Ljubljana with Kids

Ljubljana, the charming capital of Slovenia, is a fantastic destination for families. This city offers a variety of attractions, parks, museums, and other interesting places that cater to kids. In this expert guide, we’ll explore the best activities and sights for kids, provide tips on where to stay and eat, and outline a perfect 5-day itinerary for a family trip to Ljubljana.

Popular Attractions in Ljubljana for Kids

Ljubljana Castle

Perched atop a hill overlooking the city, Ljubljana Castle is a must-visit. It can be accessed by a funicular ride or a 15-minute walk from downtown. The castle offers a variety of activities for kids, including:

  • Castle Ramparts: Kids can explore the castle’s ancient walls and towers.
  • Museum Visits: Engage in learning about the castle’s history through interactive exhibits.
  • Panoramic Views: Enjoy stunning views of Ljubljana from the castle’s vantage points.
  • Escape Game: Participate in a fun and challenging activity where families can compete to solve puzzles.
  • Audio Guide: Take a more traditional tour of the castle.
  • Restaurant and Café: Ideal for a meal or snack, although reservations are recommended during busy seasons.

Tivoli City Park

Tivoli Park is the largest green space in Ljubljana, making it perfect for families. Here, you can find:

  • Playgrounds: Several playgrounds are scattered throughout the park.
  • Walking Paths: Beautiful trails for leisurely walks.
  • Paddleboat Rentals: Available on the park’s pond.
  • Lumpi Park: An outdoor play center with bouncy castles, boats, and trampolines.
  • Mala Ulica Playground: Suitable for smaller kids, with a café for parents to relax.

Ljubljana Zoo

The Ljubljana Zoo is home to a variety of animals from around the world, providing an educational and fun experience for kids. They can learn about wildlife conservation while enjoying close encounters with animals.

Ljubljana Puppet Theatre

This theatre offers entertaining puppet shows and performances that are perfect for kids. The long-standing tradition of puppetry in Ljubljana ensures high-quality shows that captivate young audiences.

River Ljubljanica

A boat tour along the Ljubljanica River is a relaxing way to see the city from a different perspective. Kids will love the unique experience of gliding under the city’s iconic bridges.

Street Art in Metelkova Mesto

Metelkova Mesto is known for its vibrant street art. While some areas may be a bit rough, the colorful graffiti and imaginative artworks can captivate children’s imaginations.

Museum of Puppetry

Located within Ljubljana Castle, the Museum of Puppetry offers interactive exhibits that engage kids in the history and art of puppetry.

The House of Experiments

This hands-on science center features interactive exhibits and experiments that make learning fun for kids. It’s a great place to explore physics, chemistry, and other scientific concepts through play.

Museum of IllusionsThe Museum of Illusions offers a variety of optical illusions and puzzles that challenge children’s perception of reality. It’s an affordable and entertaining way to spend a few hours in the old town.

Križanke Open-Air Theatre

During the summer, this venue hosts various outdoor events, including concerts and theater performances that are suitable for families.

Any Interesting Places for Kids

Ljubljana Botanical Garden

A peaceful spot for a family stroll, the botanical garden features a variety of plants, including a collection of succulents. It’s a lovely place to relax and explore nature.

National Museum of Slovenia – Metelkova

This museum offers exhibits that are kid-friendly, including dinosaur fossils, prehistoric artifacts, and cultural displays that capture children’s interest.

Local Markets

Visiting Ljubljana’s vibrant outdoor markets, such as the Central Market, is a great way to explore local culture. Kids can sample traditional Slovenian foods and browse for souvenirs.

Bridges

Ljubljana is famous for its bridges, especially the Dragon Bridge with its four massive dragon statues and the Triple Bridge. These landmarks are fun to explore and photograph.

Minicity Ljubljana

A miniature city where kids can role-play as various professionals, from police officers to bakers. It’s an excellent option for a rainy day and is just a short drive or public transport ride away.

Waterparks Near Ljubljana

Nearby waterparks like Atlantis and Aquapark Aqualuna offer indoor and outdoor pools, spa options, and saunas, making them ideal for all-weather fun.

When to Go and Where to Eat

Best Time to Visit

Ljubljana is delightful year-round, but spring and summer are particularly pleasant with mild weather and numerous outdoor activities.

Family-Friendly Restaurants

  • Lolita: Known for its award-winning ice cream.
  • Dragon Street Food: Offers chimney cakes, a local favorite.
  • Gostilna na Gradu: Located in Ljubljana Castle, highly rated and family-friendly.
  • Gostilna Sokol: A great option in Old Town for traditional Slovenian cuisine.
  • Donut Tell: Popular for its mochi donuts.

Sweet Treats

  • Lolita: For ice cream.
  • Dragon Street Food: For chimney cakes with Nutella and ice cream.

Where to Stay

Recommended Hotels

  • Hotel Cubo: Offers 24-hour fitness facilities and is located near a golf course and train station. It’s also close to various outdoor adventures, such as cave exploring and hiking/biking trails.
  • Family-Friendly Hotels: Booking.com, Expedia, Vrbo, Tripadvisor, and Hotels.com offer a range of family-friendly accommodations.

5-Day Trip to Ljubljana with Kids

Day 1: Arrival and Exploration

  • Arrive in Ljubljana and check into your family-friendly hotel.
  • Explore Tivoli City Park and let the kids play at Lumpi Park and Mala Ulica Playground.
  • Dinner at Gostilna Sokol.

Day 2: Historical Adventures

  • Visit Ljubljana Castle, explore the ramparts, and participate in the escape game.Lunch at the castle’s restaurant.
  • Afterwards, take an afternoon boat tour along the River Ljubljanica.
  • Enjoy some ice cream at Lolita.

Day 3: Educational Fun

  • Start off by spending the morning at the House of Experiments.
  • Have lunch at Dragon Street Food.
  • In the afternoon, visit the National Museum of Slovenia – Metelkova.
  • Finish the day with dinner at Gostilna na Gradu.

Day 4: Zoo and Puppetry

  • Begin the day with a morning visit to Ljubljana Zoo.
  • Have lunch at a café near the zoo.
  • In the afternoon, enjoy a show at Ljubljana Puppet Theatre.
  • Take some time to explore the street art in Metelkova Mesto.

Day 5: Relaxation and Departure

  • Visit the Museum of Illusions.
  • Take a leisurely stroll through Ljubljana Botanical Garden.
  • Indulge in some sweet treats at Donut Tell.
  • Before you leave, make sure to do some last-minute shopping and exploring at the Central Market.

Tourist Tips

  • Taxi Meters: Always make sure that taxis use their meters to avoid being overcharged.
  • Urbana Card: Use this card for bus rides; each ride costs about 1.5€. Remember to load enough money on the card beforehand.
  • Booking Essentials: Book flights and accommodations in advance through Booking.com, Skyscanner, Kiwi.com, Expedia, and family-friendly hotel platforms.
  • Travel Insurance: Consider getting travel insurance from providers like World Nomads.
  • Photo Shoots: Capture your family’s travel memories with a professional photographer from Flytographer.
  • Travel Gear: Essential items include a GoPro, Sony camera, and DJI drones for capturing your adventures.

Ljubljana offers a wide range of activities and experiences that are perfect for families. Plan ahead to make the most of your visit and create lasting memories with your kids.

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