Self Guided Walking Holidays & Cycling Holidays


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Lake Bled
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Highlights

  • Walking through flower filled alpine meadows beneath the snow capped peaks of the Julian Alps.
  • Soaking up the views along the best sections of the Via Alpina.
  • Indulging in the traditional Slovenian dish of wind cured karst prosciutto ham.
  • Exploring the Romanesque towers and Renaissance secrets of Bled Castle.
  • Arriving at the blue waters of Lake Bohinj in the heart of Triglav National Park.

Explore the mountains and lakes of Slovenia’s Julian Alps as you follow the Via Alpina from the tranquil village of Jezersko to Lake Bohinj at the heart of the Triglav National Park. Following well marked trails you will walk across forested plateaus, through deep river gorges and across flower filled Alpine meadows with the snow capped peaks of the Julian Alps as your constant companions. Medieval castles, churches and traditional mountain villages bring the walk to life and immerse you in the friendly Slovenian culture.

Your holiday begins with two nights in the small romantic village of Jezersko in the Kokra Valley. You then walk up the northern side of the Kamnik Alps—Goli Vrh—which rewards with wonderful Alpine views, before descending to the town of Preddvor and then on through the peaceful Draga Valley. Your walk continues along mountain ridges, meadows and valley floors via Bled to finish at Lake Bohinj, the jewel at the heart of the Triglav National Park.

Slovenia’s Julian Alps, located on the border with Austria, have always been a cross roads and this is reflected in the rich culture, architecture, music, history and food of this beguiling region. Highlights include the baroque Church of St. Petrus, Kamen Castle, Kremna Reszina pastries, karst prosciutto ham, borovnica blueberry schnapps and a lively folk music scene.

DAY 1: Arrive in Jezersko

The village of Jezersko is situated in the Kokra Valley in an idyllic location between the towering Kamnik-Savinja Alps and the Karavanke mountains on the Austrian border. Jezersko is easily accessible by public transport from Slovenia’s capital, Ljubljana, just 30km away.


On arrival at your hotel you will have a welcome meeting in the evening (6/6.30pm) with our local representative. They will give you all the information you need including detailed route notes, maps and local information and answer any last minute questions you may have.


Overnight: Jezersko, 3 star hotel.


DAY 2: Circular walk from Jezersko

Today you can look forward to a delightful walk to the Ceska Koca mountain hut. Situated at 1543m above sea level, the mountain hut is one of the oldest in Slovenia and it gives an outstanding view of the two parallel valleys. Your return route to Jezersko takes you past the glacial Shepherds Lake to bring you back to Jezersko.


Walk: 12.4km, 690m ascent/descent, 5hrs


Overnight: Jezersko, 3 star hotel.


DAY 3: Walk to Goli Vrh

Following a car you walk up the northern side of the Kamnik Alps - Goli Vrh. A  meadow and forest walk brings you to an amazing viewpoint above the Jezersko  valley. With one foot in Slovenia and the other in Austria, you’ll enjoy splendid views of the Grintovec range.


After returning back to your hotel, you’ll be transferred to the little town of Preddvor. Historical attractions abound including the 15th century Castle Turn, Grad Preddvor Mansion and the 12th century Church of St. Peter.


Walk: 8.8km, 785m ascent/880m descent, 5-6hrs


Overnight: Preddvor, 3 star country inn.


DAY 4: Circular walk to Jacobs Church

Today brings a slightly more demanding yet wonderful hike, full of splendid vistas. It begins with an ascent up to St. Jacobs Church, which in the days of Turkish raids served as refugee fortress and shelter. Your walk continues through deep forests of fir and spruce and across steep hillsides covered with alpine flowers to the hut at Hudicev borst; the perfect spot for a picnic! After a full day’s walk you can take a freshening dip in Crnjava lake just before returning back to your hotel.


Walk: 15.6km, 975m ascent/1000m descent, 6-7hrs


Overnight: Preddvor, 3 star country inn.


DAY 5: Walk to Begunje

Your day starts with a transfer to Ljubelj on the Austrian border, the starting point for a very interesting walk. The trail leads through an underground tunnel, originally dug by merchants in order to reduce the travelling time between the Slovenian state of Carniola and the Austrian state of Carinthia. As you emerge the trail follows an ancient shepherd’s route into the verdant Draga Valley.


Walking through a landscape of rich meadows and deep silent mountain forests you soon reach the historic village of Begunje. This is the home of the famous Slavco Avesnik Oberkrainer band, the primary exponents of ethnic Slovenian music. You will surely wish to visit the 12th century Kamen Castle and the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque delights of 15th century Katzenstein Mansion.


Walk: 13.7km, 470m ascent, 970m descent, 5hrs


Overnight:  Begunje, 4 star hotel.


DAY 6: Walk to Bled

In contrast to the previous days of hillwalking, this morning you hike across the upper Carniolan plain. A slight ascent will take you to St Catherins Church. You’ll already be able to see Bled Castle, perched overlooking the beautiful lake, but to reach the town, don’t miss the short diversion through the stunning 1.6km Vintgar Gorge, carved 150m deep into the mountain strata by the turbulent Radovna river.


Bled is a uniquely picturesque town sitting on the shores of the glacial Lake Bled and overlooked by the imposing medieval Bled Castle perched atop a rocky ridge. Traditional wooden barges called Pletna ply their trade to a small island that is the location of the Assumption of Mary Pilgrimage Church, itself sitting on the site of a temple of Ziva, the Slavic goddess of love and fertility.


There is no better way to finish your day’s walk than with a welcome vanilla and cream kremna rezina pastry while overlooking the lake.


Walk: 20.6km, 485m ascent, 565m descent, 5 hrs


Overnight:  Bled, 4 star hotel.


DAY 7: Walk to Lake Bohinj

Today you start with a transfer up to the Pokljuka plateau in the Triglav National Park to walk across mountain pastures rich in Julian poppies, edelweiss and bellflowers. The high peaks are the realm of sure footed chamois, ibex and lynx and griffon vultures circle on the thermals high above.


Walking in the clear alpine air you pass traditional farmhouses to bring you to a view point that provides views far down into the Bohinj Valley. Descending into the valley the route brings you to the historic village of Studor. Travel back in time at the village ethnographic museum and walk amongst the traditional hayracks that have been declared an architectural monument.


Your final destination is Lake Bohinj, the largest lake in Slovenia and the jewel in the heart of the Triglav National Park. Legend says that God gave the humble citizens of the lake the most beautiful part of Slovenia and the location surrounded by the Julian Alps is indeed sublime.   In the small lakeshore settlement of Ribcev Laz, sit back and relax with a glass of borovnica blueberry schnapps, coupled with a dish of karst prosciutto ham.


Walk: 13.2km, 95m ascent, 866m descent, 5 hrs


Overnight: Lake Bohinj, 4 star hotel.


DAY 8: Onward Travel

Your adventure finishes after breakfast, though you may wish to add further nights to enjoy the many attractions that Lake Bohinj has to offer.


Additional Nights and Extensions

You can add additional nights at any point before, during of after the walk or in Ljubljana.

Accommodation

We specifically select your accommodation to ensure that you enjoy every minute of your stay in Slovenia. You will stay for 4 nights in 3* hotels/inns, and 3 nights in a 4* hotel. All offer comfortable rooms with en suite bathrooms, a warm welcome to walkers, traditional hospitality and delicious local food.


Alternate accommodation

We will always try and accommodate you at the locations detailed in the itinerary, but because of limited availability in high season we may have to accommodate you at an alternative location of the same or better standard. We will confirm your accommodation details on confirming your reservation.


Single Rooms

If you require single rooms within your party we would be happy to accommodate you although there is a single room supplement payable.


Solo Walkers

This holiday is available for solo walkers but we would recommend that you are experienced in walking and navigating alone. If you are traveling solo the holiday is slightly more expensive as some costs are not share.


Meals

A delicious breakfast is included each morning. Most accommodations are happy to provide a packed lunch - this should be requested on arrival. Or you can pick up lunch in the village or stop along the trail. If you choose the half board option dinner is included or alternatively you can eat at the hotel or a local restaurant each night.

Availability

This holiday is available to start on any day between mid May until mid October.


Please note that the start dates of the 28th and 29th July 2019 are currently fully booked.


Time of Year

The best months for walking are in the summer months between July and September when the wild flowers are in still in bloom, the weather is usually fair and the higher alpine trails are mostly clear of snow. It should be noted however that the weather in the mountains is changeable and therefore you should be well prepared for all weather conditions including the occasional thunderstorm. There can also occasionally still be some snow in the early season. We do provide a detailed equipment list for the tour so that you are prepared.


Single Rooms & Solo Walkers

If you require single rooms within your party we would be happy to accommodate you although there is a single room supplement payable. This holiday is available for solo walkers but we would recommend that you are experienced in walking and navigating alone. If you are travelling solo the holiday is slightly more expensive as some costs are not shared.


Grade & Terrain

This walk is graded moderate overall and includes daily walks of between 10 and 22 km and ascents of up to 975m following rugged footpaths, tracks and mountain paths. Some of the days will involve walking on narrow paths with steep drop offs and therefore you will need a head for heights.


Due to the nature of the terrain in Slovenia, and the fact that paths are not as well looked after as in other alpine countries you may find that some paths can be blocked with overgrown tree roots etc and care is required when negotiating the paths, paying close attention to your feet as the paths are very rugged.


Some of the ascents and descents are steep and are exposed so require a good head for heights and surefootedness. There are some short sections of up to 1km where ladders and cables are in place to help you along the way where the path is very narrow or the slopes are scree.


Day 4 is a tougher day and should be considered more of a moderate-strenuous grading due to the fact that it is the most exposed day, route-finding is a bit trickier and the terrain which consists of lots of gravel rocks can become very slippy after bad weather. If the weather is bad it is possible to simply do a shorter loop walk up to the church that day.


In summary you should have a good level of walking fitness to get the most from this holiday as many of the walks are not possible to shorten once you have started. The itinerary would not be suitable for anyone under the age of 16.


Navigation & Route Notes

The routes on this trip are generally easy to follow if you pay close attention to the provided detailed route notes and maps. You will also have access to the Macs Adventure Smartphone App enabling you to follow the route using your phone’s GPS so using this combined with the provided route notes and maps means you should have no problems finding your way.


Baggage Transfer

Your bags will be transferred between your accommodation as per your itinerary. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.


Travel Insurance

It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.


General Information

The distances and ascent/descents are approximations of the recommended routes. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants),sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a day pack.

Getting to Jezersko/From Lake Bohinj

Jezersko is located just 30km from Slovenia’s capital, Ljubljana. Many low cost airlines fly into Ljubljana Airport including Easyjet, Wizz Air, and Flybe.From the airport: To get to Jezersko take the airport bus to Ljubljana (45mins) or to Kranj (15mins) and a connecting service to Jezersko - (2 hours total).Please note the bus operates infrequently and does not run on a Sunday, timetables can be checked here. 


It is also possible to take a taxi transfer straight to Jezersko which you can pay for locally and it will be more reasonable and takes about 45 minutes. We can pre-arrange this transfer for you too but the cost is more expensive than doing it locally. Let us know if you would like a price for this.


Bohinj has a railway station in Bohinjska Bistrica, 5 km from your hotel. It is on the Jesenice - Nova Gorica sideline, only a few trains a day. From the village of Ribcev Laz there are buses to Ljubljana (2hrs) whereupon connecting buses serve Ljubljana Airport (45mins). A good resource to check timetables and fares is the Slovenian Travel Information website.

Included

  • 7 Nights accommodation in hand picked small hotels and country inns. (4 nights 3*, 3 nights 4*).
  • 7 Breakfasts.
  • Door to door baggage transfer as per itinerary (1 bag per person/max.20 kg).
  • Welcome meeting and briefing on evening of day 1 (6pm).
  • Detailed pictured route descriptions with maps and a pre departure information pack.
  • 24-hour assistance by phone from our office/local representative in the event of a problem.
  • Transfers on days 3, 5 and 7 as per itinerary.

Excluded

  • Flights and transfers to first/from last accommodation.
  • Travel to the start and form the end of the walk.
  • Travel Insurance.
  • Entrance fees to gorges.
  • Personal equipment and expenses such as phone calls, extra transfers, tips, etc.
  • Lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks.
  • Any items not specifically mentioned in the program.
  • Taxi transfers or public transport should you need to skip a stage.

Extras

  • Single room supplement if applicable.
  • Additional nights during the walk.
  • Half board.
  • Airport transfers (from/to Ljubjlana airport). Minimum 2 persons.

Frequently Asked Questions

We are often asked the following questions and I hope that you will find the answers useful. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any further queries.

How far in advance do I need to book?

We suggest you book as soon as your plans are finalised as this holiday is extremely popular. You will find up to date availability on our website and we will always try and accommodate your plans.

How fit do I need to be?

This walking holiday is graded moderate. The itinerary involves daily walks of between 7 and 18.5km following footpaths, tracks and mountain paths. Some of the ascents and descents are steep and can be exposed so require a good head for heights and be sure-footed in places. You should have a good level of walking fitness to get the most from this holiday.

Which is the best airport to fly to?

The nearest airport is Ljubljana just 30km away from Jesersko. Check out the travel details for more detailed information.

How do the baggage transfers work?

Your bags will be transferred between your accommodation as per your itinerary. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20kg per person.

What personal equipment do I need?

You will need good walking shoes/boots, comfortable walking clothes, waterproof jacket and trousers, a day pack, warm clothing in the early/late part of the year and hats etc during the summer. We supply a detailed packing list with your information pack.  

When is the best time of year?

The best months for walking are in the summer months between June and September when the wild flowers are in still in bloom, the weather is fair and the higher alpine trails are clear of snow.

What happens if I can't walk stage?

You can use public transport or local taxis to continue your next overnight stop.

Excellent hiking with beautiful views!

5

We did this hiking trip with friends who also enjoy hiking and we had a great time! The hikes were challenging, the trails weren't crowded, and the countryside was beautiful! We loved the scenery and appreciated the huts. We'd definitely recommend this for people who enjoy long days on the trail and seeing a different part of the world.

Sue B

Boston, MA

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spectacular scenery, rugged hiking

4

the trip was worth every euro

dc

usa

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Very rewarding trip, with a few caveats.

4

Pros included beautiful well kept villages, wonderful breakfasts at every lodging, friendly people, and most trails not crowded. Guidebook was very detailed and absolutely necessary. Vintgar Gorge, cost 10 euros each, was horrible (incredibly crowded on a 3-foot wide boardwalk for 3-4 km) and Macs should have warned us. Air conditioning at lodges was spotty and unfortunately needed for much of the trip.

Lucky Pierre

Slovenia

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Rugged climbs, worth the effort

4

The people were very friendly, lots of English. Food was great. Hotels were generally pretty good. Lake Bled is amazing to see. Take advantage of Lake Bled with an extra day if you can. Wonderful rest day after some tough hikes

Andrea

Ontario

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Stunning scenery

4

We thoroughly enjoyed this holiday and Slovenia totally exceeded our expectations. My partner didn't really want to go...but is now planning a return trip! The walks were very varied; challenging at times. The Slovenian people were almost always friendly, helpful and accommodating. Do have a day off in Bled - it's well worth it - and an extra day at the end in Bohinj. Stay at Hotel Triglav in Bled if you can; it's a truly 4* experience and is at the quiet end of the lake. The food there is also exceptional and well worth the price. Try and avoid staying at Hotel Kristal in Bohinj - it purports to be a 4* but is 2* at best and the woman who runs it is the exception to the rule than Slovenians are helpful and friendly!

Carole

Stansted

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Beautiful and Friendly Slovenia

5

Very well planned and enjoyable holiday. The mountain walks were challenging and could have been difficult in bad weather but offered amazing views and sense of achievement when reaching the top. The level was described as moderate but the descriptions on the website had prepared us for what for us was a challenging walk. The hotels were all good in different ways from personal in the mountains to more sophisticated in Bled and Bohinj. We had an extra night in Bohinj and in hindsight would have also liked an extra night in Bled to explore more the lake and attractions. Slovenia exceeded our expectations in both beautiful scenery and friendly welcoming people.

Anna

UK

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Great holiday, but.......

4

Slovenia is a lovely country, and the accommodation and food on this trip were great. The walking itself was a bit disappointing. A lot is through woodland where large amounts of logging and/or tree clearing are being carried out, or on fairly dull flat roads/tracks for long stretches at a time. I knew from the description that some transfers were included ( and they all worked very well) but the walk didn't feel anything like the point to point walk we hoped for. Travelling early in the season after a lot of bad weather there meant that a lot of the huts that we expected to be open, weren't. One other point- the hotels in Begunje and Bled attract a lot of coach parties so the evening meals provided are only cheap buffet style shared with hordes of tourists. Not a problem in Bled where there are a lot of restaurants, but in Begunje for a decent meal you need to walk some distance to the nearest village after a day's walk.

Cumbrian Lizzie

Lake District

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Julian Alps - Slovenia

5

Very good accommodations, clean and very comfortable. The trip was well organised and well planned. The walks / hikes every day we're very enjoyable and the maps/ instructions were clear to read. We had a great time exploring the beautiful Julian Alps.

Wilks

Northampton

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Great experience in spite of bad weather

4

We had a bad start to our hiking experience – 3 days of relentless rain and temperature in the low teens. This was in the last week of May. On top of that, Adria airline lost my luggage so I was 2 days without my hiking and rain gear. Our representative in Jezersko, Ariana went out of her way to help us out, she dealt with the airline and lend me her rain gear. We were treated like a family by the owners of the bed and breakfast in Jezersko. However because of the weather I was only able to do partial hikes for 3 days and my partner did 3 hikes on her own. In spite of the bad start, we had a wonderful time, the country is beautiful, the food great and the hotels top notch.

Recreational hiker

Toronto, Canada

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Well organised and excellent information

4

Excellent walking holiday. We had unseasonal rain and this restricted us and we had to miss Day 2 walk and the higher walk above St Jacob's church. However our first host, Adriana, was superb in providing alternative suggestions and umbrellas, so we could do a walk in the hills and also have an afternoon in Kranj , as she suggested. The walking on Day 1 and Day 3 is challenging , especially if there is any fear of heights. However the mountains of Slovenia are spectacular. The people are friendly and they have wonderful craft beers and local wines. The accommodation is very comfortable, with special highlight, Hotel Triglav, which provided us with a balcony view of Lake Bled. This was after an amazing walk through the Vintgar gorge, which is beautiful. We would recommend this walk but the first three days are tough and challenging

Mark

Canberra, Australia

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Mountains & Lakes of the Julian Alps

4.5 25

100.0

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