Dates: Thursday, 16 September – Saturday, 18 September 2010
Times: Daily from 12:00 – 22:00
Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, is a central European city lying between the Alps and the Adriatic Sea, in a basin where the Ljubljanica river flows into the Sava. It has all the facilities of a modern capital, and yet it has preserved its small-town friendliness and relaxed atmosphere. It is a vibrant city full of surprises. Its surrounding areas, packed with natural beauty and cultural sights bearing witness to the city's dynamic history, are renowned for their walking, hiking and cycle trails and a wide variety of culinary delights.
It is a mid-sized city of some 280,000 inhabitants. Throughout its history, it has been influenced by its geographic position at the crossroads of Germanic, Latin and Slavic cultures. For centuries, Ljubljana was the capital of the historical region of Carniola, and in the 20th century it became the cultural, scientific, economic, political and administrative centre of Slovenia, independent since 1991. Its transport connections, concentration of industry, scientific and research institutions and cultural tradition are contributing factors to its leading position.
In 1981, Ljubljana's per capita GDP was 260% of the Yugoslav average. By the late 2000s, Ljubljana produced about 25% of Slovenia's GDP. In 2003, the level of active working population was 62%; 64% worked in the private sector and 36% in the public sector. In January 2007, the unemployment rate was 6.5% (down from 7.7% a year earlier), compared with a national average of 8.7%.
Industry remains the city's most important employer, notably in the pharmaceuticals, petrochemicals and food processing. Other fields include banking, finance, transport, construction, skilled trades and services and tourism. The public sector provides jobs in education, culture, health care and local administration.
The Ljubljana Stock Exchange (Ljubljanska borza), purchased in 2008 by the Vienna Stock Exchange, deals with large Slovenian companies. Some of these have their headquarters in the capital region: for example, the retail chain Mercator, the oil companies Petrol d.d. and the telecommunications concern Telekom Slovenia. Over 15,000 enterprises operate in the city, most of them in the tertiary sector.
Architectural highlights: Despite the appearance of large buildings, especially at the city's edge, Ljubljana's historic centre remains intact; there, Baroque and Vienna Secession styles mix. The city is strongly influenced by the Austrian fashion in the style of Graz and Salzburg.
The old city is made up of two districts: one includes Ljubljana town hall and the principal architectural works; the other, the neighborhood of the Chevaliers de la Croix, features the Ursuline church, the philharmonic society building (1702) and the Cankar Hall.
Ljubljana Castle dominates the hill over the river Ljubljanica. Built in the 12th century, the castle (like the castle at Kranj) was a residence of the Margraves, later the Dukes of Carniola. Aside from the castle, the city's main architectural works are St. Nicholas Cathedral, St. Peter's Church, the Franciscan Church of the Annunciation, the Triple Bridge and the Dragon Bridge.
Culture: Ljubljana has numerous art galleries and museums. In 2004, there were 15 museums, 41 art galleries, 11 theatres and four professional orchestras.[ There is for example an architecture museum, a railway museum, a sports museum, a museum of modern art, a brewery museum, the Slovenian Museum of Natural History and the Slovene Ethnographic Museum. The Ljubljana Zoo covers 19.6 hectares (48 acres) and has 152 animal species. An antique flea market takes place every Sunday in the old city.
Each year over 10,000 cultural events take place in the city; among these are ten international festivals of theatre, music and art generally. Numerous music festivals are held there, chiefly in European classical music and jazz. In the centre of the various Slovenian wine regions, Ljubljana is known for being a "city of wine and vine".