Slovenia-3 days in Trglav National Park-Canyons, waterfalls and gorges


Trglav National Park,  one of the film sets of Disney’s 2008, “Chron­i­cles of Narnja”,  holds 84.000 hectares of wilder­ness. It is located in the Julian Alps, the north-east of Slove­nia, close to the Ital­ian and Aus­trian bor­ders. The high­est point of the park is the peak of Mt. Triglav (2864 m), which also gave the park its name (Triglav means Three Peaks).

I arrived in Trglav from Ljubliana. More or less 110 km. It is mid June 2016. A friend of mine who knows these moun­tains well, sug­gested we stay in Trenta. So we did. From here all my story begins.

The park is pre­served with all resources and Slove­ni­ans are were­wolves when it comes to their national park. There is so much about nature pro­tec­tion that we can learn from them. Camp­ing, for exam­ple, is strictly pro­hib­ited. And “strictly” means you are in big trou­ble if the park rangers find you with your tent. And they do, as they are present and check even posts on media for proof of “your mis­for­tune”. Fines for that are huge..we are talk­ing about hun­dreds of euros worth. And even if I think the fines are a bit harsh, I totally respect their Respect for Nature. Same rules for loud level of noise, garbage, dis­turbing the fauna and flora in any way. You are wel­come to touch this par­adise with your eyes alone.

The Soča river – the highlight of Trglav

Imag­ine the Trglav National Park as a king­dom of  water and rock, home to the Emer­ald Beauty – the river Soča.  It has earned its name because it is one of the few rivers in the world that keeps its emer­ald color through­out the whole 138 km voy­age. The color comes from high con­cen­tra­tions of dis­solved lime, the stone so com­mon in Slove­nia. ‘The clear daugh­ter of the moun­tains’ is con­sid­ered one of the most beau­ti­ful rivers in Europe and serves for drink­ing, raft­ing, kayak­ing, canoe­ing, canyon­ing, swim­ming and admir­ing. Soča springs in the Trenta Val­ley, at 876 m in the Julian Alps. It then, flows trough the towns of Bovec, Kobarid, Tolmin, Kanal ob Soči, Nova Gor­ica and Gorizia, enter­ing the Adri­atic Sea close to the town of Mon­fal­cone. Just like the River Reka from the Slove­nian Skoc­jan Caves con­sid­ered by UNESCO, a nat­u­ral trea­sure of planet Earth (read my arti­cle here).

The Boka waterfall..

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For a close feel­ing to what it is like to hear tones of water falling, hit play.

How do 100 tones of water falling sound? What about 100 tones of water falling  freely 106 meters? You are right: AMAZING! Please wel­come the Boka Water­fall, from Trglav!

A must see… and the only real expe­ri­ence is being here. This one you must feel with all your senses: let the  wind sprin­kle drops on your cheeks..then let the sound of falling water con­quer your brain and ban­ish away your thoughts, stare into the foamy waters and be part of this eter­nity for as long as you desire. May it be for 1 min­ute, half an hour or half a day..Boka has all the time in the world and won’t rush you, it has no clos­ing time nor dead­li­nes, it only has one dimen­sion: infin­ity.

Trglav National Parc-32Look­ing at Boka throw­ing tones of water from the moun­tain, you will feel the noblesse of nature and a deep sense of inti­macy with all that power. You will for­get that at the same time, life looks and sounds dif­fer­ent some­where else. In big cities, trams are rush­ing down the streets and under­ground trains travel at high speeds, hun­dred of air­planes cross the sky, 150 babies are born and 105 peo­ple close their eyes forever….all in one min­ute, while you gaze at Boka.  I have stayed with her, gaz­ing at her, for more than an hour. There is a hik­ing trail start­ing from the Soca river bank –  and tak­ing you up almost above the water­fall. That is the spot you will find hard to leave.

The great gorge of the Soča river

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I took the hik­ing trails along Soča, which is one of the most pop­u­lar and also easy. The weather was whim­si­cal with 20ºC in the first half of the day, and drop­ping to 10ºC and wind, plus rain in the sec­ond half. The Trglav Park is one of the places where you really feel unsafe when weather is not on your side. The nature here is out­breaks with­out mercy.

Access to the gorges: imme­di­ately before the vil­lage of Soča (approx­i­mately 10 km from Bovec), by the road from Bovec to Trenta.

The Great Gorge of the Soča River is 750 m long and 15 m deep. The noise the water makes is amaz­ing.

Buying food from the locals:

If you pop a ques­tion or two to any of the tourist offices or locals, you will find out about the local shep­herds and their where­abouts. I really wanted to see how their sheep­fold look like and more than that, I wanted to see the shep­herds and shep­herd ladies. So we went to such a place, near Lep­ena. It was close to the main road…and speak­ing the lan­guage of hands, spiced with bits of Ger­man and Ital­ian we were taken to the cheese shop. I found the prod­ucts expen­sive com­pared, for exam­ple, with some medium to high qual­ity cheese in Italy, but then again we were in a National Park.

My jour­ney into the Julian Alps ends here for now. There is so much more to say about TRGLAV National Park and for that rea­son I will come back to it, stay much longer and at least have a date with its 2864 m sum­mit. Mr. 2864, I promise I will bring tea and cof­fee. You take care of the view!

And some info to make your life easier:

Here is Trglav National Park.

Here is where to find the Boka Water­fall.

To access the Great Gorges on Soca: On the road ‘Bovec – Trenta (Vršič Pass)’ turn right towards Lep­ena val­ley behind vil­lage named ‘Soča’. Cross the Soča river and soon after that park on a park­ing lot by the road.

Cost of accom­mo­da­tion per per­son, per night: 16 euros in a guest­house-with­out break­fast

Cof­fee price: 1 euro

Din­ner (fresh trout with oven pota­toes and salad): 10 euros


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