Dates visited: September 13, 2009 – September 18, 2009
My selection of countries on this European vacation (Croatia, Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina) was based on visiting places where there wasn’t a lot of emphasis on museums. Since Rohan was only three years old, our priority was flexibility. Thus, we rented a car for the entire duration, stopped whenever we wanted to take a break, and visited cities and small towns without having to hurry because of crowds.
Bled is an Alpine town situated alongside Lake Bled. Its main attractions are a cliff-top castle (Bled Castle) and an island (Bled Island) with a church built on it. Bled Island (in the middle of glacial Lake Bled) has to be the prettiest island in the world with the prettiest church (Assumption of Mary Pilgrimage Church) ever. We took a pletna (flat-bottomed wooden boat) to this island, and the picturesque location of the island amidst the turquoise waters and surrounded by the imposing Julian Alps. After climbing the 99 steps from the dock to the church, Rohan loved ringing the bell (installed in 1534) in the church which is supposed to make your wishes come true.
We enjoyed the hike to Bled Castle that is built on a precipice. With a cool breeze blowing, it was nice to stroll in the courtyards and get a different view of Lake Bled and Bled Island. After the long walk, we treated ourselves to a popular local dessert called kremšnita—vanilla-custard-and-cream cake with rum and raisins, topped with whipped cream and chocolate syrup. Heavenly!