Slovenia offers lower prices and fewer crowds than the Alps, attracting economy minded visitors from neighbouring Italy and Austria as well as Britain and the Netherlands. The ski areas are limited and a bit antiquated; most suit novices well. Some Slovenian resorts are making obvious investments but some are struggling.

Slovenia – which is bordered by Italy, Austria and Croatia – has 30 or so ski areas, the main ones concentrated in the Julian Alps in the west, dominated by its highest mountain, Mt Triglav; all are small and some are tiny. None is likely to keep the adventurous piste skier who wants to clock up the km's amused for a week; but you can have an enjoyable trip touring by car or by combining several resorts from one base. EasyJet (from Stansted) and Adria (from Gatwick) fly to Ljubljana.

The season is shorter than in the Alps and the resorts low. Most slopes are below 2000m.

Prices are low, and there is a positive feel – and a warm and hospitable welcome. Standards of service and accommodation have improved – the hotels may not be particularly attractive, but many are new or modernised, complete with pools, spas and often free Wi-Fi.

Getting around is relatively easy, and most ski areas are within a 40-minute drive of each other on good roads. And the main resorts are within a two-hour bus ride of Ljubljana. 

Bled, with its beautiful lake and fairly lively nightlife, is an attractive base and is featured by a few British tour operators. It has just one steepish slope. But other resorts nearby include Kranjska Gora, Krvavec, Kanin, Vogel and Kobla (the only ski area in Slovenia reachable by train).

The other main group of resorts centres on Maribor to the east, a quite different area of low-slung wooded ridges. But it has the biggest ski area in the country at 43km. 

The Ski Pass Slovenia covers all resorts in Slovenia.

Most resorts fit best into the intermediate category but differ on their suitability for novices. Experts will find few black runs, but there is good off-piste when conditions permit. Lift systems are improving and queues are rare. Most Slovenians visit at weekends; midweek the slopes can be deserted. A common feature of many areas is an access lift with no runs back to valley level. One drawback for us is the lack of quality lunches: snacks and picnics are the norm, hearty menus and cute huts are rare. Ski schools are of a high quality and cheap, with good spoken English. Other winter activities are big in Slovenia, too, so there is plenty to do off the slopes. 

Low prices.

Beautiful, varied scenery.

Good beginner slopes and lessons.


Limited, mostly easy slopes.

Still lots of slow, antiquated lifts.

Mountain huts not a highlight.

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