Slovenia, oh beautiful Slovenia

Slovenia, oh beautiful Slovenia

May
2019
21st
Sezana
279.87 Miles
Heavy Rain
Pasjak, Croatia
28:00 Hours
Strong Head Wind

If you’ve been following us on social media you will already know that we have LOVED Slovenia. What a treat.

We didn’t have any expectations of Slovenia at all.

We rolled into Slovenia at around 5pm on 13th May. We found a warmshowers.org host for the night and when we found out that we had been accepted to stay with Marko, we actually cheered! A person! Yes, Yes, Yes!!

Meet Marko

I can’t tell you how much value people add to a trip – it’s not just incredibly helpful with budgets, but it’s an absolute pleasure to talk with like-minded people.

We were especially excited to stay with Marko, because boy has he travelled! Marko has cycled…Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Mongolia, Tunisia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, Malawi, Mozambique, Swaziland, Lesotho, South Africa, Portugal, Spain, Gibraltar, Morocco, Western Sahara, Mauritania, Senegal, Zimbabwe, Indian Himalaya, Albania, Montenegro, Cameroon, Georgia, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Serbia, Kosovo, Macedonia, UAE and Oman

So you can imagine, staying with Marko was very desirable, we were most keen to hear his stories about the middle east, since we’re travelling there.

We quickly settled into Marko’s home, he fed us, washed our clothes and we had a shower. For dinner we had chicken, potatoes and cabbages. We also had wine, made by his friend and peach juice from the peaches in his garden. Marko and his wife, Vita grew so much fruit and vegetables they were pretty much self-sufficient.

Once dinner was finished Marko sat with Stew and took a look tour route – he questioned why we were taking such a boring, flat route. Well we don’t know how any better…

“This is what I would do, if I would be you…” said Marko. He sat down.

Much to my surprise, Stew opened up Google Maps, he was serious about re-routing and I really didn’t see this coming. I actually thought Stew was more wed to his route than he made out.

Stew and Marko outlined a rough route online and Marko grabbed 3 A4 sheets of paper and wrote all key places he would visit. The list pretty much filled 3 sheets of A4 paper – front and back. “This is what I would do” he said again, “if I would be you.”

The Route

After Italy we were ready for a pick me ups for the last 10 days or so we hadn’t been especially inspired and it felt like that spark was re-lit in Slovenia.

Here are some of the main highlights of the route – it was so beautiful we would do this again. You will see from the banner we basically did a full circle that started in Sezana – and 4 days later we cycled through Sezana again and made tracks to Croatia.

Skocjan caves

Read about the caves here. We loved visiting these caves. We had a bit of a moment and cycled straight past the caves which we were supposed to visit on day 1, luckily we were going by a second time so we visited them on our last day in Slovenia. The caves are REALLY good if you haven’t done caves before – we hadn’t. They do tours in English, Slovenian and German. The group starts off very large, but when you enter the cave there is perhaps 30-50 people in a group with one tour guide.

Skofja Loka

Oh this day, this day was a toughie! I was struggling with the hills,really struggling! I ended up pushing my bike up hill, Stew would get to the top of the hill, park his bike then walk down to help me push my bike up. It was absolutely POURING with rain, POURING!

We took a few stops, cafe stops to get out of the rain and dry out! One particular cafe stands out – the hot chocolate was the best we’d had – Stew tried a white one and a milk one! In the background Barbara, the waitress/owner was playing some 90s music which I enjoyed and she spoke English very well too!

As we worked our way through 1 coffee and 3 hot chocolates we were joined by Jernej. He cycled and was part of a cycling group who toured. He spotted our bikes outside and we got talking. This year he was hoping to cycle in Iran.

When we told him we were heading to Croatia he offered us a place to stay- unfortunately we weren’t going past his home! This wasn’t the last of his offers … as we were saying our goodbyes and I was just about to step onto my bike Jernej asked us to wait … he came back from his van with a gift for the road, some chorizo! We took it happily and we will look forward to enjoying it on a camp one evening!

We left Barbara’s cafe with a spring in our step. We were warm, the drinks were delicious and everyone in the cafe was a delight.

Lake Bled

A couple people had recommended Lake Bled to us – we were warned that it was a bit of a tourist trap, but wow was it worth it. Beautiful. It was here that a Korean lady seemed quite fascinated with our bikes – she had a picture with me.

Bohinjska Bistrica & Slap Savica waterfall

We found a hostel to stay at here,when we rolled up it turned out the hostel was closed for renovation! Luckily the owner was there, he said if we cycled 6 miles (towards the waterfall, luckily) we could stay in the sister hostel. They honoured our room plus we had a private bathroom and breakfast – all for the same price. Happy days! We stayed for one night, woke early and cycled 4 miles to the waterfall. We had to walk about half a mile togged there. Again, beautiful. We would not have found the gem if it wasn’t for Marko!

We’re ready for the Croatian adventures to begin – we’re waiting patiently for the sunshine to come back then it’s onto Marko’s route! I am a little nervous about the hills that lie ahead, but I think it’ll be beautiful across the Croatian coast!

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Zoe

Comments

2 responses to “Slovenia, oh beautiful Slovenia”

  1. Stephen says:

    I can see why you fell in love with Slovenia. It looks absolutely stunning!

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In April 2018, we met at work and bonded over our love of bikes and cycling! Within months we planned our first John O’Groats to Lands End together.

Luckily for us, Stewart is an experienced cyclist and has already completed a solo 2500 mile JOGLE. Zoe had been cycling for years, but only started taking cycling more seriously in 2017. Since we met cycling has been better and more adventurous than ever!

As of the 31st of March 2019 we are cycling 24,000 miles around the entire world.

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