Epidemic and lockdown in Slovenia finished: calling for new adventures in the mountains!

IN Adventure , Bohinj , Coronavirus , Slovenia

Slovenia has formally declared an end of the coronavirus epidemic! We did it guys! Moreover, the borders are reopening and even a 7-day quarantine for EU citizens arrivals has been removed! As of now, our lives are finally returning back to normal. Knocking on wood… Still knocking…

We were all pushed into this practically overnight and boy can I say my sanity would have been long shredded into pieces if it wasn’t for one thing. Nature. Those long hikes in the reawakening nature, which just started to green up after the winter and grow beautiful flowers and blooming trees. And boy, were there many hikes…

On the way to the Zajamniki Village from our cottage in Pokljuka

I stopped watching the daily news as the world drifted into this global pandemic and switched to sailing through the headlines on my phone keeping myself informed but not overwhelmed. Seriously, to suddenly lose the freedom to move around freely, not to be able to see friends and parents, and to take on the uncalled-for full-time roles as a teacher, a cook and a cleaning lady is one thing. Dealing with a whirl of emotions is another thing. To throw all that into one big mix just calls for a disaster if we don’t have the tools to deal with stress. Luckily, I have my hikes for efficient rebooting of the mind.

Other than putting on a mask and sanitizing my hands on rare occasions, my world luckily remained pretty normal. Yet, with the global tourism pulled to a halt, so did my work. Completely. But I’m not complaining. After the first shock, I embraced the new relaxed lifestyle, where I finally had the time to bake bread and cakes, attend to our vegetable garden, plant new fruit trees, and even watch Netflix. Approved by the lockdown restrictions I explored the available area throughout and fantasized about the dreamy treks in the mountains I would immerse myself in after the lockdown was finished.

Your wonderful messages about impatiently waiting to visit Slovenia gave me extra motivation to turn my dreams into something tangible. Thank you guys and it goes both ways! I can’t wait to show you all my secret little heartwarming places which I’ve put together and designed an exclusive hiking tour in the Slovenian Alps. Today I’m proud and happy to announce a new 10-day Lakes and Rivers of the Julian Alps Tour. I’ve put my heart and soul into it!

On this tour we’ll be wandering from one Alpine lake to another (12 lakes altogether!) across the breathtaking mountainous landscape of the Julian Alps and Triglav National Park. Starting from the gorgeous Bohinj Valley, we’ll trek in the alluring setting along the seven Triglav Lakes and explore remote Alpine villages with old wooden houses. We’ll be surrounded by sheer walls, walk among wild flowers, turquoise rivers and tall waterfalls. Learn more!

The coronavirus situation in Slovenia

As the coronavirus pandemic plunges the world into chaos and uncertainty, I’m really proud that the outbreak wave in Slovenia is fortunately over and we have been effective in keeping the coronavirus at bay. A big bow and thank you to the government for that! We are practically down to zero new daily cases!

The borders are slowly opening up as are the restaurants, public transport, hotels… and hiking trails! If the positive trend continues and flights are reestablished, quarantines eased down in other countries as well, and the mountain huts reopen, we’ll be able to explore Slovenia together as soon as June!

To be honest, I realize this is far from over. Moreover, the world is a big village and the global pandemic will not be over until it’s over in the tiniest village. But let’s all keep our fingers crossed for the best and keep our faith that we’ll be able to hit the trail together again as soon as possible!

The gorgeous Jezersko in May
The Krma Valley surrounded by an impressive amphitheater of high mountains
Hiking to Velika Planina on the first day the lockdown was finished
Spring flowers and the wooden houses of Velika Planina

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A dreamy hike from Pokljuka to Lake Bohinj

IN Adventure , Bohinj , Coronavirus , Hiking , Hills , News

*Note: Due to the coronavirus it’s extremely important to consider the government’s guidelines about social distancing and limitation of moving outside! All my adventures are always 100% compliant with the current guidelines. Nevertheless, the guidelines might change through time and so the adventures described here might not be in accordance with the updated guidelines. My advice? Take my adventures as a good read and save them as hiking ideas for the future 🙂

I have never seen skies so clear. Blue in their most pristine form. Free of air traffic and relieved of excess pollution. I have never seen or heard nature so pure. Bees and birds buzzing and singing about, the winds moving trees, and all the rest completely silent. I have never seen wild animals so comfortable so close to us. Bears leaving their traces just a couple of hundred meters into the forest, countless deer grazing in the fields, chamois, and even a fox in the field below our house. Completely fear free, it comes to catch mice together with our kitties. It seems nature has found a new balance; so unique it will be hard to give it up once our lives are back to normal…

Below the treeless spine of the Triglav National Park in northwestern Slovenia’s Julian Alps, on the southern rim of a lush spring-fed pasture of Pokljuka – it is here our perfectly isolated mountain home is situated and where my 22-km adventure started in late March. The place is a blend of tall Alpine forests and extensive meadows, in summer sprinkled with cows and sheep, and now with spring flowers popping out of the ground. Just a couple of kilometers northwest the vast plains are replaced by jagged peaks, seemingly tumbling away as if to the very edge of the world.

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Venturing outside at the time of Coronavirus – how to keep yourself and your family entertained

*Note: Due to the coronavirus it’s extremely important to consider the government’s guidelines about social distancing and limitation of moving outside! All my adventures are always 100% compliant with the current guidelines. Nevertheless, the guidelines might change through time and so the adventures described here might not be in accordance with the updated guidelines. My advice? Take my adventures as a good read and save them as hiking ideas for the future 🙂

You always hear me talking about our little bubble of paradise here in Slovenia. A place that seems immune to the problems of the rest of the world, a place that attracts friendly people who love the outdoors and the mountains. However, we are facing the exact same problems as the rest of the world. As a mum of two, I’m stuck with homeschooling, tons of cooking and cleaning, and, like all of you parents out there, lack of time for myself. High mountains, via ferratas, and rock climbing are off limits anyway, but, luckily, since a complete lockdown hasn’t started yet, we’re still able to enjoy relaxing time in nature. For now, at least. Therefore, we better make it sweet and worthwhile, right?

Dare I suggest it’s a great time for exploring local intriguing spots in the spirit of simplifying our lives a bit? It has worked for me and my family. We have been tracing beautiful spring flowers in nearby forests, spotting wildlife, searching for beautiful sunset spots, and even finding a massive hidden cave!

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Hiking the gorgeous Karawanks: Veliki Vrh and Kofce

IN Adventure , Alps , Hiking , Karavanke , Karawanks , mountaineering , mountains , Slovenia , Winter

As much as I tout the Julian Alps as being amazing and unique in their beauty, there’s still that corner of my heart that jumps for joy for their south-facing neighboring mountain range, the Karawanks. Stretching 120 kilometers from east to west and serving as an actual border between Slovenia and Austria, the Karawanks offer mostly sunny hiking, remarkable wild flowers in late spring and huts with traditional mountain food. To be honest, the alluring setting couldn’t be more ideal, especially on a beautiful winter day.

And we’ve seen many of those over the past few weeks!

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Climbing Mt. Stol, the iconic postcard mountain behind Bled

IN Adventure , Alps , Bled , Hiking , Karavanke , Karawanks , mountains , News , Winter

As tourists snap selfies in front of the deep green Alpine lake Bled and take a boat to the little island with a 12th century church, the dramatic backdrop of the snow-capped peaks of the Karavanke Mountains lure the other kind – the adventurers at heart. The highest in the 120-km-long mountain range, which stretches all the way from the border with Italy and Austria, to Croatia, is the outstanding Mount Stol.

The Karavanke Mountain range rise above Lake Bled with Mt. Stol on the far left

Hiking it will serve you idyllic vistas quite different from the sheer walls and rugged landscapes typical of the Triglav National Park. Here you’ll be given incredible views across the valley floor, the Sava River, and Lake Bled, while the top will literally blow your mind away as the landscape suddenly transforms into an Alpine fairy tale with seemingly never-ending white peaks all around.

The turquoise Sava Dolinka River snaking its way towards Ljubljana at the foothills of Mt. Stol
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Hiking in a winter fairy tale above Kranjska Gora: Mt. Cipernik

Serene and tranquil, rising high above Kranjska Gora, this mountain hides under a thick layer of virgin fluffy snow, its top unveiling unspoiled Alpine vistas, never-ending rolling hills, and “the mother of all ski jumping hills” Planica. Yet this lonely 1,745-meter peak is not only a forest hike with only stunning views at the top. Cipernik is adorned with a mysterious “Black cave”, numerous viewpoints, a meadow with a mountain hut, a rock arch formation with a naturally occurring window, and a perfect 6-7-hour round route. Want to hear the crazy part? You can *literally* hike it from the cute little alpine town of Kranjska Gora.

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Hiking with dogs on Velika Planina, Visit Ljubljana, Slovenia

Wishing you all the best in 2020

IN News

“This is my life. The path that leads nowhere else but to another path and then again yet to another path. Endless paths. Freedom in its most perfect sense of meaning. I’m destined for freedom, so free that when among people who either love me or hate me, I remain alone. Alone with my wishes, dreams, yearnings, and alone on my endless paths.”

Same as Nejc Zaplotnik, I thrive on freedom too.

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Best of: Bled’s must-go outdoor spots

IN Bled , Family hiking , Hiking , Julian Alps , Triglav National Park

Bled is gorgeous, it’s as simple as that. A cliff with a medieval castle rising high above Lake Bled, a deep green lake that turns turquoise in spring, and a small island with a 12th century church in the middle; all set against the picturesque backdrop of the Karawanks mountains. The setting looks like one out of a fairytale, especially in early morning from a small perch on Ojstrica above the lake’s western hilly shore.

Nevertheless, after spending a few days by the lake, you might want to stretch your adventures out a bit. Thankfully, the area has a plethora of beautiful spots and I’m here to share my favorite outdoor spots near Bled. Have more to add? Share them in the comments.

To get that picture-perfect view, extend your tour to a 611m-high hill called Ojstrica. It’s a 15-minute walk uphill on a trail starting near the parking lot in Zaka.
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Colors of the fall above Bohinj: Pokljuka, Triglav Lakes, Vogel

As I drive towards the misty Bohinj Valley, green and lush due to the amounts of rainfall it receives, surrounded by towering mountains, I’m anxious to see how the landscapes have transformed with the change of season. Everything looks brown, red, orange and yellow. Even the road resembles a colorful carpet while a light breeze continues to sweep away the vibrantly colored leaves. But I’m not here for the luring fall colors of the Lake Bohinj. I’m here for the golden larches high above the lake in the otherworldly Triglav National Park.

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A glimpse of WWI on a stunning traverse from Bohinj to the Soča

IN Adventure , Alps , Bled , Bohinj , Hiking , Julian Alps , Krn , mountains , News , Slovenia , Soča

On stunningly beautiful trails above Bohinj, where wild flowers grow in abundance and marmots peek from behind large rocks peppered on Alpine meadows, one may be also taken back to the bloody years of WWI. Numerous deteriorating buildings of the war, remains of walls, an old border line with bunkers, and bombs are dotted all along the rugged mountainous stretch between Bohinj and the Soča Valley.

There we were, on a warm and bright day in late September, wearing our hiking clothes and a backpack with the basics for two days in the mountains, starting out our three-day adventure in the Julian Alps. In the first two days we would hike over 24 kilometers and make 2,050 meters of ascent to reach Mt. Krn, 2,244 m, then descend 1,253 meters down to the Soča Valley and spend the third day hiking and relaxing along the Soča River before driving back to Bled, where we had met earlier that day.

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