The town's name has not always been Postojna. It is first attested in the 13th century as Arnsberg (later Adelsberg). The name went through several permutations before arriving at its definitive form. In the mid-14th century, for example, we find the form Postoyna. Interestingly, Postojna was originally defined as a market (15th century), and it was not until 1909 that it was granted town status.
What do you know about carters and cart transport? The people of Postojna are still known as "carters" today, and the reason for this is to be found in the town's history. The development of cart transport was extremely significant for Postojna, thanks to its position on the trade route and main road (the "Mast Road") connecting Carniola to the Adriatic and Friuli. The road was later joined by a railway line, and the first train steamed into Postojna in the 19th century. The building of the Südbahn or Southern Railway and the coming of the train caused the decline of cart transport, but only as an activity, since in the warmth of their hearts the people of Postojna are still carters. The bygone days of cart transport are remembered every year at the Carters' Holiday (Furmanski praznik) in Postojna.
The arrival of the train also meant the beginnings of mass tourism in Postojna. Tourists came to Postojna with one purpose – just like the majority of visitors today: to see the famous Postojna Cave. This was what made Postojna one of the most important tourist destinations in Europe at that time. Incredibly, in 1894 Postojna received seven times as many visitors as Bled and Lake Garda! Since then it has grown in importance in other areas too – as the centre of education and administration (including a law court) in the wider region, as well as its centre of commerce, culture and healthcare. Efforts continue today to further consolidate Postojna's status as a centre of international karstology and as a tourist destination.