The best places to visit in Ljubljana, Slovenia

Looking out from the airplanes window I could see the mountains breaking through the clouds, I was eager to arrive and learn more about Slovenia.

Ljubljana is a great place to start your journey in Slovenia. It’s the capital and largest city of Slovenia. Ljubljanca River divides the city’s old town from its commercial hub and holds many beautiful bridges. Ljubljana has many museums, vibrant streets with many tourists, great places to eat, drink and a really cool architecture.

b (5)

Everything is at a walking distance and really easy to get around. I took a shuttle from the airport to Prešeren Square which is a 30-40 min ride from the airport and it costs 9 Euro’s. The shuttle leaves as soon as has at least 4-5 passengers, otherwise another option is to take the bus which leaves every hour from the airport and costs only 4 Euro’s.

Prešeren Square

a (6)

Right at Prešeren Square you have the Franciscan church, a great view over the Triple Bridge and the tower of Ljubljana Castle.  As soon as you cross the the Triple Bridge you arrive to the Robba Fountain, a marble-&-limestone 18th-century fountain with an obelisk, pool & 3 sculpted figures holding jugs.

Walking along the streets you can hear predominantly German and Italian tourists which gives you the impression that you are not even in Slovenia.

Ljubljana Castle 

a (69)

Walking from the square to the Ljubljana Castle is a great experience, pedestrian streets and great terraces where you can have some good food and good beer. Talking about food, I found the Slovenian food close to the Romanian and Hungarian dishes. A great bone marrow butter for starter, a nice deer goulash with bread dumplings, Kremšnita cream cake will never disappoint. Among others you can opt for great stews, brilliant burgers, sausage and a mix grill.

Ljubljana Castle offers a great view over the city and the surrounding mountains, great history and legends about the local dragons. The entrance to the tower and the museum cost 7 Euro’s, but it totally worth getting it.

Metelkova Street

b (77)

b (39)

Walking back from the Ljubljana Castle a great visit is the Central market with fresh fruits, vegetables and others. Just next to the central market you can cross Lubljana’s river via the Butchers Bridge where couples put padlocks to prove their love to each-other. Ljubljana Cathedral is also a great place to visit, a Roman Catholic cathedral with a baroque interior, including gilded columns & ceiling frescoes. As soon as you walk near these places you head towards the Dragon Bridge and  just after a 10 minutes walk you arrive to Metelkova Street which holds many weird and cool graffiti and street art. You will find many retro, hippie bars, pubs, places to eat and a cultural divers mix of people.

Just about enough to visit in a day in a relaxing pace.

I’ve found Dragos by the end of the day, we quickly had some great traditional food and went to the bus station to go to our next destination, Bled. You can get a bus from Ljubljana to Bled, it’s only a 50 min ride and it costs 4.10 Euro’s.

Here is a video from my 1st day in Slovenia, exploring some great places in Ljubljana – enjoy the ride with me.

Advertisements

Salina Turda – Salt Mine – Romania

Having part of a sunny weekend I have decided to go with my parents to visit the salt mine in Turda. I have been there before and really enjoyed it, so I was looking forward to go again. One thing you need to know about this trip is the fact that the mine is more than 200m deep and my parents as well as my brother are afraid of heights. I slightly described them the mine and the fact that is somewhat underground. My dad got panicked about it right away and it took me quite some time to convince my brother to come too.

IMG_9439

Eventually the 4 of us, my mom, brother and his wife hit the road and drove to Salina Turda. Everything went smoothly until we got to the stairs down to the mine where my brother and mom freaked out from the depth of the mine. I was crazy enough to walk them through above the salt mine to the other end of it where we decent on the stairs.

IMG_9454

Once we got to the base of the mine, my brother realize that there was a 2nd staircase where he could have avoided walking through the entire mine. I quote – he said he almost shit himself and instantly got sweat form the entire salt mine experience. My mom also said she will never return to this place again.

IMG_9484

I still love the place and I think is a must visit if anyone is near Cluj Napoca. We went deep down to the deepest point of the mine, to the lake where we had the option to go with the boat, but we skipped it for obvious reasons.

IMG_9486

For me it was a really funny experience and it was a good feeling to spend some good time with my family.

Here is a short clip of the experience catching some of the moment when my brother was panicking and refused to go down into the mine. Enjoy!

The Vlădeasa Summit at 1836 m

I am back on track with my travel stories and journeys after a good break from the never ending winter. I really enjoyed the winter time, visited some cool places and learned new things. That’s being said I was really looking forward for the spring and the good weather so I can go out and explore Romania’s stunning landscapes.

cropped-19.jpg

I have started my journey in going to the summit of mount Vladeasa which is at an altitude of 1836m and I am planning to explore the Apuseni mountains further on. Later on in my journey I would love to visit the Rodnei Mountains and 2 trips in the Alps in Italy and Slovenia.

The trail to the Vladeasa summit started from Rogojel a village at the base of the mountain at an altitude of 800m and a 10km journey till the summit. While I was driving to Rogojel from Zalau I stopped by at a medieval fortress based in Bologa. Unfortunately it’s not looked after and not in great conditions, however it is a really cool place to visit.

2

Walking towards the peak, step by step beautiful landscapes where pupping up in my path. Sometimes we are too focused on the objective and forget to enjoy the journey, so I did sit down in various places and take in all the goodness the nature has to offer.

cropped-171.jpg

The highest you get in your ascent the more difficult it gets, but there is no rush, it’s more about the journey as I previously said. I did met some great people on the way, close to the top I bumped into Ildiko Mihaly, a solo traveler and mountaineer from Targu Mures who was stepping into my footsteps in the snow and walked together to the summit while getting to know each other.

14

We set down to enjoy the view and take a breath to recover our strength for the descent. By the way there was a cat on the top of the mountain and it still bothers me, wondering how did it get there? 🙂

Ildiko decided to go to the other end of the summit to check out the place and it turned out the sign with the summit was there so she did touch the real deal where I didn’t. However both places where at the same altitude and relatively same place.

31

I have started the descent as fast as possible, but my knees where failing slowly and the big snow didn’t made my journey easier. Half way through at the Vladeas Cabin I came across Ildiko once again and she kindly offered me a ride back to the village from where I started my ascent. Thank you ever so much for this, you did me a great favorite and I owe you big times.

I quickly changed into dry clothes and drove back home after a long, but strong day.

As I mentioned few times back, I have set myself some crazy goals for this year out of which so far I have done the following:

  • Cycling: 90km / 300km – you can follow me on Strava (Adi Seres) to see my progress
  • Running: 1.7 km / 300 – my body went into a shock as this was my first effort in 6 months and I quickly stopped from my first run.
  • Summits: 1 / 30 – Vladeasa 1836m – my first summit this year
  • New Countries visited: 1 / 3 – Ukraine being my first country this year. I was there together with my colleagues from work for 2 days of snowboarding.

How realistic is this goal, I am not too sure, but I am really into it and will give my best in achieving it.

Here is my journey to the summit of Vladeasa. Enjoy.

 

The highlights of my 2017

Youtube Rewind 2017 – Adi Seres

2017 was a great year of achievements, new discoveries, challenges and big changes. It was the year when I got a real sense of passion for cycling and running, altogether done over 350 km.

2017 was also the year of mountains, touching the summit of Mam Tor 517m (England), Holme Moss 524m (England), Vf. Osoiu 871m (Romania), Snowdon 1085m (Wales), Ben Nevis 1345m (Scotland), hopefully in 2018 more will come.

It was also the year of new countries, I have visited for the 2nd time Germany, for the 1st time The Netherlands and for the 1st time Thailand which was my best experience of 2017.

The year of unexpected changes, I took the decision of leaving UK and move back home to Romania. This wasn’t the easiest decision I’ve ever had to take, but I believe this was the right decision. This change led me to a new job, reconnecting with old friends, making new friends, learning how to snowboard, visiting Romania and will continue influencing my life further on.

I have recently seen a slogan saying ‘if you can dream it, you can achieve it’ – I love it so much because it was the case with 2017 – I have dreamed about it a lot and managed to achieve it.

Let’s hope 2018 will be as full and rich as 2017.

My first snowboard lesson – Poiana Brasov

Poiana Brașov  is one of the most popular ski resort in Romania, but not only, it also attracts many tourists from all around Europe.  I am here in Poiana Brasov because for a long time I have desired to be able to snowboard and today I am taking that first step in learning how.

IMG_1751

Mihai – the ski instructor from “scoala de schii” was kind enough to show me the basic things in order to quickly start snowboarding. After 2 hours of learning, practicing I was able to nicely slip down from the hill.

27332694_722093697998238_4566666892911001874_n

After a full day of snowboarding and falling, I got soaked wet. By the time I got back to the hotel, I found myself locked out. Hmm, weird isn’t it? I knock on the door, cause I didn’t know what else to do. Five minutes passed by, no one answers, I knock again. Ten minutes, 15 minutes passed by and nothing. I decided that I should find a place to eat and warm up. Just when I started leaving, the receptionist ran after me and asked me to quickly go inside. I ran inside with her and she told me that she locked the door because two bears were outside of the hotel. Wait a minute. What??? There are two wild bears outside and you locked me out???! The wet cloths are frozen on me, I wouldn’t even be able to run in case I had too. Well, same thing happened the second day too. True story. 🙂

IMG_6869

The second day I explored the a bit the forest, took a few pictures and flew my drone to capture some epic views. Right after that I went up to the mountain and had a nice coffee at 1725m altitude.

IMG_1839.jpg

Later on in the day I traveled back home, back to Zalau.

Such a nice way to end your 2017, visiting some of the best cities in Romania and do things I wished for.

The plans for 2018, one word: Mountains. I am turning 30 years old this year, so I am planning to do 30 peaks by my 30th.

Till then enjoy my first snowboard experiences, falls and some amazing winter forest views.

Brasov, Romania – The best winter city break

Brasov, a city in the heart of Transylvania, surrounded by the breathtaking Carpathian Mountains and a birthplace of many legends. It is known for it’s medieval Saxon walls, towers, Gothic-style architecture and baroque buildings.

On a snowfall the city becomes a story-like winter wonderland. The colorful Christmas lights adds a nice contrast to the beautiful white landscape.

IMG_1381

I arrived early in the morning to Brasov and although I haven’t been in the city for the past 3 years, I managed to find my way to the “Piata Sfatului” square easily. Step by step the old awesome adventure memories came to me. I remembered, ooh man…the time when I went to Brasov with Shalaka and Nandita – my really good friends from India, it was soo much fun. Braaaasov, a place of many cool memories!!!

Every time I’m in Brasov I must go to KFC too, tasty food with a brilliant view. KFC in Romania is the best in the entire world, have I told you that already?

Finding the city covered by snow, flying my drone above the city was a must do. This winter experience in Brasov was so satisfying, I totally felt like a kid.

I was really eager to go to the top of Timpa, but unfortunately the cable car wasn’t working. Probably I could have attempted climbing it? well maybe next time, cause it was quite foggy, or cloudy or wintry cause it was really snowing.

IMG_1302

Found a moody little coffee shop too, with a nice view over the narrow alleys of Brasov and the snow falling. The barista was really friendly and welcoming, probably because I was the only person sitting down to enjoy a nice coffee with cake.

Time is flying so fast when you walk in a place like Brasov, you barely notice the notion of time. I have suddenly seen the Christmas lights turning on, so I finished my coffee and went to the Christmas Market.

The Christmas Market definitely holds the best Christmas tree I have seen so far in my trip in Romania, but the market itself is also cosy, colorful and welcoming.

IMG_1613

I totally feel like I am rediscovering Romania.

After such a full day of rediscovery, remembering good old memories, enjoying a nice snow fall, I am heading towards the buss station to continue my journey to the Winter Wonderland of Romania.

Poiana Brasov is a place where I am always going back with pleasure, a true winter-land with a great view.

This time I am planning to try out something new, somethings I longed for since ever.

The hidden gem of Romania – Sighisoara – a medieval citadel

Finally I am in Sighisoara, Romania, the birth town of Vlad the Impaler, a.k.a Dracula and the most preserved , the most beautiful medieval citadel in Europe. A 12th century citadel built by the Transylvanian Saxons, a perfectly intact medieval city that you cannot find anywhere else.

IMG_0691.jpg

It is a travel back in time, walking on the same streets as our fellow knights did centuries back. Touching the same colorful walls touched by Dracula himself when he played “lapte gros si smantanos”(it’s a stupid outdoor game we used to play when I was a kid) during his childhood – I don’t know, I’m just saying, you never know. 🙂

IMG_0695.jpg

After a painful journey in a smelly train from Sibiu to Sighisoara, it was a relief and a pleasure to explore and walk on the streets of this amazing medieval citadel. The weather was a bit gloomy at first, but later on it turned into a brilliant snowy day, set the perfect mood for Christmas.

The citadel holds colorful medieval houses, towers, churches and great restaurants with traditional dishes. During the year there are medieval events and festivals organized in the citadel.

IMG_0751.jpg

For cheap as £30 you can spend a night at a any of the cute inns. They are nicely decorated in the same medieval tone. You can walk around the citadel on and on and not get bored of it. A great experience is to walk up to the church on the hill through the covered staircase which was built in 1654 and hold around 300 steps. Later on in the 1800s it was amended and reduced the steps to 178, but still keeps the Saxon architecture appearance.

IMG_0707.jpg

I am highly recommending this place to anyone who is planning to visit Romania, it is unique. I am planning to come back during the summer and spend more time in Sighisoara.

My next stop will in Brasov and Poiana Brasov, the Wonder Winterland of Romania.

Thank you for stepping by and travel more!

 

Sibiu, Romania – The cultural capital city of Europe

Sibiu, one of the most beautiful places I have been so far in Romania. The old town is one of Romania’s hidden gems. Rich in color, architecture and a pleasure to get lost in.

IMG_0588

Before going into my next location, Sighisoara, I had a few more hours to spare in Sibiu, so I decided to roam around a little bit more in the old town.

I woke up early on Sunday morning and walked towards the town, it’s really chill outside and quiet. Perfect time to take some nice architecture photos without tourists and locals in in the way.

I have discovered some beautiful places, little colorful narrow alleys which are perfect spots for photography. While admiring these places I realize what a beautiful country is Romania. I can’t wait to discover more in the year to come.

IMG_0545

The silence was  broken by a warm big bang bell sound from the cathedrals around the old town. People are slowly showing up, greeting each-other on the streets and are gathering in their church congregations.

I stop at the Christmas market once more to grab something to eat and following it up with a good Starbucks coffee, although I am not a Starbucks fan…it was perfect for to boost my energy in continuing my journey.

IMG_0601

Sibiu, it was a pleasing and satisfying place to visit, totally recommend it.

I am taking the train to Sighisoara, the city I have been waiting to see for such a long time. I am extremely excited.

 

 

The Christmas Market in Sibiu, Romania

Sibiu was voted the European Cultural City in 2007. It’s a beautiful city in the heart of Romania. It’s known for Germanic architecture in its old town, the legacy of 12th-century Saxon settlers. Around the city are the remains of medieval walls and towers, including the 13th-century Council Tower. In the upper town, Brukenthal Palace now houses the Brukenthal National Museum, with European paintings. The nearby Evangelical Cathedral has gravestones in its walls.(Wikipedia)

IMG_0614-2

I am really exited about exploring Sibiu in specially now during the Christmas Holiday.

It was a bit of a journey for me, I left around 9am from Zalau to Cluj and from Cluj another 5 hours till Sibiu by coach.

I have arrived somewhere in the afternoon, just in time to catch some daylight and also to enjoy the Christmas lights.

Beautiful city, you don’t need a tour guide or a path to walk, because everywhere you look it looks amazing. Brilliant old architecture, well preserved buildings, it feels like going back in time.

Every click you take with your camera it turns out to be a stunning photo.

Just like in any Christmas Market the presence of good food is there, lively atmosphere and cool light-shows.

After spending a couple of hours in the city centre enjoying the lights, food and the old town, I walk to my Airbnb place, drink a good coffee and well…I am getting old, I did manage to fall asleep. By the time I walk back to the city, the market is slowly closing down, I am really disappointed in myself but, lucky enough I have time the next day till 12pm to explore a bit more the city in daylight so I am happy with that.

A destination where I will surely come back again, Sibiu is my favorite city so far.

As per the Christmas Market it is in the top, if not, the best Christmas Market I have seen so far.

Next destination will be Sighisoara, but before that I will explore the city a little bit more, so make sure to SUBSCRIBE cause the details of the stunning old town in Sibiu is yet to come.

Thank you for watching.

 

The Christmas Market in Cluj Napoca

Cluj Napoca – the capital of Transylvania and the so called Silicon Valley of Transylvania, Romania. It is the home to the best universities, vibrant nightlife, and landmarks dating to Saxon and Hungarian rule. Surrounding its central square, Piața Unirii, is the Gothic-style St. Michael’s Church and the dramatic Matthias Corvinus Statue of the 15th-century king.

IMG_9856

I live just about one and a half hour away from Cluj, so I often visit this place due to having most of my friends from University living here, but also because it is simply a brilliant city close to my home.

I love the old buildings, the contrast of colors and the contrast between the old and new town.

The Christmas market is beautifully placed in the heart of the city at Piata Unirii with the ice skating place surrounding the Matthias Corvinus Statue.

The good smell of food is welcoming you to the place as well as the colorful boutique with all sort of traditional and Christmasy item.

IMG_9865

After the lights turn on visitors from Cluj and all around Romania, as well as internationals are enjoying a cup of mulled wine and good music.

I had the chance to catch up with an old friend of mine too, Andrei and he took me a little bit outside of Cluj where we took a few shots with the drone.

1.00_12_32_01.Still004

Really enjoyed catching up about good old times, but also discovering new places like this really cool looking coffe place called Joben. Highly recommended, I will surely return myself.

Because I live so close to Cluj this Christmas Market visit was more of a brake out rather than stay over, but still enjoyed it a lot and I am sure I will be back in this place soon.

IMG_9949

My next stop is Sibiu, I did pass through the city like once or twice in my life, but never really visited so I am really exited.

Thank you all for watching, if you are new to the channel SUBSCRIBE because the Winter Wonderland places are yet to follow.