Visiting Slovenia's Finest Baroque Church, Ljubljana Cathedral

Dolničarjeva ulica 1, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia
ljubljanska stolnica

With its iconic twin towers and a single, distinctive weathered green dome, Ljubljana Cathedral captures everything that is Slovenia's capital. The church is the finest example of Slovenian Baroque art, with impressive frescoes by Italian painters.

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Known officially as St. Nicholas's Church, it is Ljubljana's only and the country's most important cathedral. The magnificent building is worth seeing while in Slovenia's capital, paying particular attention to its exterior and interior. You'll need your camera because there's a real chance to photograph the elaborate decor, from the altar to the organ.



I enjoy visiting Roman Catholic churches and cathedrals in European cities, especially those with an ornate Baroque architectural style. The interior of the Ljubljana Cathedral is breathtakingly beautiful and exudes an Italian atmosphere that I adore.


Ljubljana Cathedral in Photos


Stolnica Sv. Nikolaja
The cathedral's southern façade

Stolnica Sv. Nikolaja
The bronze sculptured door on the cathedral's southern side

Stolnica Sv. Nikolaja
Ljubljana Bishops of the 20th century by sculptor Mirsad Begić on the side door

Stolnica Sv. Nikolaja
The nave's left side

Stolnica Sv. Nikolaja
Ceiling frescoes

Stolnica Sv. Nikolaja
The high altar

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The cathedral's interior

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The organ


History of Ljubljana Cathedral

The Ljubljana Cathedral was built from 1701 to 1706 on the site of a tiny Romanesque church (the oldest mention of which dates back to 1262) and later a bigger Gothic church (a fire in 1469 destroyed the structure), according to the plans of the Italian Jesuit brother, Baroque painter, and architect Andrea Pozzo. After 1841, the building took its current appearance, as it previously lacked a planned masonry dome.


Architecture

When viewed from above, such as from the Ljubljana Castle, the cathedral's green dome and two yellow towers form an aesthetically attractive pattern reminiscent of Salzburg Cathedral. The octagonal dome has a gilded cross on top, like the square steeples with octagonal belfries. The church's facades are rich in niches featuring frescoes and other noteworthy elements. The 1996 bronze sculptured entrance front and southern side doors look stunning.



The church has a single large nave as well as several side chapels. The magnificent view that greets visitors upon entering the church is evident. The rich Baroque decor of the Italian-style interior is one-of-a-kind. It features frescoes by Giulio Quaglio the Younger, a Baroque painter. Paolo and Giuseppe Groppelli's decorations from 1711 are on the right side of the nave, while Francesco Robba's works from 1745 to 1750 are on the nave's left side and the high altar. They are all finished with great care. In the early 20th century, Slovene architect Jože Plečnik designed the church's baptismal font and bishop's pulpit.


How to Get to Ljubljana Cathedral

The cathedral stands in the Old Town's Cyril and Methodius Square, near the Central Market and a two-minute walk from the Castle funicular starting point. Entry costs 2 euros.

Bus stop (line 321): Mestna Hiša
Electric train Urban stop: Mestna Hiša



Where to Stay in Ljubljana

Unsure of where to stay in Ljubljana? For my trips, I use Booking.com, a well-designed website that helps me find everything from small B&Bs to large hotel chains, vacation rentals, and homestays.




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Have any questions about visiting the Ljubljana Cathedral? Planning a trip to Slovenia? What about other suggestions? Feel free to leave a comment below.




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