Maribor On a BudgetLocated near the Austrian border is Maribor, the second largest city in Slovenia. Maribor is surrounded by hills that are filled with wine vineyards, as well as the Mariborsko Pohorje mountain. The city is split in half by the Drava River. On the left bank of the river you'll find the city's old town.
The city draws tourists from all over the world who come to enjoy the world renowned wine, old town culture, and outdoor activities which include hiking and skiing. The city is a great jumping off point for many outdoor activities and for those hoping to see the countryside. If you're more the city type, Maribor also has plenty to offer. Head to the theater for a show, sip some wine in a town square, or soak in the beauty of a cathedral while you're in the area.
Maribor's climate is humid continental with warm summers and cold winters. During the winter months the average temperature hovers around freezing. The warmest month is July, when average temperatures often exceed 20 degrees Celsius. Maribor is also one of the sunniest cities in Slovenia.
SightsPopular sights around Maribor include the Old Vine, which, at about 450 years, is the oldest vine in the world. The Old Vine House has a lot of information on the local wine culture. Other places worth a visit include Vinag Wine Cellar, Judgement Tower, Slomskov Square, Castle Square, Maribor Synagogue, the Water Tower, Maribor Castle, and the Cathedral.
NeighborhoodsMaribor is located near the Pohorje Mountain, the Slovenske Gorice Hills and the Kozjak Hills on the gravel terrace of the Drava Valley. The city is split into two parts by the River Drava. There is the left, or north bank and the right, or south bank. The left bank is where you'll find the city's old town. This is where you'll find a lot of the historic sights. To the north of the city are the wine growing hills. The foothills of the Pohorje Mountain are in the southwestern part of the city.
ActivitiesActivities around Maribor include skiing and snowboarding at the local resort, going to Slovene National Theatre, taking in the view from Piramida Hill, visiting Pekarna Cultural Center, and relaxing in Mestni Park. Festival Lent is a popular festival in the city with over 400 performances. It is one of the largest festivals in Europe and is ranked as one of the Top 50 of Europe's Best Local Festivities.
Also make sure you buy a bottle of wine while you're in town. The city is surrounded by one of the best wine regions in the world and it is particularly well known for its white wine. There are wine producers whom you can buy wine directly from, or you can purchase a bottle at any supermarket around town. Also of interest in the area is the pumpkin seed oil.
Food and DiningThere are a number of restaurants around town that cater to tourists and locals alike. You can find budget food options or fine dining restaurants with everything in between depending on your style and budget preference. There are some restaurants that serve up local dishes, and there are also some international options including Indian and Italian. Lunch is usually more affordable than dinner, so if you're on a tight budget head to a restaurant for a filling lunch and then prepare your own dinner with food from the supermarket.
TransportationMaribor is a small town that is easy to walk around. You can get maps at one of the two tourist information centers in town. One is next to the Franciscan Church and the other is in the Old Vine House on Lent. There is also a decent bus network around town. In general, you don't need to use it as a tourist unless you want to reach one of the city's outer districts. Bus number 6 is the most interesting one for tourists because it takes you under the Pohorje Mountain.
If you're hoping to travel around the wider region then it is best to have your own car. This is a great way to see the beautiful countryside and see some of the more off the beaten path areas. The roads are good and relatively easy to navigate. If you take your car into the city center on a weekday, be prepared to pay for parking.
There are also a variety of bike paths around central Maribor. This is a great way to get around. You can rent a bike at the Tourist Information Centre as well as a few hotels, the main train station, and the cable railway station.