Honored as the only national park in Slovenia, the Triglav National Park is connected to an enchanting historic tale, which has given birth to the name 'Triglav'. Situated on the northwestern part of Slovenia, the park boasts about natural aura and rich heritage.
The Name 'Triglav (Three Heads)' Holds an Interesting Story
The park is named after Mount Triglav, the highest mountain in Slovenia situated in the womb of the park. The park covers a major portion of the stunning elevations of the Julian Alps and stretches out to 83000 hectares (4% of Slovenia's territory), which is virtually considered as the land of paradise, flanked by snow capped mountains and extensive valleys.
The name 'Triglav' is a lot more controversial, but it owes its name to the characteristic shape of the Slavic deity sitting atop the highest mountain. The goddess had 3 heads and reigned over the earth, the sky and the underworld.
First an Austrian mountain climber guided by 3 locals climbed the peak in 1778 starting from Lake Bohinj. Since the 19th century the mountain became a pilgrimage site for both Slovenians and foreigners. The summit is the symbol of Slovenia's and Slovene peolple's identity. To emphasize this the image of the three-headed peak is on Slovenia's flag. A true Slovene must climb Triglav at lest once in her/his lifetime. If you want to climb it too be prepared for crowd on summer days, especially on weekends.
The park offers great, exotic scenic views on all the sides. It extends along the Italian border and to the Austrian border in North West Slovenia (Gorenjska region) and include almost the entire Julain Alps. You can say that the park is the largest in the entire of Slovenia and covers almost 33 percent of the land area. When the Alpine Conservation Park was founded in 1924, a protection policy was adopted for the Triglav Lakes Valley area for the first time. It was officially named Triglav National Park in 1961.
In 1981 a law on the park defined its borders. In 2003 the park and the Julain Alps became part of UNESCO's Man and Biosphere network. In 2004 the park recived the european Diploma of Protected Areas Award.
The highest point of the Triglav National Park is at 2864 meters and the lowest point is at Tolminka Gorge is at 180 meters.
The temperature remains pleasant all throughout the year around 20°C and in the mountains the temperature plummets to 0.7°C and slopes down to –8.8°C. Forest predominate the region and the inhabitants residing in the park benefits immensely from the forest’s richness.
You'll find more facts and news at the official website of the park.
The total number of settlements count to 25 and the names of municipalities in the area incorporate Gorje, Kobarid, Kranjska Gora, Bovec, Bohinj, Bled, Tolmin and Jesenice. There is a lot many ways of living for the local residents like tourism, crafts, pastoral economy and different mode of agriculture. Almost 1.6 million people visit the park annually.
What to See and Do in Triglav National Park
As you enter the park, there are a number of things to see and do. The picturesque landscape features diverse pointed summits, ranges of Eastern Julian Alps, deeply carved glacier valleys and steep rocks, crystal clear streams and lakes and waterfalls.
A combination of the steep sides and the delicate natural touch renders a universal appeal to the whole look of the park.
Thousands of kilometres signposted hiking trails, educational paths run accoss the park making it easy to get to every corner (well, to climb some of the steep cliffs and high mountain tops by no means is easy).
Perhaps the easiest and least undemanding way of exploring the park is following the road between Kranjska Gora and Bovec, through the Vrsic Pass the highest mountain pass of Slovenia at 1611 m.
Highlights of Triglav National Park
If you think that there is a limited number of things you can visit, then you are wrong. The lakeside town of Bled lies on the fringes of the park. The outstanding scenery is ideally romantic and is the perfect destination to hang out with your loved ones.
Off to the southwest, Lake Bohinj is complemented with awe-inspiring sceneries and churches of the medieval period. If you are in Bled, then take a short ride to the Vintgar Gorge, one of the most spectacular sight of the park.The wooden footbridge path rolling out to 1600 meters adds appeal to the place.
Apart from the two above mentioned lake several other glacial lakes dot the the alpine world like the ones in the Triglav Lakes Valley. Kriska jezera are 3 small lakes at the altitudes between 1800 -2200 meters.
Exploring the park you'll see several waterfalls tumbling down from stiff cliffs the largest of them is the 60-meter Savica waterfall, which is a few kilometers away from Bohinj at the Komarca cliff.
The site inspired Laibach, a Slovenian experimental music band, and they dedicated a song titled Baptism Below Triglav to the specatcular spot. This is also one of the popular starting points to climb Mt Triglav.
The emerald green Soca (Isonzo in Italian) has its source in the Park too. The river bursts out at a cave mouth in Trenta vallewy and descends the rocky walls in several falls. The Soca trail starts about 2.5 km northwest of the river source at Jelincic Tourist Farm. Walking on the trail is another good way of seeing a large chunk from treasures of the Triglav National Park. The 20 km educational trail is a highlight of Soca valley's natural richness ends in Bovec town.
In the Juliana Alpine Botanical Garden (Open: May-Sept: 8.30-18.30, admission: free) in Trenta Valley (on the left of the Vrsic-Trenta road) you can see all the beautiful flowers grown in Slovenia's alpine land.
Alpine wildflowers make the rough and sometimes bleak rocky terrain alive
Mount Triglav - the focal point of the whole park The 2864 meter leaves you breathless, coursing you through the gripping splendor of the steep heights and mountains. However, the weather on the top is unpredictable, sometimes too stormy and sometimes too cold. The peak is accessible and safe for hiking between June-October. However June-July tend to be very rainy.
From August till mid-October the summit is full of mountainclimbers especially on weekends. If you're in good physical condition and have expereince in mountaineering you can get to the top in 2 days spending a night in one of the mountain huts.
Proper mountain climbing equipment is a must. If you're not a savvy mountain climber hire a guide to make the ascend.
Metal handles help you to climb the steepest, rocky slopes but you have to watch out for loose stones at every step.
Apart from Triglav several other mounatin peaks are soaring towards the sky beckoning you to scale them:
- Mangart (2679 m),
- Jalovec (2645 m), and
- Razor (2601 m) southeast of Vrsic pass
At the Triglav National Park Information Centre at the Trenta House (Dom Trenta) you can hire guides, see a exhibitions about the natural and cultural treasures of the park. Eight apartments (for 4-5 persons) offer accommodation.
Activities in Triglav National Park
Don't think that the park is all about hiking, trekking and mountainclimbing. An array of other activites keep you busy for days. The rivers alone offer lots of things to do: rafting, canyoning, fly fishing on Soca and its tributaries, kayaking, paddling on Lake Bled and Bohinj. The Bled Gold Club is said to be one of the best place s to play golf in Slovenia.
The scenic alpine landscape willt tempt you to hop on a mountain bike. See more tips on an adrenaline fueled vacation in Slovenia.
The park turns into a winter adventure world when the fine powder snow covers the slopes, meadows and valleys. Several of Slovenia's ski resorts are in the area. Apart form skiing many other activities will make a winter vacation in Triglav National park enetertaining.
Where to Stay in Triglav National Park?
If you prefer to stay in a hotel-hostel type logging the larger towns and tourist centres like Bohinj, Bled, Kranjska Gora, Bovec offer good-value accommodations.
In villages you'll also find a wide choice of private rooms and apartments to rent. The staff of Trenta House will give you a hand in finding a room or house to rent (cc. price: 15 €/person or 50 €/ apartment for 4).
On the mountains you can stay at mounatin huts and shelters (Erjaceva Koca, Tricarjeva Koca, Aljazev Dom, Vodnikov Dom, Dom Planika). At most of them you can buy basic meals too.
The handful of camping grounds scattered throughout the park are also very good accommodition options.
Staying at tourist farms in the Triglav national park area allows you to be even closer to the pristine natural world.
In gist, the Triglav National Park is defined as the confluence of education, exploration, relaxation and experience. The park holds exciting workshops, creative workshops and various educational programs to educate the tourists about the site. You can say that the natural magnificence blend with contemporary setting and comes alive at the Triglav National Park.
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