Slovenia 2016

During our annual drive to Belgrade, September 2016, we met our friends Zlata and Sasa in Ljubljana and spent
the week in Slovenia. Sasa’s father came from Slovenia and he remembered a lot of the places we visited from
his childhood. Slovenia has a lot to offer, easy to get around and many good restaurants. We re-visited Postonja
Cave (last visit 2014), and three parts of Triglavski National Park: Tolminska Korita, Savica waterfall and Vintgar.
We saw Volcji Potok Arboretum with its dinosaur sculptures. Dinosaur parks are popular in the Balkans,
and there is one under construction at Ada Ciganlia in Belgrade.

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Slovenia is a very beautiful country, at the south end of the Alps. View from Predjama Castle near Postojna Cave.

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We stayed in a stone cabin at a Postojna Camping.

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Predjama Castle is the biggest castle built into the mouth of a cave. It was built in 1274 in Gothic style.

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The castle has a lot of different levels.

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The living room for the masters of the castle.

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The castle was turned into a museum after the WW II.

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Postojna Cave has 24 km of passages, of which 5.3 km are open to the public.
It is the second largest cave system in Slovenia.

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Visits are arranged every hour between 9 am and 6 pm at peak tourist season. Extra tours might be
added on the half hour if there are many visitors. Our group was three trains with 120 passengers on each.

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The train travels rather fast. The path is well lit to show different stone formations.

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The train ride into the cave system takes about ten minutes, and the walk takes about 45 minutes.

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So far there have been 37 million visitors.

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The stalagmites are very impressive. Stalagmites grow from the ground up,
built with minerals in the water dripping down.

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Stalactites hang down from the ceiling and grow as minerals dry at the ends.

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The glossy surface is due to dampness, although the cave feels dry. All pathways have a non-slip surface.

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The walk ends in a large cave with a souvenir shop. From here, a train takes you back to the opening.

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A model of the olm or proteus (Proteus anguinus), which the cave is famous for.
The endemic olm is the largest trogloditic amphibian in the world.

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Cave living creatures are displayed in a Vivarium that has tanks with live olms.

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Graffiti left by early visitors. The first visit to the cave took place in 1819.

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Butterfly exhibit, one of attractions in the full ticket to the caves.

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There is an exhibit showing the development of the rail system, established in 1872,
and the electrical light system installed in 1884.

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A 3-D model of the surrounding area. All red dots represent a cave.
Postojna Cave is in the center of the picture – the larger red “blob”.

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Tourist items for sale. The entrance fee for adults is close to Euro 40:- per person. It includes Postojna Cave,
Predjama Castle, Visit to Proteus Cave/ Vivarium, Butterflies Exhibition and EXPO Postojna Cave Karst.

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Tolminska Korita is a narrow canyon with rivers. Entrance fee Euro 3.

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Well kept paths, and beautiful forest along the trail …

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…. like these small flowers, wild cyclamen.

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One of the rivers.

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Information signs where the two rivers meet.

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The river flows fast. It feels safe to walk along the paths.

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The river gorge is narrow, and the water has a beautiful green color.

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Entrance to the Savica Waterfall.

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Stick to the trails, which are well prepared and easy to walk on.

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The path offers a comfortable walk, with helpful handrails in many places.

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Savica Waterfall. We were there on a grey day with occasional showers.

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Vintgar offered a spectacular walk along a fast running river.

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Vintgar is one of the most popular natural features in Slovenia, about 3.5 km from Bled.

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It is an old trail that is made safe where people walk.

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The river becomes wider at the end of the 1600 m long walk.

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A dam close to the end of the trail.

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A café is the perfect turn around point for the walk.

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Voljci Potok Arboretum is the most visited botanical garden in Slovenia.

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This dam was full of fish.

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The park is known for its spring flower shows, which we missed by half a year.

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The French Garden

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Mushroom picking is forbidden is all of Slovenia, without a permit.

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The arboretum is primarily a botanical garden for woody plants, and has many wooden sculptures.

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No name wooden sculpture – we could not find any sign.

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One section has greenhouses and sells plants and, at this time of the year, pumpkins.

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Part of the rose garden.

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A greenhouse with succulents.

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Flowering living stones

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Flowering cactus

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One greenhouse was for butterflies.

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There were perhaps a dozen different butterfly species.

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Part of the life size dinosaur display.

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This Tyrannosaurus looked rather friendly.

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The sculptures were rather impressive, especially as they were done life size.

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A different type of display – wooden birds.

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Our friends Zlata and Sasa.

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Exit through the gift shop and bye bye from the olm.

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