During the third global celebrations of the World Bee Day, Ljubljana was included into one of the virtual events organised by FAO and run under title »Bee Engaged«. Events aimed to draw attention to the importance of engagemeent and actions of countries, organisations, research and educational institutions, civil society, the private sector, farmers and beekeepers, as well as each individual, to preserve bees and other pollinators.
On the 18th of May, a webinar on Bees an Biodiversity In the City was organised by Beekeeping Academy of Slovenia and City of Ljubljana to share examples of good beekeeping and nature saving practice from Slovenia and its capital Ljubljana. Ljubljana, Slovenia’s capital, presents an example of a well-established city connected directly with nature through its world-renowned green character as well as its relation to bees. Urban beepeeking is flourishing in Ljubljana with Cankarjev dom – Cultural and Congress Centre Ljubljana leading the way.
In the area of the City of Ljubljana there are more than 350 beekeepers who take care of around 4,500 beehives, with as many as 180 million bees, what makes for as many as 3% of all Slovenian beekeepers. In addition to beekeepers, the City of Ljubljana also takes care of bees by planting perennials with many honey plants among them. Within the scope of the Beekeeping Tourism Day, Ljubljana received the recognition Most Bee-Friendly Municipality 2017. Furthermore, Ljubljana shows its intertwined dedication to preservation of bees and Bee Tourism through a popular Bee Path that works also as an educational trail.
The Bee Path was opened in 2016 by the Municipality of Ljubljana and Ljubljana Tourism during the Ljubljana’s Green Capital of Europe title. The path, that connects the main locations of Ljubljana’s bee-keepers, is designed as a walking guided tour where guests learn about the importance of pollinators for the sustainability of the cities. The original purpose of the path was to follow the guidelines of Beekeepers Association of Slovenia for establishment of a ‘bee-friendly’ urban environment and active development of urban bee-keeping in Ljubljana.
However, the Bee Path has overgrown its initial purpose and it has in only a few years become a physical path, a network, an educational programme, a think-tank, an incubator, and even a movement. Today, it is uniting 35 members from educational and cultural institutions, from health-care centres to economic entities, beekeepers and beekeeping societies. Numerous promotional actions, presentations and diverse activities create bridges of understanding between beekeepers and citizens to grow the care and protection of bees.