Top historic sites in Ljubljana

Franciscan Church of the Annunciation

The Franciscan Church of the Annunciation is located on Prešeren Square in Ljubljana. Built between 1646 and 1660 (the bell towers following later), it replaced an older church on the same site. The early-Baroque layout takes the form of a basilica with one nave and two rows of side-chapels. The Baroque main altar was executed by the sculptor Francesco Robba. Many of the original frescoes were ruined by the cracks ...
Founded: 1646-1660 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Ljubljana Cathedral

Ljubljana Cathedral, also named St. Nicholas" Cathedral, was originally a Gothic church. In the early 18th century, it was replaced by a Baroque building. It is an easily recognizable landmark of the city with its green dome and twin towers and stands at Cyril and Methodius Square by the nearby Ljubljana Central Market and Town Hall. The site was originally occupied by an aisled three-nave Romanesque church, the old ...
Founded: 1701-1707 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Ljubljana Castle

Ljubljana Castle stands above the downtown of Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia. Originally a Medieval fortress, probably built in the 11th century and rebuilt in the 12th century, it acquired its present outline with an almost complete overhaul in the 15th century, whereas the majority of the buildings date to the 16th and 17th centuries. At first a defense structure and since the first half of the 14th century the seat ...
Founded: 15th century | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Ursuline Church of the Holy Trinity

Ursuline Church of the Holy Trinity was built between 1718 and 1726 in the Baroque style. The church was designed by Carlo Martinuzzi, a Friulian architect, and is noted for its extensive altar made of African marble designed by Francesco Robba, who also built the Fountain of the Three Rivers of Carniola which stands on Town Square in Ljubljana. The original bell tower was destroyed in the Ljubljana earthquake of 1895. Th ...
Founded: 1718-1726 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

National Museum of Slovenia

The National Museum of Slovenia has an extensive collection of archaeological artefacts, old coins and banknotes and displays related to the applied arts. The museum was founded in 1821. After the establishment of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, the name was changed to National Museum. In 1923 the ethnographic collections possessed by the museum were removed and placed in the new Slovene Ethnographic Museum an ...
Founded: 1821 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

National Gallery of Slovenia

The National Gallery of Slovenia was founded in 1918, after the dissolution of Austria-Hungary and the establishment of the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs. Initially, it was hosted in the Kresija Palace of Ljubljana, but moved to the present location in 1925. The gallery hosts a permanent art collection from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century. The original of the Baroque Robba fountain can also be seen in the ...
Founded: 1918 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Early Christian Centre

The Early Christian Centre occupied one of the Roman Emona"s building plots, which usually measured from 3,000 to 3,600 square metres and were demarcated by four roads. The Centre was located in the vicinity of the Forum and the western town wall, the remains of which have been preserved in the Erjavčeva cesta road across the way from the Cankarjev dom cultural and congress centre. Like most of the buildings in ...
Founded: 4th century AD | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Museum of Contemporary History of Slovenia

Cekin Mansion on the northern edge of Tivoli Park houses the Museum of Contemporary History of Slovenia. The mansion is named after Laurenz Szőgyény, the husband of Ivana Lamberg, who was given the building. The name Szőgyény was Slovenized by the townspeople into Cekin. The mansion was commissioned in 1720 by Leopold Lamberg based on plans by the Viennese Baroque architect Fischer von Erlach. Dur ...
Founded: 1720 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Tivoli Castle

Tivoli Castle is a mansion located in the Ljubljana's Tivoli Park. In the early 15th century, a tower stood in the woods above the site; it was owned by Georg Apfalterer, an ally of Duke Frederick (later Holy Roman Emperor Frederick III). The tower was destroyed by Frederick II, Count of Celje in 1440. The current structure was built in the 17th century atop the ruins of a previous Renaissance-period castle, the mansion ...
Founded: 17th century | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Roman Town Walls

According to an inscription found next to the eastern town gate of Emona, on the site of the present Trg francoske revolucije square, the Roman town walls were built between 14 and 15 AD. The rectangular-shaped walls surrounding the town centre measured 2.4 metres wide and from 6 to 8 metres high. They included at least 26 towers and four main gates. The towers were erected at equal distances along the length of the walls ...
Founded: 14-15 AD | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Emona Archaeological park

The Jakopič Garden, named after the famous Slovenian Impressionist painter Rihard Jakopič, whose studio overlooked the garden, is the site of the remains of a terraced Roman house built in the 1st century AD as part of a larger building complex. In the times of the Roman Emona, the building, now referred to as House No. 15a, used to contain four apartments with a large shared atrium. The remains of the house, w ...
Founded: 0-100 AD | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Fuzine Castle

Fužine Castle is Ljubljana's has retained its original Renaissance character. It was built by a crossing point over the Ljubljanica river's rapids between 1528 and 1557 on commission from the wealthy local merchants Veit Khisl and Hans Weilhaimer, the former of whom served several terms of office as Mayor of Ljubljana. A defence tower was built in each of the four corners of the castle building and another one over the e ...
Founded: 1528-1557 | Location: Ljubljana, Slovenia

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba

The Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba, also known as the Great Mosque of Córdoba and the Mezquita is regarded as one of the most accomplished monuments of Moorish architecture.

According to a traditional account, a small Visigoth church, the Catholic Basilica of Saint Vincent of Lérins, originally stood on the site. In 784 Abd al-Rahman I ordered construction of the Great Mosque, which was considerably expanded by later Muslim rulers. The mosque underwent numerous subsequent changes: Abd al-Rahman II ordered a new minaret, while in 961 Al-Hakam II enlarged the building and enriched the Mihrab. The last of such reforms was carried out by Almanzor in 987. It was connected to the Caliph"s palace by a raised walkway, mosques within the palaces being the tradition for previous Islamic rulers – as well as Christian Kings who built their palaces adjacent to churches. The Mezquita reached its current dimensions in 987 with the completion of the outer naves and courtyard.

In 1236, Córdoba was conquered by King Ferdinand III of Castile, and the centre of the mosque was converted into a Catholic cathedral. Alfonso X oversaw the construction of the Villaviciosa Chapel and the Royal Chapel within the mosque. The kings who followed added further Christian features, such as King Henry II rebuilding the chapel in the 14th century. The minaret of the mosque was also converted to the bell tower of the cathedral. It was adorned with Santiago de Compostela"s captured cathedral bells. Following a windstorm in 1589, the former minaret was further reinforced by encasing it within a new structure.

The most significant alteration was the building of a Renaissance cathedral nave in the middle of the expansive structure. The insertion was constructed by permission of Charles V, king of Castile and Aragon. Artisans and architects continued to add to the existing structure until the late 18th century.

Architecture

The building"s floor plan is seen to be parallel to some of the earliest mosques built from the very beginning of Islam. It had a rectangular prayer hall with aisles arranged perpendicular to the qibla, the direction towards which Muslims pray. The prayer hall was large and flat, with timber ceilings held up by arches of horseshoe-like appearance.

In planning the mosque, the architects incorporated a number of Roman columns with choice capitals. Some of the columns were already in the Gothic structure; others were sent from various regions of Iberia as presents from the governors of provinces. Ivory, jasper, porphyry, gold, silver, copper, and brass were used in the decorations. Marvellous mosaics and azulejos were designed. Later, the immense temple embodied all the styles of Morisco architecture into one composition.

The building is most notable for its arcaded hypostyle hall, with 856 columns of jasper, onyx, marble, granite and porphyry. These were made from pieces of the Roman temple that had occupied the site previously, as well as other Roman buildings, such as the Mérida amphitheatre. The double arches were an innovation, permitting higher ceilings than would otherwise be possible with relatively low columns. The double arches consist of a lower horseshoe arch and an upper semi-circular arch.