Here are just some of the other things you could try: GOLF / FISHING / AIRPLANE TRIPS / 4 WHEEL DRIVE ADVENTURES / HONEY TASTING / COFFEE TASTING / BEER TASTING / BIRD WATCHING / SWIMMING / LOCAL FESTIVALS / ROCK CLIMBING / PARAGLIDING / KNIGHTS TOURNAMENTS / DRAWING & ART CLASSES / SCHNAPPS TOURS / SHOPPING / MUSHROOM PICKING / GRAPE PICKING / JAM MAKING / FRUIT PICKING / SLOVENIAN COOKING COURSE / MICROFLIGHT FLYING / WHITE WATER RAFTING / ANIMAL WATCHING / STAG RUTTING / ZOO FOR KIDS / OLIVE TOUR / MILITARY HISTORY / PHOTOGRAPHY
Slovenia is the biggest Natural Fun Park in Europe. From top to bottom it is packed with things to do and places to visit and the really great thing is that hardly anyone knows about this, so you will have plenty of space to do your own thing!
There really are so many things to do here in Slovenia, we can help you find and book the activity you want to do. If you want to try something that is not included in our website, the chances are you can still do it, so please ask and we will find out for you!
Pretty much everyone, including us, is amazed at the variety of natural things to do here and the sheer beauty of the surroundings in which to do it.
We would be delighted if you used our Lodge as your base to play the different golf courses around Slovenia and north Italy.
We can also help organise a single round of golf as one of a variety of activities available to you and advise which course might be best for you. Green fees are very reasonable and you rarely need to book in advance, but of course we can also assist you with this.
Courses just a few putts away from us are Lake Bled, Lipica (9 hole), Ljubljana, Nova Gorica and Trieste (Italy) and several others are easily accesible for a day's round.
Even if your ball goes sailing off into the rough or the forest, you will always have a beautiful view here in Slovenia and if you come back with wet shoes and kit you are welcome to dry it off in our heating room for your next day's round!
As more guests try out these courses we will put our own feedback and tips about the courses on this page.
Here are a few shots of the Arboretum Golf Club in Ljubljana, about an hour from the Lodge. You play below the mountains in a terrific country location. Green fees are about €45 and a weekend pass can be bought for €50.
We have a local fishing expert who can organise permits and equipment for you to fish locally. We have also met the Slovenian Fishing Society's chairman and he can help us find the exact fishing partner for you, whether it be in rivers, lakes or the sea.
Jump in a Plane to see Slovenia.. and Venice!
We were lucky enough to go on 3 special plane trips when we travelled the world in 2005/6. We flew over the Equadorian rainforest, the biggest sand island in the world, (Frazer Island, Australia) and over the amazing Nazca lines in Peru. This really is a fantastic and memorable experience.
We have arranged several exciting and affordable flight options with local Janez Air from a nearby private airport in modern propellor planes.
We have 4 options for you: Fly over the Slovenian Alps to the famous lake Bled and see Europe's most beautiful river, the Soca. Or you could fly over the Slovenian, Italian and Croatian coasts. Another amazing experience is the VIP flight direct to Venice, the most famous island city in the world, landing at the same private airport that Brad Pitt uses when he is in town! You also get a few hours to explore.
And last but not least is our own "Lipizzaner Lodge Special" flight where you fly over our village of Landol, then circle Predjama castle and then return over the Nanos mountain! You will be amazed at how reasonable the prices are for these flights. One of these would surely be a holiday highlight.
4 Wheel Drive Adventures
This is a really excellent day out. Our friends at the local adventure company offer a selection of very reasonable adventure days out where you either go in your own small group or if there is just 2, you join another small group and make new friends!
We can honestly report to you that the equipment levels, standard of guiding and scenery is second to none (and we have done several 4wd trips around the world). Here in Slovenia you get driven and can take a turn to drive yourself around Slovenia's biggest military tank training forest, you can learn forest survival skills, lead your team blind folded through a world war 2 bunker, or maybe just climb down a cliff!
There are lots of fun and challenging activities to do during your 4WD day out, but the team also show you some amazingly beautiful natural rock formations and other natural beauties. You really get access all areas. Lunch is provided over a campfire. You feel completely safe, but your comfort levels are pushed throughout the day to make you feel alive.
Before we came to Slovenia we had no idea that honey has several completely different tastes, depending on what the bees have been collecting in the forest, meadows, from chestnut or lime trees or different flowers.
Would you "bee lieve" it!.. Modern bee keeping was invented in Slovenia.. it's a national pastime here, you will see colourful wooden beehives all over the place when you are out and about for the Slovenian bees to get some yummy food to make yummy honey!
You can get close and personal to the busy worker bees, see how honey is collected and taste different honeys. You will find out that the crystal clear honey you buy in the supermarket might not be what you think it is. And when you taste the natural stuff, we are sure your ideas about honey will be changed for ever, as were ours.
We know several honey partner farms awaiting your visit and you can see some of the beautiful nature near to these farms and combine with visits to other places or activities. We also serve and sell our partner's honey at Lipizzaner Lodge and we think it is a great idea for our guests to have the chance to meet the hands that prepared their honey and the busy bees that collected it!
Our friend Omar from Honduras lives close to Ljubljana and he freshly roasts our coffee beans for us so you can taste the difference and know which country your coffee comes from. In our cafe you can choose coffee direct from Ethiopia, Honduras, Nicaragua or Brazil and we can also organise for you to have a coffee tasting where Omar and his Slovenian wife Katja can demonstrate how to taste and smell the different flavours and aromas in their different coffees.
It might seem a little strange, but an Australian guy moved to Slovenia and decided to start a small brewery, making English pale ale, stout and lager. His brewery is not far from us on the edge of Ljubljana and you can go there to see how the beer is made and of course taste the product. He even has a pub there with a dartboard! We also hope to serve his beer here at Lipizzaner Lodge. He calls it Human Fish beer, after the little dragon creatures that live in the caves in this region.
Being the 3rd most forested country in Europe and containing ancient forests, lakes, mountains, rivers and coast, Slovenia is a magnet for so many species of birds and a paradise for Twitchers.
In our village you will often see buzzards hovering and hunting in the open fields. At nearby lake Cerknica, Europe's largest disappearing lake, you can see all sorts of birds, including white eagles, whooper swans, great crested grebes and curlews. Water fills the lake for about 9 months in the year and this is when you can see the most birds.
We have made contact with a local bird watcher who can guide you to the best places, whether you want to just spend a day or the whole week watching birds.
Corn Crakes: And just a 20 minute walk direct from Lipizzaner Lodge is a protected Corn Crake reserve! You probably won't see one of these shy birds, but there is a very good chance to hear them.
There are too many places to list where you can have a great swim here, but you can easily swim in crystal clear rivers, lakes and of course the Italian Slovenian or Croatian parts of the Adriatic. There is a kids water park close by in Ljubljana and a new one in Istria, (between Slovenia and Croatia).
We have found many places where you can swim in water fresh from the Alps or pumped up from the Karst underground caves. Two of our daytrip destinations have private pools where you can take a dip and there are public salt water pools at the coast next to the very gentle and warm Adriatic. Depending on where you are going and what you are doing each day, there will very probably be a place where you can swim, so please don't forget to bring your swimming costumes!
And if you are interested in swimming, then please keep an eye on our Daytrips page as we will soon be adding a new section on swimming options here, there are so many and also so many of our guests are interested in the options.
Pretty much every weekend there is a different fair, market or celebration taking place somewhere not far from Lipizzaner Lodge in Slovenia or along the Italian or Croatian borders. We list some of these on our "Events" page and we will add to this list as our knowledge grows.
There are demonstrations and shows about nature, local crafts, history and many other subjects and there is lots of local food and drink to taste and buy! In just a few examples there is a wagon festival, a potato festival, a Pippi Longstockings festival a medieval knights festival and numerous wine and fruit festivals. Here below is a picture of carnival time in Slovenia, when these amazing costumes come out to play! (You can also go to see a fab museum in Ptuj in a fantastic castle with a permanent display of carnival costumes.
There is no shortage of rocks waiting to be climbed in Slovenia and we were pleasantly surprised when our guest Peter from Bratislava told us about the rock climbing area just 30 minutes from Lipizzaner Lodge at Osp, close to the Italian border. There are dozens of climbs at different levels and you can also go to nearby Crni Kal for more choice of climbs, including some lower levels.
Here is a website that tells you something about this area: http://www.climb-europe.com/RockClimbingSlovenia/Osp-Trieste.htm
The hills and mountains around our region are perfect for all sorts of flying activities and just 25 minutes drive from us, on the other side of mt Nanos, is the Vipava valley which, has many fantastic launch sites over 1,000 m high for paragliding. You will often see individual and guided paragliders hanging in the skies in this valley region and there are also competitions and meetings.
Even better, we now have a local partner, Alexander, who can offer paragliding flights for both beginners and experienced flyers! The take off site is located just 40 minutes from the Lodge, so you can be floating around the skies over the Vipava and Soca valleys with views all the way to the Adriatic sea in no time at all.
Beginners will fly "tandem" with an experienced pilot and the cost is just €90 for an hour flight! We can organise this for you no probs and you can also check out Alexander's PARAGLIDING RIDES site for some amazing photos.
Being in the centre of Europe between Empires, Slovenia has been the battleground for the Roman, Venetian, Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian empires. There are numerous castles to visit and at certain times during the year battles take place between brave knights on horseback and foot. Other armies re enact more recent battles and some castles also have knights and soldiers patrolling for the kids to stare at and have a picture with!
However, it is unnecessarily and notoriously difficult for tourists to find out where and when these tournaments take place. For example, it is very easy to find a picture on the internet of Predjama castle with knights fighting outside, but pretty much impossible for the average tourist to find out when these tournaments take place.
This is something we are working to change as we know that the sights and sounds of colourful knights doing battle is very exciting for visitors. We have found out and met some groups who do perform the fighting and we will advertise the tournaments on the "Events" page of our website. For example, there is a Medieval festival on 1st June at th the nearby Sneznik, "Snow Mountain" castle. We can't say too much now, but don't be surprised this Summer if you look out of your window at Lipizzaner Lodge and see something exciting happening on our field!?!
Drawing & Art Classes
Whether you sketch or paint mountains, castles, wildlife, rivers or lakes Slovenia has it all! We can recommend so many nice places to go on your own for a day out painting and we also kow some local artists who would be very happy to assist, instruct or guide you for the day.
Try the locally produced and unique selection of home made schnapps from fruits and herbs growing in this region at a local tourist farm and also enjoy some Slovenian Tapas (locally produced meats and cheeses).
Too much to list here, but think Italian chic in the nearby city of Trieste, shop till you drop in large and lively out of town shopping centres close by in Italy and Slovenia, there are many arts & crafts locations, city shopping in Ljubljana and coastal boutiques in Slovenia and Croatia. You tell us what you want to look for and what kind of shopping environment you prefer and we will recommend the place for you!
Usually in the Autumn and depending on the weather conditions, Slovenia's forests fill with delicious and deadly mushrooms! We know people who can take you out mushroom hunting to find the good ones. And there is a lot to see and learn in Slovenia's vast forests to entertain you for just a few hours or the whole day.
Usually during the mid - end of September all the grapes have to be harvested in Slovenia's 7 or more wine regions (we are still trying to count exactly how many regions Slovenia has for wine, but whenever we think we have found them all, we hear about another!)
Our partner vineyards offer you a day out helping them to harvest the grapes. You are assigned an experienced co worker to guide you and you will eat a worker's lunch and the bigger evening meal at the end of the day. This will surely be a unique experience and wait till you tell your friends at home about it and let them taste some of the wine you helped to make!
In Slovenia everybody makes their own jam, so there is plenty of opportunity for you to help pick the plums, apricots or other fruits and see how they are melting down naturally into jam, (or marmalade as they called here, but nobody uses oranges, so of course they are jams!)
We have planted many fruit trees at Lipizzaner lodge so we can make our own jam and you are welcome to help out if you are visiting at the right time of year, (start of Autumn). Otherwise we have some very nice neighbours with thickly covered mature fruit trees waiting to be picked!
We spent a great day last Autumn just picking plums. It was a wonderfully natural experience and one that can be repeated for any fruit that grows here, depending on when it is ripe for collection.
Slovenian Cooking Course
You can spend a great day with our Slovenian celebrity chef friend Rihard Basa, exploring nature, helping him to pick fresh ingredients from the forest and his garden and then cooking your meal together. You certainly will learn about food and have a lot of laughs.
Rihard specialises in Slovenian dishes, there are a lot, so if you want to have several days with him this is also fine. He can also come to Lipizzaner Lodge for an evening and cook in front of you if your schedule is a little tighter.
You can take to the skies, James Bond style, for local flights over the biggest disappearing lake in Europe, filled with water during the Winter, a Martian landscape of craters, pot holes and caves in the Summer. There is a small local airport, (with a great pizzaeria by the way), where these flights are arranged.
You get strapped to the pilot and off you go! These flights are also suitable for wheelchair users, we saw a video of a flight made by a lady who uses a wheelchair and you can see she had great fun!
White Water Rafting
Go down Europe's most beautiful river, the turquoise blue Soca, in a dingy with just a helmet, an oar and your raw courage. Or take a more gentle ride along the emerald green Krka river which forms part of the border between Slovenia and Croatia.
The forests and fields are full of wildlife for you to enjoy. Our guides can take you on walks in nature or hunters can take you out to spot specific animals and understand their habits. Slovenia has bears, wolves, lynx, butterflies, wild boar, mountain goats, several varieties of deer and so many birds and fish.
At the start of Autumn our local hunter friend can take you to sit on a camping chair at the edge of a field with a sleeping bag over your legs to keep you warm for the entire evening! But this is a very special and moving experience as you will hear the calls of wild stag coming down from the mountains to this exactly field to graze on the lush grass.
All around you will hear the calls getting louder and closer and if the conditions are right, you might be lucky enough to see some of these powerful beasts doing battle.
Visit an amazing Independant Zoo
Our friend at Horul has put together an amazing collection of zoo animals that were due to be terminated by their own zoos, but now live a peaceful and beautiful life in the Slovenian forest. What is more, kids are encouraged here to help clean out and feed the animals, (not the bears of course!) so kids and parents can challenge the myth that zoo animals should be stared at from behind bars.
Olive Oil Tour
Close to the coast there is a region known as Slovenia's Winter Garden, where the weather is warmer and the vegetables grow earliar. This area borders Croatia and the hills are covered in olive trees. We have a friend who makes award winning olive oil and you can visit his plantatio sample the oil even buy some small bottles to take home and maybe take a walk or cycle and use his swimming to cool off!
Visitors are still pleasantly surprised when they arrive in Slovenia to see a country that reminds them of Switzerland or Austria. Slovenia became independant from Yugoslavia in 1991 after just a 10 day conflict and the last 20 years have actually been the only time in this little country's history when it has not been ruled by somebody else.
Slovenia is full of castles, walls and bunkers with stories to tell about empires and armies defending this vital route in central Europe. There is also so much social history to learn about in a country that was split into different languge zones at different times.
The largest mountain battle of all time took place on Slovenian mountains and is wonderfully explained at the Kobarid war Museum. In Pivka there is a splendid tank museum, which can help to give you some insight into the Balkan and other recent wars.
Close to us there are the remains of a massive Roman fortress, controlling the main road from central Europe to Rome. Our guides can help unlock the secrets of why so many churches here are high on top of hills with fortified walls around them and also show you so many hidden sites, now overgrown with forest.
And high above Landol, just a short walk to the next village of St Michael under Nanos, are the remains of a Celtic prehistoric fortified settlement, controlling this valley and taking the Romans many many years to conquer.
You are probably getting the idea reading this website that Slovenia is a very photogenic place! There are lots of options for you to concentrate on, please also check out our "gallery" page to get more idea of the kinds of pictures our visitors are taking.
We can also offer you the services of our English friend, Graham who is an experienced photographer and can guide you for one or several days to fantastic photo opportunities. He is an expert on camera equipment also and can help and advise you to take an even better picture.