“So what’s your favorite country?”

 

That’s a question I’m often asked and never can answer. Honestly it’s like asking someone who their favorite child is. How can you possibly pick? Each one is special for unique reasons.

 

That said when it comes to stunning scenery, Slovenia is high on the list. Tucked inside borders no larger than the state of New Jersey, you find limestone Alps, emerald forests, rivers that rush sapphire blue and a small but beautiful Adriatic coastline.

 

So what are you in for when you explore Slovenia? 

Professional landscape photographer Erik Stensland has hosted two Niteo Tours in Slovenia, otherwise known as the Sunny Side of the Alps. His pictures below give you a glimpse of the beauty you’ll find there.

 

The Sunny Side of the Alps

When people talk about the Alps, Italy and Switzerland are the two countries that come to mind. But the Julian Alps stretch halfway across northern Slovenia.

 

Home to small hamlets, hiking trails and majestic limestone mountains, it’s the perfect place to slow one’s pace and take in God’s creation. The crown jewel is Triglav Mountain, the highest point at just over 9,000 feet.

Triglav Beauty

Named after Julius Caesar, the Julian Alps extend from northeastern Italy to Ljubljana, Slovenia’s capital.

 

Picture Perfect

Picturesque Lake Bled’s fairytale feel gives it a reputation as one of the most beautiful lakes in the world. You can take a light hike or a bike around the small three-mile lake.

 

One of my favorite things to do is follow a steep incline up the south side for an elevated view of the lake below.

 

Lake Bled Slovenia

Picture perfect Lake Bled backdropped by the Alps and Bled Castle

The landscapes on our Niteo tour were some of the most beautiful I’ve ever seen. Each day we experienced jaw-dropping scenes and wondered how it could get any better. The next day surprised us with somewhere even more spectacular.

Niteo Tour guest

Lake Jasna

Just a few miles south into Slovenia from the Austrian border you’ll discover Lake Jasna. For many it’s the perfect place for fishing, swimming or hiking around. But others just prefer to take in the beauty when everything is quiet and calm.

Lake Jasna

Lake Jasna’s quiet beauty

Kamnik Alps

To the east of Triglav National Park, you can see the lesser known Kamnik Alps. Several trailheads along the Kamniška Bistrica River here make it a great day trip for those in nearby Ljubljana.

 

Kamnik Alp Slovenia

A country road winds through green pastures to this rustic barn situated the foot of the Kamnik Alps

Slovenia, the Sunny Side of the Alps, might not be as well-known as other neighboring countries, but it hosts enough natural beauty for its own bragging rights.

 

If you’re longing to explore this area of the world, we’ve got good news. Next month Niteo Tours is unveiling a brand new 2024 Fall tour. Stay tuned!
 

Panoramic prints of the above photos are available at Morning Light Photography.

Photos above courtesy of Erik Stensland