If you are visiting Lake Bled in the wintertime, then you are probably wondering what you can do in this alpine resort during the coldest season of the year.
It is true that you cannot swim in the lake (well, except if you are into winter swimming) like in summer, but there are other things that will keep you busy and entertained while in Bled.
Below you will find some local’s suggestions on what to do in Lake Bled in winter.
Have a walk by the lake
There are things that one can do at Lake Bled all year round and one of them is having a walk (except if it is rains cats and dogs or if it snows heavily).
You can just take a short stroll or walk around the entire lake. – The route around the lake is six kilometres (three miles) long and it will take you around one hour and 15 minutes to complete the walk.
LOCATION: Lake Bled lies in the heart of Bled. It takes around 5 minutes to walk from the main bus station to the lake.
Take winter themed photos
Whether you are an avid photographer or just enjoy taking photos for your own pleasure, there is no doubt you will get inspired when at Lake Bled.
During the wintertime, the weather conditions sometimes allow for very unique captures. If it snows or when the lake freezes you can take beautiful winter photos.
If you do not mind waking up early, then going to the lake in the morning might reward you with a mysterious mist rising from the lake. View the photo gallery featuring Lake Bled in Winter to get an impression.
Try some local cuisine
One way of exploring the local culture is through eating. At Lake Bled, there are a number of restaurants that serve food that is typically eaten in Slovenia, as well as Slovenian cuisine.
In many restaurants, you will get the menus that include local food recommendations, if not you may ask the waiter to help you out.
As for local cuisine, you may go for rolled dumplings (štruklji) filled with cottage cheese, pork roast with potatoes, Carniolan sausage (Kranjska klobasa), Black pudding sausage with turnip or sauerkraut, bread dumplings, trout fillet, to name a few.
LOCATION: The majority of the restaurants are located by the southern side of the lake (centre of Bled). There is also a restaurant at Bled Castle.
Treat yourself to something sweet
Do you also have sugar cravings during winter? If yes, then you will probably want to learn more about the offer of the sweet treats at Lake Bled.
There are two desserts that originated in Bled, the first being a famous Bled Cream Cake and the second Grmada of Bled (Blejska grmada).
While both desserts include whipped cream and vanilla cream, Bled Cream Cake is lighter than Grmada of Bled as the latter contains walnuts.
LOCATION: You can order those two desserts in almost every restaurant in Bled, as well as at some coffee shops. In Public Bar & Vegan Kitchen you can also get a vegan version of Bled Cream Cake.
Visit Bled Castle
Bled Castle – that is more than 1000 years old – sits on a cliff overlooking Lake Bled and offers a stunning view. You can walk up to the castle on your way around the lake. You can find the directions to Bled Castle in this article.
Apart from enjoying the view, you can also learn about the history of Bled when at the castle, dine at the castle’s restaurant or see various exhibitions.
LOCATION: The castle is located just above Slovenian Square with St. Martin’s Parish Church.
Take a ride with iconic pletna boat to Bled Island
If you are not afraid of being cold, then you can go to the island on Lake Bled by a pletna boat. Pletna boat is a traditional boat that has been around for centuries. It is rowed by a man standing on it called pletnar.
In one of the buildings that stand on the island, you can also try a traditional festive cake potica that is also a Christmas treat among Slovenians.
Be advised that in case the lake freezes, taking a pletna boat is not possible.
LOCATION: Bled Island lies on the western side of Lake Bled.
Take part in Winter Fairytale (until 6 January)
Winter Fairytale that takes place by the lake each winter (December, January) is a festive event that includes Christmas stalls with local crafts, music concerts and entertainment for children.
You can also have a snack or a drink there while watching an open fire. If you feel like having some outdoor winter fun, you can go ice-skating on the ice rink nearby.
It is especially magical at Winter Fairytale when the dark falls and Christmas lights brighten the walking path by the lake and the Lakeside Promenade.
LOCATION: Winter Fairytale is taking place at the Lakeside Promenade below the Municipal Building and Bled Festival Hall.
Enjoy the view from one of the hills around Lake Bled
If you feel like hiking, you can climb one of the hills sitting around Lake Bled and see the lake with the island and the lake’s surroundings from a bird’s eye view.
Please have in mind that the possibility of hiking to those hills depends on the weather. If it rains or snows, the hiking trails might be too slippery or icy for hiking.
LOCATION: The hills (viewpoints) are scattered around Lake Bled.
Ski on one of the shortest ski slopes in Europe
One of the hills by Lake Bled that offer a panoramic view turns into a ski slope during the winter. That hill is called Straža. The ski slope is open when the temperatures go below freezing.
On Straža that is ideal for beginner skiers (including children), you can also enjoy night skiing.
LOCATION: Straža lies above the southeast side of Lake Bled, close to the centre of Bled and faces Bled Castle.
Warm up with hot winter drinks & read a book
Do you look forward to spending some time with a book (and without a computer) while on holiday? If you forgot your book at home and are already in Bled, then you can borrow some at a café above Lake Bled.
Grab a book before entering Apropo Café where you can have your favourite winter drink and listen to some non-mainstream music.
LOCATION: Apropo Café is located at the shopping centre (big white complex) near Lake Bled.
Visit an exhibition
If you want to escape low temperatures outside, you can visit one of the exhibitions happening in Bled.
Check out the websites of Bled Castle, Info Centre Triglavska Roža and Bled Festival Hall for more information on what is going on at the time you are in Bled.
Go for a swim in an indoor pool
If you wish to swim while at Lake Bled in winter, you can choose from three indoor swimming pools.
Lake Bled is known for hot springs. You can enjoy the therapeutic benefits of thermal water in the swimming pool of Grand Hotel Toplice. The water temperature is 23 °C.
You will find the other two swimming pools in the Park Hotel and Wellness Živa. The water in those swimming pools is being heated up to 28 °C.
LOCATION: Both hotels and the wellness are located in the centre of Bled.