Fancy taking a Ljubljana boat cruise in the rain?

What do you do when you’ve just arrived in a brand new city but you’re all very tired, feeling a bit ‘meh’, it’s raining and the kids don’t want to leave the apartment? Yup, you bribe them with a Ljubljana boat cruise. If you’re looking for something very relaxing and easy-going to do with kids in Ljubljana, we can recommend this!

Ljubljana; a quaint city

Ljubljana is a quaint city that spans both sides of the Ljubljanica river.  With narrow cobbled streets, small boutique shops tucked into alleyways and plenty of places to eat the old town is a great place to visit with kids.

It is a very vibrant city and at night the streets are full of people. We found Slovenians to be exceedingly friendly and everywhere we went they spoke perfect English and didn’t make us feel bad at all at not speaking any Slovenian.

Ljubljana boat cruise

Cute little art shop

The Llubjana Festival with kids

Visiting at the height of summer, towards the end of July, there was an environmental & arts festival taking place.  At night there were stages set up and many different performances on. Most were in Slovenian and aside from the stand up comedy, we could just about get the gist of the performances.

What we liked most was that during the day there were activities for the kids to do.

Ljubljana Festival prior to Ljubljana boat cruise

Environmental festival


Soft jumping balls as part of the arts festival

Getting the Ljubljanica boat cruise

There are at least three boats on the river of Ljubljanica which divides the city’s old town from its newer commercial town. After careful consideration we decided to go with the wooden, handcrafted boat.  It just had a certain presence of sophistication that we liked.

The boat is called Barka Ljubljanica and in the summer of 2016 it cost 8 euros for adults and children were free.  It leaves on every hour  for a 45 minute tour or the river (not the canal) and is located just off the Novi Trg square.

It is run by a lovely gentleman who was so friendly, hospitable and knowledgeable. He gives a running commentary of the animals we saw along the banks and places and history of the city.  It was such a pleasure to spend time on his boat and with him.

Ljubljana boat cruise

The wooden Ljubljana boat cruise to the right hand side.

Ljubljana boat cruise

The boat: Ljubljana boat cruise

The old town buildings rise high above the Ljubljanica whilst there are at least 6 bridges that cross over it.


The buildings overlooking the river.

Ljubljana boat cruise

Old buildings

Book your cheap accommodation in Ljubljana with Booking, like we did. We stayed in the pedestrian zone and loved it.

Our youngest loved the Ljubljana boat cruise and was able to swap seats to get a better view whenever she needed. Thankfully the rain put most people off so it was a quiet trip.

Rich and Imogen getting ready to set sail.

Imogen on the boat

Ljubljana boat cruise

Leaning over the back of the boat!

The banks of the Ljubljanica are lined with weeping willows, house boats and people’s gardens. It’s very green and lush and calm. Don’t worry about sea sickness because it really doesn’t go very fast and the waters are still.

The green banks of the river

Weeping willows: Ljubljana boat cruise

Returning back to the old town, you glide under the bridges and float past the old fish market, catching a glimpse of the old cathedral.

See the rain!?

The bridges and old fish market: Ljubljana boat cruise

Underneath a bridge: Ljubljana boat cruise

The cathedral

How to spend an hour with kids in Ljubljana

All in all, a very relaxing way to spend an hour. Our youngest certainly had a great time spotting animals and counting bridges.

Rich and Imogen on a Ljubljana boat cruise

If you want to see the best of Slovenia, you must self-drive. Get a quote through RentalCars

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Barka Ljubljanica in Llubljana is a great way to kill an hour with kids and you see a whole different perspective of the city.

What else could you do in Ljubljana with children?

What else can we inspire you to see?

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