Slovenia through the eyes of NBA superstar Luka Dončić

 

Luka Dončić is one of the hottest names in basketball. He is characterised by his versatility, his exceptional reading of the game and his quick reactions to what is happening on court. Some people have even claimed he plays like he is from another planet. The wonder boy has impressed on the European stage and is now proving his exceptional talent game after game in the American professional basketball league, the NBA. With his "out of this world" performances he has quickly won the hearts of basketball fans everywhere.

 

NBA League

2 x NBA All-Star Gam
2021, 2020

2 x All-NBA First Team
2021, 2020

NBA Rookie of The Year and NBA All-Rookie First Team
2019

EuroLeague

EuroLeague champion
2018

EuroLeague MVP
2018

All-EuroLeague First Team
2018

2 x EuroLeague Rising Star
2018, 2017

Tokyo Olympic Games

4th place at the Tokyo Olympic Games
2021

All-Star Five at the Tokyo Olympic Basketball Tournament
2021

MVP of the Tokyo Olympic Basketball Tournament by fan vote
2021

Slovenian national basketball team

EuroBasket All-Tournament Team
2017

2017 EuroBasket Champions
2017

Other achievements of Luka Dončić

  • Euroscar European Player of the Year (2019)
  • Slovenian Sportsperson of the Year (2018)

Despite living abroad since he was very young, Luka has not forgotten the country where his remarkable sporting career began. In the national team jersey, he has used his quick wits and talent to contribute to historic achievements in Slovenian basketball, such as becoming European champions in 2017 and qualifying for the Tokyo Olympic Games, where the Slovenian team finished 4th.

Photo: Aleš Fevžer, OKS

 

A historic performance at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

Luka Dončić was the driving force behind the Slovenian national basketball team, which qualified for the Olympic Games for the first time in 2021. Dončić gave wings to the Slovenian basketball team that shone at the Tokyo Olympics, surprising more experienced teams such as Spain. In the end, the Slovenian team ran out of luck and, despite putting up an incredible fight and showing great heart and team spirit, finished just out of the podium places. Even so, 4th place is an amazing ranking for a first appearance at the Olympic Games. Luka was named one of the All-Star Five of the basketball tournament and even won the fan vote for MVP.

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It’s definitely not easy. We fought till the end! What a pleasure it has been to play for our country in the first Olympics ever for us! So proud of these guys!

Luka Dončić on Twitter after the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games

He loves his country. First and foremost, his native Ljubljana, but other parts of Slovenia as well. Watch the video and find out about his favourite places in Slovenia.

Ljubljana – Luka Dončić’s hometown

Luka Dončić spent his childhood in Ljubljana. This lively European capital with an abundance of green spaces and sports infrastructure offers many opportunities for sporting activities. Let us offer you some suggestions for an active visit to Ljubljana.

Sports parks for every taste!

One of the most popular places for both indoor sports and outdoor activities is Tivoli Park. The sports park has halls and infrastructure for a variety of athletic activities, and from there you can also take a hike to the nearby Rožnik hill. If you are not a sports enthusiast, you can walk along the Jakopič Promenade and other walking paths and rest under the shade of trees in summer. Other sports parks, such as Kodeljevo Sports Park or Ljubljana Sports Park, also offer a broad variety of activities.

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Sports parks for every taste!

Sports parks for every taste!

One of the most popular places for both indoor sports and outdoor activities is Tivoli Park. The sports park has halls and infrastructure for a variety of athletic activities, and from there you can also take a hike to the nearby Rožnik hill. If you are not a sports enthusiast, you can walk along the Jakopič Promenade and other walking paths and rest under the shade of trees in summer. Other sports parks, such as Kodeljevo Sports Park or Ljubljana Sports Park, also offer a broad variety of activities.

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Heading to Stožice to watch a game

Heading to Stožice to watch a game

If you like, you can watch an interesting game at the Stožice Stadium or the Stožice Arena, the two largest sports venues in Slovenia, which also host other spectacular events, such as concerts and various performances.

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Cycling around Ljubljana

Cycling around Ljubljana

You can discover Ljubljana's lively streets and squares by bicycle, choosing between a regular or electric bicycle. The city centre, which is characterised by the masterpieces of architect Jože Plečnik, is another place well worth visiting. You can also explore other parts of Ljubljana and discover interesting hidden spots around the city.

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Discover Ljubljana from the Ljubljanica River

Discover Ljubljana from the Ljubljanica River

Would you like to see Ljubljana's sights from the river? Get on a stand up paddle board and paddle along the Ljubljanica River or take a tourist boat tour along the river.

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Discover some of the most beautiful sights

Discover some of the most beautiful sights

From Ljubljana, you can head on foot or by bicycle to the nearby hills that offer views of the city and its surroundings. Some of the most popular hiking destinations that are only a short distance from Ljubljana are Šmarna Gora, Katarina, Rožnik or Golovec, or you can travel a few kilometres away from the city and visit Velika planina, Kurešček, Sveta Ana or Krim.

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Luka Dončić adores adventure parks

Luka Dončić loves challenges. Not only on the basketball floor, but also elsewhere. Luka Dončić also adores adventure parks. Slovenia offers many possibilities for adrenaline junkies. Giant swings, thrilling zip lines, tests of balance and conquering heights – find all of this and more at Slovenia’s adventure parks. Be bold and visit them.

Let the adventure begin

Explore Slovenia

Ljubljana, the hometown of Luka Dončić, is an ideal base from which to explore the rest of Slovenia and its diversity. Whether you head off to the sea, the Alps or the Pannonian plain, the journey will not take more than two hours. See the major sights and treasures of Slovenian heritage and experience the most unforgettable adventures.

Iconic attractions

The images of Slovenia that will leave a lasting impression.

Iconic attractions

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UNESCO World Heritage

Slovenian treasure troves of world heritage

UNESCO World Heritage

UNESCO World Heritage

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Ljubljana & Central Slovenia

Liveliness of the capital and nature hikes – to primeval forests.

Ljubljana & Central Slovenia

Ljubljana & Central Slovenia

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Alpine Slovenia

Activities among the highest mountains and the wildest waters.

Alpine Slovenia

Alpine Slovenia

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Mediterranean & Karst Slovenia

Global surprises from salt pans to karst caves.

Mediterranean & Karst Slovenia

Mediterranean & Karst Slovenia

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Thermal Pannonian Slovenia

Feeling good between health resorts and wine-growing hills.

Thermal Pannonian Slovenia

Thermal Pannonian Slovenia

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Top experiences in Slovenia

Experience innovative Slovenia.

Top experiences in Slovenia

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Where to stay

From luxury hotels to tourist farms, from private rooms to camping grounds. An exclusive offer of glamping accommodation or staying at the vineyard cottages. In Slovenia, you will find accommodation to suit every budget and every taste.

Where to stay

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A country with a sporting heart

In addition to Luka Dončić, Slovenia has many other outstanding athletes. Generally speaking, Slovenians are indeed a sporting nation. We like to take walks outside, go on bicycle rides, experience water adventures, or, in winter, when the snow has fallen, go downhill or cross-country skiing or take part in other winter activities.  And we like to cheer on our sporting heroes.

The wonder boy who has sent the basketball world into frenzy

With his versatility, creativity and brilliant play, Luka, nicknamed "the Wonder Boy", has won the hearts of basketball fans all across the globe.

 

He has shown exceptional talent and love for basketball from a very early age. A basketball was the first thing on his birthday list since he was little. Although he has tried other sports, his first love remains basketball, at which he has always excelled.

In his early teens, he tasted the joy of playing on the European stage and was hailed by experts as one of the greatest talents in Slovenia and Europe.  At 13 years of age, Luka wore the jersey of Spanish giant Real Madrid, with whom he became a European club champion in the 2017/2018 season when he was voted EuroLeague's most valuable player. At the 2018 NBA draft, the Atlanta Hawks selected Dončić as their third overall pick and then traded him to the Dallas Mavericks; Dončić thus became the highest ranking Slovenian in the history of the NBA draft.

 

Alongside Luka Dončić another Slovenian basketball player, Goran Dragić, wearing the jersey of Eastern Conference club Miami Heat, has been thrilling basketball fans in the NBA in recent years. In the 2017/18 season he was the first Slovenian to play his way into the NBA All-Star Game. Although Goran and Luka would be rivals in the All-Star Game, they are good acquaintances and friends. In the Slovenian national team jersey the two basketball players celebrated together the Eurobasket championship title in 2017 and were selected among the tournament’s best five players for the all-tournament team. Dragič was also voted Eurobasket MVP.  

Luka developed his love of basketball right from the cradle

Luka inherited basketball genes from his father Saša Dončić, a former Slovenian basketball player and coach, and is also strongly supported by his mother Mirjam Poterbin, who has stood by his side ever since he started playing basketball. While accompanying Luka at the NBA draft, the elegant lady captured a great deal of attention from the media and fans. Although she experienced difficult times due to her son's early departure abroad, today Luka Dončić's mom is very proud of her son, who acts with maturity beyond his teenage years. One of Luka's most ardent fans is his girlfriend Anamarija Goltes, established in her own field as a fashion and photo model.

What is the secret to Slovenia's sporting success?

In addition to Luka Dončić, Slovenia has a number of other worldclass athletes who are at the very top of their sport. Do you want to know the formula for success we have her in Slovenia, a country of two million people?

Slovenian sporting success explained

Are you a big fan of Luka Dončić?

Share the images of a Slovenian basketball star which excites you most.

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