#Travel: Lessons from Ljubljana, Slovenia – Europe’s Green Capital 2016

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For the last decade, Ljubljana has been working hard to achieve high environmental standards. In June 2014, the European Commission announced that the city had been awarded the Official European Green Capital Award 2016.

In recent years, the capital has been completely redesigned with sustainability in mind. The capital received recognition for taking numerous sustainable measures including raising environmental awareness, for its ‘Vision 2025’ sustainability strategy and the modifications made to its transportation network.

Transportation in Ljubljana has changed dramatically over the past decade and the city has become more comfortable and more charming for both, tourists and locals. Eco-friendly alternatives such as electric-powered vehicles referred to as “Kavalirs” (Gentle helpers) offer a free ride for locals and tourists within the expanded pedestrian zones. Cycling has also increased, with over 1.6 million journeys taken this year using a bike-sharing system, BicikeLJ.

By modifying the traffic flow within the city to limit motorised traffic and giving priority to pedestrians, cyclists and public transport, Ljubljana now enjoys cleaner air, new green areas, new embankments by the river and a more relaxed atmosphere. Expanded pedestrian zones also offer more space than ever for Ljubljana’s free open-air events with music festivals, street theatre and dance performances, sports events and exhibitions.

Ljubljana is also one of Europe’s ‘greenest’ capitals, with almost 75% of its surface covered with green areas. Many of the capital’s top attractions are outside spaces, including the Ljubljana Botanic Garden, one of the world’s historically most important botanic gardens, and the 35km Path of Remembrance and Comradeship running along the course of the military barbed-wire fence which surrounded Ljubljana during the Second World War.

Ljubljana is Slovenia’s capital and largest city.

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SUSAN WONG

Susan Wong is the Editor of Capital Lifestyle, a resident photographer, an award-winning journalist, radio presenter, full-time adventurer, long-time admirer of anything edible, and a spicy food athlete at Capital FM.

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