Slovenia to visit Munich for UEFA EURO 2024

So much Slovenia is in Munich: Brass music, brown bear and boiled sausage

Slovenia is coming to Munich for a UEFA EURO 2024 match. But Slovenian culture, cuisine and personalities also characterize the cityscape outside of the European Championships.  Here you can find out just how Slovenian Munich is - from the sound of trumpets at the Oktoberfest to Alpine similarities.

Man with Slovenian flag in hand and traditional costume walks along Munich's Ludwigstraße
Imago/STL
Traditional costumes in Munich are just one of the Slovenian influences in the Bavarian capital

On behalf of the Department of Education and Sport

This article about the UEFA EURO 2024 in the host city of Munich, one of 10 host cities of the European Football Championship in Germany, was commissioned by the Department of Education and Sport (RBS). The content was coordinated between the RBS and muenchen.de, the official city portal.

Slovenia meets Serbia in Munich

"Pozdravljeni vsi Slovenci, ljubitelji nogometa in münchenski popotniki!"

Hello to all Slovenians, football fans and Munich travelers!

Will the underdog team make it to the knockout round? Slovenia has qualified for a European Championship for the second time and have been drawn in a tough group with Denmark, Serbia and England. Can Slovenia pull off a surprise or at least a respectable result in Munich? The Slovenian national team will play their second group match on June 20, 2024 at 3 p.m. in the Munich Arena against Serbia.

The Slovenian fans will bathe Munich in their national colors of white, blue and red - not to be confused with the Serbian supporters and their red, blue and white flags!

Although there are only around 2 million Slovenians, Slovenian culture has nevertheless made it to the other side of the Alps in many places. It has also put down roots in Munich. We take you on a Slovenian journey of discovery through the city.

Logo of the host city Munich at UEFA EURO 2024 with the towers of the Frauenkirche

Slovenia: Facts about the European Championship guest

  • Area: 20,273 km²
  • Population: 2.1 million
  • Capital: Ljubljana, 285,604 inhabitants (320.80 km away)
  • Slovenian citizens in Munich: 2,124 (as of 31.12.2023)

Slovenian Consulate General in Munich
Lindwurmstraße 14
80337 München.
Consul General: Maša Šiftar
Website

Slovenian flair: from trumpet echoes to mini buses in Munich

Slovenian cultural association Lipa at the big "Munich 2022" parade
Michael Hofmann
The Lipa cultural association took part in the big "Munich 2022" parade

Brass music is as much a part of folk culture in Slovenia as it is in Bavaria: Slovenian musician Slavko Avsenik composed an Oktoberfest classic that all Munich residents have probably heard at some point. The polka "Trompetenecho" from 1954 was the signature tune of the "Musikantenstadl" (a famous German folk TV show) and was recorded in Munich - the starting point for Avsenik's global career with the "Original Oberkrainern". Avsenik later recorded the album "Olympiade in Musik" for the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich, including the waltz "Mein München, ich sag ade".

The Slovenian cultural association Lipa München e.V. serves as an ambassador for Slovenian culture in Munich: Lipa organizes festivals typical of the country and takes part in the Oktoberfest procession in traditional costumes. The association's folklore group performs Upper Carniolan, Stajerische and Prekmurske dances in specially made costumes.

And how do the Slovenes feel about religion? Munich's small Slovenian Catholic community celebrates a service every Sunday evening in the baroque Asamkirche church in Sendlinger Straße under Father Izidor Pečovnik.

An innovation from the Slovenian capital Ljubljana is enriching the streets of Munich this summer: from June, free mini-buses will be driving through the city center on a trial basis and taking guests along a circular route to the important sights and squares in the old town. The vehicles, known as "Kavalir" in Slovenia, are already a great success in Ljubljana's car-free city center.

Slovenian national anthem: Zdravljica

Since 1991, Zdravljica (meaning "toast"!) has been the Slovenian national anthem, more precisely: the seventh verse of the poem by France Prešeren (1800-1849), set to music by Stanko Premrl (1880-1965). A masterful peculiarity: as this is a drinking song, the poet wrote all the verses in the shape of a wine glass.

Slovenian:

Živé naj vsi naródi
ki hrepené dočakat’ dan,
da koder sonce hodi,
prepir iz svéta bo pregnan,
da rojak
prost bo vsak,
ne vrag, le sosed bo mejak!

English:

God's blessing on all nations
Who long and work for that bright day
When o'er earth's habitations
No war, no strife shall hold its sway
Who long to see
That all men free
No more shall foes, but neighbours be!

(Official English translation by Janko Lavrin, 1954)

Slovenian-Munich similarities: Friendship across the Alps

Panorama of Lake Bled in Slovenia with crystal clear water under a blue sky and forests on the shore
Pixabay/defait
View of Lake Bled in the Slovenian Alps

What do Upper Bavaria and Munich have in common with Slovenia? Well, in both cases, they are Catholic-influenced Alpine regions with beautiful mountains, lakes, castles and churches that are ideal tourist destinations for hiking, sightseeing and skiing. The flora and fauna are similar, except that there are more bears in the wild in Slovenia - and here the circle closes: "Bruno", who became famous in Germany as a roaming bear in 2004 and is exhibited in the Museum Mensch und Natur in Munich, had Slovenian parents, Joze and Jurka.

But there are also political ties: A permanent commission has existed between Slovenia and Bavaria since 1975 to further develop and deepen friendly relations. Just a few months after the state was founded, the Slovenian Consulate General was opened in Munich in 1992.

German is a popular foreign language at school in Slovenia, enabling many Slovenians to converse in German, which of course goes back to the Austro-Hungarian past - until well into the 19th century, the capital Ljubljana (formerly called Laibach) was still predominantly German-speaking.

Slovenian for beginners

SlovenianEnglish
Pozdravljeni!Hello!
Kako vam gre?Good afternoon!
MünchenMunich
dayes
neno
Prosim, prosim!Please!
Hvala!Thank you
Kako vam je ime?What's your name?
Ime mi je [...]My name is [...]
Katera pot je do stadiona?Where is the stadium?
Dobra igra!Good game!
Gol!Goal!
Se vidimo pozneje!See you later!

Slovenian food in Munich

Slovenian Carniolan sausage elegantly arranged on a plate. Next to it is a glass of red wine.
Iztok Medja
Carniolan sausage is one of the specialties of Slovenian cuisine

Slovenian dishes combine Austrian cuisine with the delights of the Balkans. The national dish is the Heidensterz (Ajdovi žganci), a mush made from buckwheat flour, which is served heartily with meat and vegetables or as a soup garnish. Unfortunately, you won't find any distinctly Slovenian restaurants in Munich, but there are several Yugoslavian Balkan restaurants that offer a taste of Slovenia.

Or you can go to the Viktualienmarkt and stock up on genuine Slovenian Carniola (Kranjska Klobasa). The smoked boiled sausage from Carniola is one of the most popular types of sausage in the country. Of course, it must be accompanied by an excellent Slovenian wine: Slovenia is the wine country of Eastern Europe par excellence. Ask your wine merchant for a red Cviček.

Here are a few Slovenian dishes and snacks that we recommend for watching football:

  • Potica: A traditional yeast cake with various fillings such as walnuts, poppy seeds or raisins, often enjoyed on festive occasions.
  • Štruklji: Dough rolls filled with various ingredients such as cheese, fruit or vegetables, in both savory and sweet varieties.
  • Idrijski žlikrofi: Handmade dumplings, traditionally filled with potato or meat, often served with sour cream or bacon.
  • Prekmurska gibanica: A sweet pastry from the Prekmurje region, consisting of several layers of dough and various fillings such as poppy seeds, curd cheese, apples and nuts.

Slovenian personalities in Munich: From Ažbe to Oblak

Monument to Anton Ažbe in Munich. It shows the upper body and Ažbe's head with moustache.
Michael Hofmann
Bust of Anton Ažbe in Schwabing's Leopoldpark

Did you know that a Slovenian painter had a significant influence on the development of the Blauer Reiter group of artists? Anton Ažbe (1862-1905) ran an art school in Munich, whose students included Wassily Kandinsky and Alexej von Jawlensky. In 2004, he received a monument in the form of a bronze bust in Munich Leopold Park. Ažbe's students also included his compatriot Rihard Jakopič (1869-1943), who lived in Munich from 1890 to 1900 and is considered the leading painter of Slovenian Impressionism. The Slovenian realist painter Ivana Kobilca (1861-1926), whose portrait adorned the Slovenian 5000 tolar bill until the introduction of the euro in 2007, studied in Munich from 1881 to 1889.

Slovenians have, of course, also left their sporting mark in Munich: Climber Janja Garnbret excelled at the European Championships on Königsplatz in 2022, winning the gold medal in all three competitions. Sydney Olympic rowing champions Iztok Čop and Luka Špik won the world title in the double sculls on the Olympic race course in Oberschleissheim in 2007. NBA superstar Luka Dončić from the Dallas Mavericks thrilled the crowd at the 2022 international match between Germany and Slovenia at BMW Park. However, his 23 points in front of a sell-out crowd could not prevent a defeat.

Bayern Munich fans are probably still familiar with Branko Oblak: the midfielder from Ljubljana played for Munich from 1977 to 1980 and retired with the championship title back home.

Slovenian basketball star Luka Dončić

Beitrag auf Instagram ansehen.

How long a journey from Ljubljana to Munich takes

  • By plane: 55 minutes (direct flight)
  • By car: 4 hours, 37 minutes
  • By long-distance bus: 5 hours, 55 minutes
  • By train: 6 hours, 8 minutes (fastest connection)
  • On foot: 104 hours (approx. 9 days)

Slovenia at UEFA EURO 2024: Underdogs with little experience

The Slovenian national football team played its first international match in June 1991, before which Slovenian footballers played for the Yugoslavia team. Since then, the Slovenians have qualified twice for the World Cup (2002 and 2010). Their first and so far only appearance at the European Championships was in Belgium and the Netherlands in 2000. After two draws and a defeat, however, they had to return home after the preliminary round.

The few internationally renowned stars in the current squad include striker Benjamin Šeško from RB Leipzig, regular goalkeeper and captain Jan Oblak (Atlético Madrid) and Andraž Šporar (Panathinaikos Athens). Matjaž Kek has been coach of the Slovenian team, which incidentally does not have an official nickname, since 2018.

Slovenia qualified directly for EURO 2024 by finishing second in Group H, level on points with Denmark, who they will face again in the preliminary round of EURO 2024. They left Finland, Kazakhstan, Northern Ireland and San Marino behind them. On the final matchday, they defeated the Kazakhs 2:1 in Ljubljana to secure their ticket to the European Championship.

Slovenia's team is preparing for the matches against Denmark, Serbia and England at its European Championship quarters in Wuppertal.

Slovenia's group matches at the European Championship in Group C:

  • Sunday, 16.6.2024, 6 p.m. in Stuttgart: Slovenia - Denmark
  • Thursday, 20.6.2024, 3 p.m. in Munich: Slovenia - Serbia
  • Tuesday, 25.6.2024, 9 p.m. in Cologne: England - Slovenia

Slovenia's star striker: Benjamin Šeško

Beitrag auf Instagram ansehen.

Mehr zur UEFA EURO 2024 in München