Now, before we left for this trip, everyone asked if this European holiday was our honeymoon. Since we had actually been married almost 2 months prior, but, I mean would YOU go on a honeymoon with your grandmother and 10 members of your family? As much as I love my adorable little grandma, that is not how I pictured our honeymoon and it definitely didn’t feel like one. Until we hit my favorite little Slovenian spot….Lake Bled. (Typically, we also would hit the minuscule town of Adlesici, from which my grandfather’s family hailed!) Beautiful doesn’t even begin to describe the small town of Bled, situated around a perfect little lake with a tiny island in the middle. There are no powered boats on this lake, so there is a wonderful quietness to it. Only designated ‘pletnas’ or row boats make the trip out to the church atop the island. An impressive castle mansion overlooks the lake, from a top a mountain cliff. The mountains surround you, making everywhere you look a beautiful landscape to marvel at. Swans float by in the crystal water as you stroll along the lake, almost as if you wandered straight into a Disney movie. (I swear, I am not making this stuff up!) Lake Bled is hands down one of my top 5 favorite places in the world and I am pretty sure anyone that has been there can attest to it’s magical allure. I knew that K would love it here and I couldn’t wait to show it off.
Click through to see more of the little Slovenian spot of heaven I have claimed for myself!
The view from the balcony off of our hotel room…are you booking your flight yet? (Oh, you will be, by the end of this post…)
My second shooter in training caught me taking these detail photos in our hotel room on the first day. I love love love the vintage opulent feel to everything in the Grand Hotel Toplice.
After taking in the gorgeous views from our room and even the Castle atop the cliff, I tackled my fear of small boats by letting K row me out to the church on the island. Let’s face it, I would have been no help, even if I tried!
We were loving our time in Bled! This majestic spot always seems too good to be true. And if all those special moments had in Lake Bled hadn’t been enough to feel like we were actually getting a bit of a honeymoon, it was about to get even better! On our last evening in Bled, Slovenia, my father handed us two envelopes. This was the first of the two….
We were shocked to receive such a special surprise….even before we knew what it was! It is safe to say we were excited! I made sure to charge all my camera batteries and pack my bags before bed, so we could be up before sunrise. The next morning, with sleep still in our eyes, we made our way outside to find a red truck with a friendly gentleman waiting for us. With the sun just starting to rise, we jumped in the truck and shortly found ourselves in a large open field, where THIS began to be pulled out of the back of the truck!
“Asdfghjl! A hot air balloon! Asdfghjkl! We are going on a hot air balloon ride! Asdfghjkl! We are going on a hot air balloon ride in one of the most beautiful places in the world, I know! Asdfghjkl!” Yup, that pretty much sums up my reaction to our surprise. It is safe to say that I finally woke up at this point, watching them blow up the balloon, bouncing around with excitement.
We hopped into the basket and were ready to take in all the sights!
My second shooter at the ready! And the unique design of the field we took off from!
One of my absolute favorite images from the trip, taken by my talented second shooter!!! (For a first time D-SLR shooter, I was crazy impressed that K ended up shooting in manual for the majority of the trip! I think it took me years to be brave enough to shoot in manual, back in the day!)
Our hot air balloon ride was one of the most peaceful and magical experiences I have ever had! Floating through the sky, while the world is still sleeping. So wonderfully quiet and contemplative. The cool, calm air blowing by our faces. The warm sun rising in the sky. And with my new spouse by my side! It felt a bit unreal, at times. I kept finding myself awe-struck, my camera frozen at my side, taking it all in with my eyes and my heart. Now, this felt like a honeymoon moment….a moment we will never forget.
Our wonderfully charismatic pilot for our early morning adventure….
Thankfully, our lovely pilot asked us if we wanted a photo. Whew, that was close! It would have been a shame to not get a photo together during our special honeymoon-esque moment!
To have shared this unique moment together up in the skies (on our actual 2 month anniversary, no less!) was beyond special. I was almost sad as we began to descend to land, but I know we will never ever forget it. Thank you, dad, for helping us make some amazing honeymoon memories amidst our Griswold-esque vacation. We spent our honeymoon in the skies of a place very dear to my heart and it doesn’t get better than that.
Back at the hotel, my uncle awoke to find this curious sight from his balcony. Little did he know, it was us, up there! How perfect to have this image of us, from afar, during our magical honeymoon moments! If not for the fact that it was taken on his mobile device, I would blow this up, to cover an entire wall in our house!