The wider region around the river Drava contains many attractive tourist destinations offering natural and cultural sights of interest and a wide range of recreational and sports activities and gastronomic pleasures. From Maribor, Slovenia's second-largest city, and green Pohorje, unique among Slovenia's mountain regions, to winegrowing areas and thermal spas: the Podravska region has something for everyone.
From Maribor, a university city and cultural centre with an opera house, theatre, museums, galleries, numerous events and many interesting sights, you can reach the Pohorje cable car by city bus. The Mariborsko Pohorje ski area, overlooking the hill vineyards that reach right into the city, has the Snow Stadium, a venue for international ski competitions and romantic night skiing, and the Adrenaline Park, full of exciting challenges. Higher up, Bolfenk with its Natural and Cultural Heritage Centre and Areh with its little Baroque church can be reached by chairlift. This part of Pohorje is popular with locals and tourists alike. Those seeking relaxation can find it at the Terme Maribor spa. Destinations along the Drava are particularly attractive in summer – in the city itself there is the Lent district, famous for its international summer festival. Other destinations on the river include the Mariborski Otok Nature Park and the nearby reservoir of Brestrniško Jezero.
From Mariborsko Pohorje the view stretches over the Drava-Ptuj Plain to the Haloze Hills and Slovenske gorice. Here you can explore over 50 km of wine routes. Along the way you will find wine shops and farms ready to serve excellent white varietal wines and delicious food to walkers and cyclists.
Another attraction of this part of the country is Ptuj, Slovenia's oldest town, nestled below the imposing Ptuj Castle, which today houses museum collections. The town of kurents (traditional carnival figures) and other original traditions also boasts Slovenia's oldest wine cellar. Relaxation is guaranteed at the Terme Ptuj spa and you can enjoy unique encounters with the past at Ptujska Gora with its famous pilgrimage church and the nearby castles of Štatenberg, Vurberg and Borl. Ptujsko Jezero, a reservoir on the Drava, offers fishing, rowing and sailing. Another reservoir, Ormoško Jezero, is a nature reserve. The nearby town of Ormož has an attractive castle, the grounds of which are planted with exotic trees.
Another castle worth visiting is Bistrica Castle in Slovenska Bistrica. This castle contains several permanent exhibitions, museum collections covering different periods of history, an art gallery and a great hall decorated with frescoes.