There are several great things to do in Lake Bled. It’s a destination that had been on both our bucket lists for a very long time. And we are delighted to say we weren’t disappointed. The setting is even more picturesque in real life.
Located on the edge of the Triglav National Park, Lake Bled with its crystal clear waters, a tiny island, mountainous backdrop, and castle perched high on a hillside makes an ideal getaway. It’s easy to see why this place is so popular.
Our only regret is we didn’t spend any longer here.
So, What Are Some Things to do at Lake Bled
Hike to One of the Viewpoints
If you enjoy hiking, Lake Bled is packed with various viewpoints and trails. Our original plan was to take a long hike in the mountains, but alas, the weather wasn’t cooperating.
To the accompaniment of distant thunder, we took the Ojstrica Bled Trail which offers a stunning view of the lake from the lookout point. Even if you are not into walking, we really recommend this hike for its vistas.
Once you start the Ojstrica trail, it takes around 20-40 minutes to reach the top. The path as it weaves its way through the forest is easy to follow.
After about 15-20 minutes, you’ll see a signpost for Ojstrica. Turn right at this sign and follow the path for a few more minutes. The last part of the climb is a little tricky but not too difficult.
At the top of the Ojstrica Bled Trail, there’s a bench to sit on, as well as several Instagram photo-worthy rock lookouts. If you have time, apparently, it’s worth continuing up to the higher viewpoint, Mala Osojnica, for another fantastic view of Lake Bled viewpoint.
Take A Stroll Or Gentle Bike Ride Around The Lake
Don’t want to walk uphill? There’s a mostly flat six-kilometre trail around the lake that’s perfect for simple recreation (walks or cycle rides). It will probably still take a long time to get around as you’ll be stopping to take loads of photos. Take a picnic, relax and enjoy the lake views and the island with the Karavanke mountains and the Julian Alps in the distance.
The Church On Bled Island
To visit the 17th-century pilgrimage church on Bled Island and ring the wishing bell, you need to climb the 99 stone steps of the beautiful Baroque staircase. It is considered good luck for Slovenian newlyweds if the groom carries his bride up the stairs on their wedding day. Jonathan and I had better never get married; there’s no way he would manage to get me up those stairs! We’d be doomed from the start.
Did You Know?
Peter Florjančič, a well-known inventor, comes from Bled. He invented the perfume atomiser, amongst other things. When he was a child, ‘Ali, a friend of my uncle Kenda, foretold me over a Turkish coffee that I may live for as many years as there are steps on the Bled island…”
“I have reached 99 years this year, but I’m lucky because they found another step below the water surface, “wrote the Slovenian inventor Peter Florjančič.
This year he celebrated his 100th birthday. The people of Bled hope he will discover more steps under the water surface.
How To Get To Bled Island
There are regular departures throughout the day. It takes around 20 minutes to get from the lakeshore to the island.
Boat tickets cost €14 for a roundtrip to Bled Island and include a waiting time of 30 minutes so you can explore the island and the church.
Or you could rent a rowing boat and row yourself.
Visit Bled Castle
Bled Castle is one of the oldest castles in Slovenia. Built 130 metres high on a steep cliff, it overlooks Lake Bled and the city.
Our fabulous host Mateja said the best view of the lake from the castle was actually from the castle toilet. At €13 a ticket to visit the castle, it did seem a bit much to pay and we only wanted a photo of the castle.
Have you visited Bled Castle? What did you think?
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Swim in Lake Bled
I’m not a swimmer, in fact, I usually go out of my way to avoid water, but after our short hike, it was nice to have a little paddle in Lake Bled. It wasn’t as cold as I thought it would be but being a bit of a drama queen, I had to scream.
There is a little beach, with sun loungers and umbrellas. I expect it gets rather busy in the summer!
Can’t Visit Lake Bled Without Trying The Famous Bled Cream Cake
Having been so brave dipping our feet into Lake Bled, it was now only natural that we should reward ourselves with the famous Bled Cream Cake (Kremšnita).
Mateja took us to the Slaščičarna Zima Coffee Shop. She’s been coming here since she was a child and says they have the best Kremšnita in Bled. We devoured our Kremšnita enthusiastically -a delicious mix of puff pastry, butter, egg custard, and vanilla cream.
As one cake is never enough, we tried another traditional cake, the Blejska grmada. Well, it would be rude not to! This one was made of pastry, rum, raisins, nuts, with whipped cream and chocolate sauce-delicious!
Running In Bled
After eating all that cake, a great way to burn those calories is to run. If you’re interested in taking part in a race, there’s a fun 10 k night race that takes place in June. For more details on racing events in Slovenia, please check here.
Best Time To Visit Lake Bled
It’s a year-round destination. Spring and autumn are probably the best times to visit if you want better weather but fewer tourists. During the summer months, it gets busy. If you can only visit in the summer, try to avoid being there for a weekend. Also, aim to visit the sites early before the tour buses arrive.
During the winter months, Lake Bled will be cold but there will be fewer crowds, and there will be snow, I’d imagine the area would look absolutely stunning.
Map Of Lake Bled
Lake Bled on a Map
How to Go From Ljubljana to Lake Bled
There are several ways to get to Lake Bled from Ljubljana.
Without your own transport, the bus is the easiest way to get to Lake Bled from Ljubljana.
The Ljubljana to Bled bus runs every hour on the hour from 6 am to 9 pm all year round and every half hour during the summer months.
Journey time takes around one hour and twenty minutes.
For up to dates details on schedules and ticket prices, please check here.
It’s possible to take the train.
There are two train stations close to Bled. There is a frequent service From Ljubljana to Lesce Train Station. But this station is about four kilometres away from Bled, so it would be a bus, taxi or walk from here.
Jezero Bled Station is a little closer to Bled, just 1.5 kilometres away.
For up to dates details on schedules and ticket prices, please check here.
Bled is around 50 kilometres from Ljubljana and easily accessible by the highway. As Bled is such a major tourist site, it’s exceptionally well signposted.
On A Day Trip From Ljubliana
Interested in just a day trip from Ljubliana? Then check these tours out.
Disclaimer: We explored Slovenia as guests of Mateja Travel and Marathon Tours. However, all opinions are entirely and genuinely our own. We wouldn’t recommend anything that we hadn’t enjoyed and experienced firsthand.
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Very nice! It’s one of my favorite places in Europe.
One of our new favourite places too 🙂
Looks fabulous. Planning a trip to eastern Europe next year and Slovenia is now on the list.
Absolutely one of the most beautiful places I have seen. Climbed the stairs to the church and to the castle(250 if I recall). We spent two nights there and could have stayed longer. We enjoyed our cream cake at the Park Hotel, a couple of my friends finding themselves there twice. I would gladly go there again, actually Slovenia again. If there in Sept be sure to check out ethnic festival in Kamnick.
Lake Bled looks absolutely picture perfect! Slovenia is on my list of places to visit. I need to start planning!
Lake Bled looks stunning and the Bled Cream Cake delicious! I was in Nova Goricia in October and you can take a train up to Lake Bled from there, but I didn’t have time to. Next time I will make time