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Pohod v Slovenijo – Walking in Slovenia

Coming into the hamlet of Podvrh where Pri Lenart is located. - WCF-9892.jpgAs the taxi pulled into the drive of Pri Lenart, Zana came out and warmly greeted us with a big, cheerful smile. But it was obvious that she was concerned about Jeannie, as she was aware of the stomach distress of the past few days. Zana was eager to make sure that Jeannie was comfortable.

We were given a brief tour, and then shown across a well, cared-for lawn to what was in the past, the barn but is now mostly a large outdoor porch where we were served tea, coffee, and cookies. It was nice to just sit and enjoy the views, sounds of birds chirping, and a conversation with Zana – getting to know each other.

Pri Lenart, front entry. - WCF-0234.jpgIn the foothills of the Julian Alps, Pri Lenart is a lovingly-restored, Slovene farmhouse from 1662, operating as sort of a boutique hotel – though it is really much more. The current owners are a young husband and wife team, Luka and Zana. They are the extra spark that makes the beautiful buildings, stunning scenery, and guided walks even better. Surrounded by mountains, valleys, pastures, and forests, and at the edge of the Triglav National Park, this would be the perfect base for our walking holiday in Slovenia.

After our conversation and tea with Zana, she took us inside (one of the staff had already taken our large heavy bags up the three flights of stairs!) and showed us our room. Though the previous week’s guests had departed at noon, Zana had a beautiful room cleaned and ready for us.

A good sign near Pri Lenart. - WCF-0216.jpgWe settled in, and before long we heard Luka arrive with the other guests – Paul and Janet from England. They chose to come to Slovenia based mostly on the recommendation of a friend, but seemed a bit trepidatious about the difficulty of the walks. However, Luka and Zana assured us all that there were many options and that they would adjust the itinerary once we began.

The plan for the first evening was to gather on the porch of the restored barn for an aperitif around 19h00, then the first course at 19h30 would be served in the dining room, and then dinner at 20:15 or so, followed by dessert. Of course, delicious local wine and wonderful conversation flowed the entire evening. Jeannie’s stomach was a little unsettled still, so she ate lightly. She passed on the 3-kinds of salami and 6-types of cheese, with various pickled veggies and mushrooms, and settled for a piece of cheese. I, on the other hand, felt fine and took up any slack.

A sampling of food at Pri Lenart.The main course this evening was pasta and sauce, and of course all homemade. Jeannie asked for a small portion and it was perfect, she also indulged in two sips of wine and then, feeling brave, she finished almost all of her tiramisu dessert.

Our hosts, Zana and Luka then joined us for more conversation and to discuss the next day’s weather forecast and walking route.

The dialog was fascinating as the six of us from different nations, age groups and experiences sat around the table talking about subjects far and wide; as we would every night we were there. And we finished each night with a small glass of local, homemade brandy/schnapps. Tonight was blueberry, but would be different every night.

Our bedroom at Pri Lenart. - WCF-9671.jpgIt had been a long day, and it was 22h00 so we said good night then went up to bed, where we were serenaded into sleep by the millions of crickets outside our open windows. Tomorrow would come early, and we were excited about the prospects of our first day of walking about the Slovenian countryside.

Walking In Slovenia. - WCF-9768.jpgOver the next several days we would follow the same basic routine: get up early enough for a delicious breakfast at 08h30, grab a sandwich and fruit to put in our packs for lunch on the trail. Next, before our departure we would get our pants and legs sprayed as a preventative against ticks which, as in many parts of the world, do carry LYME disease.

Walking In Slovenia. - WCF-9710.jpgThen we would head out on foot or by van to hike about 11± km/7± miles, with a total ascent of maybe 600 m/2000 feet. Every day was different, and we were treated to an incredible variety of beautiful scenery, birds, fungi, and wildflowers, and always with delightful conversation along the way.

Of course, the muscle-burning, never-ending climbs over a varied rocky terrain were indeed challenging, but the views and sights along the way made it all worthwhile. Each day we walked through hamlets and villages, and climbed big hills and mountains each with interesting names and stories, like Malenski Vrh and Gorenja Žetina.

The accompanying images are of Pri Lenart, and the first day’s hikes. Of course there will be more to follow.


This Post Has 22 Comments

  1. I live in Folkston, Ga. and it is a delight to follow your travels. I am pleased as punch to see “the places you go”, far from North Shore but a great place to begin. I learn much from each post and pictures. Thank you Linda Link Pina

  2. An amazing leg of your life’s journey, Folks! Rechecked the location again to get a perspective with the surrounding countries… so different from previous treks of yours. Rich with history of course.

  3. Slovenia is more beautiful than I imagined. Makes you wonder how different things were 100 years ago to make people immigrate from there. Your stories bring us along with you and the drool-worthy pictures are the satisfying dessert.

    1. On one of our walks in the countryside, we stopped where a farmer was working, and our guide had a short conversation with him. I asked her to tell him we find Slovenia to be a beautiful country. She did and his reply was “Slovenia is Slovenia”. I guess when you work hard in the country, the beauty that others see is not so special. I’m sure life was quite difficult for their hope for a better life to draw them to take a long voyage to an unknown place. I would like to return and find family who have knowledge of the life and conditions at that time. Maybe we’ll plan another trip, and you can join us?!

  4. I would love to be there and see the beautiful countryside without doing the heavy walking.

    1. We’re glad we can share the photos for those who can’t join us on the trail. Who knows how long we’ll be able to travel this way so we’re trying to enjoy as much as we can!

  5. Wow what a great place. Love the house and your room. The wide window ledges reminds me of my Dad’s farm house where he lived in Germany. How nice the meals and walks were included in this package. Pictures are great.

    1. As different as places are, there’s usually an element that is familiar to someone. Glad we could trigger a fond memory.

  6. Beautiful countryside! For some reason I didn’t realize it was so mountainous there.

    1. Lots of rolling green hills, and the Julian Alps are on the northern border. It is a popular place for climbing; we enjoyed the view from lower elevations!

  7. I love the bedroom. I bet sleeping was such a wonderful time in such a beautiful setting. I was really smiling at the Teddy Bears and the dolls that greeted y’all on your walks. Too cute.

    1. It was a beautiful bedroom, but we stayed so busy we didn’t spend much time there, and we usually fell asleep pretty quickly! Yes, it is interesting to see the items that decorate our paths. It would have been fun to see the children who put the dolls on the bench.

  8. What a beautiful location. The photos are, again, spectacular. Thanks so much for the view!

    1. After two months in the great city of Verona, and a week in the capital of Slovenia, it was a delightful place to enjoy the countryside. The hills and wildflowers made for great hikes. You may want to add this less-traveled country on a future travel agenda; it is worth a detour from Italy. Enjoy your next adventure, wherever it is!

  9. Looks lovely. Russ and I are still out west. Currently in Oregon. Back end of Sept.

    1. Slovenia doesn’t get a lot of travel press, but it is definitely worth a visit. Do let us know when you’re back in town; would love to exchange travel stories!

  10. This looks like a wonderful, unspoilt palce to visit!

    1. It truly was, and a great place for walking! Definitely worth adding to future travel plans.

  11. Thanks again for sharing!

    1. Always glad to see you following us!

  12. Beautiful, we head to Barcelona end of Sept for three weeks.

    1. Have fun! We’ll watch for photos, Barcelona is a great place!

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