Nestled between Austria, Croatia, Hungary and Italy, Slovenia is Europe’s greenest and most peaceful secret, starting to slowly emerge from its forests and lush fields. Word of its beauty is quickly starting to spread: I’m not surprised. Slovenia is an adventurer’s playground and for those seeker peaceful, reflective moments – an absolute dream.
Yet its secrets do certainly still exist. In the most southern area of Slovenia on the border of Croatia, Bela Krajina, is relatively unheard of.
It’s the most rural and underdeveloped, yet full of culture and sights just waiting to be discovered. Those who venture off the beaten path are richly rewarded, and Bela Krajina has plenty to give! Read on to discover 5 fantastic activities you can do in Bela Krajina Slovenia. Once you get here, you’ll quickly realise there are many more!
Flowing through the lush green countryside of Bela Krajina is the very beating heart of its kind-hearted and tranquil character: the mesmerising Kolpa River. Bordering the Republic of Croatia, this surprisingly warm-watered river (it can go up to 30°C!) is 113km long and passes through over 50 ancient dams. There’s plenty of wildlife to listen to along the way, as you drift past endless trees, local children playing along the banks and some truly sweet traditional hut houses.
It’s the perfect place to step out from your chilled zone and get into the adventure spirit – and one of the best activities you can try is some good old exhilarating rafting!
I got buckled up and kitted out and headed to the start point for a riveting ride through the twists and turns, ups and downs and inevitable splashes of this natural rollercoaster. One minute I was gliding along peacefully, the next I was frantically paddling for my life: now that’s my kind of fun!
There’s nothing better that I love to do than hike. I love hiking so much – that whilst I’m doing – I need to remind myself that I do actually like it. I’ve challenged myself to do some crazy paths, but if you are looking for an easy trail, with highly rewarding views in under 20 minutes, you need to get to this viewpoint!
Once you’ve rafted down the Kolpa River, pull up your sleeves and get a bird’s eye view high above it. The trail is through glorious woodland, complete with very large mushrooms, birds a-chirping and lots of plants to inspect and pick up if you know what you’re doing.
I recommend you hire a car and find the start of the trail which is just along from Decina village, off the road of Deskova Vas. This Slovenian car hire guide will help you out!
Check out the Google location here or ask Big Berry Resort for help if you are staying with them!
To experience the Bela Krajina region of Slovenia, you need a car!
Are you coming from Ljubljana airport?
Are you driving in from another country?
If you’re a lady in need of some pampering inside and out, you need to pay a visit to Oljarna Pečarič. Slovenia is known as THE greenest country in the world, and when it comes to their produce, they produce some of the freshest and healthiest goodies I’ve had in a while.
Oljarna Pečarič’s delicious oils have endless beneficial properties and vitamins, perfect for your skin, hair, nails, cholesterol, digestion and travelling woes. Going strong since 1937, they have been bottling up their magic in the darling village of Drašiči in their family business, and selling it to visitors throughout the land.
As a traveller, I like to always carry a little kit with me of natural remedies – and since visiting here – it’s hard to control myself with what I put in my backpack. I’d love to pack all of these oil medicines. I learnt for example that hazelnut oil is perfect for your liver and intestines, apricot oil for acne, almond oil for sunspots, hemp oil for those aching shoulders of yours and don’t forget three teaspoons of poppy oil a day for a natural energy boost! Milk thistle cleans your body right out, pumpkin oil prevents infections, evening primrose is great for mosquito bites and grab that rosehip for your wrinkles!
I had a lot of fun tasting them all and convinced myself to get some bottles into my backpack to bring back home. Treat yourself and pay them a visit.
Oljarna Pečarič, Drašiči 33, 8330 Metlika, Slovenija
Črnomelj is the biggest ‘city’ in this area with around 14000 inhabitants but stepping into it feels like you’re in a local village, where everyone knows the butcher, baker and hairdresser. It’s a gorgeous little town, well worth a visit to toodle up and down the streets and soak up the local Slovenian culture that is going down. Nip into the local shops, and you should stumble upon “Belokranjske pisanica” – this areas famous painted Easter eggs. The local artisans should also be selling their local creations – including pottery, weaved baskets and embroidered linen.
The food here is also rustic, homemade and a real treat when it comes to Slovenian delicacies. You’ll find Bela Krajina’s own take on rakija (explosive spirit alcohol stuff!), homemade apple juice, delicious salami and my absolute favourite, “Belokranjska pogača”, which is their traditional flatbread. With the recipe handed down from generation to generation, the course sea salt and sprinkle of caraway seeds on top just makes it. Yum.
And if you’re in town at the right time of year from the 18th June to 1st July 2019, you will be able to catch Jurjevanje; the oldest traditional folk festival in Slovenia! You will be able to see traditional dances from all over the world (yes, India was there!), along with special street theatre performances. There’s also pop-up food stalls where the best restaurants in town will serve their dishes from hot bubbling pots on the street. Time your trip right!
Big Berry is a luxury living resort haven, tucked away down twisting country roads right next to Kolpa River. Bringing luxury living and Mother Nature together as one, this is the perfect place to stay and make your homebase nest. From here, you can discover everything that Bela Krajina has to offer. That’s if you make it out! They have plenty of activities going on on-site, and once you’ve laid your head down on their beds, you might struggle to get back up! Warning: relaxation mode is high here.
The best airport in Slovenia to fly into is Ljubljana. Once you land, grab your rental car and drive 1.5 hours to reach your getaway! You can find Big Berry at Primostek 50, 8332 Gradac, Slovenia.
Are you in central Europe already and looking for the quickest route here?
My visit to Bela Krajina was made possible by Big Berry in Slovenia. Opinions as always remain mine = honest and to the point.
Comment below with your Slovenia experiences!