Koper (Slovenia)

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Koper is the largest city on the coast of Slovenia with around 40,000 inhabitants. It is the only cargo port in the country.

A large part of the city consists of industrial areas. The port city also has an old part that is worth seeing.

Book day tours Slovenia online

You can book many great day trips within Slovenia by bus online.

Many of these tickets are available on the well-known website Getyourguide.com

– Bus tours to the Postojna Caves: click here

– Tours to and from Lake Bled: click here

– Tours and bus trips Ljubljana: click here

Koper is only about 10 km from the border with Italy. There is a larger Italian minority in Koper. Therefore Koper is a bilingual town, all street signs and the like are in Slovenian and Italian.

Sights of Koper

The old town is the most beautiful part of the city. A walk through the picturesque narrow streets is a highlight in Koper. The two most important sights in Koper are right on the town’s main square, which bears the name of the former Yugoslav head of state Tito (Tito Square or Tito Trg in Slovenian). They are Koper Cathedral and the Praetor’s Palace next door.

Cathedral: The tower of the Koper church can be climbed. More information is available at the Koper Tourist Information Centre in the adjacent Praetor’s Palace. From the top you have a great panoramic view of the city. Climbing the tower costs 4 euros. Without paying admission, you can look at the beautiful interior of the church.

Tours Coast Slovenia: Various day trips by bus to and from Piran, Portoroz and the short coast of Slovenia can be booked online at Getyourguide.

Koper, view of church

The Assumption of the Virgin Mary is one of the most beautiful churches in Slovenia. The large paintings in the church are particularly famous. Important in art is for example the painting “Sacra Conversazione” by Vittore Carpaccio from the 16th century. The cathedral dates from the 13th century (Romanesque), but was later partly converted into a Baroque church by the Venetians.

Book day tours Slovenia online

You can book many great day trips within Slovenia by bus online.

Many of these tickets are available on the well-known website Getyourguide.com

– Bus tours to the Postojna Caves: click here

– Tours to and from Lake Bled: click here

– Tours and bus trips Ljubljana: click here

Praetor’s Palace: It is one of the most famous palaces in Slovenia. Originally built in the 14th century, it was later rebuilt many times. Especially because of the large 17th century battlements, the building looks a bit kitschy.

Praetoren.Palace, Koper, Slovenia

Today, the great hall of the Praetorian Palace is mainly used for official occasions and celebrations. The interior of the building can be visited for 4 euros (as of 2019). Koper’s tourist information office is in the Praetor’s Palace, where you also pay the entrance fee. The third large building, directly opposite the Praetor’s Palace on Tito Square, is the so-called Loggia.

Port: If you walk along the pedestrian zone from Tito Square towards the sea, after less than 100 metres you will be in front of a barrier from which you have a good view of the cargo port. It is by far the largest port in Slovenia and by far the largest employer in the city of Koper.

port of Koper, only port in Slovenia

A large part of Slovenia’s exports and imports are handled in this port. To the left of the harbour is a small beach and a nice café. Further south follows the huge marina and fishing harbour. You can walk on footpaths about 100 metres out to sea and look at the luxurious yachts.

Town gate and fountain: In another square in the old town, Preseren Square, stands the 17th century Da Fonte fountain. It is one of the most famous fountains in Slovenia and a good photo motif.

Da Fonte, Koper

Not too much remains of the once mighty city wall around Koper. Worth seeing, however, is the well-preserved Muda city gate in the shape of an arch in the Renaissance style from the early 16th century. For a long time, this gate was the only entrance to the city of Koper, so there was a lot going on here. Traders and farmers brought all their goods through this gate into the old town.

Museum of Koper: The Regional Museum of Koper is definitely worth a visit. We have made an extra page about the museum.

Some tips on accommodation in Koper

Koper is a good base for tourists who want to explore the whole Slovenian coast. If you travel by bus or train, you will usually arrive here. Even if you are travelling by car, you can reach Koper quickly and easily.

There are some hotels and holiday flats directly in the old town. But also between the train station and the old town near the big shopping centres is not a bad area to choose accommodation. Both the old town and the train station, including the bus station, can be reached on foot in just a few minutes.

Several times we have stayed at Hotel Vodisek on the way from the train station to the Old Town (medium-sized hotel with about 30 rooms). It is a good and modern accommodation with rather reasonable prices and good breakfast. The staff is nice and speaks foreign languages well. It is about 10 minutes walk from the train station and the old town, a big shopping centre and some big supermarkets are nearby. This and other hotels can be booked at Booking.com.

The well-known Hotel Koper in the Old Town near the sea is also popular. Within 3 minutes you can reach a small beach. This and other hotels can be booked at Booking.com.

If you are looking for a small, inexpensive apartment or studio, you could find your holiday happiness in the old town of Koper at Apartma Dimnikarska. Hardly any accommodation in Slovenia has better ratings on the internet. Centrally located in a small, nice alley in the largely car-free old town. You can book this and other hotels at Booking.com.

Apartma Tina, a real holiday flat with bedroom and living room etc., for a maximum of 4 people, also gets extremely good reviews. This and other hotels can be booked at Booking.com.

A good hostel (roughly youth hostel) is Koper is the Hostel Secret Garden, also in the great old town. An overnight stay in a shared room (small dormitory) costs less than 15 euros. You can book this and other hotels at Booking.com.

Getting to Koper by bus and train

Koper is the only seaside town in Slovenia with a railway station. Trains only run to Ljubljana a few times a day. Tourists often take a train towards Ljubljanan and get off at Postojna. Here is the world-famous Postojna Jama Cave, the biggest attraction in Slovenia. A day trip to the cave is possible from Koper by train, but also by public bus.

Koper’s train and bus stations are right next to each other and about one kilometre outside the centre. Buses run several times an hour from Koper along the coast to Izola, Portoroz and Piran. There are also several buses daily to Ljubljana and other cities in Slovenia. The long-distance bus is the most important means of transport in Slovenia, not the railway as in Germany. The buses are usually modern, cheap and punctual. Tickets are sold at a special bus ticket office in the neighbouring Koper railway station. There is also a free public toilet here. For shorter distances, you can also get tickets from the driver.

Bus in Slovenia

If you want to get to Italy by public transport from Koper, you also have to take the bus. The Koper-Trieste railway has unfortunately been closed down. Buses to Trieste run about 6-8 times a day during the week. On Saturday there are slightly fewer buses between Koper and Trieste, and on Sunday only one per day. The journey time to Trieste is about 45 minutes. The buses arrive at the bus station in Trieste. As in Koper, the bus station is only a few metres away from the main railway station. Tickets to Trieste can be bought in Koper at the bus ticket office in the station or from the driver. Another daily bus to Italy connects Koper with Venice and Padua (not on Sundays).

There are also several daily buses from Koper to Croatia. Many go to the city of Pula in the south of Istria and some stop on the way at other resorts such as Porec and Rovinj. One bus continues from Pula to Rijeka and Zagreb. There are also bus connections to other countries of the former Yugoslavia, such as Bosnia and Serbia.

Getting to Koper by car

Slovenia has a very good network of motorways. Koper is easily accessible by motorway from both Ljubljana and Trieste in Italy. Road connections to nearby Croatia are also well developed. You need a vignette in Slovenia if you want to use the motorways: more information here.

Shopping in Koper

There is a huge shopping centre and several other large shops in the area around Koper railway station. More about shopping in Koper.

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