Bled is a small town in Slovenia that sits on the shores of Lake Bled. It is an extremely picturesque area with castles, lakes, churches, waterfalls and canyons all making the list of things to see in Bled. It is a small town so it doesn’t need a long stay, but it will be a beautiful few days.
This hostel is located a few kilometres outside of the main town in the small suburb of Ribno. Once you arrive at the hostel, the distance no longer becomes a problem because bikes can be hired for a very small fee from the hostel. A bike is the perfect way to see Lake Bled. Some of the hostels closer to town can be a bit of magnet for big groups of young backpackers partying until very late and generally making it a bit uncomfortable, Hostel Bled seemed to avoid this.
Well located a short walk from bus station in the centre of town. Bathrooms were a bit damp but modern interior and great atmosphere between guests. Right by the lake and town centre but not too far from the Vintgar. Super friendly helpful staff with some great tips for around Bled.
Sights and Highlights
Bled Castle and Lake Bled
It is not hard to see why Bled is such a popular destination for backpackers. The backdrop for the town is one of the most picturesque you will ever see. The views from the top of Bled Castle looking back down towards the town and Lake Bled itself are stunning. Go for a bike ride around the lake or take a boat trip out to the island in the middle of the lake and visit Bled Island, home of the Church of the Assumption.
Do no miss Vintgar Gorge while you are in Bled. It is quite easy to walk to the gorge entrance from the town itself if you have a map. You can walk the 1.6km length of the gorge via a set of wooden walkways and paths. It is spectacular and a great spot for some photography. The hike through the gorge culminates in a waterfall area that again is a great spot for some photos. There is a cafe at the end of the walk if you need to recharge.
Places to Eat
Located very conveniently across the road from the bus station. They have all the usual suspects found in Balkan fast food. Bled is quite touristy and most of the restaurants in town are geared towards a different demographic than is usually found in hostels, so this place may well become your go to food spot if you are looking for something little cheaper.
The pizza in Slovenia I found to be of quite high quality, which makes sense given the proximity of Slovenia to the home of pizza, Italy. Pizzeria Rustika was the place that my hostel directed me to and I ended up being quite happy with their suggestion. Good pizza.
Bled is not particularly well known for its nightlife. But this place fits the bill if you area a backpacker looking for a place for a drink. This is the preferred destination for young students living in Bled so the alcohol tends to be fairly cheap. This is also a good place to go if there is a sporting event that you want to watch on a TV.
One of Bled’s top party places, with a large selection of mixed drinks and cocktails and DJs most nights, it attracts a varied mix of tourists, students and locals. There’s also a big screen TV that more often than not is tuned to some live sporting event, and if you manage to stop by in the morning for a glass of your preferred hang over remedy you can enjoy nice views of the castle and free wireless internet.
Everything you want to see in Bled is walkable. Hiring a bike is a good idea as well. Going for a bike ride around the lake is a great idea when the weather is nice. There are also various types of small paddle boats that can be rented for around €10-15.
Getting In and Out
There is a bus station in the middle of town and a train station located a small bus trip away out of town. Most people that are in Bled will have either come from, or are heading to, Ljubljana. It is only a short 1hr 15min trip back to Ljubljana by either bus or train so it is not a big deal to backtrack in that direction to continue exploring the Balkans. If you are on a larger backpacking trip and are planning on leaving the Balkans and heading north, then the most likely candidate for your next stop is Salzburg. Buses to Salzburg can be caught from the bus station in the centre of town. Note that since both Slovenia and Austria are in the Schengen zone, there will likely be no immigration control when you cross the border.