Saturday, October 8, 2011

Bled, Slovenia

The good folks at the hostel I stayed in arranged a small group tour for a few of us to Bled. It's about an hour (55 km) from Ljubljana and is a major tourist attraction. The town is over 1,000 years old. It is best known for the island in the emerald green lake, its castle, stunning scenery, and some sort of cream cake.

The place is so beautiful! The glacial lake is surrounded by forests and the Julian Alps. Slovenia only has one island and it's here. The only way to get to it is by row boat. Somehow I ended up rowing the six of us over to the island. I'm still not sure just how that happened but oh well.

From the dock there are 99 steps up to the top. The local tradition is that the groom must carry his bride up the stairs to the church and the whole time the bride must be silent.

At the top of the island is the 15th century Assumption of Mary Pilgrimage Church. Inside you can make a wish and then ring the bell three times.

Slovenia's oldest castle overlooks the lake. It dates back to the 17th century and it offers some amazing vies of the lake and the Alps. We planned to skip the castle and just hike up some paths to get a better view of the island. Well, we ended up charming one of the maintenance guys and he let us all in the back door of the castle. So we got to see everything and save the €7 admission. Sweet!

The only thing that we didn't do was go hiking along the Vintgar gorge. I'll for sure be back to do some hiking there. And to try that cream cake (somehow we missed that too).

After Bled we drove about 45 minutes to Lake Bohinj, inside Triglav National Park. It is the country's largest glacial lake. It's 4.2 km long, 1 km wide and 45 meters deep. Also known as 2.6 miles long, 0.6 miles wide and ~148 feet deep. Dang metric system.

Bohinj was far less touristy then Bled but just as beautiful. A few of us actually went in to the water for a bit. Let me just state the obvious. Glacial the Alps...YES, it was cold.

These Slovenes have it really good when it comes to beautiful scenery.

No comments:

Post a Comment