Published: September 8th 2011
September 8th 2011
Fri 2 Sept: Head north to Kransjka Gora & then Vrsic Pass 1611m is AWESOME! Mountain lovers would be v close to heaven. & drivers would enjoy the 50 hairpin turns. Incline at times 18 degrees. Second gear v useful. Mountain views absolutely stunning. No wonder Slovenians enjoy hiking these mountains. The drive was so good I did it again from the other direction for the fun of it. Those who get car sick avoid this drive. For others, the view is close to God.
Then onto Bled. Accommodation not where it was supposed to be. Receptionist said "we have been getting some complaints. " - is in countryside rather than on the lake, and road in is one lane variety, of narrowest version. And you be glad to know the large 4wheel drive tractor with implement & I both came to a mutual sharing outside Accom without a scratch to either. Other good thing is that the world championships of rowing is happening on Lake Bled this weekend - also is Olympic qualifying. all the big names are here ( like me!) The place is chokers! so if you were watching the world sports news you may have seen me. Good thing Bled is also visually stunning, with autumn hues begining to be painted on the flora. And Accom has satellite TV, so I simply have to watch some of the US Open Tennis.
Saturday 3 Sept. To Lake Bohinj. The lake is emerald-blue in a clear blue skied day. It is a glacial lake with enormous mtns either side. At the far end the local people thought it was the end of the world. Went up gondola on Mt Vogel for overview of whle area with the Slovenian Alps providing the crowning glory. Beautiful.
Sunday 4 Sept. Morning the castle & Vintgar Gorge - a 1600m walk thru gorge on wooden walkways attached to the walls of the gorge. It criss-crosses over swirling river with rapids, falls & through the gorge itself. Afternoon walked all way round Lake Bled with world championship rowing competition finishing off. Go Australia. Fantastic colours of the water & afternoon light. Food is a lot of bread, sausage, seafood & potatoes. Ljubljana has plenty of horse on offer, too. Beer cheap!
Monday 5 Sept. Easy drive to Postojnska Caves. These caves a stunning cornucopia of stalactites, stalagmites & columns. Crowds of people though. Cave after cave of calcium formations, pillars & translucent curtains. Bonus is the 5 min tunnel train ride in & out. It is better than the ghost train ride at the exhibition - & you are flying along. The Predjama castle is 9km up the road. Went further onto Skocjan caves. Less people but it is more of the cave network than the stalactite etc formations. Some of the caves are mammoth. So depends whether your preference is the formations or caves. Onto Piran.
Tuesday 6 Sept. Piran is at the tip of a narrow costal peninsula, & a gem of Venetian Gothic architecture. It is old, is quaint, is rustic, is by the sea, & everyone sits, drinks & eats looking over the water to either Italy or Croatia.
Wed - Friday 7-10 Sept. Zadar at the north of Dalmatian coast is a bustling city. The thumb-like formation of the old city has glossy marbled streets laid out on old Roman plan - majority of it pedestrian.. Unfortunately city was bombed during WWII and the for a number of years in the local wars of 1990s. It has preserved/ restored the ancient churches but has lost the true feel of a medieval city. More it is caught in tension of the old bringing in tourists and the drive to the new. So along the narrow streets you can have the Gucci shops enticing tourists. On the mainland it is very drad in parts. Off to check out some of the nearby islands Friday.