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Ambassadors of #CentralSlovenia

Winner of  the Share Your Postcards from #CentralSlovenia  Challenge will take over a selection to posting features @igslovenia for a week. There is almost 2.000 photos tagged #centralslovenia, a plentiful collection of postcards to share with your friends.

Purpose of the challenge is to raise awareness of the many beautiful spots just around the corner from Ljubljana. We can be successful in fulfilling this task only with the help of you hence we decided to award the most active supporters as Ambassadors who will also receive an exclusive, limited edition T-shirt!

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What qualifies you for an Ambassador of #CentralSlovenia? It is simple:

  • follow @igslovenia and @visitljubljana on Instagram
  • post your photos from Central Slovenia – the more you post, bigger are your chances to win a T-shirt
  • share featured photos or tagged photos with your friends – tag them in comments, invite them somewhere.

First Ambassador we announced a while ago is @mihapongrac (Miha Pongrac) followed by  Uroš Abram @uabram . They have both shared many photos from the area, Uroš has also been featured.

Following their steps are @peterpancur Peter Pančur and @sasacrocy.loves with a great collections of Central Slovenia posts, @lukaesenko (Luka Esenko) and Jan Čermelj @jancermelj both already with a double feature, Ana Pogačar @anapogacar and Iztok Medja   .

We know that some people don’t have photos from Central Slovenia, but they support the campaign by sharing  photos and, above all, sharing the vibe! Manuel Wolf @manuelo_bo and @hairhoppers_010  are just two of them.

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Update

The second set of ambassadors, awarded by exclusive T-shirts as follows:

@dejkovski and @jakaskrlep have shared many different locations and have both been featured already; this is valid also for @dreamypixels whose time lapse of clouds over Velika planina was the very first video we have ever posted on Instagram. Great collections of photos from Central Slovenia which bring them an Ambassador title have also @valentina_plahuta, @denissimcic, @bojanaklemenc.bofit, @ines_loveslife and @silva.abram , Valentina and Bojana also with a feature. Congratulations!

Update 2

In the last part of the challenge the Ambassador title and a T-shirt go to:

@gregorkacin has shown us many different parts of Central Slovenia and he was also featured. Very active contributors who shared their photos were also @mybluedragoness, @lukakotnikphoto, @lukezifoto, @pjsmooth77 and @mancakorelc.

Thank you all for your support!

St. Ana

St. Ana above Lake Podpeč is a perfect getaway from a hustle and bustle of Ljubljana. Only a short drive  from the city (like 15 minutes) plus a short walk (20 or 30 minutes) … there is this amazing small church built on a hill with the same name – St. Ana.

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St. Ana is a church you can see from far away and it offers some amaaaaazing views of Ljubljana Marshes. It stands on a steep slope above the old Podpeč Quarry. As the hill juts out like a huge pier above the Barje, the view from the platform around the church is amazingly beautiful and vast, for it embraces the entire Ljubljansko barje from Škofljica to Vrhnika. In its present form, the Church of St. Ana has stood here since the end of the 16th century, when built on foundations of an old Gothic church. The main pilgrimage gathering is held on Sunday after St. Anna’s Day (26th July).

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We (meaning team Igslovenia – @zokus_gf, me & Tara, our dog:)) prefer leaving our car near Lake Podpeč and then going a little bit uphill to ‘climb’ to the top. It usually takes us just around half of an hour and it gives us the pleasure of being just a little tired while reaching the church at the top. Plus – there is a city bus going from Ljubljana to Jezero (Lake Podpeč) and back every half of an  hour … so … if you don’t mind a short walk uphill St. Ana is reachable even if you don’t drive.

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If you have a car and (or) you are not a fan of walking uphill … go towards village Preserje and leave your car just before the village. The walk will be a little bit shorter and easier.

Beside the church … there is nothing at the top … just views … wherever you look … there are amazing views. So – bring some water … sit down, relax and enjoy. Best time to visit St. Ana is, of course, sunrise or sunset. I prefer – sunsets. Just be careful … if you are going up or down in the dark … bring some lights with you!

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By @sanya_lt.

 

 

 

 

Ljubljana Castle

I’ll be honest: Ljubljana Castle is my favourite photo-spot in Ljubljana. Perched on top of a hill, just above the old town, it offers amazing views on the whole city and surrounding area, all the way to Kamnik-Savinja & Julian Alps. Wherever you look, whatever you do … there is something to see & photograph; the castle itself, architecture details, people (getting married), couples in love, rich cultural program, view on the city, mountains in the distance … It really doesn’t matter what are you looking for … you will find it!

There are many trails leading to the top of the castle and every one of them offers different photo opportunities. Ok, the easiest way to get up there is to take the funicular (located near the central market, on the Krekov trg), but taking photos from the funicular is no fun (due to the ‘dirty’ windows you will never get the photo you are looking for).

Ljubljana Castle window

So – walk! My favourite time to visit the castle is spring, when colour green takes over the castle forests. Walking up there between lush green trees opens ‘windows’ in the trees allowing you to take picture perfect photos.

I also love the views from the castle in the winter, when you can see almost all city. I prefer view toward Trnovo district (south-west of the city), where you can take best sunset photos. Don’t forget; You will never be alone at the Castle Hill in the sunset time, so if you are looking for a really nice place and photo – be there before sunset!

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Also – don’t forget to visit the Castle Tower! It offers unobstructed (360) view of the city so – it’s a must! The views of the city from here are the best and you can capture details of the rooftops & Ljubljana’s notable bridges, squares and buildings.

If you get hungry  or thirsty… there are 2 restaurants (that I really, really like), Strelec & Gostilna na Gradu and a Castle Coffe House, so … just sit down and enjoy. If you need more ideas about perfect photo spots don’t forget to check out an amazing SNAPP guide to photographing Ljubljana by dear friend, Luka Esenko.

So … when in Ljubljana … Castle is a must. Also – let me know you are around. I’ll just might join you.

Sanja

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Ljubljana (from Trg revolucije to the Town Hall)

Ljubljana is a small city by the standards of capitals but as Slovenia itself offers  many great views at the short distances. Since we are dedicated to show you not only the obvious few spots of Slovenia we decided to divide descriptions of Ljubljana to shorter walks which offer great photo opportunities.maximStarting point is Trg Republike (Republic Square). It is the centre of contemporary Ljubljana built in 1960 by famous architect Edvard Ravnikar and  surrounded by the Parliament (just behind my back), Cankarjev dom – cultural and congress centre, Maximarket department store and TR3 and Ljubljanska banka office buildings (on the photo). All building were built between 1954 and 1975  and that’s why I call the square “contemporary”. Until a few years ago it used to be a parking space. Now, when empty, these two buildings stand as a kind of entrance (or exit). Since the square itself is fairly empty it offers fine but tricky photo opportunity.The square and the buildings are huge and the sunlight comes mostly from behind of Maximarket or the towers. See it for yourself. In the late autumn sun sets just between the towers.

 

ursulinskaUrsuline church and monastery are just a passage of Maximarket store away – facing the towers just turn left. Too close in fact to find enough space for a proper shot. The church tower is also visible from the Republic square over the roof of the store and from some side views, but always just partially. But if you turn left again and use the underground passage just a few steps away you’ll find yourself in a fine park of Kongresni trg (Congress Square). Now, on your right, is a front side of the same church from 1726.

ursulinkskafrontThe concrete part of the square where you stand now also used to be a parking lot but now offers a clean view on the magnificent Ljubljana Castle over the building of Slovenian Philharmonic, one of the oldest of the kind, from 1701. Just behind your back, taken from the steps of the church.

gradThe beautiful park itself is also called Zvezda (Star), in past times also Sidro (Anchor). Just take a stroll and you find the reason for yourself.

zvezdaMany different approaches are possible now to the river bank, personally I prefer  the narrow one beside the Philharmonia building.

filharmonijaFrom the other side, back to the square, a few days of the year you can catch a sunset around late spring. But in the autumn the view on the river, old city buildings and the castle is enriched with large leaves.

listgradOn your left is now the famous Tromostovje (Triple Bridge). Many different angles are accesible, one of the best is from the new small bridge or from Makalonca bar just bellow the bridge.

 

tromostovjeThe best view on Prešernov trg (Preseren Square) in the front of Triple Bridge is from the steps of the Franciscan Church of the Annunciation, the red building on the photo above. It is difficult not to catch at least a glimpse of the castle from spots around here.

presernovCrossing the Tripple Bridge you’ll find yourself in front of the Town Hall and famous baroque Robba Fountain with a view on the Cathedral.

magistratEarly morning is always the best time to take photos around here since sun rises somewhere behind the castle, exact point of course depends on the time of the year. Daily sun can be very harsh and  the whole area is already in the shadow afternoons.

For more information about the sights and Ljubljana Visit Ljubljana, one of the best tourist websites and offices in the world.

 

Zoran Leban Trojar @zokus_gf

lukaesenko

Luka Esenko. Amazing landscape photographer and an Instagrammer that – sometimes – makes me crazy. Each and every photo he publishes on Instagram could end up on @Igslovenia profile. Every day. But this only means – he is good at what he does. And this is – photography, sharing his knowledge about photography & connecting great photographers and incredible locations in his new app. I just had to ask him a few questions;,

Hi there Luka, we will start as we always do; can you tell us a little bit about yourself? Who are you, what do you do?

Hi Sanja, I am a local photographer based in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. Photography has been my work for the last eight years when I started running workshops in Slovenia and Croatia. I also love the outdoors, the Alps above all, this is why a lot of my photos are from there.

Ljubljana from the Nebotičnik / Skyscraper caffee.

Ljubljana from the Nebotičnik / Skyscraper caffee.

You are a professional photographer, I know that. What does Instagram mean to you? Or better; People say that Instagram is only for amateur photographers. What do you think about that?

To be honest I am pretty new to Instagram. I started last summer when I was on a vacation in Croatia. It soon became quite fun and I’ve had a lot of feedback and interaction on my posts. What I like about it is its focus on photography and I find it more enjoyable to browse through the feed. For photographers (pro and amateur alike) this is a great channel to promote their work and services.

Slovenia. You take people around our country for photography workshops. Can you say that there is a place that amazes people more than other? Or – what is your favourite photo-destination in Slovenia?

Quite obviously Lake Bled and its island is the most popular among my clients. But there are many other less “iconic” places that people love and make great subjects for photography. Unique to Slovenia are its hilltop churches – my clients always wonder how crazy we are in Slovenia to build churches on top of the hill – who wants to walk up there?!? I always reply – well – photographers :) Personally, my favourite place is the Julian Alps. I love the mountains, but unfortunately I’m usually way too busy to get out and spend the time I’d like to out there. For that reason every moment I do get to spend there is even more precious.

Church of St. Thomas / Sveti Tomaž.

Speaking of photo-destinations. You took connecting amazing photographers and incredible destination to a whole new level. You are a co-founder of the snappguides application. Can you tell us a little bit more about it?

Recently we released SNAPP Guides – destination guides for photographers. This is a mobile app (currently available on iOS with Android coming soon) where photographers can purchase guides to destination they are traveling to. With these guides they get exact coordinates with interactive maps (routing, current position, different layers..), information how to get there, when to go, practical advice on photographing that location as well as inspirational images. We work with pro photographers around the world to deliver the best possible information and currently we have ten destinations available – new ones are being added to the collection every month.

Laka Bled; Island & Castle in the back.

Sounds amazing! And looking at the @snappguiddes social media profiles and page … you have tons, literally tons of amazing photos. Who are the photographers that you are working with? How did you meet?

We sure have a lot of great images to share! Through my previous work I met many excellent photographers from all around the world. With their help we partnered with the best authors/photographers from destinations such as the UK, California, Oregon, South Africa, Ireland, Austria and many others. Now we’re receiving requests from photographers who want to make guides with us and we’re growing our team of photographers quickly. If you have extensive knowledge of photo locations in your area and would like to build a guide with us do get in touch!

Can you share some ‘behind the app’ information with us? What are the places (locations) that people love most? How is Slovenia doing? Can we expect more photographers here soon?:)

A tremendous amount of work goes into each guide. Every spot has to be populated with relevant information, exact coordinates and beautiful images. Most of the spots have been scouted more than just once to make sure the information is valid. At the moment, the most popular guides are Yosemite NP in California and London, UK. Slovenia is doing well, but it is obvious that it gets fewer visitors per year compared to other better known destinations in the world. I’m working hard to change that!

What are the plans for the future? Which destinations in Slovenia will be presented in the app?

Right now the most popular places of Slovenia are covered, Lakes Bled & Bohinj, Ljubljana and Istria. The Complete Guide to Slovenia will follow but I can’t promise when – it is huge amount of work to cover it all! As for SNAPP Guides, we want to cover as many destinations as possible. We’re working hard to deliver new destinations, but because of our high standards it takes time.

As a local and as an amazing photographer … what would you say to a person visiting Slovenia for the first time? Where to go, what to see? (Beside – Bled, Ljubljana & Piran, that is:)

Well, the ones you mentioned are definitely the obvious, right? My first suggestion is make sure you allow enough time – Slovenia might be small but it has lots of great places to photograph! Be prepared to do some hiking and you’ll need a car. Visit one or two hilltop churches for sunrise or sunset, don’t miss the wine region (Brda or Prlekija) and be sure to explore Soča river valley.

Thanks Luka! And … all the best with your amazing projects! 

Thanks for giving me this opportunity at Igslovenia!

 

Sanja Leban Trojar – @sanya_lt

You can find more about Luka Esenko and his work on his web page, Facebook or Twitter profile & you can follow him on Instagram.

laughtraveleat

Ljubljana, 16. 4. 2016 by Sanja Leban Trojar – @sanya_lt

First of all – can you tell us something about yourself? Who are you, what do you do?

Hello! My name is Nam (@laughtraveleat on Instagram) and I am a travel blogger / writer who lives in Hong Kong. I run my own blog: Laugh Travel Eat that documents my travel tips and adventures near or far. My day job is content marketing, and when I am not writing or working, you will find me stuffing my face with egg waffle and bubble tea or catching up on the latest DC TV series while online shopping.

Do you travel a lot? How you pick your traveling destination?

I like to travel as much as I can, because there’s just so much to see in the world and it has become so easy to just hop on a plane and head to an exotic location nowadays. I generally look out for flight deals, though sometimes after reading a book or watching a movie, or even seeing a picture on Instagram and Pinterest will get a place on my radar that makes me really want to go.

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Your Instagram profile is full of amazing photos from Slovenia. Can you tell us a little bit about – how you came across Slovenia, when did you decide to visit and what places did you see?

I visited Slovenia last August with my friends as a bit of a graduation trip. We actually wanted to visit Albania, but the flights were too expensive, so we headed for Pula, Croatia instead. Then my friend suggested that we go to Ljubljana and I thought, why not? So we spent two days there before taking a bus to Bled, where I stayed for 4 nights while my friends left on the second due to poor timing on my side. I had another week to go before I needed to be in Italy, so I traveled to Bohinj by myself.

Where did you find information about Slovenia? How did you decide what to see?

I looked everywhere online for a bit, the official tourism page was a lot of help, and I got a lot of inspiration from the @Igslovenia Instagram as well! There aren’t a lot of blog posts out there on Slovenia, especially in the Bohinj region, but I had a lot of help from the staff in Castle 1004 Hostel in Bled in terms of transport etc.

What was your favourite place in Slovenia? What would you say is ‘a must see’ place in Slovenia … especially if you are a photographer?

The classic view point of Lake Bled – Ojstrica. It’s the postcard, picture perfect view of Lake Bled and a pleasant hike up. I only managed to go there on my last day in Bled because of the rain during my stay, and I was so glad that I got to visit there on a sunny day!

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Is there a place or thing that you would say – skip it? Why?

Well – Voje Waterfall! Although the hike there was pleasant with a gorgeous meadow, the waterfall itself is not as grand as it looks. As reaching this waterfall involve an extra 2-3 hours hike from the Mostnica Gorge, I would say skip it unless you have the time!

Back to photography; What equipment do you use for taking photos?

My trusty DLSM Panasonic DMC-GM1; I am not a photographic expert by any means, but a semi-automatic mirrorless it’s easy to use and take great photos!

What does photography mean to you?

Photography has become a way for me to record every moment in my life, especially when I am visiting a new place. A moment capture in the camera will forever be there, however, one can easily forget about some place or somewhere. There’s also something special about looking at the world through a different angle, which you wouldn’t normally if you are not holding a camera!

Can you describe us your photography style?

In all honesty, I am a point a shoot kind of girl, though if I see something I like, I will stop and try to find the best angle for it. I can’t say I have a particular style, other than taking tons and tons of photos.

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How did you end up on Instagram?

I started my account on my mum’s phone about five years back, but didn’t really started using it until a year after. Eventually I began to post only the photos from my travel when I started my own blog last year. Instagram is an amazing community and resources that fuels my wanderlust like no other! Accounts like @Igslovenia is what keeps me around and hyped up about all the amazing places I have yet to see in the world!

Do you use any other social media channel? If yes – can you compare the experience with using Instagram?

Pinterest is the other social media channel that I use frequently. It’s similarity to Instagram ends on both of them being visual. While Instagram is like a photo sharing site, Pinterest is a noticeboard. You can find me on Facebook, also.

How often do you publish photos on Instagram? Do you interact with other people on Instagram?

I publish a photo daily! And because I do genuinely enjoy Instagram, I go through my feed every moment I get and try to comment on every photo I find interesting. Being a frequent user myself, I know that every comment means a lot and it only takes a button and a few words to make someone’s day.

What would you say are the most important ‘rules’ that every Instagrammer must follow? Or – it would be good to follow?

Try not to be fake. I know that there are lot of people who are trying to grow their accounts (business or otherwise), but the whole following – unfollowing technique is one of the most annoying thing I have ever come across. If you don’t like someone’s feed, don’t follow and expect a follow back then unfollowing them.

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ed_norton

Ljubljana, 14. 2. 2016, by @sanya_lt

Meet Ed Norton, amazing (Lonely Planet) photographer, who loves extreme sports, thinks people in Bovec are really nice, whereas caves in Slovenia – not so much. It  was an honour (& fun!) talking to him and finding out lots about photography; Instagram and his cool mum:)) Thank you so much, Ed!

First of all – can you tell us something about yourself? Who are you, what do you do?

My name’s Ed Norton and I’m a travel photographer working for Lonely Planet / Getty Images. I’m originally from the South West of England from a city called Bristol but I am now based in London.

OK, Lonely Planet! To an amateur photographer this seems like a dream job. Is it?

It certainly is a dream job! There is a lot of hard work that comes with it though. I often work 16 hours a day, 7 days a week. At least half my time is spent in a dark room alone editing and labelling my images. If you don’t enjoy your own company then it’s definitely not for you! Photography is my life and when I’m not working, I’m learning or researching. I literally never stop doing either of those things and I absolutely love it. You absolutely have to love what you do. Don’t ever chase money. That will follow if you’re passionate about it.

Although I got a contract with Lonely Planet I was still essentially freelance. I’m completely self-taught in photography and had to do the same with the business side of things. Without any guidance you have to be really self-motivated and willing to take risks. People always say ‘you’re so lucky’. I personally prefer to keep the word luck out of my life as it implies that things happen by chance and without your involvement. I prefer to see it that you’re dealt a hand in life, without comparing it to anyone else you make the best out of it and create your own opportunities. Things don’t just fall in your lap, you need to be out there being as proactive as you can. Oh, and always remember that failure is all part of the fun of it! Handle failure with a positive attitude and learn from your mistakes and you can do anything you want in life.

 



Do you travel a lot? How you pick your traveling destination?

I used to travel pretty much full time but slowed down over the past 3 years. I still got away 4-8 times a year but sometimes shorter trips. From March 2016 I’ll be back on the road again and exploring the world full time for a couple of years at least.

Your Instagram profile is full of amazing photos from Slovenia. Can you tell us a little bit about – how you came across Slovenia, when did you decide to visit and what places did you see?

I’m not sure how I decided on Slovenia exactly, it was a case of looking at a map and picking somewhere new. I also tend to check flight prices to European countries to see what’s good at the moment. Wiz Air do flights from London from £35 (return!). I didn’t know too much on what to expect with Slovenia and had only really seen photos from Lake Bled. That alone looked beautiful so I decided to do some more research on Slovenia. The rest is history!



Where did you find information about Slovenia? How did you decide what to see?

Lonely Planet of course :) I then go for some visual inspiration and use platforms like Instagram, 500px, Google Images to look for things to see – if you like to travel then make sure you follow travel photographers as they’ll do all the research for you! I’ll then read blogs, travel forums, articles to get other information and piece it all together.

What was your favourite place in Slovenia? What would you say is ‘a must see’ place in Slovenia … especially if you are a photographer?

That’s a tough one to answer as I loved everything I saw! Ljubljana is an amazing city, great relaxed atmosphere and friendly people (and amazing food!). I fell in love with Lake Bled. It’s just postcard perfect! Bovec was amazing as well! The people were so friendly, the extreme sports, scenery (especially the view from the top of Mangart!) I need to go back to explore more!

Is there a place or thing that you would say – skip it? Why?

Predjama Castle was great to see for a flying visit. The tour was interesting enough but the tour of the caves underneath wasn’t that great. But it’s a minor really! It’s a truly stunning country!

 

 

Back to photography; What equipment do you use for taking photos?

Most of my work is taken on a Canon 6D. I have a range of lenses ranging from 16mm and all the way to 400mm. What I pack in my bag depends on the trip.

What does photography mean to you?

Everything! I constantly have to pinch myself that I’m able to travel the world and take photos, combining 2 of my 3 biggest passions (the 3rd being music!). We all share a beautiful world together. My aim is to try and inspire people to explore it as much as they can as well!

Can you describe us your photography style?

Colourful! I guess that comes from growing up in England where grey is what I’m used to! I also spend a lot of time perfecting the details of my images. It’s not something you’ll notice on Instagram but when my work is printed out you’ll notice the sharpness, textures and details that I bring out.

 

 


How did you end up on Instagram?

Ha! Believe it or not it was actually my mum who introduced me to Instagram. I didn’t listen to her for a while as your mum isn’t meant to know what’s cool is she?! Turns out she is quite cool and I should have listened to her from the start. I set up my account about 3 years ago but have only really been using it properly over the last 8 months.

Do you use any other social media channel? If yes – can you compare the experience with using Instagram?

I have a Facebook page  and Twitter account. Instagram however is my favourite. The community is much more engaged. It’s a visual platform only so you know what you’re getting in your feed and you can tailor to suit you. One post can be and amazing photographer from New York and the next you’re taken away to the top of a mountain in the Himalayas. Travelling the world at the flick of a screen!

How often do you publish photos on Instagram? Do you interact with other people on Instagram?

1-3 times a day. When I’m not posting I’m looking at other peoples work and trying to find new amazing photographers to follow. I interact as much as I can, especially with my own followers. There are loads of names that ‘like’ my posts that have been there from the very start which is amazing.

What would you say are the most important ‘rules’ that every Instagrammer must follow? Or – it would be good to follow?

Apart from the usual don’t post more than 3 times a day I’d say keep the camera facing forward and show the world how you see it! Stop trying to copy the people and be like a ‘celebrity’, your life is probably a lot more interesting than you think! Basically, don’t post selfies unless they’re funny!

 

To find more about Ed & his work – check his web page!

JSFtravel

Ljubljana, 14. 12. 2015, by @sanya_lt

As most of the Instagrammers that keep amazing me I’ve found the @JSFtravel profile while going through photos tagged #igslovenia. I soon discovered that the profile belongs to a lovely American couple whose job is – to travel. Or – is this a full time – hobby? Let’s find out!

Can you present yourself? Who are you, where do you come from and what do you do?

We are an American couple, Sarah & Kris, travelling full time. In April 2014, we left our jobs, sold everything we owned and set out on a journey to travel the world. What we find most fascinating about travelling is experiencing different cultures. We love learning about the people, food and local customs in the places we visit.

For 20 years, Kris worked for an airline. His flight benefits allowed him (plus spouse, once we got married!) to fly for free. He has been travelling much longer than me to places I still haven’t been, like Egypt, Brazil and Scotland. With the number of years, he worked at the airline, he was able to take an early retirement while keeping his flight benefits; therefore, we pay only a very small fee to fly, which helps tremendously in budgeting our travels.

My background is in journalism and marketing. I like finding the story about a place and sharing it with other people. When we decided to travel full time, I created our blog as a way to tell stories of the places we were visiting to our family and friends back home. Just as much as I like using words to tell stories, I also like capturing images with my camera and let the photos show the story.

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How does your life look like? How much do you travel?

We are essentially homeless – without a home or possessions to return to – so we are constantly travelling. However, we do travel slowly. Staying in one place for a month at a time allows us to gain a deeper understanding of the area. In between our longer stays, we pick destinations along the route where we might stay for a week or two at a time.

How do you pick your destinations? Where do you search for information about a new country, new destination?

There is so much of the world that we want to see that we often find it difficult to choose where we will travel to next! In our first year of full time travel, we were actually travelling ‘around the world.’ We had a goal of circumnavigating the world in a year’s time, which we did. We travelled west, starting in South America – and spent time on six continents before arriving back in the United States for a short visit. During that time, we chose destinations based on westward travel.

Now as long term travellers with no specific route, many things come into play when determining our destinations. We choose where to go based on affordability, accessibility and interest-at-the-moment. (Example: After spending winter in Melbourne, Australia, we caught the end of summer on the coast of Croatia.)

At this point, there are very few places that don’t interest us – we want to see it all!

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Are you professional or amateur photographers? What equipment do you use for taking photos?

I am an amateur photographer; a hobby photographer, actually. I use a Canon Rebel T2i with a 18-55mm lens – and I almost always carry my camera with me. In rare occasions, I use an old (and more portable) Canon Power Shot. Kris uses his iPhone and, honestly, it sometimes takes the better photo.

Can you describe us your photography style?

I don’t really have a photography style. I like to takes pictures of the things I see – and I want my photos to retain a real-life quality to them. My favourite pictures are the ones that tell a story all on their own, without any words needed.

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How did you end up on Instagram?

Instagram is a travel’s delight! We wanted to connect with other travellers, as well as have a place to display our photos – Instagram is perfect for that!

How often do you publish? Do you interact with other people on Instagram? Who would you recommend to follow?

We publish on Instagram once a day, but throughout the day we interact with the people we follow – and the people who follow us. We love the Instagram community. Seeing pictures around the world fuels our passion for travel.

Who would you recommend us to follow?

Jewelszee,  NoDestinationsTheTouristinHeckticTravels & Nomadasaurus.

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Slovenia? How/when did you decide to visit? Why?

Slovenia was on our list for a long time before we actually visited! We were drawn to the country for its beautiful scenic landscapes and the fairytale city of Ljubljana. We spent two weeks in Ljubljana last spring – which is not enough time!

What are your favourite places here?

We loved everything we saw in Slovenia – city, mountains, rural countryside, so it is difficult to pick one place. Being in the historic old town of Ljubljana was magical, but the natural beauty of Lake Bled was our favourite.

Which place is (for you) the best to take photos?

The entire country is very photogenic! We loved taking pictures along the river in Ljubljana’s old town. However, the best place to capture the splendour of Slovenia was from the hills that surround Lake Bled. The view of the lake from above by far surpassed any other vantage point.

What would you say to a first time visitor – what is ‘a must see’ place in Slovenia? See Lake Bled; slow down and take it in!

What did you miss while staying here?

So much! We didn’t make it to the coast or Piran. And, although we rode through the countryside, we didn’t stay in the rural area. We would love to explore the smaller towns in Slovenia and more of the mountains, as well.

What are your plans for the future? Coming back to Slovenia?

We plan to keep travelling for as long as we can. We definitely see another trip to Slovenia in our future – there is still so much more to see!

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mighele_

Ljubljana, 5. 12. 2015, @sanya_lt

Instagram thought me an important lesson; before I go anywhere, I search through the #hashtags connected to the place I want to visit and I ask local Instagrammers for tips – where to go & what to see. Mighele_ is the person that ‘pops up’ when you are looking for ideas where to go and what to do in Italy, especially in its northern part, around Trieste. I have also found some of his photos of Slovenia and decided that an interview with a neighbour (with an amazing gallery!) is a must!

Can you present yourself? Who are you, where do you come from and what do you do?

My name is Michele and I’m from the north-eastern part of Italy. My instagram name is @Mighele_ but I have also another profile, @mighele_daily and of course – you can find me on Twitter & Tumblr.

 I currently live in Trieste, but I was born and raised in Udine, where I worked as a graphic designer for several years. Now I’m working hard on a new project with my partner Marco called “Dezen Dezen. It’s very exciting to see the project – slowly but surely – becoming a reality! The next big step waiting for us is to move our screen printing manufacture to Trieste.

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How would you describe your photography style? I find your photos very aesthetic, symmetry is importantto you and (especially lately) there almost must be a splash of blue here and there. Am I wrong?

You already told everything. It’s not easy for me to describe my style because I have a very spontaneous approach to photography and most of the time I just shoot what I encounter during my days and on my travels. My photos are often blue because blue is the colour that surrounds me most of the time between the sea of Trieste and the sky of the Friuli’s Alps.

Are you a professional or amateur photographer? What kind of equipment do you use for taking photos?

Absolutely amateur! For the last few years I was only using my iPhone for shooting and for editing my photos. However, recently, Nikon Italy invited me to take part in a photography project and having a Nikon Reflex in my hand gave me a lot of new inspiration.

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How did you end up on Instagram?

Honestly, I don’t remember! When I initially installed Instagram 3 years ago, none of my friends was using it and I hadn’t understood the potential at the beginning. Only after a few months of using it &  with the number of followers growing it became more interesting. And, as you know, I never stopped using it! :)

Instagram is my favourite social media mostly because it allows you to tell stories in a very simple way! In Italy the community of Instagrammers  is very large and united. The first one that involved me was Instagramers Italia and thanks to them I discovered how cool Instagram is and met a bunch of cool people from all around Europe and the world.

Can you share some tips for Slovenian Instagramers? How to act on Instagram? What is really important for you?

Instagram is all about storytelling: Show your passions and show the most beautiful places in your country! Those are my favourite contents!

In a nutshell: Less selfies and more interaction! That was my winning combination and it allowed me to get to know so many people and some of them became very close friends of mine. It also allowed me to get in touch with some cool brands with which I developed different kind of collaborations.

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Slovenia? How/when did you decide to visit? Why?

Living so close to Slovenia also means I visit it often, but unfortunately I had only a few occasions to visit it as a tourist. In the last year we participated many times on Ljubljana’s arts and crafts markets with our Dezen Dezen handmades and each time I take more confidence with the city and fall a little bit more in love with it.

What are your favorite places here?

I have seen more Slovenian highways and gas stations than cities, LOL, but as I said I love Ljubljana and Piran! I would love visit the beautiful Lake Bled and I hope I will spend a weekend there really soon. Until then I will admire Slovenia on Instagram!

Do you think that Instagram community could do something to help you while exploring Slovenia?

Of course! Browsing Instagram galleries of my favourite Instagrammers helps me discover a lot of beautiful places that I never visited or even knew they existed but are just a few kilometres away. When I find something new and interesting it immediately becomes my next destination! The community can become a great resource to discover beautiful places. When you use hashtags and geolocation correctly Instagram is a very powerful tool.

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hulyaozkurt

Ljubljana, 25. 11. 2015, @sanya_lt

Usually an amazing gallery and 118.000 followers make a reason good enough to do an interview with an Instagramer. But, when it comes to @hulyaozkurt, we have to say at least two more things; Her photo of Lake Bled is the most liked photo ever on our Instagram account and she is one of the nicest Instagramers that we have ever met. She will always take time to comment on your photo, say thank you when you feature her work and immediately say ‘Yes’ when you ask her if she will do an interview with you. So, here we go …

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Who are you, where do you come from and what do you do? It is stated on your profile page that ‘Istanbul and Venice are in your heart’. Why? :)
I’m a lawyer and my greatest passion is photography. I was born in Switzerland and I’ve grown up in Istanbul, the city that will always be in my heart. I’ve moved to Italy 13 years ago and now I live in a small and very peaceful town called Treviso close to Venice. When I stand in front of the Gran Canal in Venice I feel as if I was in Istanbul facing the Bosphorus, looking at the seagulls playing with the waves.
How would you describe your photography (your photography style)?
I take pictures of my travels and life adventures, of what I like and what is harmonious. I love architecture and design. I always try to use natural light and avoid filters.

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Are you a professional or amateur photographer? What kind of equipment do you use for taking photos?
I’ve started as an amateur photographer with my dad’s Nikon camera, but as I’ve improved I bought a new camera for myself and started to take pictures also with my iPhone 5. As technology developed I’ve started to use an iPhone 6 camera and got a new Sony alpha 7s camera. I think that it’s great.

What does photography mean to you?
I think it’s a passion that I will keep for all my life. It’s a way for me to see the world.

How did you end up on Instagram?
My friends that liked my photos suggested me to use it, and I’ve decided to share my pictures on an Instagram account with my name. I’ve been chosen a suggested user by Instagram and the adventure started.

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Can you share some tips for Slovenian Instagramers? How to act on Instagram? What is really important for you?
I think that the most important points are to be patient, to practice a lot, observe every single detail and never give up. To share at least one picture a day is also important, it keeps your profile alive and your followers attached. I think that to answer to your followers is fundamental and always to be aware of the harmony and beauty of your pictures.

Slovenia? How/when did you decide to visit? Why?
I’ve been to Slovenia many times before, but I didn’t have Instagram then. I’m convinced that your country is beautiful with it’s nature, people, culture, cities, history and food. It’s a pleasure for me and my family to spend holidays in Slovenia.

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What are your favourite places here? What would you say to a first time visitor – what is ‘a must see’ place in Slovenia?
My favourite places are Ljubljana, Piran, Radovljica and Bled. Slovenia offers everything for a visitor; sea, mountain, lakes and history.
What did you miss while staying here?
Nothing sincerely, just my dog that was waiting for me at home:)

Where did you got the information that you needed to explore the country?
Before starting to a new trip I always check information on Instagram. For this reason I think that an Instagram community is essential to visit a country and to collaborate with @igslovenia on a future project would be a great pleasure for me.

 

All photos by @hulyaozkurt

 

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