05 August, 2016

Emerald river

Another one-day trip, another part of Slovenia discovered. It has been my wish to go to the Soča valley for ages, but due to time and mobility issues, I never made it. 
After my positive experience with tourist agency travel, I thought I might just repeat it. In the last moment, my little sister joined in and off we go towards the West. 
A rather shy Triglav hiding in a cloudy layer.
Špikova/Martuljška skupina
On the way to the Trenta valley - the 50 impressive hairpin bends stretch across 24 kilometers, connecting Kranjska Gora with Log v Trenti, reaching its highest point on the Vršič pass
First stop - the Russian Chapel built in 1916 in memory of Russian prisoners of war who were killed while improving the road during WWI. 
Prisankovo okno, a natural opening in the Julian Alps
First view of the Trenta valley - accompanied with unfriendly, cold wind...
... and a glimpse at the emerald Soča - accompanied by goosebumps.
What looks like a cottage by the roadside, turns out to be our next stop: Juliana. Founded in 1926 by Albert Bois de Chesne, it is Slovenia's first Alpine botanical garden, covering about 2500 mand is home to more than 600 Alpine flowers and plants. Arund them, hundreds of bugs and butterflies didn't seem to bother about the cloudy, windy weather.
Slightly downhill, a quick stop in a local church decorated by Slovene painter and sculptor Tone Kralj.
And after a while, an interesting visit to the Triglav National Park Infomation Center in Trenta. Beautifully set up, great guided tour and definitely worth a visit!
An easy early afternoon walk by the Krajcarca river towards the back side of Triglav...
... and back to the info center again
Next stop: the small village Soča by the homonymous river, home to another Tone Kralj church and an Austro-Hungarian cemetery - one of many in the region of the Isonzo Battles.
And another view of the emerald beauty as it runs towards its most impressive part.
The Big Troughs of the Soča, stretching over 750 meters in form of a 10-15 m deep gorge that is less than 2 m wide in some places. The power of the crystal-clear water can be seen in the erosions it formed in solid rock.
Somewhere on the way back home, another beautiful green hillside...
... and one of the most famous ossuaries, built in 1938 around the church of St. Anthony in Kobarid for more than 7000 Italian WWI soldiers.
All in all: a beautiful piece of heaven on earth, and certainly a valley I will want to visit again some time soon. Preferably with a couple of days of hiking :)

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