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Ptuj from the Drava River banks

There is something about Eastern Slovenia that makes me go back every time I can. It might have something to do with unbelievably  kind people, really good food or ‘just’ stunning nature. At the end … it doesn’t really matter why am I coming back, the fact is … I am. And I do enjoy each and every time.

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Also – there is one more important thing; Eastern Slovenia is not (yet) as popular & crowded as the Western Slovenia with lakes Bled and Bohinj, Piran, Postojna Cave and other touristy places is. I’m quite sure this will not last forever so I try to see & absorb as much of this part of my country as I can. I recommend you to do the same … and maybe … you can start with Ptuj.

Ptuj is one of the oldest cities in Slovenia and, for sure, one of the most beautiful. Any photographer knows red-tile roofs, white houses, bridges (there are 4 of them crossing Drava River) and river (here almost a lake) make a quite a nice photo-combination.

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One of the best places to take photos of Ptuj is the right bank of the Drava River. You can leave your car on one of the parking near Terme Ptuj or Grand Hotel Primus and find your way to the river. It shouldn’t be difficult, since the river is just there. But, if you are not sure, just look for the castle and walk towards it.

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Once you’ve reached the river, that’s it. You can walk up and down by the river and search for the best angles & motives. When you’re done, you can – (1) walk up to the castle, (2) get lost in the streets of the old town or (3) sit down and enjoy a cup of coffee or a nice meal.

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If you’d decide to take a nice meal … my recommendation would be: Stop at the Ribič restaurant. Beside really tasty food there is always a chance you will meet one of the kindest, funniest and best waiters in Slovenia.

For Igslovenia, @sanya_lt.

PS: Since sharing is caring … be sure to leave your experiences with Ptuj in the comment section. Let us know where to go and what to see & where to go to take best photos. Thank you!

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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).

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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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Mommy, mommy, we are on TV!

Jokes aside … it does not happen very often that we end up on television explaining who we are and what we do. Up until now Igslovenia mostly appeared online or in magazines that are specialized in digital marketing.

Since it is always nice to know who is ‘at the other side’ of the computer screen we decided to share a few articles and presentations about us. They are, sorry, all in Slovene. Hopefully, one day … we can do an interview in English:))

The first interview: SKETA.SI > ‘Kokoška’ na Instagramu (Chicken on Instagram:)

About Instagram in Slovenia; Radio Val 202 (10.6. 2015) > Instagrama v Sloveniji še ne jemljemo resno.

Fotkast na mreži podkastov Marsovci (5.1. 2016)> Slovenija na Instagramu

Podcast 091 Metina lista (18.6. 2016) > Metina lista

About Instameet in Koper (24.6. 2016) > Instagramerji bodo obiskali Koper

A short video clip that was shown on TV, so my mum finally knows what we do;) – Svet na Kanalu A (12.7. 2016) >> Igslovenia. Who are we & what do we do?

Holiday entertainment on the online portal of national TV station Praznični koledar MMC RTV (8.12. 2016)

Local news coverage of photographers who made into top 10 2016  (12.1. 2017) Koprski fotograf med top 10,

18.1. 2017 Ajdovski in koprski fotograf med naj instagramerji

Interview in a national daily Dnevnik (3.2. 2017) Ljudje se zaljubijo v fotografijo na Instagramu 

 

Since we are on Instagram almost from it’s beginnings we also have some exoeriences to share – we did a few seminars and workshops and were invited to lecture or participate at roundtables on the topic:

Seminar : Instagram in tourism marketing, 6.10. 2016  with Marketing magazin 

Workshop: Instagram od A do … 22.12. 2016

Workshop: Instagram in Marketing, SEMPL 18, November 2016

Workshop: ABC Instagrama, Njami Food bloggers conference, November 2016

Seminar: Instagram in Marketing, 30.3. 2017 with Marketing Magazin

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 instagrammers from Slovenia 2016

It has been an amazing year for Igslovenia. We have organized 3 Instameets and some very successful workshops (next one >> 22. 12. 2016!) beside having published almost 450 photos from 285 photographers. At the end of the year, is time for recap – who are the best photographers of 2016 on @igslovenia?

Let us explain the criteria first; We have been looking for best instagrammers from Slovenia. They were the most featured photographers on our page in the past year, so they are (mainly) landscape photographers sharing photos of Slovenia and tagging #igslovenia. Their photos are of supreme quality, they are always searching for new locations and sharing lots of information about specific places. We also highly appreciated their interaction with followers. All of them have been featured on Igslovenia profile at least 5 times in 2016.

So, here they are, top 10 instagramers from Slovenia 2016 (in alphabetical order).

Ana Pogačar >> @anapogacar

Velika Planina Ana2 Ana3

Borut Trdina >> @boruttrdina

boruttrdina borut2 borut3

Aleš Krivec >> @dreamypixels

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Iztok Medja >> @iztok_medja

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Jaka Ivančič >> @jaka_ivancic

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Jan Čermelj >> @jancermelj

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Luka Esenko >> @lukaesenko

lukaesenko luka2 luka3

Luka Kotnik >> @lukakotnikphoto

lukakotnik lukak2 lukak3

Peter Zajfrid >> @peterzajfridphoto

peterzajfrid peter2 peter3

Simon Primožič >> @simonprimozic

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PS: All photos used here were published by top 10 instagrammers – on Instagram.  To see the originals in high quality check their webpages & follow them on Instagram.

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Above Lake Bled in a hot air balloon

To be honest, I do not like anything that has  to do with heights. I am not a fan of flying and bungee jumping is usually only a part of my nightmares. Nevertheless, when Domen from 3glav adventures invited me to try hot air ballooning over Lake Bled I couldn’t resist and even haven’t thought much about how high would we go and how would I feel up there. All I had on my mind was that flying over Lake Bled should mean amazing views. Lots of them!

Since hot air balloon can only move up and down and everything else depends on the winds, it took us 2 weeks to find a day that worked for all of us (meaning that I had time, 3glav adventures was available and weather conditions were perfect). However, it was well worth the trouble!

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Mission number 1 was getting the balloon standing up. Since I could not help, I was searching for any option to take that ‘classic Instagram’ photo of a person walking inside the balloon. Forget it! Huge fans, ropes all around, hot air … it was simply too dangerous to get so close. This is all I got. 😀

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Once the balloon was up everything went very fast. Suddenly there was Bled Island bellow us and I hardly managed to snap a few photos of it before we were already flying over the Bled Castle. Amazing! The perspective up there is sooooo different! I probably forgot to breathe in the first minutes of the flight since there was so much going on and there were so many amazing views.

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At this stage, we were flying about 300 meters above ground and I had no time to panic. Changing phones in my hands ( I always carry around two phones), trying even to do some photos with the camera … I hardly noticed that things below us became really small. Well, we were already on 1.300 metres above Lake Bled. The views were spectacular! Once again, there was not much space and time for panic attacks.

 

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Some ‘panic time’ was available when balloon was slowly descending but all I had to do was to look around and the beauty of what I saw had calmed me down. Just before landing I had an opportunity to take last few photos and that was it. The end.

This was one of the best (photo) experiences I had in my life and the best one since I’ve started to work on @igslovenia project. Not only I was able to see Lake Bled in a way I have never seen it before, I also had the chance to do it with a bunch of great people. No, I am not saying this because I’m a nice person or somebody asked me to. It is plain and simple truth. There are people and there are teams that just know their business and know what people want and need. Team 3glav adventures for sure is one of them and I can easily say: Whatever sport activity you are planning near Lake Bled – check 3glav adventures.

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PS: All the photos were taken by Iphone6.

 

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Lake Cerknica

Lake Cerknica, the largest disappearing (intermittent) lake in Slovenia, is one of my favourite places in Slovenia to photograph. It might not have the charm of Ljubljana castle or the definitive beauty of Lake Bled, but it has something more. I would call it the ‘raw beauty’ or simple beauty of nature that is changing all the time! When full, Lake Cerknica is the biggest lake in Slovenia, when there is not a lot of water you will ‘only see’ fields on which cattle can graze. But not only water, everything changes here, paths, colours, boats, trees, flowers … you just have to keep returning and discovering new point of views.

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If you are looking for a short (photo) visit just park your car near the Museum of Lake Cerknica and walk down by the road. Most of the photos you can see here were taken from the road. To discover the real magic of the lake and its surroundings take your time! Check all the paths you can find, search for boats in the water, sinkholes, rent a bicycle (another thing that you can to on the spot, at the Museum). Don’t forget! The lake freezes in the winter and you will see many people ice-skating on the lake!

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Robanov Kot Valley

Robanov Kot Valley is a small, scenic Alpine Valley tucked under summits of Križevnik, Molička Peč, Veliki Vrh, Mala Ojstrica, Krofička and Strelovec. Like the nearby Logar Valley, Robanov Kot was also created by a glaciar during the last ice age. No valley is perfect without some creek or river, so also Robanov Kot needs one; Bela stream, a tributary of the Savinja River runs through the valley not far away from the few farmhouses. Robanov Kot Valley is perfect for hiking and climbing, but the amazing views give enough photo opportunities also for photographers.

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If you combine your visit here with visiting also the Logar Valley and Rinka Waterfall, your day will be perfect.Try to avoid visiting in high season (July, August) since you can be here (almost) alone in other months. For taking photos; Early mornings are probably the best. If you are lucky, you will catch some morning mists and be able to observe sun rays slowly spreading throughout the valley.

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Source of the Krupa River

The source of the Krupa River is the largest and one of the most beautiful Karst springs in Bela krajina. Water flows from under the 30 meters high rock wall and creates a nice pool in the middle of green lush nature. Not only the spring is interesting as the home of some rare species such as the Cave Salamander and some other but it also offers some nice photo opportunities.

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The pool is actually not a pool:) It is an artificial lake since there is a dam just a few meters down the river, created to run the sawmill. The building is still there and it makes a nice addition to your photos.

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You will find the spring of the river Krupa in the village Krupa. Leave your car on the marked parking spot and walk down to the river. It is a really shot walk (5 minutes) and since the area is not that big you can take your time:) When you finish discovering the spring be sure also to take the walk down by the river and enjoy the beautiful nature. The path is marked and it passes also some other interesting spots like caves and churches but – to do a full circle it will take you around 4 hours. So if you are looking for an idea what to do on one afternoon in Bela krajina this is quite a nice idea.

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Have you been here already? Please, do share your experience with us and other people searching for ideas where to head with a camera (or phone:) in Slovenia.

By Sanja Leban Trojar, @sanya_lt

 

 

Logar Valley

The Logar Valley, in the heart of the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, is one of the most beautiful Alpine glacial valleys in Europe and quite popular motive on photos tagged #igslovenia. 2.000 meter peaks in the back, green meadows & pastures in the front & crystal clear Savinja River make this place – magical.

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You can visit Logar Valley in any season. In winter you will enjoy snowy fields, in summer lush green forests, in autumn and spring the colours of the nature will amaze you. You can simply enjoy the beautiful nature here or be active; The Valley offers hiking, cycling, horseback riding, cross-country skiing and many other great opportunities.

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For photographers; be sure to stop at the beginning of the Valley and capture one of the most ‘typical’ Slovenian views: White mountains, green valley and a white road in the middle. The next ‘must see’ for you is Rinka Waterfall at the end of the Valley.

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Rinka is the second highest waterfall in Slovenia! It plunges a total of 105 m from the small river above to the pool below, with a single drop of 90 m. Not only the waterfall is impressive, you will be able to snap some nice photos of the mountains here as well. The second (quite impressive) thing to see here is a coffee bar near the waterfall. It clings to a rocky crag just near the waterfall. The place is called the ‘Eagle’s Nest’.

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Instameet in Koper was amazing!

As you all know we had an Instameet in Koper, Slovenia on the 25th of June. The plan was simple: To meet Instagrammers in front of the beautiful Praetorian Palace and then go for a walk around the town. Our dear friend, local photographer, Jaka Ivančič, promised that he will show us everything there is to see and help us find the best views Koper has to offer. And we were not disappointed! Not at all.

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First Instagrammers on Titov trg / Square.

First of all; more than 30 people showed up on that day. Most of them from Slovenia but we had also a big group of people from Russia. We always get some people from other countries so we can say; Igslovenia Instameets are international! And it is always great to meet new friends!

After a cold drink (We needed it. The day was just hoooooooooot!) we had the pleasure to enjoy the Praetorian Palace with a guide of our own. Thank you, TIC Koper & Nika!

Discovering the town was a special kind of fun; Jaka picked the best streets and told us everything there is to know about Koper (Did you know it was an island once? And that it had city walls bigger than Dubrovnik??)  Also when 30 people with cameras are walking around the town, photographing everything there is and especially each other … fun is guarantied!

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Old Town Koper.

Looking for the best view.

The views from the church tower were just perfect and well worth of 3XX steps (I’m quite sure the number is close to 400!?) that we had to take to get to the top. But Jaka saved the best for the last; Tomos building which is now empty & closed for public was just ours. This part of the Instameet was just for the bravest, but the ones who climbed to the roof were not sorry. Not only this is THE building to be to take best photos of Koper, there were  tons of opportunities to photograph the building itself and feel its (probably not so happy but extremely interesting) history.

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View from the church tower.

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Looking down from the church tower.

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View of Koper from the Tomos building.

 

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At the top of the world.

 

Industrial touch

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Only the brave ones.

We will not tell you anything more about how fun it was to spend also the evening in Koper, drinking beer and having fun with new friends. Next time – be sure to join us. #simple

Thank you all who helped & thank you all who came. Hope to see you soon again! ***

Sanja Leban Trojar, @sanya_LT