Main destinations via rail…

Ljubljana – Salzburg – Budapest

We had almost a week in each of the 3 cities with many day trips into the countryside as well – sometimes taking a local train and at other times joining a small group for the day.  We had 2 memorable days like this in Slovenia with Roundabout Travel…Slovenia Day Tours.  They organise similar tours in Croatia and use very comfortable and modern mini vans + very knowledgeable guides.  The day included walks through National Park areas – a stunning gorge (see feature photo);  a visit to an historic castle – how it was ever built is beyond belief as foundations carved into a cliff (see photo);  beautiful caves;  a delicious lunch in a farmhouse restaurant garden + a visit/walk at the beautiful Lake Bled. 

Ljubljana + day trips to rural Slovenia including Lake Bled region

The capital of Slovenia, is a prosperous and pretty city which is easy to walk around (see nighttime photo). As in most modern cities near the centre, many historic buildings have been converted into both traditional and modern restaurants, cafes, galleries, etc.  We stayed centrally in Hotel Cubo – a small, modern hotel, again with very friendly, helpful staff with excellent English – many Slovenians can speak English, especially the young people who learn English at school;  that’s the case in most European countries especially in areas with many tourists but even when you go miles away from the centre.  This isn’t always the case in some Eastern European destinations eg. see our post on Russia – still a memorable time!
Salzburg + day trips to Austrian countryside including a half day river cruise

Budapest – self guided tours around the city/historic hotel was a highlight…more to come