Escape to Bohinj

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Family-owned holiday home, sleeps 6 (+1)  ♥  Currently undergoing complete renovation ♥  Easy walking distance to Lake Bohinj

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Winter Hiking in Bohinj – Pršivec

hiking-prsivec

From the north shore of Lake Bohinj, rocky cliffs rise dramatically to the 1,761m summit of Pršivec. The views from the top across the Julian Alps and down to the lake are spectacular. Having hiked up Pršivec in summer and autumn, we wanted to try a winter visit. This year’s winter has been unusually mild. Heavy snow has fallen on the high peaks, but only short-lived flurries have made it lower down into the valley. This meant much of the approach would be clear, with only the higher, north-facing slopes likely to be under snow.

There are three main routes up Pršivec and we linked two of them to perform a traverse. Our ascent would be from the Slap Savica hut (653m) at the western end of Lake Bohinj. This offers the quickest ascent, a key consideration with the short winter days. The descent would be along the ridge to the east, via Vogar and home to Stara Fužina.

The Climb

From the car park at Slap Savica, the hike climbs up the Komarča wall, signposted to Črno jezero (Black Lake). As you gaze up at the imposing rock, it is hard to imagine a path could cut a way up. However, it is a well-marked route, with red-white dots showing the way. You quickly gain height… and tired thighs! Teasing views of the lake and the hamlet of Ukanc through the trees give a
taste of what will follow.

The Komarča path has recently been repaired and there are steel ropes and pegs to help you in exposed areas. It is not advisable to climb this route in snow – it is steep and exposed, and accidents do happen. The warmth of this winter had melted the snow and ice, so our ascent was completely clear.

hiking-lake-bohinj

Črno Jezero

After 1.5 hours, we reached the top of the climb. From here, the path headed through a snowy forest to the lowest of the Triglav Lakes, Črno jezero (1,294m).

The Triglav Lakes Valley, protected since 1924, is considered one of the most beautiful parts of the Julian Alps. Although there are ten lakes, it is generally called the Seven Lakes Valley as three dry up during the year.

Črno jezero is the warmest of the Seven Lakes, being shallow and at a lower altitude. It is 150m long, 80m wide and its depth varies considerably with rainfall. Despite its name, the water is not black, but it reflects the dark pine forest which encircles it. The Alpine Newt, endemic to the Alps, lives here – they clearly don’t mind the cold water! Water from the lake drains through underground passages, feeding Slap Savica (waterfall), from where it flows into Lake Bohinj.

Because no river flows out of Črno jezero, there is no river bed to set the height of the water. We have visited at different times of year and it is noticeable how much the water level changes. On this visit, the winter conditions strikingly highlighted the fluctuation. Collapsed slabs of ice, formed on a full lake, surrounded the now lower, shrunken, surface of ice in the middle.

winter-crno-jezero

In the solitude of the mountains, it looked and felt otherworldly.

Leaving Črno jezero, the next stop was Planina Viševnic (1,615m), a beautiful alpine pasture that in summer feels like a scene from Heidi. Log cabins are dotted among lush meadows, with high mountains all around, making it a popular hike in summer. There is a charming alpine hut here, open in summer for refreshments and lunch.

In winter, it is a different story. The red-white blazes, often painted on low rocks, were blanketed by thick snow, slowing our progress. Our prior knowledge of the area, having hiked the trail before, was invaluable in helping us establish the route. The ground turned from earth to snow and then to ice, so we put on our crampons.

winter-hiking-bohinj

On Top of Pršivec

From Viševnik, a path winds up through the forest, opening quite suddenly onto to the summit of Pršivec (1,761m). Here you get panoramic views of the Bohinj Valley and Mount Triglav, Slovenia’s highest peak at 2,864m, seen on the right in the photo below.

winter julian alps

It is a challenging climb to the top of Pršivec, but the reward is fabulous, with views up to Triglav and down to Lake Bohinj, glistening in the sunshine 1,250m below. 

prsivec lake bohinj

As with most Slovenian mountains, there is a visitors’ box here with a rubber stamp. Bring your own inkpad and paper to make a souvenir of the occasion!

We could have spent more time admiring the amazing views, spotting other peaks and breathing in the crisp mountain air. However, in February, the daylight hours are limited, so we had to start the descent. The path down the eastern side is quite steep in places, but our crampons dug in securely, keeping us safe. Here again, it was hard to find the path, so knowing the route was very helpful.

The Descent to Stara Fužina

45 minutes after leaving the summit, the snow thinned and the path became clearer as we headed towards Vogar.

Vogar  (1,054m) provides another super viewpoint over Lake Bohinj. It is a popular hiking point, detailed in our Blog post here. On clear days, it is also a paragliding take-off point. There is a mountain hut where you can get a coffee or beer, depending on your need! In winter it is usually open only at weekends, so best to check in advance if you are relying on it for food. From here, we watched the sun set over the mountains before heading down to Stara Fužina on the clear path.

sunset vogar slovenia

We had a wonderful hike up Pršivec, grateful that the warm spell provided an opportunity to hike up high. There is something completely wonderful about the solitude and stillness of hiking in winter. You can feel the warmth of the sun on your back, yet snow covers the peaks all around. We did not meet a single other person between leaving the Savica hut and returning to our home, Pr Méžnarjo. It was just us, and the mountains.

Need to Know

Start:                   Slap Savica car park, Ukanc

Distance:          14km

Ascent:              1,070m

Highest Alt:    1,761m

Need to Know

Finish:                 Stara Fužina

Time:                   9hrs in snow (7hrs in summer)

Descent:           1,190m

Name:                 Pršivec (pur-shee-vetz)

map prsivec

Route map from Komoot

Hiking in Winter

Mountain hiking at any time of year can be dangerous, and winter brings additional risks. Always make sure that you are prepared and do not exceed your own abilities and experience. Remember:

  • always check the mountain weather forecast and keep an eye on the conditions throughout the day. Conditions can change very quickly high up
  • plan the hike in advance. Trails can be covered in snow even if it all looks clear from below, so make sure you know the route. Consider escape routes just in case the weather closes in
  • days are shorter in winter and distances take more time to cover in snow, so set off early and don’t be too ambitious
  • always carry the right equipment. As a minimum, you will need: multiple spare clothing layers; waterproof, gloves & hat; strong walking boots; crampons & trekking poles or ice-axes if there is a risk of snow; mobile phone; map & compass (technology is more likely to fail when it’s cold); torch (it gets dark quickly, especially under trees); bivouac or survival bag; sunglasses & sun screen; first-aid kit; lots of food and drink

This is not a definitive list – you are responsible for your own safety in the mountains.

Do you have a favourite winter hike in Bohinj? Do let us know in the comment box below. 

Juliana Trail – Hiking in the Julian Alps, Slovenia

Hiking trails are often focused on summiting mountains, standing on the very top. Search for #hiking on Instagram and you’ll be flooded with photos of the ultimate sunrise from some amazing climb or other. And whilst there is something deeply satisfying about reaching the high points of a mountain range, it can be at the expense of missing what lies a little lower down the slopes.

family walk hike slovenia

Juliana Trail

To address this, a new trail has just been launched through the Julian Alps. The Juliana Trail delves right into the Slovene alpine world. Hike through valleys, forests, lush meadows and along emerald rivers, learning about the rich natural and cultural heritage of Slovenia as you go.

Owen Clarke, writer for Outside Magazine and one of the first hikers to complete the trail, commented “The Juliana Trail won’t be the most challenging hike you’ve ever done, but you won’t find an experience quite like it anywhere else.” This is because the Juliana Trail has been purposely designed to give you a real taste of Slovenia.

“The Juliana Trail seeks different heroes – those that aspire advancement in their spirit as well as altitude.”

The Route

Officially opened in Autumn 2019, the 270km circular trail has been split into 16 stages, each about 17km in length.

juliana trail map

source: www.bohinj.si

The route passes through some of the best natural and cultural sites in Slovenia. You can pass through the alpine hub of Kranjska Gora for some outdoor adventures and experience iconic Lake Bled, rowing or swimming out to the church on the island.

lake bled osojnica

Head to the Pokljuka Plateau and Lake Bohinj for pristine nature and tranquillity. Visit the stunning Tolmin Gorge, historic Kobarid, and be mesmerised by the turquoise waters of the Soča river.

Amenities

Each stage of the Juliana Trail starts and finishes in a town where you can spend the night and refuel. Interestingly, over half of the overnight stops are in small, remote villages rather than the traditional tourist haunts. Here, you can really immerse yourself in your surroundings whilst experiencing the warm hospitality of the Slovenian people. Slovenia is a very environmentally conscious country, and each stop is accessible by public transport. This means that it is possible to select just a small section of the hike rather than completing the whole trail; perfect for those who are only in Slovenia for a short stay, or for family hiking.

hiking julian alps

Need to Know

Time of Year:  Best time between March and October

Length:               267.4km

Altitude:            7163m ascent and 7150m descent

No. Stages:       16

Av. Stage:           17.5km (4—5 hours walking)

Stage Details:  Click here (external site)

Trail app:            Click here (external site)

It’s easy to find your way… The J-A blazes mark the route in between signposts.

julian alps route

Hike the new Juliana Trail to get off the beaten track & immerse yourself in the natural world.  

Have you hiked part of the Juiliana Trail? Do let us know about your experience in the comment box below. 

5 Reasons to Love Autumn in Bohinj

bohinj colours autumn

The evenings are drawing in, and the days are beginning to feel that bit cooler. Autumn is upon us in Bohinj. After the busyness of summer, life slows down allowing you to enjoy the natural beauty that this season offers. Here are 5 reasons why we love autumn in Bohinj;

1. Amazing Colours

The reds, yellows, oranges, golds, browns and greens of the trees are stunning at this time of year, particularly when bathed in the soft evening sunlight. On a still day, you can see these amazing colours reflected in the glassy water of Lake Bohinj

lake bohinj colours autumn

Head out in a kayak to the middle of the lake to get the ultimate vantage point, surrounded by this beautiful palette.

kayak lake bohinj

2. Hiking & Biking Adventures

September and October are excellent months for hiking and biking in the Triglav National Park and wider Julian Alps. The weather is generally stable, with fewer storms than in the summer months, and most visitors are long gone. There is something wonderful about wrapping up warm and heading out into the crisper, cooler air. You can really soak up the peace and tranquillity of this unspoilt place and immerse yourself in the natural world. Now that the days are shorter and fewer mountain huts are open, make sure you plan your trip to ensure you are well prepared and stay safe.

mostnica gorge walk autumn

3. Nature’s Bounty

Look carefully and you will see fruits, nuts, seeds, mushrooms and toadstools in a wealth of different shapes and sizes. Slovenia is a lush country and around 60% of the land is covered in forest. With the warmth of summer replaced by cooler, damper air, autumn brings a flurry of growth. In Bohinj there is a real focus on using locally sourced food, so take the opportunity to sample foraged delicacies in the local restaurants – delicious!

wild toadstool mushroom bohinj

4. Early Morning Mist

The cooler, longer nights and increased moisture in the air often wrap Lake Bohinj in an early morning blanket of mist. It is a magical and mysterious time to be at the lakeside, made all the more special as you are likely to be there by yourself. When it starts to clear, the mist is often replaced by brilliant blue skies within 10 minutes. Look out for that perfect spider’s web, dappled in the morning dew. There is beauty all around if you look for it.

lake bohinj misty morning

5. Affordable Holiday

After the summer holidays, demand for flights falls and the prices can drop to as low as £60 return with budget airlines such as EasyJet and WizzAir. Some restaurants and cafés also reduce their prices now the main holiday season has gone.

Autumn in Bohinj

So come and enjoy an autumn break in Bohinj. Watch the golden leaves fall from the trees against blue skies, listen to them crunch underfoot in the forest, feel the warmth of the autumn sun on your back and taste the foragers’ treasure trove of goodies. It really is a season for all the senses.

Top 3 Hikes to Viewpoints over Lake Bohinj, Slovenia

pec viewpoint lake bohinj

There are lots of hikes that give wonderful views over Lake Bohinj and the Julian Alps. So many that it can be hard choose between them! Some are major, full-day expeditions, serious outings that climb to over 2,000m. But the hikes described below are our top 3 for fantastic views with relatively little climbing. They’re nice at any time of day, but there is something special about an amazing sunrise or sunset.

The first walk, to Peč, is the quickest and easiest. If you have time, why not try all three?!

Viewpoint #1 - Peč - Alt. 640m (2km, 40-minute round trip from Stara Fužina)

This picture-perfect view of Lake Bohinj (see above) is taken from Peč, a promontory on the lower slopes of Rudnica. It is about a 40-minute round trip from the village of Stara Fužina, an hour if you take it slowly. You never get more than 100m above the water, but the views over Lake Bohinj, and the meadows along the way, are superb. The final view is beautiful, with the church and bridge acting as gatekeeper to the lake. This photo was taken at the end of a glorious day in March.

hiking boots bohinj slovenia

From the centre of Stara Fužina, cross the bridge over the river, heading east. Turn right down the small road after the wooden barn, following the flow of the river. After a while, you’ll cross the smaller Ribnica river and join a cycle path. After about 500m, the path rises gently to a road crossing the river from the right. Turn left here and follow the signs to Peč.

You can extend the walk by following the marked trail to the summit of Rudnica (946m, 3hr round trip). This hill splits the Bohinj valley into its upper and lower halves and forms the southern side of the U-shaped valley. The ascent up Rudnica from Stara Fužina is lovely, gentler than Vogar or Studor (see below), and passes through forest, pastures and flower meadows.

Close to the summit, a large clearing provides beautiful views to the lake below and high mountain summits further afield. 

rudnica hike bohinj slovenia

There are few more lovely spots for a picnic, and because so few people venture up here (there are no facilities & nowhere to buy refreshments) you and the resident deer will probably have the hill to yourselves. The far side of the hill is steeper, the paths more challenging, so it’s best to descend the same way.

Viewpoint #2 - Vogar – Alt. 950m (6km, 2-3hrs round trip)

Vogar provides a wonderful viewpoint high above the north-eastern end of the lake. It is the spot from which many paragliders take off in summer. From the bridge in the middle of Stara Fužina, follow the road uphill to the west. Beyond the children’s play area is a car-park, from which Vogar is signposted as 1 hour 15 minutes.

vogar julian alps hike

It’s a steep climb up through the forest, marked by the typical red circles surrounding a white spot, and signposts. The path was previously roughly paved by large boulder slabs. Although some of these are still in place, it is quite bumpy where they have become dislodged.

As you get close to the top, you will see a sign post to the paragliding launch site on the left. The view appears quite suddenly, with a panorama over Lake Bohinj and Stara Fužina below. You may even get to watch some brave souls launch themselves off the mountain under their parachutes. If you have ever want to fly like a bird, this must be one of the best places to try. What an amazing view!

If you’re still feeling energetic, head a little further up the path to the Kosijev dom na Vogarju. This mountain hut offers refreshments, and you can sit down, relax and enjoy the wonderful views all around.

vogar viewpoint lake bohinj

Vogar offers lovely views all year round. This photo was taken in December, after early snowfall.

Viewpoint #3 - Studor – Alt. 980m (5km, 2-3hr round trip)

The hill of Studor forms the northern side of the U-shaped valley. The walk to the top is steep enough to get your heart beating, but the views are worth it. You can see along the entire length of Lake Bohinj from the top – a worthy reward. Start in Stara Fužina and follow the path towards the Mostnica gorge. Just before the Devil’s Bridge (Hudičev most), turn right to follow the path to Uskovnica, through a beech forest. When the path splits, keep right and follow the trail up, contouring across the southern face.   

studor hike bohinj slovenia

There is a small clearing near the summit which gives fantastic views along the lake. This clearing is a much less-used paraglider take-off point – it’s quite a climb from the nearest road.

We have never had to share the summit of Studor with anyone else – it’s beautifully quiet.

studor viewpoint lake bohinj

So, will it be number 1, a quick scamper up Peč for the picture-perfect view over church and lake? Or will you choose number 2, a steep climb up Vogar, joining the paragliders as they soar into the sky? Or maybe it’ll be number 3, secluded Studor, the quieter option that will take your breath away?

The decision is yours…

Family Canyoning Adventure near Lake Bohinj, Slovenia

family canyoning bohinj slovenia

“Just keep your arms in and legs together.” These were the instructions from the lovely Luka as I sat at the top of a boulder and tentatively peered down at the pool beneath. “That’s a long way down”, I thought nervously… And that was the start of our family canyoning adventure near Lake Bohinj in Slovenia.

After watching the kids whizz down without batting an eyelid, I somehow summoned up the courage to tip myself over the edge. I survived (I had been a little concerned that I might not), and I actually quite enjoyed it. “If it continues like this”, I thought, “I should be fine!” Of course, that was just the beginning, the easy bit. More challenges were to come!

canyoning slide bohinj slovenia

What is Canyoning?

Canyoning involves getting from the top of a river canyon to the bottom, wearing a wetsuit, rubber shoes, harness and helmet to keep you safe. An expert guide is on hand at all times – thankfully! You abseil down waterfalls, jump off boulders into pools, and whizz down slides formed naturally in the rock that have been carved out by water rushing downhill over millennia. Often, it is the only way to visit such inaccessible places and appreciate the unspoiled nature. There are quite a few canyons in the Bohinj/Bled region, some easy and some harder for those who really want to push themselves to the limit.

canyoning abseil bohinj slovenia

Anyone who knows me well will know that I am not an adrenaline junky. I like my feet on the ground, able to change my mind if I don’t like something. So why did we sign up for canyoning? With three children aged 16, 14 and 11, I thought it would be a great family activity. And, after all, how hard could it be? The blurb said no experience was needed and that children over the age of 8 can have a go.

Family time can often feel squeezed, and sometimes it is hard to compete against the allure of a screen. Holidays can provide the ideal time to try something new and spend some quality time together. And it is good to get out of your comfort zone every now and again too. Or so I am always told!

Jerečica Canyon

The canyon that we descended is considered suitable for beginners, and we were in a group of 12 people, mostly adults and teens. Our guides, Luke & Miha, who spoke excellent English, were reassuring, friendly and funny, helping us all enjoy the activity to the full, even those of us who were a bit scared. This was especially important for the higher jumps. In fact, for the biggest jump, if anyone had any doubts or concerns they were advised not to do it. Safety was certainly the number one priority.

The biggest jump involved jumping over a rock into a pool 8m below you – certainly not for the faint-hearted! Our two teens gave this a go and came bubbling to the surface of the water with huge grins on their faces. There is something incredibly empowering doing something that you thought you might not be able to do, and our family canyoning experience offered that to each of us at our own level. We could see our children grow in confidence before our eyes.

canyoning bohinj slovenia

Family Bonding

I opted for a lower jump of ‘just’ 5m – I could have skipped that too if I’d wanted to. With the kids cheering me on with “you can do it Mum!”, I looked at the pool beneath me and made the leap. It is such a weird sensation falling through the air, having the time to think “I haven’t hit the water yet”.  Yet I did it! There were huge cheers for everyone as they did their jump. Roles are reversed as the kids offer the adults support and encouragement, and you cannot help but feel more connected as a family as you help each other through each of the challenges. There was lots of laughter too as you emerge from descents into pools looking slightly shell-shocked but with smiles and sparkly eyes.

Canyoning is certainly an exhilarating and unforgettable experience. With each challenge you grow in confidence, so that by the end of the session you have a real sense of accomplishment; the kids are buzzing with confidence and there is a great feeling amongst the group not just of having survived, but of actually having thrived. As soon as we had finished, the kids said “can we go again – now?” and they meant it. They have a lot more energy and stamina than us adults, that’s for sure! Next summer we may have to try the next level up of canyoning. I think, for me, though, Jerečica offered enough of a challenge and excitement…

canyoning jump bohinj slovenia

Practical Information

We went to the Jerečica canyon with Sport4fun. Maruša, the owner, was really helpful via email before our trip, explaining what we could do and what the canyoning involved. You need to make a reservation at peak times, so we booked at Sport4fun’s hut at Camp Danica in Bohinjska Bistrica once we had a better idea of our holiday plans and the weather forecast.

The canyoning cost us €69 per person, with discounts available for families. The price includes all of your equipment, transport to and from the canyon, plus English speaking guides and a drink and a snack afterwards. Unusually for us, we paid the optional €15 extra for the photos at the end of the trip; you’ve just been looking at some of them, and I hope you agree that the guides clearly know when to click the button to brilliantly capture the experience.

You need to be over 8 years old and be able to swim. Wear your own swimsuit (you are provided with wetsuits to change in to at the office before you depart in the minibus), and bring a towel for drying off afterwards.

Canyoning runs daily at 9am and 3pm between May and September, and there is a wealth of providers in the Bohinj/Bled region.

* All costs and details accurate summer 2018

Wild Flower Festival, Lake Bohinj, Slovenia

lake bohinj walk

We are delighted to see all the wonderful events listed for the Wild Flower Festival (24th May-9th June 2019) around Lake Bohinj. For anyone who loves nature and botany, this is an event not to be missed. There will be guided walks, family activities, botanical excursions, floral cuisine, embroidery workshops, folk dancing, lakeside yoga, concerts and exhibitions. This huge variety of activities, many of which are free of charge, means that there is something of interest for everyone.

edelweiss bohinj flower festival

Cultural Heritage

The aim of the Wild Flower Festival is to promote and raise awareness of the unique cultural heritage in the Bohinj region of Slovenia. It is an opportunity to celebrate the beautiful displays of flowers in the alpine meadows in conjunction with the skills and knowledge of local people. So why not come along and learn how to make unique flower arrangements from the flowers gathered in the meadow? Or visit one of the oldest working Mills in the valley where they grind flowers? Under the expertise of local people you can learn about the traditional methods that have been used for centuries.

bohinj wild flowers

Floral Cuisine

Let your taste buds experience new flavours for the first time here in Bohinj.  Local businesses such as Gostilna DanicaGostilna Pri Hrvatu, and Restaurant Reste, all offer a special menu during the festival so you try foods flavoured by the mountain plants. Hotel Krystal, renowned for its chocolate shop, will be offering chocolate tasting as well. A speciality is their chocolate flavoured with the local Mohant cheese and hemp seeds! If that sounds a bit exotic you can always try their delicious strawberries and raspberries dipped in chocolate.    

wild flowers bohinj
flowers bohinj meadow

Mountain Hiking

Springtime is one of the quieter times to visit Lake Bohinj and you will be rewarded with walks and hikes where you will see hardly another person. You can enjoy the meadows in full bloom, spot Orchids (did you know that there are 40 Orchids native to the Bohinj area alone?), Lilies, Dianthus, Arnica, Lunaria, Edelweiss and Gentian to name but a few. 

Further Information

For a complete timetable for the Wild Flower Festival, please click here.

Family Skiing at Vogel

vogel ski bohinj lift

We are just back from our first family skiing at Vogel Ski Centre. Our motivation to buy and renovate a house near Lake Bohinj was our love hiking, swimming and general ‘normal’ outdoor activities. We had never skied before, so the fact that the Vogel Ski Centre is so close was a potential bonus rather than a deciding factor. Having now just returned from our first ever family ski trip, that perspective has changed!

It takes less than 10 minutes to drive from Stara Fužina to the car park (free in winter) at the cable car base station in Ukanc. You can buy a myriad of ski pass options, ranging from half a day to the whole season, with discounts for kids and families. The cable car runs as often as needed, so it rarely takes more than 10-15 minutes to get on board for the 4-minute, 1000m climb up to the top. There are amazing views over Lake Bohinj and the Julian Alps as you ascend.

vogel cable car lake bohinj

Ski Hire & Lessons

Once on the mountain, we hired equipment from Ski Finžgar, with whom we had also arranged a couple of family ski lessons. Our instructor Luka was great – he was very patient with us! His English was perfect, and his explanations of what to do were very clear. As complete novices, actually doing what he asked of us was easier said than done – the kids learnt very quickly, we adults a little more slowly – but with quiet slopes and his watchful guidance, we had plenty of space & time to practise our snowploughs & turns, and by the end we were all doing parallel turns on the lovely pistes.

Vogel, as with many ski centres in Slovenia, caters brilliantly for family and beginner skiers, and the nursery and blue slopes are very easily accessible. For those who are more advanced, there are red routes and off-piste options.

ski vogel triglav view

There are plenty of cafés and places to eat, and we really enjoyed learning in such a beautiful environment. We took some time to look around, and loved watching the snowboarders doing their flips and jumps – certainly not for the faint hearted!

At the end of each day, we left our hired equipment in a locker and descended back down to Stara Fužina for a hearty supper and good night’s sleep.

So, after our three “taster” days skiing, everyone wants to come back and do more. We found it to be excellent value for money, with equipment hire, ski pass and two hours’ tuition working out at about €55 per person per day.

We have hiked at Vogel in the summer, so it was lovely to see the same area covered in snow. It turns out that chair-lifts aren’t just for walkers!

Bohinj Steam Train – A stunning railway journey through the Julian Alps

steam train bohinj railway

The Bohinj steam train is one of the most magnificent rail journeys you can do in a day, according to the Telegraph Travel.

There is something uniquely special about travelling on a steam train. The feel and smell, the other enthusiastic travellers… And the dedicated staff committed to maintaining the engine and celebrating its history. It is a time to stop and stare, soak up the views and atmosphere and enjoy being on holiday.

The steam train adventure takes three hours. Scenery highlights include views of Lake Bled, numerous gorges, the incredible Bohinj tunnel (6,339 metres long – not for those afraid of the dark!) and the longest stone arch bridge in the world. The Solkan bridge, with its 85 metre wide arch, crosses the stunning, emerald coloured, Soča River. The “museum train” also provides historical entertainment, with a special appearance from “Franz Ferdinand” and his wife to open the journey. Train guards are immaculately dressed and an accordion player comes through the carriages playing nationally-known songs creating a lovely atmosphere.

The Bohinj Railway was built in the early 1900s as part of a strategic railway to connect Western Austria and Southern Germany with the then Austro-Hungarian port of Trieste. The line starts in Jesenice, crosses the Julian Alps through the Bohinj tunnel and then continues to Nova Gorica, crossing the Italian border to reach Trieste. After World War I, the train line lost its importance as political divisions increased in Europe. It wasn’t until 2004 when Slovenia joined the European Union that the railway was brought back to life.

The Bohinj steam train stops at a number of stations along the route where you can get off and explore small museums or grab a snack. Just outside the final stop in Nova Gorica, you can head to Europe Square where you can stand with one foot in Italy and one in Slovenia! A great photo opportunity.

Watch the video to get a real flavour of the trip: 

As of 2019, a return train ticket costs €40 for Adults and €29 for children aged 6-12 years. With the Bohinj Tourist Card you can get a discount, usually 50%.

For more information or to book, please visit https://www.abc-tourism.si/

So next time you are in Bohinj, why not take a day to enjoy this historic train excursion?

Have you enjoyed this train ride? We would love to hear about it so feel free to comment below!

New 300km Hiking Trail in Julian Alps to open in 2019

julian alps hiking trail

Hiking is one of the most popular activities in the Bohinj region. Next year, a new 300km marked hiking trail across the Julian Alps will open. Set within the Triglav National Park, the route will offer stunning mountain views, guiding hikers through pristine nature to the crystal-clear waters of Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj, leading on to the turquoise waters of the Soča river and further south to the vineyards of Brda.

This new hiking trail will be divided into stages of approximately 15-20 km, incorporating public transport links and food & lodgings. Even if you don’t have time for the whole 300km, you can therefore select a smaller section to hike. Cycle trails are going to be incorporated too, and a digital guide will be made available.

So get your hiking boots and start making plans. Come and Escape to Bohinj!

hiking boots bohinj slovenia