A settlement area since Mesolithic times, Bled Castle was first mentioned as Ueldes (Veldes) within the March of Carniola on April 10, 1004, when it was awarded by Emperor Henry II to Bishop Albuin I of Brixen. With Carniola it was ceded to Rudolph of Habsburg after he defeated King Ottokar II of Bohemia at the Battle on the Marchfeld in 1278. From 1364 on Bled was part of the Duchy of Carniola and of the Napoleonic Illyrian Provinces between 1809 and 1816.
After the dissolution of Austria-Hungary in 1918 it belonged to the Kingdom of Yugoslavia and became a summer domicile of the ruling House of Karađorđević, a tradition that President Josip Broz Tito continued, when he built his residence here in 1947. Bled became an independent municipality in 1996. In 2000, Bled became the home of IEDC-Bled School of Management, "the Harvard of Southern and Central Europe "
Naturopath Arnold Rikli (1823-1906) from Switzerland contributed significantly to the development of Bled as a health resort in the 2nd half of the 19th century. Due to its mild climate, Bled has been visited by aristocratic guests from all across the world. Today it is an important convention centre and tourist resort, offering a wide range of sport activities (golf, fishing, horseback-riding) and is a starting point for mountain treks and hikes especially within the nearby Triglav National Park.
A small island in the middle of the lake is home to the Assumption of Mary Pilgrimage Church; visitors frequently ring its bell for good luck. Human traces from prehistory have been found on the island. Before the church was built, there was a temple consecrated to Živa, the Slavic goddess of love and fertility. One can get to the island on a traditional wooden row barge called Pletna.