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Top 5 swimmings spots in Soča Valley

While exploring Slovenia, a visit to the Soča Valley is inevitable. It’s considered to be one of the prettiest parts of the country and it’s often called a paradise for cycling, hiking and watersports. Beautiful, yet cold Soča river never reaches more than 7-14°C in its upper stream, but it’s nevertheless the place to jump into the water after a day of cycling or hiking in the valley. 

Many of our touring and mountain-biking routes pass this magical place so it’s only fair to list the places where you can actually jump into this magnificent emerald river.

1) Camp Soča

The first on the list is the confluence of Soča and Lepena rivers, located by the Camp Soča. Surrounded by forested hills and rocky mountain peaks, this swimming place is in the uppermost part of the Soča river of all the listed places. The proximity of the Soča spring can mean only one thing – the water is really cold and hardly reaches 10°C even in summer. 

But the white stone beachfront and the natural pools close to the Great Soča Gorge call for swimming and jumping in the water anyway.

Soča gorge_Tomo Jeseničnik

Jumping spots just next to the Great Soča Gorge (Photo: Tomo Jeseničnik)

2) Magnetic rock

The second place on the list is called magnetic rock by the locals. It’s located just a 10-min walk from the Kal-Koritnica village or from camps (Toni, Liza, Kovač and Vodenca) east of Bovec. The place is hidden in the forest and is more or less known only by the locals which means more solitude. The hanging bridge over the river only adds to the beauty of the place.

Soča river hanging bridges_Koritnica

Koritnica is a hidden swimming gem in Soča Valley

3) Napoleon’s bridge across Nadiža

Close to the village Logje some 13km away from Kobarid, Napoleon’s stone bridge across Nadiža river represents a magical place for a refreshing swim. It was built in the beginning of 19. century at the time of Napoleon’s conquest around Europe, hence its name. Surrounded by greenery you won’t be anything but amazed by this place. As a bonus, Nadiža river is warmer than Soča and reaches up to 20°C in summer.

Napoleons bridge across Nadiža_Ciril Jazbec

The stone bridge across Nadiža dates back to around 1812 (Photo: Ciril Jazbec)

4) Sotočje

The Sotočje sandy beach in Tolmin is perfect for summer swims, picnics and sunbathing. This is already a third place on this list that’s actually a confluence of two rivers – this time Soča and Tolminka rivers. Many music festivals take place here every summer, bringing a lively vibe to the city of Tolmin. 

Sotočje_Tolmin

The famous confluence of Soča and Tolminka rivers

5) Modrej beach

Just next to the town called Most na Soči, the emerald Soča river almost completely slows down. The Modrej beach is therefore one of the safest places to swim in Soča river and also one of the warmest places – especially after the confluence with Idrijca river a 1km further from this beach. Here you also have a possibility to enjoy other water activities, such as kayaking or paddle boarding.

Modrej beach Soča Valley

At Modrej beach the Soča river almost completely slows down

Up for other activities in Soča Valley?

Cycling & mountain-biking routes

One of the MTB routes that crosses the Soča Valley is the Trans Slovenia 01 route that explores Slovenia in 7-days on a mountain-bike. It goes from the Julian Alps, across Soča Valley, through vineyards of Goriška Brda and Karst region before reaching the sunny Adriatic coast where one can relax at the beach after a week of biking.

Similar to this route, but appropriate for touring cycling or e-bikes, is the 8-day Bike Slovenia Green Alps to Adriatic route that enables you to taste the delicious and varied typical cuisine along the way. Jumping in the sea at the end is also part of this route.

MTB and cycling trails in Slovenia

Scenic landscapes make biking around Slovenia a must-do

Hiking in Soča Valley

If you’re up for some long-distance hiking routes or trekking in Slovenia that goes by the Soča Valley, we recommend the Walk of Peace trail. Although the trail goes along the former WW1 frontline, this route isn’t just about history. The ever-changing nature, landscapes and cuisine along the way are unforgettable!

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Meeting the wild goats along the Walk of Peace route

7 must-see sights of the Walk of Peace hiking route

Walk of Peace is a UNESCO protected hiking trail that goes along the former WW1 front-line on the Slovenian-Italian border. The hike starts in the Julian Alps in Slovenia and finishes 13-days later on the sunny Adriatic coast in Italy.

Our list of 7 must-see sights will show you that this route is much more than just about WW1 and the peace with the past. It’s also about the beautiful nature, local culture, authentic cuisine and present inner peace. 

In this 13-day hike you’ll:

1) Marvel at the Alps and the views

The Walk of Peace hiking route passes beautiful Alpine valleys that are surrounded by many high mountains. If you’d wish to hike to any mountain, we recommend the Krn mountain (2245m) which is easily accessible from the Kuhinja alpine pasture that’s along the way. 

Another two route viewpoints are Mrzli vrh (1359m) hill and Sabotin mountain ridge (609m). They were a place of important WW1 battles and an outdoor museum is on top of both. The first one overlooks the surrounding hills and the nearby Tolminka river and the second overlooks the emerald Soča river and the Tuscany-like wine region of Goriška Brda.

walk-of-peace-views-valleys

Picturesque Alpine valleys and mountains

2) Swim in rivers, waterfalls and gorges

At the start the trail goes along the emerald Soča river which is one of the prettiest European rivers. It was even a part of the Chronicles of Narnia movie, but its freezing temperatures never go above 7-14°C. On the way, you’ll also see the magnificent Tolmin Gorge, Koritnica Gorge and Fratarica Gorge that are named after the eponymous Alpine rivers.

In the Fratarica Gorge there are two waterfalls – 8m high Katedrala waterfall and the 48m high Parabola waterfall. The latter has small turquoise ponds above and below it, so make sure to take a refreshing swim there. Otherwise, the route also passes a 15m high Kozjak waterfall. It’s hidden in a small cave and the play of light lets you marvel at its beauty.

soča-river-walking-trail

Some scenes from the Chronicles of Narnia were filmed in the Soča river valley

3) Walk the vineyards of Goriška Brda

If you ever wanted to visit picturesque Tuscany, you’re gonna love the Tuscany-like wine region of Goriška Brda. This region is full of vineyard hills and small romantic stone villages and it comes right after leaving the Soča river valley. To have a great panoramic view of the vineyard hills, visit the Gonjače view tower.

Since Goriška Brda are renowned for high quality wine and exquisite home-made food, we also recommend visiting some local wine cellars and trying the dry white Rebula wine which is the most typical wine of the region.

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The endless vineyards of Goriška Brda

4) Visit the Karst caves

After passing the Goriška Brda, you come to the Slovenian Karst region that’s full of disappearing springs and caves. There are more than 8.000 caves there, but only about 20 are open to the public. Many of the caves were used as military shelters during WW1 and some have also been destroyed for this reason. 

During this hiking route you can visit Cave Pečinka that was used as a military shelter during WW1 and WW2. The cave even has an artificially made passage that served as an observation post during the war and it goes from the cave to the top of the hill Pečina.

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Pečinka cave is only one of the many WW1 shelter caves

5) Take a swim in the Adriatic sea

Leaving the Karst plateau you’ll soon notice the landscape changing to the Mediterranean. When you reach the sunny coastal town of Duino you can finally take a swim in the Adriatic sea and even visit two castles that are above the city cliffs. One is open for visitors, but the other one is unfortunately in ruins. 

From there you can prolong your walk to the Rilke trail that goes along the sea and offers views over the city of Trieste which was one of the main Italian goals during WW1. Trieste is also the finish line of this 13-day long hiking route.

adriatic-sea-views

Finishing the hiking tour at the sunny seaside? Yes, please

6) Enjoy tasty local food and wine

This hiking trip enables you to also immerse yourself in the authentic local cuisine and wine culture. When in Soča Valley, don’t forget to try the typical Čompa an skuta dish which is cooked potatoes served with cottage cheese. Later, in the vineyards of Goriška Brda, try the Frtalja, a traditional herbal omelette, and a glass of the dry white Rebula wine

In the Karst region we recommend trying the local prosciutto which is highly prized by gourmets. And if you’d like to have a top-level culinary experience, you can visit the Michelin starred restaurant Hiša Franko in Kobarid that’s owned by the world’s best female chef of 2017.

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Frtalja and white Rebula wine are a must-try of this hiking tour

7) Learn about the WW1

As you can see by now, the Walk of Peace isn’t just about WW1, it’s also about the outstandingly beautiful nature and local culture. Still, the trail is UNESCO protected because of its WW1 importance and the fortified tunnels, shelters, trenches, bomb craters and even machine gun emplacements that you can still see along the way.

To learn more about the history of WW1 and the Isonzo front, we encourage you to visit the outdoor museums that you pass on the route, for example the Zaprikaj, Čelo or Ravelnik outdoor museums, and the Walk of Peace Visitors Centre in Kobarid.

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On the way you can still see the WW1 trenches

Prepare for an unforgettable hiking adventure

 

The Walk of Peace hiking trail is perfect for the end of summer, autumn or spring hiking trip when the trails are empty and the temperature is more suitable. You can embark on this adventure on your own or with an organized self-guided or guided hiking tour.

Why an organized hiking tour?

  • You never get lost (24/7 assistance)
  • You visit the local hidden gems 
  • Accommodation and meals are organized
  • Baggage and start/end transfers are organized 
  • An experienced hiking guide will tell you a lot of interesting things about the WW1 and local culture 

Self-guided tours can be organized anytime. This year’s guided tour dates are:
May 30 – June 11, 2022
Sep 8 – 20, 2022

And don’t worry about the Covid-19 travel restrictions, you can book the tour risk-free. Read more about the Covid refund guarantee here.

walk-of-peace-hiking-tour

Making friends olong the way

Top 5 photo spots on Slovenia bicycle tours

Slovenia is full of hidden gems, unique experiences, and picturesque adventures. No one knows them better than our Visit GoodPlace experts and that’s why they’ve curated a list of activities, trails, sights, and roads that you should visit during your Slovenia bicycling tours.

“For me, the best photos are not the ones that look perfect, but those with a story behind it. So I encourage you that if you decide to visit these photo spots, take time to really soak in the atmosphere. Make an adventure out of it. Choose biking or hiking and make the best out of our Slovenia bicycling tours. Make a picnic. Have fun. These are the things you will remember when you will browse through your travel photos.”– Romina Gerbec

Zelenci springs

Slovenia has been named the greenest country in the world because of its sustainability efforts however there is another reason for that. The country is literally green. It is covered with green forests, meadows, rivers, and lakes, which will keep you company during Slovenia bicycle tours. Yes, you read that right – many waters in Slovenia have this turquoise colour, ranging from shades of green to shades of blue. Zelenci has green in its name (zelena means green in Slovene). There is a wooden lookout tower nearby so everyone can make a good shot of the place.

Mangart Saddle

Topping out at 2,072 meters, the road to Mangart Saddle is the highest lying road in Slovenia. The ride is an adventure on its own. You can drive up there in your own car, but it’s highly recommended you take the shuttle bus, so you don’t have to meet cars on the narrow road and it’s also more environmentally friendly. If you’re a true adventurer and a sports head, you can take your bike and challenge yourself on one of the hardest Slovenia bicycle tours. Once you reach the saddle, you can enjoy the view of the Log Koritnica Valley on one side and the view of Lakes of Fusine in Italy on the other. It’s one of my favourite spots for taking photos.

Kolovrat

Mount Kolovrat is a ridge that rises above Soča Valley and lies on the Slovenian-Italian border. It is accessible by car, but I strongly recommend visiting this point while riding on our Slovenia bicycling tours. From the top of Mt. Klabuk, you can take a photo of the Julian Alps and if you turn the other way, the Adriatic sea will shine in the distance. The 360 view is spectacular. It’s one of those places I visit regularly, all year round, and I never, ever leave without taking a photo (or ten).

Ljubljana Gornji trg

When in Ljubljana, take a walk through a vibrant and picturesque old town or enjoy a more relaxed bike ride on your Slovenia bicycling tours. There are many opportunities for “postcard images”, well worth this list, but my choice is Gornji Trg (the upper square). The place is not as busy as the main streets of Ljubljana’s Old Town, so you can get a nice shot of charming buildings. A cherry on top is the chandelier hanging above the square.

Ojstrica Lake Bled

You were probably expecting lake Bled to appear on this list at some point. For a suburb shot of Bled island, castle, and the mountains at the back, climb up a small hill named Ojstrica (it takes around 20 minutes). This one can be one of the most exciting stops during the Slovenia bicycle tours. If you enjoy taking photos of sunrises, get there early and enjoy the view of spectacular colours reflecting in the water.

Author: Romina Gerbec, head of marketing

Romina is our digital marketing ninja. Her team possesses skills that range from graphic design to social media advertising, which helps our boutique travel agency more visible on the world wide web. She believes that every successful marketing story starts with a good product or service. However, a good-looking photo can’t hurt either, she says. If you enjoy taking photos (or browsing through them after your holidays), you should not miss these photo spots when you visit Slovenia.

Top 5 panoramic roads on your Slovenia cycling holidays

Slovenia is full of hidden gems, unique experiences, and picturesque adventures. No one knows them better than our Visit GoodPlace experts and that’s why they’ve curated a list of activities, trails, sights, and roads that you should visit during your Slovenia cycling holidays.

At Visit Goodplace, we all love to bike. But while some team members are big fans of hard-core mountain biking, I prefer easy touring along quiet roads and scenic gravel paths. Cycling on such panoramic roads enables me to truly enjoy the incredible views offered by the dynamic landscape which makes it a perfect cycling holidays destination. Here are my top picks.– Katja Defrančeski

Parenzana old railway track

Although Parenzana railway track doesn’t include many high-altitude points, its seaside location provides for a range of magnificent views of the coast. When it was still in operation in the early 1900s, the track was used for transporting passengers, salt, olive oil, Istrian stone, wine, and other goods between Poreč and Trieste. Today it is transformed into one of my favorite paths, winding between vineyards in the hinterland of the Adriatic coast. I especially like the old train tunnels on the track, which truly take you back in time and it’ll definitely be one of the highlights of your Slovenia cycling holidays.

Tours: Istria to Adriatic

Below the Julian Alps

When you cycle from Kranjska Gora to Bled, you are in for a treat. There is a dedicated cycling path connecting these two lovely places and it is full of little bridges and of course, amazing views of the Julian Alps. This pleasant path leads to the village of Mojstrana, where it enters one of the prettiest alpine valleys in Slovenia, the Radovna River Valley. I love the part of the route when you arrive in wide green pastures scattered with a few small farms.

Tours: Bike Slovenia Green, Around TNP, Trans Slovenia 02

From mountain to vineyards

On your Slovenia cycling holidays, you shouldn’t miss this route, which is another one of my beloved cycling roads. is the one leading from the Soča Valley across the scenic Kolovrat mountain ridge all the way to the famous Goriška Brda, the wine capital of Slovenia. Along this panoramic route, you can admire panoramas in all directions. In front of you, there are the rolling hills covered in vineyards, behind you the Alps. On the left, you have the Soča Valley and on the right the Italian region of Friuli Venezia Giulia.

Tours: Bike Slovenia Green, Trans Slovenia 01

The Karst route

If you want to discover the Karst on your Slovenia cycling holidays, I recommend you to cycle from Komen to Lokev. Even though Karst is all about the underground caves, you will be able to observe its unique natural phenomena on the surface as well. There is something special in the combination of red soil, refreshing wind, and typical villages on hilltops that offer some lesser-known, but no less breath-taking vistas.

Tours: Trans Slovenia 01

Solčava panoramic road

The Solčava panoramic road is well-known as one of the best Slovenia cycling holiday tours. Despite that, it is never crowded. It takes you along the pearls of the natural and cultural heritage of the Solčava region, including the famous Logarska Valley. The first time I cycled on this route, I was simply taken away by the views of the mountain peaks above and pristine valleys below me. Along the panoramic road, you can also visit some excellent highland farms, where they are producing everything nature offers with a lot of love.

Tours: Trans Slovenia 03, Trans Slovenia 04

Author: Katja Defrančeski, COO

Katja has 10+ years of experience in managing projects in tourism. If you decide to book a tour with us, she will make sure that everything will work out exactly as planned. She is the energetic, organized, experienced person that every office needs. In her free time, she (surprise, surprise 🙃) enjoys cycling, especially if it is accompanied by amazing views, rich culture, and good food. Take a look at her list of the top 5 panoramic roads, which offer much more than just good Slovenia cycling holidays.

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