Skofja Loka

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Skofja Loka


Škofja Loka is a town in the north-west of Slovenia, in the region of Ljubljana. It has a population of over 22,000 and an area of 146 km².

The town’s history started in 973 when the German Emperor, Otto II, bestowed the territory of Loka upon the Bishop of Freising in Bavaria. “Loka” means meadow on the banks of the river. At the start of the fourteenth century, the town was protected by a wall with five gates, part of which is still intact.

Throughout its history, the town has suffered numerous armed conflicts, epidemics, fires and even earthquakes, more notably that of 1511, meaning that Škofja Loka has been rebuilt several times.

Despite this, it is renowned as being the best-preserved medieval town in Slovenia.


El núcleo The old town centre is composed of an upper square, called “Plac”, and a lower square, “Lontrg”, both overlooked by Škofja Loka’s castle, which is perched atop a hill.

The town retains many parts relevant to its history and boasts countless monuments worth visiting, but many natural attractions exist beyond its town walls.

Škofja Loka is also a wonderful base to explore the Julian Alps, as they are very close by.

One “Loka” (meadow), two valleys and three mountain chains provide endless opportunities for discovering the Slovenian great outdoors.

The culture festival “Pisana Loka”, which is held in August every year, is one of the town’s main events.

However, the most important living expression is, without a doubt, the Škofja Loka Passion Play, which celebrates Holy Week in a unique way.


The Škofja Loka Passion Play is a theatrical piece performed as a procession in the streets of the town’s centre during Lent and Easter. With more than 900 local performers, this representation is based on the manuscript of a Capuchin monk, which demonstrates 20 scenes of the Stations of the Cross and others from the Old and New Testaments.

Performed in the dialect of the time it was written, the play is staged at various locations throughout the town. In addition to the actors, an additional 400 volunteers from the community participate in the production. Given the complexity involved, the “Škofja Loka Passion Play” is only performed every six years.

While it is considered an important part of local identity, the play is also instrumental in social cohesion, giving residents the chance to come together and feel like they are contributing to their community.

Knowledge and skills associated with the play are transmitted from older to younger generations by families who participate, and craftspeople assisting in the production host classes to pass their expertise on to others. The Passion Play is also included in the curricula of local schools. Given its relevance and uniqueness, the “Škofja Loka Passion Play” was added to UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.