The city of Maribor is included to the region Administrative unit Maribor and to the province Maribor
Presentation of the destination
Maribor is the second largest city in Slovenia, with a population of approximately 115,000. It was first mentioned as a market near Marchburch, a 12th century castle built on Piramida Hill above the city, and officially became a town in the middle of the 13th century. The city has had a long and difficult history. The area was annexed by the Nazis during World War II, and the city was visited by Adolf Hitler at one point. During the war, Maribor was the site of a German prisoner of war camp that held troops from Britain, Australia, and New Zealand that had been captured in Crete in 1941. It was heavily damaged by bombings during the war, with over 50% of the city bombed by the Allies. However, it has since become a center of culture in Slovenia. It is home to the University of Maribor as well as dozens of fascinating tourist sites, and boasts a warm climate that allows the local wine traditions to flourish.
Points of interests / things to see
If there’s one place in Maribor you must visit, it’s the Old Vine. The grapevine is over 400 years old, and has even made it into the Guinness World Records. It is a Žametovka grapevine, one of the oldest domesticated noble wine types in Slovenia. The vine has been tested by experts who have confirmed its age, while there are also paintings of it and the house it grows on that date back to the mid-17th century. Wine and cuttings from the vine have been used as ceremonial gifts to important people in the past, including former U.S. president Bill Clinton and Pope Benedict XVI. The vine grows on Old Vine House, once part of the town’s defense wall, which now contains exhibitions on local wine culture and trade, as well as the history and importance of the Old Vine. Guided tours are available, and you can also buy excellent local wines, Slovene chocolate, and other souvenirs in the shop or partake in a wine tasting. There are also several local festivals related to the vine each year, including September’s 10-day Old Vine Festival with ceremonial grape harvest, the pruning of the vine during Lent, and St. Martin’s Day celebrations that feature the arrival of the Wine Queen.Location: Vojašniška 8Hours: The Old Vine House is open daily from 10:00 until 18:00 (Nov through Apr) and 20:00 (May through Oct)
Maribor is one of the sunniest cities in all of Slovenia, so you should be sure to take advantage of the gorgeous weather and take a leisurely stroll through Maribor City Park. The park is a popular local attraction that covers 5 hectares of land. Its three ponds are home to various bird species including beautiful swans and ducks, as well as terrapins that are sure to delight children. You can relax in the shade under the many trees, as there are over 100 species throughout the park, as well as lovely flower beds, fascinating sculptures, and beautiful fountains. Kids will love the playground, and if you’re lucky you might come across a concert in the park’s pavilion. You can also climb Piramida, a hill that provides the best views of the city.The park is also home to the city’s aquarium-terrarium. For a small price, you can visit one of the best aquariums in all of southern and central Europe, which features over 100 fish species in sea, river, and lake environments. The newer terrarium contains over 100 species of amphibians, reptiles and insects, including iguanas, crocodiles, and poisonous snakes.Hours: Mon through Fri 8:00 to 19:00, weekends and holidays 9:00 to 12:00 and 14:00 to 19:00Admission: Adults €4, children €3.20
In the heart of Maribor on the main square, you’ll find the town hall. It was built in 1515, but has been remodeled several times, once in the mid-1600s to fit Renaissance style, then to late Classical style in the mid-20th century, and finally restored to its original appearance in recent days. It has been the site of historical events in the past, including a 1941 speech that Adolf Hitler made to Germans in the area from the balcony. It is currently used as city offices, as well as containing a restaurant that features Slovenian cuisine. Just outside the town hall is the Plague Memorial, which commemorates the end of the horrific plague epidemic that killed a third of the city’s population back in 1680. The original memorial was built in 1681, but it was later replaced in 1743 by the current memorial, a work by local sculptor Jožef Štraub. The memorial is considered to be a great example of baroque art, and is also among the artist’s best work. It is made of beautiful white marble. The memorial’s pedestal supports a Corinthian column that holds a statue of the Virgin Mary standing on the moon with a crown of 12 stars. The base features depictions of six saints that the townspeople prayed to for help: St. Francis of Assisi, St. Sebastian, St. James, St. Anthony of Padua, St. Roch, and St. Francis Xavier.
For a unique experience and new views of Maribor, consider going for an adventure on a timber raft on the Drava River. The river was at one time used for economic transport, as rafters moved timber from the forests of the nearby Pohorje and Kozjak mountain ranges down the river to the cities of Belgrade, Serbia and Osijek, Croatia. Today, experienced raftsmen will take you on a leisurely ride down the river on a wooden raft to Lent, a nearby port. As you float along, you will be treated to Slovene music played by the Rafter’s Trio, as well as a typical rafter’s snack, as many drinks as you want, and a taste of traditional coffee prepared in the raft’s kitchen. Be sure to pay attention to the informative presentation on the history of Drava River timber rafting and local traditions which is offered in several languages, including Slovene, Croatian, Italian, German, English, Russian, Spanish, and French. One of the highlights of the approximately hour long trip is the Rafter’s Baptism, in which one of the passengers is chosen to be “christened”. It’s even worth booking the tour if the weather is bad, as you’ll still be able to enjoy most of the entertainment at the “Rafter’s Tavern”.Location: Information at Tourist Association Maribor, Partizanska 47; purchase tickets at bay Koblarjev zalivWebsite: http://www.td-maribor.com/
Sports enthusiasts should take advantage of the many activities offered near Maribor at Pohorje, a mountain range that is part of the Central Eastern Alps. The mountain range borders Maribor as well as the towns of Dravograd and Slovenske Konjice and the Mislinja and Dravinja rivers. Several area ski resorts provide a variety of outdoor activities. Unitur Rogla Ski Resort offers skiing, snowboarding, hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding, as well as facilities for swimming and playing soccer, handball, squash, tennis or basketball. Website: http://www.rogla.eu/en/Kope-Ribniško Pohorje Ski Resort also offers a wide array of activities, including cross country skiing for those who prefer a more relaxed look at the Alpine scenery of the area. Mountain biking, hiking, and skiing are also offered.Website: http://www.ribnisko-pohorje.si/en/ribnisko-pohorje-winter/ There are many other places to visit in the area, but we must mention Mariborsko Pohorje Ski Resort. It is the largest ski resort in Slovenia, and is famous for having hosted women’s World Cup alpine races in giant slalom and slalom in the past. The resort also features a sledding track in winter, an Alpine roller coaster in summer, a spa and golf, in addition to the usual skiing, mountain biking, and hiking.Website: http://www.pohorje.org/en/mariborsko-pohorje-winter/skiresort-skiresort
Wine lovers should definitely not miss out on visiting the Vinag Wine Cellar, located in the city center under Trg svobode square. At the end of 2.5 km long underground tunnels, you will enter one of the oldest and largest classic wine cellars in all of Europe. The wine cellar’s archives hold over 250,000 bottles of the best vintages, boasting over 5.5 million liters of high quality wine. There is also a wine tasting room and a shop for you to take some wine home with you.Location: Trg svobode 3Hours: Shop open Mon through Fri 9:00 to 18:00 and Sat 8:00 to 13:00, tour reservations should be made in advance
Each summer, Maribor hosts the Lent International Summer Festival, named after the city’s waterfront district of Lent. This two week festival at the end of June includes hundreds of entertaining events, including theater, opera, and ballet performances, musicians of all kinds, dancers, mimes, acrobats, and magicians. There are also several sub-festivals that cater to specific interests. Families can take their children to Otroški Lent, the children’s festival, while jazz lovers should definitely take the time to visit the Lent International Jazz Festival. In previous years, it has featured world famous musicians such as Ray Charles, B.B. King and Jose Feliciano.Website: http://www.festival-lent.si/en/
Maribor Synagogue, known to locals as Sinagoga Maribor, is one of only two synagogues left in Slovenia. It is one of the oldest preserved synagogues in all of Europe. It was built in the 14th century in what was then the Jewish quarter of Maribor, where it was the center of the medieval Jewish community. The building has a long history, having been converted into a Catholic church in the 1500s, a military warehouse in the late 1700s, and then from 1811 until the 1980s it was used as an apartment. Since then, it has been converted into a cultural center used for exhibitions including one on the history of the Jewish community, as well as being used for concerts and literary events.
Spend an afternoon in the sunshine visiting the remnants of the medieval city walls and fortified towers of Maribor. Today, all that remains are the Water Tower, Judgement Tower, and Jewish Tower. The impressive Judgement Tower was built in the early 14th century, with four floors added on in the 19th century. Next to the Drava River, you’ll find the Water Tower, which dates back to 1555 and was constructed in the Renaissance style. Many medieval houses around it were demolished in the 1960s, but a project was undertaken to save the tower. Today, it is home to Slovenia’s oldest wine cellar, which contains a wine shop filled with a selection of the best Slovenian wines. The top floor of the tower is also used for wine tastings.
Vacation rentals in Maribor (Administrative unit Maribor)
How to get there ?
By plane: Maribor has its own international airport, Maribor Edvard Rusjan Airport (MBX), the second largest airport in Slovenia. It is located 9 km south of Maribor’s railway station and is named after Edvard Rusjan, a famous Slovene pioneer aviator. However, it does not offer very many flights.Website: http://www.maribor-airport.si/en/International visitors may instead want to check for flights at the largest international airport in Slovenia, Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport (LJU) in the capital, Ljubljana. It is located approximately an hour and a half drive away from Maribor.Website: http://www.lju-airport.si/en/MainBy train: Maribor has a train station located at Partizanska cesta 50, and is connected to many European cities by Slovenian Railways. It takes approximately 3.5 hours to reach Maribor from Vienna, 9.5 hours from Venice, 6.5 hours from Budapest, and 9 hours from Prague. Detailed information about train schedules and prices can be found on the Slovenian Railways website. Website: http://www.slo-zeleznice.si/en/passengers/sloveniaBy bus: Maribor’s bus station is located next to the train station at Mlinska ulica 1. There are frequent services to Ljubljana, Belgrade, Sarajevo, Vienna, Neum, and Tuzla, as well as many other cities.By car: Maribor can easily be accessed by car from European cities near and far, including Ljubljana, Zagreb, Budapest, Trieste, and Graz.
Hotels in Maribor (Administrative unit Maribor)