Kranj ( /ˈkraŋ/ (help·info)) (known in historic sources at various times as Carnium, Creina, Chreina or Krainburg) is the fourth largest city in Slovenia, with a population of 54,500 (2010). It is located approximately 20 km north-west of Ljubljana. The centre of the City Municipality of Kranj and of the traditional region of Upper Carniola (northwestern Slovenia) is a mainly industrial city with significant electronics and rubber industries. The historical region of Carniola (Kranjska) is named after the town, which was its provincial capital in the early Middle Ages. The nucleus of the city is a well-preserved medieval old town, built at the confluence of the Kokra and the Sava rivers.
The city lies on the busy Ljubljana - Jesenice - Villach (Austria) - Munich (Germany) railway (served by Kranj's railway station) and highway.
Slovenia's national airport, Ljubljana Jože Pučnik Airport (in Brnik) is also very close to Kranj, considerably more so than its nominal client, Ljubljana.
St. Cantianius and Companions Parish Church
The St. Cantianius and Companions Parish Church (Župnijska cerkev sv. Kancijana in tovarišev) is the largest church in Kranj and also the seat of the Kranj Parish and Deaconates. It was built in the 14th century, and measures 442 cubic metres (15,600 cu ft). Construction was commissioned by the counts of Kranj.
The castle was built in the mid-16th century by the baron Johann Jakob Khisl. Later owners have included the families of Moscon, Ravbar, Apfaltrer, Auersperg, and Pagliaruzzi. The building was renovated in 1952 by the architect Jože Plečnik in his late period. The castle garden is currently used as a concert setting.
The city is known for its sports facilities, including soccer tennis and basketball, as well as the biggest aquatic centre in the country, which hosted the 2003 Men's European Water Polo Championship (along with Ljubljana, hosting the women's competition). The annual Teden Mladih (Youth Week) festival and Carniola Festival are very popular.
The Sava, flowing through Kranj
Sava Street (Savska cesta)
View of Kranj from Šmajetna Gora
Prešeren Street (Prešernova cesta)
A street near Kieselstein Castle
View on the Kamnik–Savinja Alps from Kranj
Twin towns — Sister cities
Kranj is twinned with:
- Leopold Layer (1752–1828), painter
- Friderik Irenej Baraga (1797–1868), missionary
- France Prešeren (1800–1849), poet
- Janez Bleiweis (1808–1881), politician
- Janez Puhar (1814–1864), inventor of photography on glass
- Simon Jenko (1835–1869), poet
- Ciril Metod Koch (1867–1925), architect
- Janez Mencinger (1838–1912), writer
- Ernst Mally (1879–1944), philosopher
- Hinko Smrekar (1883–1942), painter
- Ivan Pregelj (1883–1960), writer
- Lojze Dolinar (1893–1970), sculptor
- Franc Novak (1908–1999), gynaecologist
- Peter Lipar (1912–1980), composer
- Marij Pregelj (1913–1967), painter
- Marjan Šorli (1915–1975), architect
- Davorin Dolar (1921–2005), chemist
- Zvone Černe (1927–2007), industrialist
- Boštjan Hladnik (1929–2006), film director
- Marko Pogačnik (born 1944), sculptor
- Ivan Savnik (1879–1950), industrialist and merchant
- Andrej Šifrer (born 1952), musician
- Andrej Štremfelj (born 1956), alpinist
- Borut Petrič and Darjan Petrič (1964), freestyle swimmers
- Primož Grašič (born 1968), guitarist
- Gregor Fučka (born 1971), Italian basketball player
- Marko Milič (born 1977), Slovenian basketball player
- Tadej Valjavec (born 1977), Slovenian professional road cyclist
- Aleksandar Radosavljević (born 1979), footballer
- Robert Kranjec (born 1981), ski jumper
- Vesna Fabjan (born 1985), cross country skier
- Bojan Jokić (born 1986), footballer