10 congress myths that you didn’t dare to ask, or know whom to ask
MYTH 1: Bled is a tourist and congress icon of Slovenia
CONFIRMED: Bled is a global tourist icon characterized by the image of its island in the lake and the castle perched above it, sealing its rank amongst the hottest and most photogenic destinations of Europe.
MYTH 2: Bled Island is the only island in Slovenia
BUSTED: It is not the only one, but it is probably the most beautiful. The most recognizable symbol of the island is the Church of Virgin Mary with a long and rich history, but the lush greenery hides even more interesting island buildings, such as the Wishing Bell Tower, the vicarage and Provost’s House, and a small hermitage with some mysterious legends.
MYTH 3: Bled has healing powers on its congress participants
CONFIRMED: Bled has a mild, healthy, sub-Alpine climate, with the longest swimming season of any Alpine resort. Moreover, it has genuine healing spring waters, which are used in the three swimming pools of the Grand Hotel Toplice (23 °C), Hotel Park and Hotel Golf, which offer not only a pleasant swimming experience, but also the successful treatment of stress related illnesses, exhaustion, neuro-vegetative disorders and age-related fatigue. Bled has been known as a natural healing resort since 1895, when the Swiss doctor Arnold Rikli put Bled on the medical tourism map.
MYTH 4: The famous Bled cream cake was created in Bled
BUSTED: The crispy golden brown crust, sprinkled with ground sugar, yellow custard and white whipped cream is officially protected as an original Bled cream cake – “kremšnita”. However, the original recipe was brought to Slovenia from Vojvodina by the confectioner Ištvan Lukaševič, who moved from Sente in Vojdovina to Bled, where the legend of “kremšnite” was finally settled.
MYTH 5: It is possible to organise an event in the national park
CONFIRMED: The best national parks in Europe offer outstanding landscapes and the joyful experience of wilderness. The only Slovenian national park, the Triglav National Park, is an alpine landscape considered one of the most beautiful in Europe. The park administration is situated in Bled and from there it’s easy to explore the wonders of the park, in which you can participate in a variety of incentive programs.
MYTH 6: Bled is a place where congress participants can sleep in camps
CONFIRMED: The eco-village “Gozdne Vile” offers a special type of accommodation, with its wooden huts following the latest trends in camping, but transforming the simple activity of engaging with nature into an altogether more glamorous experience: “glamping”. Gozdne vile consists of small wooden huts offering accommodation right in the heart of nature. They are similar to the wooden houses, called “kožarice, that the charcoal burners once built at Pokljuka for their summer accommodation. Eight huts have been manufactured from organically grown, untreated larch wood and covered with larch shingles. These have proved to be very popular among congress guests.
MYTH 7: It is forbidden to bathe in the lake
BUSTED: Lake Bled has some very nice beaches, the most attractive being “grajska plaza” just below the picturesque castle and the beach in Zaka. In the lake not only can you swim, but also compete in rowing, fish, take a ride on a traditional Pletna Boat to the island or simply stroll leisurely around the lake. In the summer months, the water temperature even gets up to 25°C.
MYTH 8: Bled is only suitable for small-size meetings
BUSTED: With 512 seats, the Bled Congress Centre (Festival Hall) is the town’s largest convention hall. It boasts a superb lakeside location in the very heart of the town, enabling easy access from several hotels of various categories, which are all within easy walking distance.
MYTH 9: Green meetings can be organised in Bled
CONFIRMED: Under the slogan “Green for today”, Sava Hotels Bled took its first steps towards sustainability, such as consistent recycling, the reduction of energy and water consumption, the use of local suppliers and the development of eco-friendly goods.
MYTH 10: The accordion is a typical instrument of Bled and the Gorenjska region
CONFIRMED: The Accordion is an indispensable part of Slovenian folk music and it was in the vicinity of Bled that the most successful Slovenian ensemble, The Avsenik Brothers Ensemble, made their performances. During their heyday from 1953 to 1990 they released around 120 records and cassettes to a total circulation of more than 30 million listeners. In total they have about 670 songs and to learn more about them you can visit their museum and restaurant in Begunje, not far from Bled.