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Report 2017: Slovenia, Bosnia, Croatia September 2011

By Christy319 from USA, Summer 2011

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Page 4 of 7: Soca Valley to Lipica

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Julius Kugy, Slovenia's famous botonist, at the head of the Soca Valley

We spent four days in the Soca Valley area of the park. This is a center of fly fishing, hiking, river rafting, and just about every other outdoor activity you can think of. The hiking is terrific, and the mountain huts were still open. The rivers were gorgeous and though we donít fly fish, we loved just sitting by the river (we could walk to one from our hotel). Even though the area is mountainous it has a Mediterranean climate, and we hiked in shorts and t-shirts. There are also quite a few sights related to World War I. A million people died on the Soca Front ó this is where Hemingway set A Farewell to Arms. There are also older forts in the area, since itís a historic route between Italy and Slovenia. So even if you arenít outdoorsy, if you enjoy good scenery and historic sights I think the Soca Valley is a worthwhile stop.

We stayed at Pristava Lepana, an inn in the Lepena Valley (just off the Soca Valley). The main draw for me was the horseback riding. If you are an experienced rider, you can go on trail rides through the Alps on the Lipizzaners the innkeepers raise. If you are a beginner, you can take a lesson in their ring. The property is beautiful (white horses against green pastures and mountains!) though the rooms themselves are a bit cluttered and dark. The innkeepers are incredibly kind and helpful ó they suggested hikes and lent hiking poles, and can arrange any sort of activity. The restaurant is good though a bit stuffier than youíd expect. The town of Bovec is 15 minutes away, if you want more choices for dining. Bovec is a very outdoorsy town, sort of the Moab (Utah) of Slovenia.

From the Soca Valley, we headed down to the Lipizzaner stud farm in Lipica. I enjoyed this but if you arenít a horse person, you may not. Between the tour and watching the training session, it took the better part of the day, so we didnít have time for the cave tour we had planned on doing at Skocjon.

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