They are named after Julius Caesar, who founded the municipium of Cividale del Friuli at the foot of the mountains. A large part of the Julian Alps is included in Triglav National Park. The second highest peak of the range, the 2,775 m high Jôf di Montasio, lies in Italy.
The Julian Alps cover an estimated 4,400 km2 (of which 1,542 km2 lies in Italy). They are located between the Sava Valley and Canale Valley. They are divided into the Eastern and Western Julian Alps.