The wonder boy who has sent the basketball world into frenzy
Luka Dončić is one of the hottest names in basketball. Already in his first season in the NBA, the world's greatest basketball league, Luka amazed with his exceptional performances wearing the Dallas Mavericks jersey, and earned the title of the NBA Rookie of the Year; in the 2019/20 season, he continues to break records and surpass the achievements of the biggest names in the history of the NBA.
With his versatility, creativity and brilliant play, Luka, nicknamed "The Matador", has won the hearts of basketball fans all across the globe. This was obvious in the voting for the NBA All-Star Game: having received more than 4.2 million fan votes, Luka ranked second in the Western Conference and third in the entire league! After counting all the votes, including those of basketball players and journalists, Luka wasn't chosen for the All-Star Game, but played in the Rising Stars Challenge.
Dončić achieved a great breakthrough to the elite game this year. He came second in the Western Conference after LeBron James, the star of the Los Angeles Lakers. Dončić has become the second youngest starter since James in 2005. Among all guards in the League, he received the most votes from the fans, and was voted first among Western Conference guards by basketball players and reporters.
The wonder boy has shown exceptional talent and love for basketball from a very early age. A ball has been the first thing on his birthday list since he was little. Although he has also tried other sports, his first love remains basketball, at which he has always been exceptionally good. At 13 years of age, Luka signed a contract with Spanish giant Real Madrid, with whom he became a European club champion in the 2017/2018 season and was voted EuroLeague's most valuable player. At the 2018 NBA draft, the Atlanta Hawks selected Dončić with their third overall pick and then traded him to the Dallas Mavericks; Dončić thus became the highest drafted 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 may be rivals in the All-Star Game, they are good colleagues 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.
Despite living abroad since his early age, Luka has not forgotten the country where his exceptional sports career began. Let your curiosity take you to Ljubljana, the city where Luka Dončić was born. Discover what fascinates Luka apart from basketball and take the opportunity to explore Slovenia.
If you want to found out more why a nation of 2 million can be so successful in cycling and competition sports in general, we invite you to read a special press release article.
Luka’s favourite "3-pointer" from Slovenia
Luka Dončić’s native Slovenia has a number of hidden gems that are worth visiting. And what does Luka recommend?
This picturesque karst cave system is the European "champion" of tourist visits. Take a ride on a unique underground train into the depths of the Postojna Cave, or explore the cave’s remote passages l...More
Catch the best views of Ljubljana. Ascend to Ljubljana Castle where you will find a wide variety of events, the finest restaurants and an unforgettable adventure of saving the Ljubljana dragon, a fun...More
Take a traditional pletna boat ride on this alpine lake to Slovenia’s only natural island, where you can also ring the famous wishing bell. Admire the view of the lake from above – ascend the mighty B...More
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.More
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.More
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.More
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.More
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.More
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.
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.
Spend your holiday in the heart of mountainous Slovenia. Walk through vibrant and untouched nature that is criss-crossed by 10,000 kilometres of marked and arranged hiking trails. You can choose from 175 mountain huts or spend your nights in hotels and camps for hikers.
Cycling and biking
Explore Slovenia by bike. Riding amid the hills and plains, mountain peaks and forests, along the coast and the karst landscape and along the rivers and lakes of Slovenia is a lushly verdant fairy tale. Different trails are suitable for on-road and off-road biking.
Slovenia is a country of smaller ski resorts that are family-friendly and suitable for beginners, children and experienced skiers alike. Numerous ski schools and ski instructors, who speak different languages, will make sure that you really enjoy the snow.
Treat yourself to a swim in some of the many thermal spas and swimming pools. In summer, take a dip in the sea, lakes or rivers. Slovenia is rich in natural water resources. Visit Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj or one of the many natural swimming areas located on the coast.
An explosion of adrenaline-filled fun
Are you up for spending a daring and exciting summer? Choose an adrenaline-filled adventure that is ideal for you and embark on an unforgettable adventure.
Fly like a bird with the help of ziplines
Experience the landscape from a bird's perspective – enjoy a ride on the most daring ziplines in Slovenia.
The snow-covered Slovenian landscape is a true magnet for activities on the snow. One of the most popular activities among Slovenians is cross-country skiing, proof of which is that you can find arranged cross-country trails in many places all over Slovenia.
Winter hikes and snowshoeing
Experience magical winter nature in a special way. Put on your winter hiking boots or snowshoes and go for a hike in a snow-covered landscape.
The craziest winter experiences in Slovenia
Would you like to try something new, a daring escapade in the snow? Get ready for an adrenaline-fueled adventure and fun that will make your winter holidays even more exciting!
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.
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