Situated in the heart of Europe, Slovenia is nestled between Austria on her northern border, Croatia to the South, to the West is Italy and to the East, Hungary. A beautiful country of diverse landscapes, Slovenia is truly a place where you can see all of nature's bounty.
The Alps of Slovenia spread out in a panorama across the northern expanse of the country, with the Julian Alps spilling over into Italy and the Kamnik-Savinja Alps into Austria. Some of the peaks within the Julian Alps rise to majestic heights of more than 9,000 feet. In the surrounding landscape, forests encompass over 60 percent of the land while nearly 25 percent is used for agricultural purposes. The climate of Slovenia is varied, Mediterranean type climate along the coast, with colder temperatures in the higher altitudes, for the most part temperate in most areas of the country, making a visit to Slovenia in any season enjoyable.
Slovenia gained its independence in 1991, having previously been ruled by foreign powers, predominantly the Austro-Hungarian Habsburg monarchy. The Slovenes are resilient people and retained their own unique identity despite the hardships and oppression imposed on them by foreign rule. Their ancestors were the Slavs who hailed from the Carpathian Mountains, migrating to the area now known as Slovenia in the sixth century.
Prior to their independence, from the time following World War I, Slovenia was part of Yugoslavia, both as a kingdom and as the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia following World War II. For seventy years the Slovenes lived under the banner of Yugoslavia, but with a popular vote of nearly ninety percent of the people, Slovenia become an independent nation in 1991. In 2004, Slovenia joined the European Union.
When visiting Slovenia, the natural beauty of the landscape is an attraction in itself, but the hospitality of the Slovene people shines as brightly as their beautiful country. There are a wide variety of things to see and do which promise to keep even the most discriminating traveler enthralled.
With a wealth of choices, it is hard to decide where to begin! One might choose to partake of a relaxing day at one of the many thermal spas found throughout the country, or spend the day cycling and enjoy the unspoiled landscape. For the more adventurous, a short drive to the Alps for some outstanding skiing might be the order of the day at one of the many Slovenian ski resorts. Located in the Julian Alps, Kranjska Gora is synonymous with ski-jumping and the home of World Cup skiing events. It is a favorite destination for tourists and locals alike. Cross-country skiing is popular there as well, and during the summer it is a haven for the truly adventurous, offering a wonderful locale for mountain climbing, biking and a variety of adventure sports.
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