LUV fest begins on the holiday of Slovenian culture, 8 February, when museums, galleries, and other cultural institutions open their doors for free, and will offer more than 130 diverse cultural events until 12 March. It also brings special experiences, including the lighting of light installations with a dance performance by the renowned choreographer and dancer DISKOlektiv at Kongresni trg, in which visitors and passersby can actively participate. Throughout the streets from Trubarjeva to Soteska, it will be possible to admire artworks, and special decorations themed around LUV fest will also be on Wolfova ulica and Pod Trančo.
Participants will have the opportunity to join special guided tours of Ljubljana and experience it through Ljubljana's stories of love or through the eyes of youth from the LGBTQI+ community. Various guided tours of exhibitions on the theme of love are also being prepared by numerous museums and galleries in Ljubljana. The beginning of March will be marked by the Ana Srčna festival, which will invite visitors to an evening walk through a light-experience environment with hundreds of fire and light elements at Špica. On the eve of St. Gregory's Day, there will be a traditional event called "Welcome Spring - Gregorički" on Eipprova ulica in Trnovo, where many children gather every year to release boats with candles on the Gradaščica stream. LUV fest will also offer a rich program for families with children, from performances to storytelling events and creative workshops.
Adults will have the opportunity to test their craftsmanship at creative handicraft workshops, and part of the additional offerings of LUV fest will include speed dating and other events for those looking for romantic love. Ljubljana's hotels are preparing special LUV pampering packages, restaurateurs and merchants are providing special culinary and shopping LUV delights.
"LUV fest is a platform that connects quality cultural events of various forms and genres under the overarching theme of love, thematic tours of the city, outdoor art, interactive workshops, and experiences for all generations, as well as hotel, shopping, and culinary offerings. The comprehensive offering allows us to invite visitors to Ljubljana with a diverse program even during times when we usually experience lower occupancy rates. The festival's message is also attractive as it highlights activities imbued with love, especially towards our culture, language, art, and heritage, as well as towards fellow humans, community, friendship, family, and ultimately ourselves," explains M.Sc. Petra Stušek, CEO of Ljubljana Tourism.
With LUV fest, Ljubljana Tourism is implementing strategic efforts to deseaseonalize tourism in Ljubljana, revitalizing months when the city is quieter, also in terms of tourist visits. The goal of the festival is to position Ljubljana as a destination worth visiting even in February and March, and to offer residents a lively atmosphere during this time.
Following last year's first edition of LUV fest, Ljubljana Tourism surveyed residents for their opinions, and the majority of their suggestions were also considered in this year's program. They have included more content for the LGBTQI+ community, more literature, various workshops, and outdoor artworks. They hope that locals will embrace the festival, co-create it, and continue to live with it in the future. Satisfied locals are indeed the best ambassadors for both the festival and Ljubljana.
The entire program of LUV fest is available on a special website of Ljubljana Tourism and in a program brochure, which is freely available at the Tourist Information Center on Adamič-Lundrov embankment 2.