Slovenia is a tiny country, which is extremely rich culturally and traditionally. Due to its central location, surrounded by Austria, Italy, Croatia and Hungary, it is influenced by their features too, what makes it even richer.
When someone travels to Slovenia, mostly Ljubljana (the capital), Lake Bled and Postojna Cave are on their agenda, but do you really think that Slovenia offers only this to a curious wanderer?
Even though Slovenia measures only 20,273 km2, this tiny country offers something for every taste.
If you like off-the beaten paths make sure to spend at least 2-3 days in NE region Pomurje. It is a bit allocated and even for many Slovenians a bit too far to visit. That makes it even more appealing, more natural, less commercialized and unique.
21 best reasons to visit Pomurje when in Slovenia
There are always destinations which are better than the others. We think that the biggest influence is made by its people. When a place, region or a country is less visited, people are always more hospitable and friendly. And Pomurje is exactly like this – less visited place with warm and hospitable locals.
Some years ago Pomurje was a bit hard to reach as there was no highway from Ljubljana, but not anymore. You will only need around 1,5-2 hours by car to reach this region from Ljubljana, which many still have for remote.
3. Good value for your money
Exploring small towns and villages in Pomurje, you will quickly realize that you get lots for your money. That sure is a big plus and reason for a visit.
4. Spas and thermal water
If you like spas and healthy thermal water, you came to the right place. Pomurje is full of spas with long tradition. Can there be anything better than joining exploring and relaxing?
If you enjoy good food you will find your paradise here. Not only the food is good, you will also find some dishes, which are unique and cannot be found anywhere else in the world. Just to name the few: bograč, bujta repa, prleška tünka, dödöle, zaseka, prekmurska gibanica
6. Wines and wine cellars
This part of Slovenia has always been known for good wine. There are lots of small and large winemakers here. We decided to visit w well know wine cellar Steyer. Steyer mainly produces Traminer, but they offer also other wines, including sparkling. The family Steyer is relatively new to the wine business as their first bottle was made in 1993. From then on, the quality increased rapidly. Nowadays they produce around 100.000 liters of wine per year and it all comes from its own vineyards.
Their new building with a big tasting rooms is beautiful and perfect to enjoy in a glass of their good wine.
Guided tour and tasting is possible with bookings in advance and will cost you 7€/pp (including 3 wines, cheese plate and bread) or 10€/pp (including 5 wines, cheese plate and bread). The guided tour and tasting is possible in English, German, Serbo-Croatian and Slovenian.
Location: Plitvica 10, 9253 Apače or coordinates 220.127.116.11 / 015.55.31.1
7. Pumpkin seed oil and oil-extraction plant Kocbek
Cultivation of pumpkins has been present in Pomurje for centuries and is one of the longest traditions, which is still very alive today. To get to know how pumpkin seed oil is made, visit oil-extraction plant Kocbek, which have been producing pumpkin seed oil since 1929.
The Kocbek oil-extraction plant did not stop at pumpkin seed oil, as they also offer pumpkin seed oil chocolate, salami and soaps. They plan to launch some pastas and biscuits too.
Did you know there are 825 different varieties of pumpkins available, but only one is good for extracting pumpkin seed oil? You can get oil on two ways – with cold extraction or warm extraction. The cold extraction pumpkin oil is much more expensive as you need twice as much pumpkin seeds for one liter.
If you have never heard for pumpkin seed oil, you really have to try it, but make sure it is a good one and 100%. Lately it has been also used in culinary and that’s not just on salads!
Oil-extraction plant Kocbek offers guided tour, but unfortunately only for 25 people and up. But don’t give up too fast – pay them a visit and the owners will sneak you in a room, where they still extract pumpkin oil seed in a traditional way. Make sure to ask them for some tasting too.
Location: Stara Gora 1a, 9244 Sveti Jurij ob Ščavnici or coordinates 18.104.22.168 / 016.01.57.3
8. Prekmurje ham and ham producer Kodila
Another fantastic stop for foodies is Kodila ham producer. Prekmurje ham is protected geographically, uniquely made and authentic for this region. The meat used for ham is exactly like for more known prosciutto, but due to the production differences they are like day and night. Both are good, but both very different in taste. Prekmurje ham is produced using past traditions of Prekmurian farms to dry out the ham and smoked it.
Everyone who is interested in production and tasting, can book the tour individually. It will cost you from 7€/pp to 30€/pp –depends of the tasting. You can only taste different types of dry meat, including Prekmurje ham and different salamis, sausages, cracklings, minced lard or you can also include steaks, what makes tasting a bit more expensive.
The tasting room is made in a traditional design, including the estate, having thatched roof and loam layers. If you like cooking, there are also cooking classes available.
Lokacija: Markišavci 44, 9000 Murska sobota oziroma koordinate 46.41.00.5 / 016.09.47.3
9. Negova Castle
Pomurje region has many castles and mansions, but two of them should be on your must to do list. One of them is Negova Castle, which is beautifully renovated and can brag with the FIAPs center of photography. There are only six locations in the world – Buenos Aires, Argentina, Montevarchi Italy, Konya Turkey, Muscat Oman, Jinan china and Negova Slovenia.
Before stepping into the castle courtyard, don’t overlook the pillory near the church, just in front of the castle entrance. There are only 12 pillories in Slovenia preserved.
The Negova castle was first mentioned in 1425 and if the walls could talk, would tell lots of interesting stories. One of the most known is of Apolonia – herbalist, for which she was declared as a witch. You can still meet Apolonia at the castle courtyard and make sure to tie a ribbon to her stick and make a wish.
One of the most known and international oriented event at Negova Castle is Traminer Salon, which is organized by the Steyer wine maker. It is opened to public, but you will need to purchase a ticket for the event. There are more than 100 different Traminer makers from different countries around the world present. Everything is combined with top culinary and concerts.
A visit to Negova Castle’s courtyard is free of charge, but to enter the castle, you will need to buy a ticket, which costs 3€/pp.
Location: Negova 13, 9245 Sp. Ivanjci or coordinates 22.214.171.124 / 015.56.12.8
10. Wind Mill
The wind mill at Stara Gora is a replica to a working mill, which was once very important in this area. Its millstones were used until 1957 for grinding flower. Now grinding flower is done just to show its visitors how it was made.
Entrance tickets is 3,50€/adults and 2€/children, students.
Location: coordinates 126.96.36.199 / 016.01.49.8
11. The town of Ljutomer
The town is the capital of a small region Prlekija, which is part of the larger region Pomurje. Ljutomer is small, but with a nice central square where you can enjoy a cup of coffee or tea. Mostly Ljutomer is historically known as location of the first Slovenian camp in 1868. Traditional sport is harness racing, which has been extremely popular for centuries.
12. Republic of Prlekija and homestead Belec
If you are keen of having double citizenship, make sure to stop at Belec homestead in the middle of Prlekija. For a small fee and two “strict” (hard working and honest) conditions, you will become a proud owner of the green passport of Republic Prlekija.
To be honest, Republic Prlekija is really not a true republic, but a very good marketing strategy to promote Prlekija around the world.
Even if you are not into getting your second citizenship, you can still enjoy views from Belec homestead and try some of its home-made jams and spirits.
They also offer home-made cooking, but only if they have a bigger group announced. Contact them before you plan to visit them to make sure they are open.
Location: Železne Dveri 11, 9240 Ljutomer or coordinates 188.8.131.52/016.11.07.9
13. Jeruzalem wine region
Did you know that Pomurje has an area which is part of the best 5% of wine positions in the world? This is one of the most stunning landscapes in Slovenia. Hills, covered with vineyards, are still a well kept secret, so you will have the views only to yourself. If the name sounds familiar, you are right – it is almost like Jerusalem and honestly, the name for this place did come from Jerusalem. When crusaders came to this place they were impressed over the beauties and the views. They said it is a sacred place and divine place like Jerusalem.
14. Pottery workshop and Center Duo
You cannot really feel the country if you don’t immerse yourself into its culture and tradition. Make sure to visit Center Duo and try yourself in one of the most traditional crafts – pottery.
Center Duo has a wonderful roll in Pomurje – it takes care for traditional crafts and tries to educate new generations that these knowledge will not be forgotten.
If you want to try if pottery is your thing, book individual course with professional potter for 20 EUR/hour and 5 EUR/pp for the material (clay).
Location: Veržej – coordinates 184.108.40.206 / 016.09.38.4
15. Sleeping in the earth house
Earth houses were once used by Slavs. Due to better isolation, they were dig up into the earth. Their roofs were thatched. Near the Center Duo is a small camping place, which also has 5 earth houses available for rent. One earth house is suitable for 4-5 people and costs 30€/night. Believe it or not, but they are equipped with Wi-Fi too.
Location: Veržej – coordinates 220.127.116.11 / 016.09.38.4
16. Vinarium viewing tower in Lendava
Pomurje is richer for the new viewing tower Vinairum. It is actually the highest viewing tower in the whole country and the views from up there are spectacular. What makes the visit even more special is that you can observe 4 different countries from the top of it – Slovenia, Croatia, Hungary and Austria.
The road to Vinarium tower runs through beautiful countryside, full of narrow roads and vineyards.
Location: Dolgovaške gorice 229, 9220 Lendava or coordinates 46.34.02.0 / 016.28.04.2
17. Castle Grad
The most visited and best known castle in Pomurje is Grad. Did you know that the word Grad actually means castle in Slovenian language?
The Grad castle is the largest baroque castle in Slovenia and was built by crusaders in 11th Century. It has 365 rooms – one for each day in a year. Some of the rooms are available also as accommodation.
Walk around the castle’s courtyard and visit some of the rooms, which are remodeled into museum of traditional Pomurje crafts – pottery, blacksmith, weaving, spirit production, herbalism.
The Grad castle is surrounded with majestic English garden, but the courtyard is known as having strong energies, which you can feel as warmth and shivers.
There is an entrance fee for the castle: 3€ for adults, 1,80€ for children and students. The castle is closed on Mondays.
Location: Grad 191, 9264Grad or coordinates 18.104.22.168/016.05.46.3
18. Theme park Vulkanija
Pomurje, is made out of different smaller regions and one is called Goričko. Its hilly surface was shaped due to a volcano, which was active here 3 million years ago.
Today there is not a real active volcano here, but you can still get to know a lot about it and volcanoes in general.
Vulkanija theme park is great attraction for everyone who visits Pomurje and Slovenia with kids. Their guided tour will take you into artificial lava tube and to the center of the Earth. The tour is available in English, German and Slovenian.
The entrance tickets cost 10€/adults, 8€/students and retirees, 7€/kids from 6 to 15 years old. There is even a family tickets available for 25€, including 2 adults and 2 kids.
Location: Grad 174, 9264 Grad or coordinates 22.214.171.124 / 016.05.33.1
19. Culinary events
If you like food you will be happy to know that Pomurje is full with different culinary events. Make sure to check the happening in closest tourism information center or the web page Visit Pomurje.
Getting to know a country and its features is best if you can taste and smell it as well. Don’t be shy and try everything that Pomurje offers. There are lots of unique dishes available, including some unusual ingredients, but if you are brave enough to overcome them, you will not be sorry, as they are delicious. After all – isn’t this the main reason you travel – getting to know other cultures, traditions and tastes.
20. Love Island and floating Mura mill
If you think Slovenia has only one island (in the middle of Lake Bled) you are wrong. An island can be found also in Pomurje and this is not just an ordinary island – it is The Love Island. The island was made naturally by a small branch of the river Mura.
The island got its name after Countess Marija Zichy. She liked to visit the island, walked around it and swam in the Mura River. One day she met a charming man there, son of a miller, and they felt madly in love. Because he was “just” the miller’s son, they could not be together and she never got married.
The river Mura put a big impact on the local life as it has flooded a lot. Because of the floods, which ruined homes and fields, a new profession was born, called burjaš. The word actually means men, who were reinforcing and damming the river and its river banks.
You can still see how this work was traditionally done, if you visit the Love Island during the second weekend in August. You will also be able to try traditional food (“riba na batu” and “pajani kruj”) and see other crafts typical for the Pomurje region.
The Love Island has also a floating mill, which still grinds seeds into the flower. All the seeds are organically grown. The flower is also sold here.
Don’t miss a ride on a wooden raft across the Mura River. It is a truly unique and fun experience.
A visit to the Love Island, including with floating mill and a ride on the raft will cost you 3 EUR/pp. If you want to try typical snack of the burjaš (worker on the river Mura) and drink a love potion, you have to book the visit in advance, which will cost you 6,50€/pp.
Location: Ižakovci pri Beltincih or coordinates 126.96.36.199/016.12.30.5
21. Cycling paths
If you are focused to spend your holidays actively, you will enjoy the fact that Pomurje has more than 600 kilometers of marked cycling paths. They will take you pass all the best tourist attractions, wine cellars and tourist farms. Do we need to say more?
We listed 21 best tourist attractions in Pomurje, but don’t think that these are all. Pomurje has lots more to offer, you just need to take time to explore them. Even though the region is small, it offers many secrets worth taking your time. Visit Pomurje and get the know its best!
TIP: Make sure to stay at least 2-3 nights in Pomurje. The choice of accommodation is large and you can choose from spa hotels to guest houses or even tourist farms. Check the options for accommodation here. If you are flying to Slovenia, you might want to rent a car – we recommend to use Economy Car Rentals.