Slovenia steals my heart

It was a Wednesday and the skies were blue in Croatia! Almost a strange phenomenon, according to some of the locals after so many days of non-stop rain. Once again we were up early, 06:30, as we had to be on the road by 08:00. We were leaving Croatia for a couple of days to visit Slovenia.

On the way we drove through some beautiful mountain passes and enjoyed some more views of the blue-green Adriatic Sea. The temperature ranged between 3 and 10deg Celsius and the mist rising up from the valleys was spectacular.Mist in the mountainsMist rising from the valley to the mountains

Our first stop was near a small town called Sinj (pronounced Sin). This is another ancient town with its key feature the Nehaj Fortress which was a place for Christian refugees from the Ottomans in Bosnia from 1558-1671 when they had to leave having been accused of piracy. We didn’t get the opportunity to actually visit the town but had a half hour coffee stop at a service station as the driver has to have a stop after a certain time or number of kilometres travelled. This is very strictly adhered to in Europe.

We then continued on to Opatija where we would have a longer break and lunch. It is a beautiful port town with pure white islands just off the coast. Although it is quite a small port it is able to receive some very large tourist ships. Opatija is a long narrow town as the land rises steeply from the coastline but the the harbour wall is wide and smooth so we enjoyed a good hour strolling along it. We had some rolls and boiled eggs so found a spot under some trees in a lovely park just off the harbour wall. At 13:15 we were on our way again. Next stop the Postonja Caves in Slovenia. As we rejoined the highway, there was a  small building on our left referred to as a tourist office. It looked more like a forgotten ablution block with nothing else around it.A tourist info officeA tourist info office on the road near OpatijaHarbour wall in OpatijaHarbour wall in OpatijaWhite islands in the AdriaticWhite islands in the Adriatic

 

 

Our next stop was at the Postonja Caves in central Slovenia. The tour of the caves was a true highlight of the trip even though the temperature was between 3o and 8oC. These caves, created by the Povka River, are the second longest in Slovenia which has a number of underground cave systems. The Postonja Cave system is a little over 24kms long but only some 5kms are open to the public. To access these one is first taken on a 10 minute train ride passing some beautiful stalagmites and stalagtites. The first trains were pushed by the guides followed by gas driven trains which were finally upgraded to electric ones after 1945. The entrance to the caves is blackened as well as for a fair distance into them. We learnt that German occupying forces in the 1940s had stored barrels of gasoline in the caves. In 1944 Slovene Partisans set these on fire damaging many of the caves and left the entrance blackened.Vicky Trevor at the entrance to the Postoinja cavesVicky Trevor at the entrance to the Postonja caves. Note the blackened walls.The maiden with a sea gull in OpatijaThe maiden with a sea gull with a broken wing on the Opatija harbour wall

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After a delightful tour of these beautiful natural creations we were back on to our bus to drive the short distance to Bled where we would spend 2 nights. It was during these 2 days that Slovenia stole my heart. Bosnia was a very interesting place to visit, Croatia has some positively beautiful scenery and very friendly people but it was the glorious rural scenes and mountains of Slovenia which were the best for me.

About Me

I was born into the early part of the Baby Boomer generation, the 3rd of what came to be a family of 6 daughters. Although both our parents, who are now deceased, had been raised in rural Natal (now KwaZulu-Natal) and the 2 eldest daughters were born in a country town, the other 4 of us were all born at home in Durban. Read More

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