italian treats and admire historic buildings including the remains of a Roman theatre, fort and statue of James Joyce, who completed ‘Dubliners’ here.
Portorož - Stanjel - Kobarid - Kranjska Gora
After breakfast we leave the Slovenian coast to Kranjska Gora. We travel through the Karst region, an intriguing limestone plateau, pausing at the village of Stanjel, a beautiful stone village and one of the oldest settlements in the Karst area, inhabited in prehistoric times and fortified in the 15th century. Landmarks include the ancient castle and the Ferrari Garden. We continue through the small town of Kobarid where formidable battles were fought during WWI and where Ernest Hemingway got his inspiration for his book ‘Farewell to Arms’. Then into the Julian Alps, through the dramatic Trenta Valley and the breathtaking hairpin bends of the Vrsic Pass (some 1,611m above sea level) to Kranjska Gora in time for dinner at the Hotel Kompas (4T).
Kranjska Gora - Planica - Triglav National Park
Enjoy a short sightseeing visit of Kranjska Gora, an unspoiled mountain village surrounded by the beautiful Julian Alps. Its location makes it a popular destination for summer hikes and winter sports. We visit Planica, an alpine valley and one of the world’s best Nordic ski centres; and Zelenci Nature Reserve, considered the source of the River Sava, an ecologically and culturally important river which connects three capitals and marks country borders as it flows 615 miles towards Belgrade. We continue through the village of Mojstana and into Vrata - one of the three Triglav valleys and entrance to the spectacular northern wall of the highest mountain in Slovenia, Mount Triglav (2,864m). Pericnik Waterfall, one of the best known waterfalls in Slovenia, is one of today’s highlights.
Today is free to relax in Kranjska Gora or find a walking trail into the wonderful alpine surroundings. Nearby Triglav National Park is Slovenia’s only national park and one of the largest in Europe, full of magnificent sights of rocky mountains, river gorges, forests, lakes, waterfalls and endemic fauna. Alternatively, take an optional excursion to one of Slovenia’s icons - Lake Bled. This crystal blue, glacier-formed lake is best seen from the cliff-top castle, with a stunning backdrop of mountain scenery. After visiting this 11th century fort, full of interesting exhibits and taking in views of famously picturesque Bled Island, topped with the legendary Church of Maria, you will head to a café by the lake to taste the famous Bled Cream Cake. Later, visit Bohinj Lake, Slovenia's largest natural lake. After a short journey through Bohinj Valley, you can either take a short climb for an impressive view of the 78m Savica Waterfall, or take a cable car to Mount Vogel, surrounded by the peaks of the Julian Alps.
Day 10 Kranjska Gora - Ljubljana - UK
We transfer back to Ljubljana Airport for our return flight to the UK. Upon arrival, your Titan vehicle will be waiting for the journey home.