How you can Go to the Prime Caves in Slovenia

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You’ve been charmed by the streets of Ljubljana and awestruck by the alpine wonders of Bled. However your go to to Slovenia isn’t full till you’ve skilled at the very least one of many high 5 caves in Slovenia.

Listed below are the highest suggestions from Terry Anzur, a Slovenian-American journalist on the weblog Strangers in the Living Room:

  1. Postojna Cave: one thing for everybody
  2. Predjama Cave Fortress: world’s largest cave citadel
  3. Škočjan Caves: UNESCO heritage underground
  4. Pivka Cave: journey for thrill-seekers
  5. Idrija Mercury Mine: deep dive into historical past

Which Slovenia cave journey is best for you? In a rustic with a whole bunch of caves in Slovenia, there’s one thing for everybody: Pure magnificence, fascinating historical past, epic journey and even a Disneyland-style prepare journey.

The speedy train ride through Postojna Cave makes a Slovenia cave adventure accessible for travelers of all ages and abilities.
The speedy prepare journey by way of Postojna Cave makes a Slovenia cave journey accessible for vacationers of all ages and skills. Photograph courtesy Iztok Media for Postojna Cave Park.

Postojna Cave: Accessible Slovenia Cave Journey

You probably have time for just one Slovenia cave journey, make it Postojna Cave. This pure marvel has been wowing guests for greater than 200 years. In 1818, an area lamplighter stumbled into the cave and declared: “Right here is paradise.”

Greater than 40 million individuals have visited Postojna Cave since then. It’s the third most visited attraction in Slovenia, after Ljubljana and Bled. At occasions, you may need the sensation that you just’re in a cave-themed amusement park. Don’t despair if there’s a line to board the prepare; it strikes shortly.

The three.7 km prepare journey makes essentially the most astounding chambers and galleries accessible for all ages and skills. Don’t miss the huge Dance Corridor, lit by Murano glass chandeliers. There’s an optionally available 1.5 km stroll to the long-lasting “Good” formation.

Be sure you keep seated on the prepare because it whips previous the overhead rocks with lethal velocity. Please respect nature by not touching the formations. They shaped over hundreds of thousands of years, one drop of water at a time.

For optimum enjoyment, put down your digicam. Within the low gentle, your cellphone pictures are more likely to be disappointing. Flash pictures isn’t allowed. Skilled photographers want permission to arrange lights.

Be a part of this Postojna Cave tour from Ljubljana!

Postojna Cave in Slovenia
Guests to Postojna Cave have the choice of staying on the prepare or taking this brief stroll by way of huge galleries to view the long-lasting rock formations. Photograph courtesy Iztok Media for Postojna Cave Park.

Slovenia’s Child Dragons

Children will love seeing the “child dragons,” a novel species in Postojna Cave. The olms can dwell for 100 years and may survive a decade with out meals. Purchase a separate ticket to the Vivarium to study extra about all of the creatures of the underground world.

When to Go to: Postojna Cave is open twelve months a yr. There’s an underground nativity scene in the course of the holidays. Carry a heat jacket due to the fixed 10-degree Celsius temperature, year-round. To keep away from the summer time crowds in June, July and August, arrive when the cave opens at 9 am. The massive tour teams arrive later within the morning.

Getting there: Postojna Cave Park is a straightforward day journey from Ljubljana or Bled, by automobile or bus. Reserve tickets online or purchase on the ticket workplace.

Professional tip: Keep on the Hotel Jama to skip the ticket line and get a reduction on tour packages. Tenting within the space can also be fashionable. There’s a parking zone for motorhomes. There’s even a free kennel the place your pet can wait whilst you tour the cave.

Predjama Fortress: Mighty Slovenia Cave Fortress

Predjama Fortress, the world’s largest cave fortress, is just a brief drive from Postonja Cave. You may simply go to each on the identical day with a mixed “Two Adventures” ticket or combined tour.

Many group excursions solely cease for the insta-worthy photograph alternative of the Slovenia cave citadel rising from stable karst rock. However you must plan to go inside and study the fascinating historical past.

The fifteenth Century knight Erazem withstood a siege for greater than a yr by smuggling in recent meals by way of the cave tunnels. Sadly, he didn’t survive a cannonball that struck the citadel at its most weak level: the bathroom.

Make a want as you ring the citadel’s bell. It was used to warn of approaching invaders. You solely need to admire the view of the encompassing countryside.

Professional tip: Get the Predjama Fortress audio information for a vivid description of life within the Center Ages as you stroll by way of the torture chamber and weapon rooms.

Predjama Castle Slovenia cave adventure
Go inside the long-lasting Predjama Cave Fortress to go to the caves that made it attainable to carry off an invading military for greater than a yr.

Škočjan Caves: UNESCO heritage Slovenia Cave

For a extra pure Slovenia cave expertise, go to the Škočjan Caves in Slovenia. UNESCO has organized a guided tour that presents the underground world heritage whereas respecting the setting.

You’ll be awestruck by the underground cathedrals, carved out over the centuries by the Reka River. Images isn’t allowed for a lot of the tour contained in the caves. Close to the exit, there’s a image alternative that conveys the majesty of what you’ve gotten simply skilled.

Sturdy mountain climbing sneakers are a should, in addition to a jacket for the underground chill. Be ready for slippery pavement and a whole bunch of steps. This journey isn’t advisable for small children or these with mobility considerations.

Getting there: You may go to Škočjan Caves on a day trip from Ljubljana by automobile. Buy tickets online or on the ticket workplace. Horse lovers could need to add a cease in close by Lipica, house of the Lipizzaner horses you will have seen performing in Vienna. Bicycle excursions of the karst area are one other nice choice.

Professional tip: Enable some further time for an prolonged hike by way of the karst panorama and the charming village of Škočjan. Climbing trails are properly marked, ranging from the top of the cave tour.

Škočjan Cave adventure Slovenia
Škočjan Cave guided tour and prolonged hike exploring the beautiful surroundings of the karst area in Slovenia. Photograph courtesy Terry Anzur.

Pivka Cave: Journey for Thrill Seekers

In case you got here to Slovenia for a high-octane journey, you’re in luck. With just a little planning forward, you’ll be able to book an adrenalin tour within the huge underground of Postojna Cave Park. The entire particular gear you will want is included within the value of the guided tour.

The Luka Čeč tour in Pivka Cave is called for the lamplighter who found the cave system in 1818, however toiled in poverty for many years earlier than getting the credit score he deserved. Be ready for rappelling down rock faces, slogging by way of mud and paddling by way of an underground lake.

Exploring the caves in Slovenia
E book upfront to expertise a thrill-seeking Slovenia cave journey, like this tour of Pivka Cave. Photograph courtesy Terry Anzur.

You even have an opportunity to identify the newborn dragons and different distinctive cave species of their pure habitat. This journey was so epic for my household of three that it deserves its personal film, as you’ll see on this video:

The Bat Cave beneath the Fortress

A much less demanding journey means that you can discover the Windy Gap and different passageways beneath Predjama Fortress. Completely different variations of this guided tour are appropriate for older children and teenagers.

However watch out for bats! The constant year-round temperature makes the citadel caves a hibernating spot. Tours must be reserved in advance from Might to September, when the bats are awake.

Professional tip: Gasoline up on your journey at Gostilna Požar, a pleasant mid-priced restaurant serving Slovenian specialties with a picture-postcard view of Predjama Fortress.

Idrija Mercury Mine: Underground Historical past

Historical past paired with caves in Slovenia! This tour covers 500 years of UNESCO world heritage within the 700 km of mercury mine tunnels beneath the city of Idrija. Anthony’s Shaft is the oldest preserved mine entrance in Europe.

The tour begins with a film in regards to the arduous lives of the mercury miners. A information sporting a mine foreman’s uniform takes you into the tunnels. You’ll see the numbered medallions miners wore throughout their shifts on the “demise clock.” They stopped at an underground chapel to wish for a secure return.

Miners stored up their spirits with sturdy drink. They believed the mine was haunted by a mischievous elf who would make them the quicksilver — or nugatory rocks. Idrija prospered because it grew to become one of many largest mercury mines on this planet. Sadly, the wealth didn’t trickle right down to the poorly paid miners.

The miners labored with out security gear till trendy occasions. What number of died from mercury poisoning and associated diseases? All of them. However you’ll be completely secure within the heat jacket and protecting helmet included with the tour. Count on numerous strolling on slippery surfaces and stairs.

Idrija Mercury Mine Tour Slovenia
Miners wished one another “good luck” earlier than starting a protracted arduous day within the Idrija Mercury Mine. Photograph courtesy Terry Anzur

Discover out extra on this video:

Idrija Dumplings and Lace

Above floor, the miners’ wives stored busy with lacemaking, a convention that continues right now. The handcrafted lace offered within the native outlets makes a phenomenal memento to take house.

Don’t overlook to strive the normal Idrija dumplings referred to as žlikrofi. Served with hearty sauce, they have been a filling meal for the hard-working miners. The most well-liked restaurant is Gostilna Pri Škafarju, only a brief stroll from the doorway to the mine tour, however the dumplings are served in lots of the native eateries.

Getting there: Idrija will be reached by automobile on a day journey from Ljubljana. Discover tour times and ticket information on the web site.

Professional tip: You probably have extra time, go to Gewerkenegg Fortress, which looms over the slim streets of the small, pleasant city. It’s full of displays in regards to the historical past of mercury mining and lacemaking in Idrija.

Planning a visit to Slovenia? The largest mistake you can also make isn’t permitting sufficient time for all the nature and historical past that’s packed into this small nation – the caves in Slovenia specifically. It’s a miniature model of Europe in a single clear, inexperienced, sustainable package deal.

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