After eight weeks of lockdown, the COVID-19 pandemic in Slovenia has been revoked. Restrictions, in place to prevent the disease from spreading, have been lifted one by one, seeing the city of Ljubljana coming back to life. While our favourite museums, galleries and theatres put a lot of effort into entertaining us during the lockdown, it is certainly a joyous occasion when we can visit all these places in person again.
BACK TO NORMAL?
Will everything return to its usual tracks right away? In due time. The city streets are coming back to life with locals eager to soak in the sun and reconnect with friends in person after months of not being able to do just that. Cafés, restaurants, galleries, museums, and shops are open and operating, but some restrictions still apply. Socializing and gathering is mostly limited to outdoor venues, as masks must still be worn inside public spaces, but many of Ljubljana’s favourite cafes, bars and restaurants have beautiful terraces and gardens where all the health regulations can be abided.
A BREATH OF FRESH AIR
While in hibernation galleries and museums had ample time to refresh their exhibits and opened their doors with new works that will delight the public. All museums and galleries in Ljubljana have already officially reopened and are welcoming visitors according to the NIJZ National Institute of Public Health guidelines.
The drive-in cinema, operated by Kino Bežigrad has also taken off in May. The experience is inspired by the American drive-in cinemas from the 60s and transports you back in time with attractive girls on skates, who will serve you french fries, burgers or classic movie snacks directly to your car. You can enjoy nostalgic cinema vibes on the parking lot behind Center Vič every evening all through the summer.
The Ljubljana Castle is open and operating again and celebrating 115 years of the city’s ownership of the castle. The funicular leading to the castle is also operating, transporting smaller groups at a time.
The Faculty of Architecture of the University of Ljubljana is celebrating its 100 jubilee and has prepared a special exhibition to commemorate the occasion. The exhibition is conceptualized as a beginning of a collection of selected works at the Faculty of Architecture and represents a starting point for further research, thinking and design of architecture in Slovenia. It is on display at CD – Cultural and Congress Centre Ljubljana as of 11 May.
POSTPONED EVENTS WILL SHINE
The Restaurant week (Teden restavracij), intended for March had to be postponed and will take place between 12 and 21 June. The Slovenian Restaurant week promotes exquisite Slovenian cuisine and gastronomy, including various restaurant across the country, who all prepare a special tasting menu for the occasion. This time around the red thread of the event will be connecting the past to the present.
The popular Open kitchen (Odprta kuhna), a gourmet culinary market, presenting over 60 of the best Slovenian restaurants, is returning to the farmer’s market on Pogačarjev trg and it’s coming back strong. The restaurant stands with chosen specialities from all over the world will delight us twice a week, every Thursday and Friday weather permitting.
CULTURE IN BLOOM
With the loosening of public gathering restrictions, the streets of Ljubljana will become a setting of a rich and diverse cultural program.
The weekends in June will be reserved for fairs. On Saturdays, you can visit Artish on Gornji trg, a creative festival with a sales exhibition of unique artwork and the Art market on Breg. On Sundays, Breg will become the location of the Flea market.
The Library under the Treetops (Knjižnjica pod krošnjami), the only 100 % natural library in the world is opening again in three locations. The library has become synonymous with summers in the city, providing a chance to read and browse books, create and socialize under the trees.
June in Ljubljana is a festival that is not missing a beat. It will take place between 11 and 17 June, displaying free of charge exquisite theatre, music and dance performances of various artistic genres in the centre of the city. The streets of Ljubljana will also become the scene of the Lighting Guerrilla festival. Lighting installations, projections and exhibitions will transform the city between 15 June and 11 July.
For all wine connoisseurs, the Ljubljana wine route is the festival that cannot be missed. The streets of the city of wines and wine will welcome winemakers from all parts of Slovenia. The wine experience will be accompanied by delicious local foods and musical and dance entertainment. The festival is planned for June with the exact dates still to be announced.
Festival Ljubljana, the international cultural summer festival, will proceed as planned, starting 2 July and delighting with an assorted program until the beginning of September. Ljubljana will welcome internationally recognized elite artists in concerts, operettas, ballets, theatre, and dance performances of the highest quality.