Discover our top 10 activities at Lake Bohinj to help you make the most of your holiday in Slovenia. All our favourite activities are within a kilometre of the lake, so you can spend more time out and about and less time in the car!
1) Swimming at Lake Bohinj
Swimming and splashing about in the lake has got to be top of the list. The water is crystal clear and incredibly clean. In fact, all of the water in Lake Bohinj is replenished by mountain streams and springs three times a year. In summer you can expect the water temperature to be in the early 20s °C. So perfect for cooling off after a walk or hike.
The water feels like silk on your skin and there is nothing better than swimming out into the lake and looking at the impressive Julian Alps all around you. It’s easy to see why so many people fall in love with this magical place.
Even in the height of summer it is still possible to find a secluded spot to laze around, take a dip, and watch the fish dart around the shore line. There are shallow areas which are perfect for toddlers, and a floating platform for older children, whilst high rocks give bold teenagers an opportunity to fling themselves into the water.
Head down to the lake for a swim a sunset. You’ll probably have the lake to yourselves.
2) Kayaking or Stand Up Paddleboarding
Enjoy even more fun on the water with a kayak or Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP). Lake Bohinj is very calm, making it ideal for beginners and children.
Hiring is inexpensive and can be done directly from a number of operators on the lake shore. With water splashing on your body and the sun on your back, it’s easy to relax into the holiday spirit. We recommend hiring for the day (approximately €35) as then you can discover little inlets, take a picnic with you, and paddle about at your leisure.
Head far out into the lake to get that postcard view of Lake Bohinj with the bridge and the striking Church of St John the Baptist. Soak up the peace and tranquillity and take in amazing views of the surrounding mountains.
Remember that sunshine reflects off the surface of the water. Do take the necessary precautions – sun cream, sun hat and sun glasses.
Go on a bright, sunny day and you will be rewarded with Instagram-worthy photos of the Julian Alps reflected in the crystal-clear water. The boat, powered by electricity, is completely silent, so you can really appreciate the natural beauty as you glide across the lake.
As you relax on the boat, the captain provides an interesting talk about the history of the vessel, the lake and the geology of the surrounding area.
For those with a little more time and energy, take the boat one way across the lake and return by foot along the northern shore line footpath.
4) Stroll around Lake Bohinj
Lake Bohinj is the largest and perhaps the most beautiful natural lake in Slovenia. A great way to get your bearings is to take the well-marked footpath around the lake. It takes between three and five hours to complete the 12km circuit, depending on how often you stop to admire the views or take a dip in the water.
We recommend you start in Ribčev Laz and head over the bridge towards Stara Fužina and around the quite side of the lake. Once you reach Ukanc at the end of the lake (great photo opportunities here), you can buy and ice-cream or drink at the campsite café.
From Ukanc, head along the roadside path or the “rougher” forest path higher up.
It is lovely walk, and it is hard not to feel inspired by the beautiful scenery. In fact, when Agatha Christie visited and was asked if she could use Bohinj as a location for one of her crime novels, she famously remarked that Bohinj “was too beautiful for murder”
For a shorter walk, from Ribčev Laz, head along the shore line towards Stara Fužina. There are lots of shallow swimming places, grassy areas and opportunities for refreshments. Return back along the same path.
5) Discover the Slap Savica Waterfall
Slap Savica (“Slap” means waterfall in Slovene) is one of the most famous waterfalls in Slovenia. At 70 metres high, the water bursts through the rock and crashes down to the emerald-green pool below. It is a must-see when in Bohinj.
Having visited a number of times, I think that it is the setting which adds particular charm to this waterfall. The hike is through a lush forest, with gorgeous views out over Lake Bohinj.
There are 550 steps (yes, we have counted!), but there are plenty of resting places. As you near the waterfall, you can hear the water thundering down.
In summer it can get quite busy, so go early to avoid the crowds.
6) Ride the Cable Car to Vogel
For the ultimate panoramic views of Lake Bohinj and the Julian Alps, head up to Vogel on the cable car. In just 4 minutes you glide up to an altitude of 1,535m. It’s really exciting, especially for children. This is the quickest and easiest way to experience the pure mountain air of the high alpine world.
At the top, on a clear day, you can enjoy breath-taking views, watch sheep amble about, and observe beautiful alpine flowers bursting out from rock crevices.
Relax in the café or take advantage of the ski chairlifts, some of which also operate in summer, to start one of the numerous, well-marked, high-altitude hiking trails.
For the more energetic, try the zip line or mountain bike park; for the fearless, paragliding offers an unforgettable experience.
The café at the top does amazing hot chocolate!
7) Hike to a Viewpoint over Lake Bohinj
It is about a 40-minute round trip from the village of Stara Fužina. You never get more than 200m above the water, but the views over Lake Bohinj, and the meadows along the way are superb. The final view is beautiful, with the Church of St John the Baptist and bridge acting as gatekeepers to the lake.
Head up to the Peč viewpoint for sunset and watch Lake Bohinj on fire!
8) Immerse yourself in Nature at the Mostnica Gorge
One of our favourites walks when we visit Lake Bohinj is to head up the Mostnica Gorge. The moss-carpeted forest floor, impressive rock formations and refreshing breeze from the cold mountain water combine to make it beautiful and atmospheric – imagine the perfect home for pixies and elves. It is the perfect haven on a hot summer’s day.
Water has gushed down the gorge for millennia, carving striking pools, crevices and waterfalls into the rock. In places, the gorge is only 1 metre wide, with the bottom looking impossibly distant below.
As you go through this enchanting gorge, look out for the rock formation, below, said to resemble the head and trunk of an elephant.
It takes about 1.5 hours to reach the top of the gorge from Stara Fužina. Here you will find Koča na Vojah, a mountain hut offering refreshments.
Stop at the Koča na Vojah for a delicious slice of blueberry strudel.
9) Devour a Banana Split Overlooking Lake Bohinj
Indulge in a delicious banana split at Kramer café overlooking Lake Bohinj. Or if that’s not your thing, try a Nutella-filled pancake or one of the locally crafted beers. You can’t get a better view.
The café is situated next to a small pier. Wander along to watch the trout swimming in the clear water, or run and jump off into the lake. A very popular activity for children, and indeed with our own!
Café Kramer only accept cash. There is a cash point in Ribčev Laz by the tourist information.
10) Visit the Church of St John the Baptist
To add a little culture to your stay in Lake Bohinj, visit the beautiful medieval Church of St John the Baptist.
This church is considered to be one of the most brilliantly frescoed churches in all of Slovenia.
The simple, plain style of the white exterior belies the detailed and vivid artwork inside the church. If you decide to view the art inside, be prepared for a few gory surprises!
For a small fee, you can climb up the tower for a superb view of the lake.
Top 10 Activities at Lake Bohinj
Ready to start planning your visit to Lake Bohinj? Hopefully by now you will have a flavour of the types of activities you can try here in summer. You can explore the local area by foot, boat, cable car, as well as by bike, horse and even electric scooter! So much to do… I hope you have time to try all 10!
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