Europe Trip Highlights Part 2

Welcome to part two of my trip recap post! We just left Izola and said goodbye to the sea, but were heading towards some of the most beautiful water and mountains I've ever seen in my life in Bovec, Slovenia. This is part of the Julian Alps, and Dan described this area as the "adventure capital of Slovenia". I can definitely confirm that!


We stayed at Hotel Sanje ob Soci, which was probably my favorite place we stayed during the trip. The building is a beautiful A frame with incredible views of the mountains, and also had a sauna in the basement! It was right down the street from the tiny and cute downtown area and all of the workers were amazing. 


Plus, the breakfast was incredible. One day we were the only ones who ordered breakfast and we had a feast set out for us right in front of a roaring fireplace.


Our first full day was one of the highlights of the entire trip. We started in the morning by heading down the road to Nature's Way to meet up with our guide for canyoning! This is something that I've never done before but always thought it looked so cool. We were lucky enough to be the only two on the tour this morning, so we could go at our own pace with our tour guide Tim. After picking up our gear, we parked at the base of a waterfall and hiked about a half hour to the start of the canyoning trail. From there, we put on our neoprene wetsuit and canyoning shoes and made our way down the canyon.


Along the way, we had to jump off rocks into the pools, slide down natural rock slides, rappel down steeper sections, and use the via ferrata system to make our way around rock walls. It was such an amazing experience that was both exhilarating and a little terrifying! Tim made everything so fun and easy, and we had the best time. We were lucky to have the area to ourselves- usually it's completely packed in high season so we didn't have to rush or get slowed down by groups in front of us! My favorite and scariest part was the very last waterfall which happened to be the highest of our journey- Tim slowly lowered us by rope, and at about the halfway point we free-falled into the water! Talk about a rush!


After that action-filled morning, we had a quick lunch break back at the hotel (where we just got snacks from the Mercator) before heading back for white water rafting. I mentioned the beautiful water before, but I really can't describe how incredible it was. If you've ever seen pictures of crystal clear water that looks like it was edited to look an unatural shade of blue- that's exactly what the Soca River looks like in real life- even better and more incredible in person than what you see in pictures. Mineral deposits can explain this color in the water- when the sun reflects on the rock flour, it gives it a blue or green color depending on the weather. It's also completely clean and safe to drink- so while we were on our adventures Tim kept telling us to drink it to stay hydrated.


Rafting was definitely less of a rush than canyoning but was so much fun! We had a group with us and we managed to not fall in the water (except when Tim gave us a chance to float around!). I would definitely recommend this to anyone! 


Our next day was also a very active one. We decided to take a chair lift up to the ski area in town to try to do some hiking. We weren't sure what to expect since it was the end of April, but we were in for a surprise when there was a TON of snow and lots of skiiers out! The visibility was really bad at first, so we very slowly and carefully made our way to the ski bum bar that was right by the lift, and enjoyed some Lasko beer while we got glimpses of the mountain. It was fun to see how quickly the views changed since we were so high up in the clouds! Apparently the ski season here can last until June, depending on the snow, so I guess it wasn't a surprise so many people were out.


Once we got back into town, we headed out for a long hike through the alps. We followed an All Trails route that took us through so many beautiful areas, including some old WW1 shelters, over bridges, through fields, and into the town. It was a great hike that was really only tough at the beginning (lots of incline!) and ended up being about 9 miles long.


We had to end at a brewery, and the one in town called Thirsty River hit the spot. Then, we stopped for pizza at Pizzerija Črna Ovca, which was really good! There are some tennis courts, bocce courts, playgrounds, and more at the restaurant so it seems like a great place to spend a while with friends or family. 



After we finished we still had a bit more daylight and it was our last day in the area, so we did a quick drive to check out some waterfalls and gorges. I will never get tired of these sights and the sound the water makes- it was the ultimate relaxation! We spent a lot of time just sitting by the water marveling in its beauty and feeling so lucky to be here. 

All good things must come to an end, and it was time to leave for our next stop!

Comments

  1. Oh, man. This trip sounds FABULOUS. I'll be adding this to my list of places I need to visit...which is now so long that I probably need to be a multimillionaire to finance it all. Sigh. (Note: Not happening on my salary, for sure...)

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