Bled, Slovenia | Magical Legends, Fables and Folklore

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All blog posts are based on our personal travels around Europe, penned by J. Christina.

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From along the breathtaking Dalmatian Coast and traveling through war-torn countries in Central Europe, we have experienced the incredible natural beauty, glittering azure water, majestic beaches, and soaring mountains as we reach storied Lake Bled.

We arrive at magical Lake Bled and its fairy tale world in Slovenia. Lake Bled is ranked one of the most beautiful places in Slovenia and the most photogenic lake on the planet.  Bled is Slovenia’s most popular alpine resort, luring honeymooners, backpackers, hikers, mountaineers, and outdoorsmen, during all four seasons.

The amazing alpine town of Bled is nestled between the soaring Julian Alps and the Karawanks mountain ranges near the border of Austria; about 50 km northwest of the nation’s capital city of Ljubljana. Where the sky-high mountain ranges ascend upward 9,400’above Lake Bled, the highest peak in Slovenia.

Slovenia has some 500 fairy tale castles sprinkled through the country; that’s one castle per 25 kilometers, all enhancing the backdrop of the folklore of this stunning and intriguing country.

In the distance, the iconic Bled Castle / Blejski Grad the oldest in Slovenia gracefully dangles over a 130m high rocky limestone cliff, overlooking the mirrored turquoise waters of Lake Bled.  This postcard-perfect place is a treasure-trove of tales, myths, and magical legends waiting to be explored.

Just one of the many fables in ancient times is there was no water at the now Lake Bled, it was once a valley of lush green grass and only a single rock.  By day the shepherds grazed their sheep in the valley, and by night the fairies danced. Until one day, when the fairies asked the shepherds to fence in around their dance area, so the grass would remain soft.  The shepherds ignored their plea and soon the youngest and most beautiful fairy broke her leg while dancing. 

The angry, grumpy fairies summoned the springs and brooks to storm the valley and fill it with water. Forming this incredible tear-drop-shaped island, surrounded by glistening blue-green water, now known as Bled Island. If you watch closely at night the fairies dance under the light of the stars around the sparkling turquoise crown jewel Lake Bled.

Crossing Lake Bled is similar to Venice, where the profession of Pletna Oarsman is respected artistry, handed down from father to son through generations. The only way to reach Bled Island is by water, and by hiring a traditional wooden Pletna, with its colorful awning, and rowed by a standing oarsman.  On the island is The Church of the Assumption of Mary, Slovenia’s iconic cultural attraction and wedding venue. Here the groom carries the bride up 99 steps to the church to ring the Wishing Bell three times, wishing for a long and happy life.  The quaint island is cloaked in ancient tales and mystical powers.

A visit to Lake Bled is not complete without trying a slice of the Slovenian Lake Bled Cream Cake, Krempita/Kremsnita. The cake originates from the café of Hotel Park at Bled.

Bled is the most beautiful and magical Alpine Resort in Europe – it is must-see.

Continue this journey with us as we cross the Istria Peninsula, the largest in Croatia, at the Gulf of Trieste into Venice, Italy.

*2018 travels

Visit Slovenia

Slovenia Airports


Wishing Bell

Slovenia is in the Schengen area, so there are no more border checkpoints with Italy. European countries do random custom checks instead.

*images unsplash

J. Christina is the author and owner of Scribbles and Smiles. Through our blog, we share stories of the wonderful discoveries we have made on our European travels. Christina (Christie) is married to John, a.k.a. Mr. Christie. Where Mr. Christie is right on board with their travel jaunts around the world sharing in their blogging endeavor - hence, their bespoke pen name, J. Christina.

After many years of intrepid travel, we thoughtfully opened our treasure-trove of European travelogues, artfully sharing with a worldwide audience. Intentionally sharing the joie de vivre through our words and images, so others can travel vicariously. 

You can sign-up to receive email updates via her blog, and you can also find Scribbles and Smiles on social media. 

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