Discover the jewel of Central Europe in Slovenia
Instead of booking your usual walking holiday this year, why not try something new? The best kept secret in Central Europe, Slovenia offers glacial lakes, mountains and fairytale medieval architecture. Not to be confused with Slovakia, this small but mighty country shares borders with Austria, Croatia, Hungary and Italy. Slovenia has something for everyone from the church topped islet of Bled to the iconic Tromostovje bridge along the Ljubljanica river. Take your pick from rivers, seas, mountains and valleys on Slovenia’s many scenic walks - some of which even cross through other countries.
Perfect for walkers and hikers, we’ve put together a brief summary to the best parts of this beautiful and historic country.
Taking it easy
For those looking for a gentle introduction to Slovenia, the Via Bela Krajina trail from Semic to Metlika is a great place to start. Relatively flat with few obstructions, the trail winds its way along the river Kolpa, accompanied by beautiful white birch trees and colourful flowers. The friendly locals are always happy to stop for a chat - and to tell you about the many legends and customs of this stunning part of the country.
Nature enthusiasts will fall in love with the 25 kilometre (15.5 miles) Soca Trail as they make their way through the Alpine valley of Trenta, along the crystal waters of the river Soca, to Bovec. Take the time to marvel at impressive canyons, rustic bridges and Mother Nature in all her glory before ending the trail at the famous Triglav National Park.
Going loco for Loka
One of the lushest areas of Slovenia is the Skofja Loka hills region - so much so that it has been much celebrated by local writer Ivan Tavcar in his works. Idyllic green valleys are contrasted with a number of magnificent peaks, including the prominent Blegos for a picture postcard finish. As the Loka Mountain trail does involve climbing, you will need a certain amount of stamina and experience for this one - if in doubt, consult with local guides or experts.
Staying with Slovenia’s beautiful valleys, you can do no better than the stunning mountain landscape of the Kamnik-Savinja Alps on the Logar Valley trail. Explore incredible scenery as you make you way past the Rinka Falls to the welcoming Okreselj mountain lodge where you can enjoy a drink, a meal or even an overnight stay. More experienced climbers can awake refreshed the next day, ready to show off their skills as they tackle the stunning Planjava and Ojstrica mountains for gorgeous views across the valleys.
The hills are alive
Not quite as arduous as the Logar Valley mountains - but just as breathtaking are the Pohorje hills. Starting from the picturesque city of Maribor with its 15th century castle houses, make your way over the Pohorje hills along the Slovenian Mountain Trail. Take in the views of lush forests and crystal clear rivers and lakes as you make your way to Koroska nestled between the Drava river and the Karavanke. Although this trail does involve quite a lot of ascent, it is relatively forgiving and there are plenty of huts and lodges along the route for walkers to rest up before continuing on their way.
Top of the world
One for the more experienced hiker is the Koroska Mountain Trail (not to be confused with the Slovenian Mountain Trail above which ends at Koroska). Approximately 230 kilometres (143 miles) in length, the Koroska Mountain Trail winds its way among the slopes of the three valleys of Koroska whilst connecting to the Karawanks, Pohorje, Kozjak and Savinija Alps mountains. Although this circular route is one of the longest Slovenian walks, it is possible to plan a one day section of the route instead of the entire thing for those less accustomed to hiking.
When preparing a walking or hiking holiday in a different country, it’s essential that you make sure you know what you’re letting yourself in for. Weather conditions and terrain can change quite suddenly and it’s vital that you’re prepared for every eventuality: For our full guide to walking safely in Slovenia, check out our page HERE.