Here are some photos from «Velika Planina », the « big meadow », a well known place in the Slovenian Alps, but mostly known by the Slovenians themselves.
It’s a wide pasture village made of wooden huts. Most of them are not in activity anymore and became private properties, sometimes with all comfort (sauna,etc). But a fair amount remained what they were initially, and there are still cows, sheep, horses... it’s possible to buy cheese directly from the maker.
This is not the same range tham the Triglav but the « Kamniške Alps », another Slovenian alpine range, smaller and further to the East, whose highest point, Grintovec, tops at 2558m. From a landscape point of view, the « Kamnik’s Alps » (from the name of the pretty town nearby) look pretty much the same than the Julian Alps, made of a very white limestone, with steep and deep valleys.
On the other hand, speaking about the mountain architecture, they are rather different : if the style of the mountain houses in the Julian Alps was quite close to the neighboring Austria and Italy, the huts of Velika Planina, these « UFO », have their own style ; as for me, I found they look slightly like wooden houses in Slovakia, more flat shapes.
The knees of Dorota having not recovered fully from the Triglav, we found wiser to shorten the very big level difference by taking the cable car to Velika Planina
This Sunday afternoon was taking place there a sort of big folkloric festival, a stand was put in the very center of the « village », musicians were playing Slovenian music, a crowd of people drank and danced, with some handcraft exhibitions around, etc...
We were almost the only strangers, me easily noticeable with my beret, in complete immersion in the Slovenian culture, in this place that seemed to give the heartbeat of a whole country.
The evening, we ate and slept at one of the three guesthouses, Črnuški dom
, located in the southern end of the plateau, from which we overlook a wide part of the Slovenia basin, and at night one can even recognise the lights of the capital Ljubljana.
As the Sunday night are often quiet in mountain huts, we got acquainted at this occasion with the family managing the place: the parents, with who we could barely communicate, but who offered us to try for free many local specialities, and their son Primoz, whose correct English allowed us to spend the rest of the evening chatting. This experience of contact with the people of Slovenia was the most accomplished of our holidays.
Rare are the trails that do not end by some via ferrata, in the Kamniške Alps, which makes most of the hikes very sporty, hence a very wild mountain range, with very little frequentation. As for us, the program for the day after consisted in one of the very few possible walks which did not involve some scramble, which consists in following the main crest linking Velika Planina to the heart of the massif. Anyway, this route involves numerous ups and downs, and we found wise to end our trip at the top of Konj, modest 1800m summit, but with a breathtaking panoramic view to the white, arid and steep immensities of the Kamniške Alps.
My page about Velika Planina :