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Considering its size, Ljubljana has huge number of restaurants, most of them good. You'll find plenty of options along the Ljubljanica River, but these fill up quickly at dinnertime, so get there early. If you're looking for a place that tourists haven't discovered, try the P.E.N. Klub, Tomisiceva 12 (tel. 01/251-4160), in the headquarters of the Writers' Society. Near the parliament and behind the Opera House, this Bohemian-styled place is where local foodies, politicians, and intellectuals gather. You will however need to call ahead to check if it's open, and whether they can find a table for you.

Very Expensive -- Considered by some to be the top eatery in Ljubljana, Manna, Eipprova 1a (tel. 01/283-5294), serves up expensive international fare with great flare and at expectedly upmarket prices. In some respects, the sparkling decor outshines the authenticity of the often over-elaborate cuisine which tends to favor exotic choices. Nevertheless, this was where First Lady Laura Bush was treated to lunch on her visit to the capital (and where you can -- for 75€/$95 -- sample the menu created especially for her). Although problematically located some 3km (2 miles) from the center, if you have the time to trek out to Cubo, Smartinska 55 (tel. 01/521-1515; www.cubo-ljubljana.com), do so by whatever means. It's a smart, chic, decidedly contemporary place which savvy locals consider their favorite haunt -- delighting in the Scandinavian-inspired decor as much as the superb, unpretentious, largely Italian menu (which changes regularly). The food is light, simple, and spectacular. Of particular merit are the desserts, which have already inspired this young establishment's first recipe book. Both Cubo and Manna are closed Sundays.

Moderate -- If you're craving your weekly intake of raw fish, stop off at Sushimama, Wolfova ulica 12 (tel. 01/426-9125), a modern place in the heart of Ljubljana; it's one of the top sushi restaurants in central Europe, with a loyal local crowd. Go classic with miso soup, followed by nigri sushi and kinako with a pancake; the sashimi is fresh from the Adriatic. Another interesting option (as much for the lack of English menus as for the eclectic, fantastical decor), this time for Balkan dishes, is Atrium No. IV, Gorni trg 4 (tel. 01/251-1069), situated right next to Cerkev sv. Jakoba. Expect an energetic crowd scattered about the gorgeous little rooms decorated with framed pictures and painted in bright, dramatic colors. And don't forget to check out the outrageous ceiling decorations. Besides Sokol, another popular (and arguably less touristy) place to sample Slovene cuisine in the heart of Old Town, is Vodnikov Hram, Vodnikov trg 2 (tel. 01/234-5260; www.vodnikov-hram.si), right near the funicular that takes you up to the castle.

Inexpensive -- There's a friendly atmosphere at Harambasa, Vrtna ulica 8, Krakovo (tel. 041-843-106), which serves Bosnian pub fare in a space filled with antiques and junk -- swords, coffeepots, and copper urns alongside postcards, newspapers, and Sarajevo sports team shirts. Food is simple: Cevapi v lepinji (spicy little sausages with bread), sudukice (Bosnian sausage), and pola-pola, another kind of sausage, best with kajmak cheese. A filling meal with beer and Turkish coffee (served with a cigarette) is under 6€ ($7.60).

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.