Most visitors to Slovenia head straight for the capital Ljubljana and the picturesque town of Bled but if you can spare an extra day or two, I highly recommend a visit to the Triglav National Park and the small village of Ribcev Laz on Lake Bohinj.
During my stay in Bled last year, I took a drive to Savica waterfall, Slovenia’s most famous waterfall, located in the Triglav National Park.
One of many inflows to Lake Bohinj, the waterfall is a powerful force, and is around 50 metres high. To reach the falls, follow the signs from the village of Ukanc.
The falls are accessed by a reasonably steep climb on well-made steps above the Savica gorge, in about 20 minutes. A viewing platform provides good photo opportunities whilst keeping you (mostly) dry from the spray of the falls.
Parking: around €3.00, Entrance to falls: around €2.50 per adult.
Between Ukanc and Bled is the small village of Ribcez Laz, at the eastern end of Lake Bohinj. The lake itself is larger and less developed than Lake Bled but it still offers plenty of activities for visitors.
Fishing and canoe hire are popular water activities whilst the area is also great for hiking and biking.
A surprise to me was the Church of St. John the Baptist, sitting beside the village’s cute stone bridge. This quaint, unremarkable-looking church contains 14th, 15th and 16th century frescoes of superb quality.
We were lucky to visit the church whilst a group was visiting and we had the advantage of listening to their tour guide talk about the history of the church.
If you are visiting by yourself, check with the Tourist Office if visits are available as the church is not always open.
Also in the village is the ‘monument to four brave men’ built in 1978 to mark the 200th anniversary of the first ascent to the summit of Mt. Triglav.
The monument can be found in a small park near to St John the Baptist Church.
On our journey back to Bled (about 30 kilometres), we travelled via more small villages and farming communities and at Studor were rapt to see a number of Toplar hayracks.
These are traditional Slovenian double hayracks that are used to dry hay and wheat in the often damp conditions.
Need to know:
Ribcev Laz, on the eastern end of Lake Bohinj, is located 28 kilometres from Bled and 82 kilometres from Ljubljana. Savica Falls are a further 8 kilometres from Ribcev Laz.
The best way to explore the area is by car but bus services do operate between Ljubljana, Bled and Ribcev Laz.
A range of accommodation is available at Ribcev Laz including hotels, apartments and farm stays.
Slovenia is a small and friendly country and English is widely spoken. I highly recommend you include a visit to Slovenia, and the beautiful Triglav National Park, in your European itinerary.
More information on the Lake Bohinj region can be found on the Slovenian Tourism website.
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