Maribor with its surroundings
Maribor is the second biggest city in Slovenia and as such also the centre of the North-East part of Slovenia. Even from the Middle Ages onwards it has been known for producing wine, which is why it is today surrounded by vineyards, and the connection with viticulture is confirmed by the 400-year-old vine Å½ametovka by the Drava river, which is the oldest preserved vine in the world. In Maribor there is also one of the largest classic wine cellars in the Central Europe, with its halls stretching three kilometres under the old town centre.
Maribor is also a student town, and at the evening hours it opens the doors of various bars where the most persistent ones enjoy themselves until the morning hours. It becomes the cultural centre of Slovenia in the time of Lent. This is an internationally acknowledged festival, placed among the top 50 events in Europe. At Lent you can listen to various types of music, and also visit various shows and creative workshops, all this along with good food and drink. And on the last day you will witness magnificent fireworks that will not let you forget the festival any time soon.
The thing that really makes the town different from all the others is certainly Pohorje. The mountain rising by the town offers relaxation in the summer as well as in the winter months. Especially during the winter you can visit ski slopes just a few minutes outside the town, and these are appropriate for the experienced and also for the amateur skiers. You can choose between the exciting day skiing or the romantic night skiing. On the snow stadium you can also see the traditional ski contests. The most famous is the ski world cup, where the best female skiers from all over the world compete for the title of the Golden Fox. For the most daring there is also the adrenalin park, which no doubt surpasses all the sport challenges.
Near Maribor lies Ptuj, the oldest town in Slovenia, which was in the past a Roman stronghold Poetovia by the Drava river. Each year in the time of the carnival, Kurentovanje is organized here (the carnival is named after the traditional mascot – Kurent). The town prides itself also with many cultural sites, especially the mighty Ptuj Castle and the Štatenberg Manor.
The east side of Styria region is a place of the hilly Haloze. Because of the propitious climate conditions (only around five percent of the world viticulture regions have such conditions) it belongs to the most ideal regions for growing vine. This is a 'home' of the best Laški and Rhine Rizling and other first-class white wines.
Other wine-growing regions are also Prlekija and Slovenjske gorice. Among the numerous viticulture places, Jeruzalem is the most famous one, and among wines Šipon has the greatest renown. The capital of Prlekija is Ljutomer, which is also the place of horse breeding for the Ljutomer riders, and their horse club is the second oldest in Europe.
In Slovenjske gorice there are the touristic Radenci with springs of the Radenska mineral water and spa activity, and Radgona with the famous wine cellar where the oldest Slovene sparkling wine has been produced by the classical champagne method since 1852.
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