Pristine waters and forests, towering glorious summits, scenic valleys, endemic animals and plants, rich cultural heritage, friendly locals and delicious cuisine… the list goes on. Triglav National Park is the only national park in Slovenia and one of the oldest in Europe. Its 840 km2 covers 4% of Slovenia’s territory and a huge portion of the country’s Julian Alps. Named after Mount Triglav, the country’s highest peak, the Park was established in 1981.
The Park’s beautiful mountainous landscape with its sharp ridges, high karst plateaus, glacier-made valleys, deep ravines and crystal-clear waters is over 200 million years old. As an ancient sea receded and tectonic plates shifted, the Alps grew proudly from the Earth. Evidence of this are fossils which can still be found on the Park’s rocky surfaces.
With more than 250 springs of various sizes, the Park is home to numerous alpine lakes, including Slovenia’s largest natural lake (Bohinj), a lush network of rivers and streams, wetlands and bogs. Two major European rivers, the Sava and the Soča, immerge in the Triglav National Park. The Soča’s famous emerald waters flow into the Adriatic Sea, while the majestic Sava flows all the way to the Black Sea. Besides being stunning to look at, both rivers promise numerous activities, such as swimming, kayaking, rafting, paddle boarding, fishing, etc.
There are more than 7.000 animal species roaming the Park, including ibex, red deer, chamois, brown bear, and the lynx, while 84 bird species are reigned over by the golden eagle. Over 1.600 types of plants flourish in often less than perfect conditions, like gorgeous flowers the Apine eryngo, hairy alpenrose, edelweiss, Triglav rose, etc.
In addition to climbing, cycling, water or air sports, hiking is undoubtedly the favourite pastime in Triglav National Park. Among the many musts, the most popular trails are: the Triglav Bistrica Trail, the Soča Trail, Mostnica, Soča and Tolmin Gorges, the Tamar Valley, the wide network of trails on the Pokljuka Plateau, trails to and around Triglav’s Seven Lakes, and of course ascending all the wonderful mountains, including Mt. Triglav itself.
There are incredible places to visit and stay at when discovering the Park. Easily accessible from Ljubljana or anywhere else in Slovenia, the most popular are Kranjska Gora, the Bohinj villages, Kobarid and Bovec. Plenty of accommodations can be found in the form of hotels, camps, glamping and mountain huts. The main thing to remember when visiting the Park is to always respect nature and keep safety in mind when exploring this magical place.