Thursday, 8 December 2016

Ljubljana Cafe Life

Travelling party band in full swing at a café at night
Nothing like finding a rut and digging deep. The three days so far (update - all 4 days!), Gary and I have ended up at the same outdoor café by the Ljubaniča river for our afternoon cappuccino at 1500h, just the perfect time of still above freezing temps, sun, amazing evening light in wintertime, and the entire rest of the city seems out and about too.

Really, there are few places that tops Ljubljana for café life. The old city is beautiful yet really compact, with all the cafés just about 5-6 blocks along 1-2 streets on either side of the river, so all the action is close by.


The terrific thing with coffee culture in Slovenia is that it is all about the social aspect of it. There is no such thing as takeout coffee in big travel mugs that people walk (run) down the street with. Indeed, my first time here on sabbatical in 2005 and even now, I have yet to see a N. American style travel mug. What you do instead is go walk down to the local café with your friends or your work colleagues, and you actually take a true break and enjoy sitting there with your coffee together. That relaxed attitude is SOOOO nice!

Of course, it also helps that your sidewalk café is on beautiful pedestrian-only cobbled streets next to a beautiful little river, not a Starbucks outdoor patio next to a busy street with noise and pollution from traffic roaring by!

And the wonderful cherry on top is that coffee and the general cost of dining is beyond ridiculously cheap. A really nice sit-down cappuccino on prime real estate in the heart of the old city in the capital city? All of 1.70 Euros all-in, or about $2.50! And tonight, 9 of us went out for pizza and beer(ssss) at another pub right next to Prešeren Square for all of 127.50 Euros, or about $21 each all-in!

The other thing that can't be beat is people watching, which you can just do for hours on end.

In addition to the actual cafés, there are all these kiosks selling "glauwein" or mulled wine, along with other drinks. Bulk discount of buy 5 get 1 free, or buy 10 get 3 free. That'll keep the blood from freezing!
The action definitely does NOT stop or even slow down once the sun and the temperatures go down.