We didn’t know where we would go for the New Year’s celebration, it kind of happened in the last minute since we started our Masters and didn’t really wanted to take precious time from studying and exam preparations. Samir had a wish too visit Klagenfurt for about the 5 years, and reason for that is just a fact that he found it fun to pronounce. But besides having a mouthful name Klagenfurt am Worthersee has a charm and it was worth visiting. Ljubljana has apparently become a city that pulls us back, it was like visiting an old friend, catching up on the things we’ve missed the last time we were there. The third city was Bled located on the mesmerizing lake tucked in mountains.
Our small road trip started with the morning visit to Klagenfurt where we stayed for 8 hours. Let’s start by saying it was freaking cold, at least to me, I had full gear on barely moving because of the all layers I had on me. Unfortunately because of the cold we haven’t gone to the lake, but I would say that we have walked through every street in Klagenfurt.
It is believed that Klagenfurt got its name from dangerous swaps where fateful fairies or demons tend to live. But this place was nothing but a charming Austrian town with colorful buildings and clean mountain air.
We started our tour from the Alter Platz, after which we visited the Landhaus Klagenfurt (seat of the State Assembly). On this square you can see a truly beautiful facade of the Old town hall building. After that we went to the Neuer Platz, where the Christmas market was located filled with local food, drinks and souvenirs. Also here we saw a dragon monument or Lindwurm that is also found on the City’s coat of arms.
Samir’s favorite monument was actually a small one (not the smallest we saw) called Wörtherseemandl. In the old legend this little man or Mandl was trying to warn his fellow citizens that if they don’t stop with drinking something bad would happen to the city of Klagenfurt. He was thrown out of the pub and ridiculed. That Christmas Eve a great flood destroyed the town because people have lost their way from God. This little man is a reminder to not drink too much.
Interesting fact about Klagenfurt is that it was the awarded the prestigious Europa Nostra Diploma of Merit for the exemplary restoration and redevelopment of its ancient centre for three times, and therefore setting a European record.
Second day on our New Years tour was Ljubljana, beloved city where we love to come back. Since we were here before this time we decided to stroll around, without and agenda, it was a chill day. We ate at the Christmas market, we sat next to the Ljubljanica river and rank the mulled wine. There were a lot of events, live music and ice skating rinks around the town.
We left Ljubljana earlier so that we could prepare for the New years celebration on lake Bled. Bled made a beautiful event, town was decorated like in the fairytail, there were two music stages. One was with traditional Slovenian music and second with Ex-yu and rock music. Bands were great even the mayor greeted us.
Next morning we were of to Bled again to visit the castle and learn more about the town. It was raining but it didn’t spoil our day. We recommend you to visit Bled in spring and enjoy the lake and reflection of the mountains. But the lake is magical even when its raining. We got a group discount on our ticket to enter the castle, even with that it was expensive because castle is small but the views were amazing. Inside the castle there is a small museum about towns history, a wine shop where the monks are selling their wine and a old printing shop.
In this old printing shop you can see a demonstration of printing on a reconstructed Gutenberg’s printing machine. We even tried to print our own certificate and I can tell you it was hard and heavy. But for about 10€ you can get an unique experience and gift.