Thursday, September 11, 2008

Views Around Žaga - Bovec & surroundings

Tucked away in Slovenia's northwest corner is one of the country's most interesting areas. As you head upstream along the turquoise Soča River the scenery becomes ever more grandiose. When you tire of admiring the works of nature you can reflect on the works of man by seeking out reminders of the battles that took place here during World War One. The two main settlements in the upper valley are Kobarid and Bovec.

Bovec town centre

It's a good thing Bovec is surrounded by dramatic scenery, as the town itself is rather characterless and less appealing than Kobarid, specialy due to the longggggg renovation after eartquakes (in april, 1998 and in july, 2004) . Every building seems to house an adventure sports agency or a restaurant full of large groups discussing the day's activities. It also seems to attract a lot of motorcyclists. Bovec is definitely the place to come if you are interested in rafting, kayaking, mountaineering, paragliding, or a variety of other mentioned organised activities.

Even if you just want to walk, there are plenty of trails of various lengths and difficulties in the surrounding area, many of them making use of bouncing footbridges to cross rivers. You may catch a glimpse of the Boka Waterfall from the Kobarid-Bovec road, but you can have a closer look by following a trail southwest from Bovec or Žaga. Another trail leads west to Zmuklica, just off the Bovec-Trenta road. At this point the river passes through a narrow ravine of smooth near-white rocks - a lovely spot to relax and watch the kayakers struggling with the currents. Several trails lead northwest to the fortress at Kluže. The higher trails alternate between forest and scree; from the latter there are views across to Svinjak, the pyramidal mountain that dominates Bovec. The rock strata, some of them in an almost vertical position, are clearly visible. The fortress, which was built by the Austrians during the First World War, is in good condition and contains a museum. A short distance uphill through the forest you can find the ruins of another fortress, Fort Hermann.

It is quite possible to enjoy a visit to the Soča Valley without a car, but it requires a bit more planning than other parts of Slovenia. Several daily buses run along the valley from Bovec to Kobarid (30 mins) and Tolmin (45 mins - 1 hour), from where you can continue by bus to Ljubljana or the train station at Most na Soči. At least one daily bus goes all the way from Bovec to Ljubljana (3 - 4 hours).

From November to April the road over the Vršič Pass is closed to all traffic. Bus services over the pass from Bovec to Kranjska Gora via Trenta vary depending on the season. Very roughly, in July and August you should have no trouble doing the trip by bus on any day, while in May-June and September-October you may find a bus running on Saturdays and Sundays. At these times the schedules make it easier to do a day trip from Kranjska Gora to Trenta or Bovec than vice versa.

Good walking/tourist maps of the area are available locally and in Ljubljana bookshops. The 1:25000 "Bovec z okolico" map is particularly useful - it shows six numbered walking trails and five bike trails around Bovec, and points of natural and historical interest are clearly marked.

...around Bovec

a view towards mountains surrounding Trenta

Soča - Zmuklica

Soča - canyoning spots



at the Bovec airport

Mt. Svinjak




near Bovec

near Bovec

near Bovec

Herman Fortres


Julius Kugy

Soča at Trnovo

Just before the 2nd gorge, known as the Great Soca Gorge (800 meters). One kilometer west of the village Soca. Because it rained the days before, lots of mini waterfalls add their water to the river. A lovely spot.

Another part of the Soca valley. Bovec is in the middle left of the Soca, Cezsoca to the right of the Soca. Taken from the highest spot that can be walked to to see the Boka waterfall.

The Soca valley between Bovec and Kobarid (from NW to SE) on a rainy day. The villages seen are Zaga and Srpenica. Not a very nice picture, but it gives an impression of the region.

The ride up the Vršič pass and down to the Soča river valley is very rewarding. The narrow road winds like a serpent as it climbs to the pass and down to the Soča river and the views on the way and at the pass are breath taking.You can take the short stroll to the sources of the Soča and then drove along its beautiful gorge . At one point one even has a glimpse at the snowy peak of the Triglav.

You have to love places with clean, crystal clear, inviting water, such as the river Soca in Slovenia. It´s famous for its water quality, for endemic fish species, but also for rafting and kayaking. Having similar views from a suspension bridges, I suggest you to take a swim (14°C). Refreshing!:)

Other GALLERYS of Bovec area:

Views Around Žaga - Kobarid & surroundings

Tucked away in Slovenia's northwest corner is one of the country's most interesting areas. As you head upstream along the turquoise Soča River the scenery becomes ever more grandiose. When you tire of admiring the works of nature you can reflect on the works of man by seeking out reminders of the battles that took place here during World War One. The two main settlements in the upper valley are Kobarid and Bovec.


The town of Kobarid is just a few kilometres from the Italian border, at the point where the Soča emerges from the narrow confines of its upper course and begins to meander through a broader valley. It's a small cluster of flower-bedecked white houses clustered around the elegant belfry of the Church of the Assumption.

If, like me, all your mental images of the First World War involve plains and poppy fields, the Kobarid Museum is an essential stop. For two and a half years the Italian and Austrian/German armies faced each other in the mountains around Kobarid (Caporetto). In addition to the normal hazards of war, they had to deal with the bitterly cold mountain weather and the logistic difficulties of maintaining positions on the crests of mountain ranges. When you see how inaccessible the valley is today, it's hard to grasp the sheer scale of the Soča (Isonzo) front - there were almost a million casualties here. The museum brings the story to life with photographs, charts, and relief displays.

There are a number of marked walking and cycling trains around the town. The 5km Kobarid Historical Trail links some of the main historical and natural sights. It starts at the Italian Ossuary, which is topped by a 17th-century church that was moved here in 1935. A detour from the main trail, signposted to Veliki Rob, takes you to a viewing platform where you can look almost directly down on Kobarid's main square. The main trail leads north past the remains of trenches and observations posts and the ancient archaeological site of Tonočov Grad. After crossing the river via a high footbridge you reach the Kozjak Waterfall. The path returns to Kobarid crossing the arched Napoleon Bridge.

...around Kobarid

...lotts of choices:)

Napoleon`s bridge



world war one reminder -kostnica Kobarid

...go to Bovec

Buy a licence for Soča activities!

Dear visitors to our magnificent Soča River,

For your information, you must buy a licence before doing any kind of water sport on the Soča River before getting into the water. This has been the regulation for many years; this year, there is also supervisory control over the purchasing of tickets, which means that the licence has to be bought before you start and kept on your person during the trip (or stuck on your raft or mini raft).

You are kindly asked to buy your licences at sales-points (stated below) in order to avoid any inconvenience during the control procedures. At the listed sales-points you will also get a list of access and exit points on the Soča River and degrees of difficulty for different sections of the river.

Please take care of your own safety and the safety of others, and respect nature!

Thank you!

tel.: +386 (0)5 3896 444
fax: +386 (0)5 3896 445

centralno prodajno mesto: TIC BOVEC Trg golobarskih žrtev 8

Aktivni planet d.o.o. Trg golobarskih žrtev 19
Alpe šport Vančar d.o.o. Trg golobarskih žrtev 20
ATC Kanin d.o.o.
prodajno mesto Kaninski center
Dvor 43
Bar Kaverna, Nives Marka s.p. Trg golobarskih žrtev 25
Bovec rafting team, Hrovat Adis s.p. Mala vas 106
Severna obzorja d.o.o. - Outdoor Freaks Klanc 9a
Soča rafting d.o.o. Trg golobarskih žrtev 14
Traft d.o.o. Trg golobarskih žrtev 18
Wes'm d.o.o. - kamp Polovnik Dvor 22

Prijon kajak center d.o.o. Čezsoča 12b

Kamp Soča, Boštjan Komac s.p. Soča 8
Penzion Kamp Klin, Zorč Polonca s.p. Lepena 1

Pozitiv spot športni turizem, Blaž Lužnik s.p. Markova ulica 2
Kamp Lazar, Edi Lazar s.p. Gregorčičeva 63
Ustanova Fundacija poti miru v Posočju
prodajno mesto TIC Kobarid
Gregorčičeva 8
X-point d.o.o. Stresova 1

Canyon 4 d.o.o. Trnovo ob Soči 26 a
TOP d.o.o. Žaga 151

Getting Around Slovenia - INFOS


Traffic infos:

Getting around by CAR

Getting around Slovenia by car, you need to know a few facts: don`t drive on the left, don`t drink and drive and don`t cut the corners! Also, speed limits: 50 km/h, 90 km/h, 130 km/h! And if that still does not change your minds - take a look at some infos and "the new pricelist" ("nov cenik cestno prometnih prekrškov"):

..."the pricelist" and some other infos:

...gas prices, traffic information, etc.:

...on higways in Slovenia you need a vignette:

Getting around by BUS
...bus timetabels for Slovenia:

You can input any two towns to find bus connections between them. Pay attention to the footnotes beneath the schedules as they often contain important information (vozi = runs, ne vozi = does not run, vsak dan = every day, vozi ob delavnikih razen sobote = runs on working days except Saturdays; for more vocabulary including the days of the week see the site's help page).

Ljubljana bus station:

Infos of avrigo bus company:

Ljubljana city public transfer (LPP):

...across Vršič:

Getting around by TRAIN
Slovenske železnice:

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

5 Suggestions - What To Do, When In Soča valley?

We have prepared 5 ideas for spending active and diverse holidays in Soca valley...

Rafting or kayaking on the Soča river or canyoning in Sušec
& a picnic by the Soča

Rafting, a downstream trip in a rugged, inflatable rubber boat with a group of people - a very attractive way of experiencing the river`s nature. Participants do not need any prior paddling skills, in a few minutes they get accustomed to the role of a coordinated paddling team, enjoying the adrenaline river...

Canyoning is another way of experiencing nature in an adventurous way. A tour through an untouched chasm offering no view to the outside world, across waterfalls and through pools that fascinate with their crystal clear water...

...a list of sports and tourist agancies! and where to stay!

In winter: skiing on Kanin and night sledding on the Mangart or the Stol Mt.
In summer: exploring one of the numerous walking trails or MTB-ing...

Kanin is the only ski resort in Slovenia, that can boast slopes higher than 2000 m. It is an Alpine ski resort, where the skiing season runs from December through early May. The Kanin ski area is recognised for its sunny location and breathtaking view that stretches from the heart of the Julian ALps to the Adriatic Sea... Ascending the 2000 m high mountain, where you can walk a trail, MTB, hike, visit a mountain lodge, or simply enjoy the beauty of the mountains, is incredibly easy with the cable car.

In the dark, illuminated by torches and headlamps, under the bright stars in the sky above, sleds are rushing through the tranquil winter night.Sledding courses down Mangart road, as well as Možnica, Javoršček Road, Stol near Žaga and the road from Lepoč pasture will satisfy sledders of all tastes.

Biking on Mangart mountain and visiting the Mangart alpine meadow
or the Kanin mountain biking park

Recreational bikers will be blown away by easy, appreciably organized trails with minor elevation changes, while the more experienced will be fascinated by the diverse terrain. At this point, we must again mention the Kanin MTB park, a heaven for mountain biking enthusiasts. If only the workers and keepers here would share the enthusiasm...

Walking trail to Krn Lake

The Bovec area is a paradise for walking trails. Many trails arround Bovec, Srpenica, Žaga, Log pod Mangrtom, Soča and Trenta, that are marked and secured, offer unlimited pleasures of watching the streams and waterfalls, flora and favna, etc., and will fascinate you with their indigenousness and wilderness.

...Krn iz Lepene - potopis!
A must see, if do not know how to get on Krn...

Visiting the Ravelnik museum, Kluže fortress
and Kobarid museum or one of the numerous world war one collections...

Military cemeteries, monuments and memorials will remind you of semi-historic times. The ruins of fortresses and bunkers, well perserved "mulatiers" and parts of the front are a reminder that something like that should never happen again. You can also choose to visit private museum collections, already mentioned...

The choice which path you take, is yours!