Saturday, October 22, 2005

LJUBLJANA


Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, is a dynamic Central European city lying at an altitude of 298 m above sea level and is located between the Alps and the Adriatic Sea. It covers a surface area of 275 km2 and has a population of 276,000. Its climate is continental, with an average temperature of 3,4˚ C in January and 21,9˚ C in July.

Ljubljana is a city with a high quality of life. Its very centre is occupied by parks and forests,.
It has a lot of theatres, museums, galleries and one even of the oldest philharmonic orchestras in the world. Every year it hosts more than 10,000 cultural events.

The old town
core is situated between the casle hill and the Ljubljanica River. Outskirts of the city are: Šiška, Bežigrad, Moste and Vič.

The Ljubljana Castle was built on top of a hill. It was used as a fortress in the 11. century. After a large earthquake that stroked in 1511, the castle was rebuilt. The remains show the signs of gothic (chapel of the st.Jurij) and Renaissance's time. The watch out tower was built in 1848. It was reconstructed in 1982. Nowadays the castle is main attraction for turists, who can get there by a small “train”. It is also capable of hosting weddings and is a great hiking point. If you ever intend of paying a visit, you should also pay attention at the monument of the labors rebellion.Ljubljana's castle is accecable by car or walking through the narrow street leading up to the castle.

The architect Joze Plecnik made a number of parks and squares in the town. His style was very much influenced by his trips to Rome and Paris as a student where he had admired the ancient Classical and Renaissance Masters.

The finest pices of art:

-The Ursuline Church: The Ursuline Church was built in 1718 to 1726 and is the most beautiful Baroque work in Ljubljana. The architect is unknown but the church is a model of Palladio's Church in Venice.

-The Three bridgeswhere constructed because of an earthquake in 1895. Because Ljubljana was under the government of Austria, the Austrians were paying for the rebuilding of the town. Actually the bridge, which was single at that time, didn't suffer from the earthquake, but they managed to make the Austrians believe otherwise. The city of Ljubljana got money to rebuild the bridge. The funds were used to enlarge the flow of people crossing the bridge by building two extra bridges on each side of the existing one. This was designed by Plecnik and is believed to be a unique construction.

-The Shoemakers bridge and the Three Bridges are the oldest bridges crossing the river Ljubljanica in Ljubljana, dating back to at least the 13th century.
The name of the Shoemakers bridge has a funny story behind it. It started out as a wooden bridge with butchers' booths on it, but the smell was so awful that the Emperor paid to have them removed to another place. The ones who took over the booths afterwards were shoemakers, giving the bridge its present name.
Because of many natural disasters like fires and floods, iron bridge was built in 1867. It was moved in 1931 further down the river where it is still in use, replaced by a stone bridge designed by Plecnik.

-Robba Fountain is situated on Mestni trg and is considered to be the youngest part of the medieval town, however, the history of the buildings of this area can be tracked back to the 12th century.
The fountain, next to The Townhall, is said to be the most beautiful Baroque monument in Ljubljana and it is quite well placed to the junction of threee streets. It symbolises the three rivers: Sava, Krka, Ljubljanica. It is 10m high.

Uroš Križman

Sources:
http://www.ljubljana.si/
http://www.ijs.si/slo/ljubljana/
http://geocities.com/ljubljanalife/
Ljubljana Life: Volume 8, Issue 2, Autumn 2005
http://www.burger.si/Ljubljana/Gradovi_LjubljanskiGrad.htm
http://www.ijs.si/slo/ljubljana/
Matjaž Chvatal in Željko Božek: Slovenija, turistični vodik, tourist guide, Reiseführer, guida furistica
http://www.burger.si/Ljubljana/Virtual/Panorama_KongresniTrg_Ursulinska_021099_0945.html