Summers in Kranj are fresher and also hotter than anywhere else. No, this is not a joke. From the picturesque old town that seems like a stage for experiences rising over the canyon of the Kokra River, you can let your eyes wander over the summits of the Alps. Of all the larger towns in Slovenia, Kranj is the one that is closest to the mountains that have two thousand meteres or more in altitude. The charm of the Alps and its freshness mix here with the flair of the city and the heat of the open-air events in the cafés, courtyards and stages that are full of life in the summer.
In Kranj you can feel as if you were sitting in a large alpine amphitheatre, with mountains all around, where everything sounds good, from jazz to blues, from Slovenian chansons to rock, from musicals to classical music.
Khislstein Summer Stage and evenings under the linden tree in the castle courtyard
The open-air stage in the Khislstein castle is synonymous with the summer in Kranj. Concerts, musicals and theatre performances take place here in its pleasant atmosphere. Take a look at the program and book a ticket for one of the shows.The summer evenings under the castle tree have a slightly more intimate feel. There, one can hardly decide which is more romantic – the linden tree, a symbol of Slovenia, rustling in the evening breeze, or the melodies played on the guitar and the chansons being sung here. A bit more passionate is the atmosphere next to the former defence tower at the tip of the rock between the two rivers. This tower is like a guardian of music-listening pleasure, and the popular café around it contributes quite a lot to that pleasure. Just don’t miss the Friday evening concerts at Pungert.
The urban trio – Kranfest, Jazz Kamp and SubArt
One of the hottest events in summer is the Kranfest, where the entire town is flooded with music and crowds of people from the entire region. Then the lights on the stages are lit up at the same time as the flames under the cookers. Various stars enter the stages and the famous Carniolan sausages are cooked over the fires. After that, the prestigious Jazz Kamp comes to town. Many people from Kranj love it so much that they plan their summer vacation just so that they don’t miss it. It has a great programme and jazz lovers from near and far come to hear it, while its workshops are taught by famous musicians. SubArt festival specializes more in electronic and alternative music. Its audience is younger and that is a good addition to the colourful summer repertoire.
Movie nights and the summer at the Maister Square
When summer comes to Kranj, the streets fill with the magical energy of concerts and other cultural events, and then the breeze from the Alps carries them throughout the town. Every Thursday night in the Vovk garden, you can feel as if you were visiting a neighbour who suddenly decided to have an open-air cinema in a secluded courtyard. A fantastic backdrop for summer events is also the Maister Square or the masterpieces created by the architect Plečnik. The bustling street life in Kranj is well complemented by the delicacies that can be enjoyed in the restaurants, as well as by the attractive features of the city. Here, at the foot of the Alps, history has been made for 6000 years and it is constantly made fresh by the Kokra and Sava rivers flowing into one, so that each summer one urban surprise follows another.
Walk with a local tourist guide through the capital of the Slovenian Alps
Kranj should be visited already during the day so that you can see some of the most beautiful views from here. Or in the morning mist, you can first walk to the little church on the hill of Jamnik, a world star on Instagram. Then you can treat yourself to a coffee in Kranj and stroll through the old streets, the little shops and galleries. You definitely should not miss the Gallery of the Prešeren Award Laureates , as it presents works by Slovenian artists, who have been recognized by receiving the prize that bears the name of the great poet. His statue stands not only in Kranj, but also in the centre of Ljubljana. Four times a week in summertime, you have a chance to walk the streets of Kranj with a local guide.Then you can hear many good stories, like the one about why Dr. France Prešeren, the greatest Slovenian poet who liked to give figs to children, was called Dr. Fig. The Layer house will delight you with its artistic atmosphere and the life story of Leopold Layer. In the Museum of Gorenjska, you will learn that Kranj was already a big city at the time of the first Slavs, and then some pleasantly cool air awaits you in the Tunnels below the old town of Kranj.
Visit the urban streets and squares of Kranj that have the Alps all around and enjoy the warm evenings that are even an hour or two longer in summer. Bring your friends along and enjoy one of the many cultural events every evening of the week. Let Kranj be your town this summer!