Radovljica is a picturesque village only a short 7km drive from Lake Bled (Slovenia). We visited the village with the intention of eating at a traditional Slovenian restaurant called Gostilna Lectar, which was recommended to us by our hosts. On the back terrace of Gostilna Lectar we enjoyed a tasty rustic Slovenian lunch while admiring the stunning surround views of the Julian Alps. To our pleasant surprise, we also learned the restaurant housed a Gingerbread Museum in its vaulted cellar, which to this very day operates and produces beautiful decorative gingerbreads made from honey dough. The process of honey-bread making is called ‘lect’ and hence how Gostilna Lectar got its name.
So after lunch we ventured down to the cellar to learn about the traditional Slovenian craft of gingerbread making. The bakery dates back to 1766 and specialises in the traditionally designed heart-shaped gingerbreads, which were once popular tokens of love. The museum also has an impressive array of gingerbreads in modern shapes, sizes, colours and designs (including Hello Kitty!). The staff are traditionally dressed and you can watch them create and decorate gingerbread using antique tools and age-old baking techniques – it’s a true living museum. I asked my 6 year old what she appreciated most about the experience and she said that it felt old-fashioned and she could see how gingerbread was made in the olden-days. I guess what she is trying to say is that it felt authentic!
We departed with our very own traditional heart-shaped gingerbread, as well as some butterflies and dinosaurs! The museum is definitely a hidden gem worth visiting. The following pictures offer a small taste of the museum and what it has to offer.