The Slovenian countryside - a must see!



Mon, 10 Jul 2017 - 05:00 GMT


Mon, 10 Jul 2017 - 05:00 GMT

I was traveling through small roads, like this one, and I was absolutely rewarded for my choice - Mad Nomad

I was traveling through small roads, like this one, and I was absolutely rewarded for my choice - Mad Nomad

CAIRO - 10 July 2017: Having entered Slovenia, I headed to the coast, as I wanted to visit the picturesque town of Piran. The impact of the Venetians is more than visible in the entire old city. The big difference, compared to the old towns of Croatia, was that in Piran the tourists were considerably fewer, something that made me more than happy. The previous day, I was traveling in rain the whole day, but in Piran there was so much sunshine that I even took a dip into the sea, after a long time!

I moved to the east, in order to visit some scenic castles and towns. I did not ride even a meter on highway and I was rewarded to the fullest! Imagine that I didn’t have to buy a vignette, as it is only needed for the roads with green or blue signs. But, if you ride on the provincial roads signed in yellow, the vignette is absolutely unnecessary.

I enjoyed riding in the endless forests of Slovenia! Sometimes it was through easy dirt roads and some other times it was through rough woodcutters’ tracks - Mad Nomad

I totally fell in love with the Slovenian countryside! How much beauty can be squeezed in such a small place… With the 58% of the land covered by forests, this is the third-most forested country in Europe, after Finland and Sweden! I took some dirt roads and found myself into thick, humid forests! I, then, moved on small roads through scenic little villages. There are farms all over the place, surrounded by verdant meadows, all having these iconic, old, wooden granaries. Even the small farm houses were so tidy and cute, full of flowers and colors, making the entire scenery unbelievably picturesque, an image I couldn’t get enough of!

Do you see now why I fell in love with sLOVEnia? - Mad Nomad

In such a farm, up on the hills, I was delighted to meet again Janez and Petra, a Slovenian couple I had first met in Pakistan. At that time, they were traveling in an old Renault 4L and we happened to cross the border to India together. After having returned to their country, they got married, bought this old, deserted farm and have been living there since, with the newer member of their family! It was unbelievable meeting them again after six years. As soon as I arrived, we sat on the hill, around a campfire and couldn’t stop talking! We had so much catching up to do… How did the rest of our trip go, what had we done after having returned home, what do we do now…

I stayed there for two days and helped as much as I could with the chores in the farm, while Petra was cooking delicious meals with organic vegetables grown in their garden. If I wasn’t traveling, that’s the kind of life I would be living! I always liked to live in nature, under human conditions, without stress, producing my own food, being self-sufficient, remaining untouched by any system and financial crisis.

I was traveling through small roads, like this one, and I was absolutely rewarded for my choice! - Mad Nomad

I bid Janez and Petra farewell and headed to Ljubljana, where Ika would host me through CouchSurfing. Ljubljana is one of the few capitals I enjoyed so much. It is a very human city, with this typical serenity you see in Northern Europe, but vibrant at the same time. These days, Eurobasket was held in the city, so there were many acts and performances around.

Ljubljana changed hands often between Romans, Huns, Ostrogoths, Lombards and finally Austrians, who left their footprint in the old town until today - Mad Nomad

The day I was about to leave Ljubljana, I woke up by many loud thunders that shook the place. It was down pouring and I thought it would be pointless to go up to the Alps in such a weather. I headed to Italy. The thought, however, of visiting the lakes of Bled and Bohinj would not leave my mind. I hated to miss this opportunity. After all, I was looking forward to visit the Alps, these lakes and the surrounding mountains for so long… Nevertheless, the sky was cloudy as far as I could see and especially on the north the clouds were close to the land, creating thick fog. I didn’t stand a good chance for nice weather on the mountains. I felt just like I was feeling when I had left Pokhara in Nepal, and went over Katmantu, but the thought of hiking the area of Annapurna wouldn’t leave me. So, I did once more what I had done then and had not regretted it!

I was looking forward to visit the Julian Alps and it was really worth! - Mad Nomad

I turned back and started to ride up north! And then, miraculously… after an hour of riding, I could see some blue skies and by the time I arrived at the lakes it was sunshine! What a right choice I had made, turning back and visiting the Alps… The reward was greater than I could have ever dreamed of. The scenery was amazing! I let the images to speak for themselves…

Lake Bled with the church on its small island and the castle on the background - Mad Nomad

I rode to Vršič Pass, up to an altitude of 1,611 m. (5,286 ft.). I was surrounded by rocky, snow-capped peaks. Over the altitude of 1,400 m. (4,593 ft.) there was snow even on the roadside. What a perfect occasion to try out the isothermal suit of REV’IT! I put on the interior layer of my Levante summer jacket and I was fine. It seems that this jacket is the perfect choice for temperatures ranging from 0 oC to 50 oC!

Riding to the Vršič Pass, at 1,611 m. (5,286 ft.), I was surrounded by the snow-capped peaks of the Alps - Mad Nomad

I wild-camped on a lovely spot in Soča Valley, by a fierce river. Another good thing about Slovenia is that, with so many forests, you can find anywhere ideal spots for wild-camping! I was close to the border, so the next day I entered in Italy, from where we will take a ferry-boat to Morocco on Saturday, 21st of September! Christina is already on the ship, coming to Italy on her heavy-loaded Leonida! So, get ready! The adventure is about to start 😉

Here you can watch the video from my trip in Slovenia accompanied by the wonderful soundtracks of Delta Shakedown, the band in which Dionisis Frantzis plays!

This article was originally published in Mad Nomad





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