The Slovenian Tourist Board (STB) has unveiled it will focus on experiencing sports and outdoor adventure in the green heart of Europe. Over 60% of the country is covered in forest and more than half is included in the Natura 2000 European network of nature protection areas, intended to preserve biodiversity.
Add to that a national park, three regional parks, and 45 landscape parks, and Slovenia is a destination that naturally lends itself to hiking, cycling, and everything in between, with lots to discover this year.
Get outdoors in Slovenia – Sporting pursuits
Activity holidays in Slovenia are designed to embrace nature. A hiker’s paradise, there is 10,000km of marked trails to explore that take ramblers through picturesque mountain ranges including the Julian Alps, Karavanke Alps, and the Kamnik-Savinja Alps. Those who prefer water-based adventures will find there are plenty of adrenaline-pumping activities to dive into. Many lakes and rivers are suitable to swim in, whilst stand-up paddleboarding is popular in the coastal towns of Piran and Portorož.
Past years have seen a plethora of new hiking and biking trails and tours launch in Slovenia including new stages to the Juliana Trail in 2020, a 270km hiking route through the breath-taking Julian Alps, and the Green Gourmet Route last year, which passes through sustainable restaurants and vineyards.
Slovenia is also proud to have produced many highly talented athletes over the years including double Tour de France winner and current world champion in UCI men’s road racing, Tadej Pogačar, and Luka Dončića famous Ljubljana-born basketball player who currently plays for the Dallas Mavericks and is consistently ranked the top under 25 NBA player, according to polling carried out by HoopsHype. Rock and sport climber, Janja Garnbret, also proudly hails from Slovenia and in 2021, became the first-ever female Olympic gold medallist in sport climbing.
Get outdoors in Slovenia – Unmissable events
2022 looks set to be a bumper sports year for Slovenia with events taking place across a range of disciplines. Being Slovenia’s national sport, there are plenty of alpine skiing events taking place including the Vitranc Cup, one of the most prestigious events in the men’s Alpine Ski World Cup, held 12-13 March in Kranjska Gora. The 105th edition of the world-famous cycling race, Giro d’Italia, will hold its 19th stage in Slovenia on 27 May. It’s one of the oldest cycling races in the world, totalling 21 stages across three countries. June will also see the return of Tour of Slovenia, an international cycling race that sees the sport’s top-performing athletes race in five stages around the country.
Get outdoors in Slovenia – News from the STB
In support of this year’s theme, the STB has announced the appointment of Ilona Stermecki as its new Acting Director. Stermecki brings multiple years of experience in the field of tourism, specialising in agency management, destination management, development of tourism products, experiences, and tourism management.
Upon taking over the position, Stermecki stated: “This is a great challenge for me and, above all, the opportunity to share my knowledge and experience with the STB team and in close cooperation with the Ministry of Economic Development and Technology and other ministries to continue further development of Slovenia as a green, active, healthy and safe destination with a sustainable orientation.”