Where there are rivers and water there are bridges and Slovenia has the most amount of fresh water per square km than any other country in Europe.. We have a lot of different bridges for you to enjoy along your way:
We have the longest stone arch bridge in the world over the Soca river by Nova Gorica (35 mins), hobbit bridges leading to stunning waterfalls, bouncy swing bridges across perilous gorges, military bridges built by Napoleon's armies as as they headed towards Russia, wooden bridges, stone bridges, natural stone bridges created thousands of years ago when huge prehistoric caves collapsed and lots lots more!!
You will see plenty of wooden swing bridges across rivers like above and it can take quite some nerve to cross one, but what about this stone cracker over the stunning Soca river near Kobarid (80 mins).. would you believe kids jump off that one in the summer!
And where you see a swing bridge in Slovenia you can be fairly sure of an amazing walk. The first bridge here brings you across the Idrija river, for example on a lovely forest track walk from the town of Idrija (50 mins) to Slovenia's shortest river and a wonderful little lake overshadowed by a high cliff wall.
Wow.. look carefully in the second photo and you can see an amazing stone bridge hidden in the centre of the picture. The bridge is one of Slovenia's secret gems hiding away at the bottom of this prehistoric Slovenian stone valley, but just 25 mins from the Lodge! You can find this local bridge at the amazing Rakov Skocjan natural park and it crosses the river of 7 names which flows in this mini region between two enormous natural stone arches.. themselves amazing bridges.
You can swim here in the summer and you have a very good chance of seeing lots of beautiful dragon flies buzzing around in a place we call "Dragon Fly Alley"!
You will want to cross both of these bridges above.. the first is a little similar to the stunning Mostar bridge in Bosnia. This one crosses the emerald green Soca river at one of our favourite villages in Slovenia, Kanal (60 mins). The bridge has a diving board on the top and in the summer there is a diving competition!! There is also a lovely café in Kanal where you can sit and admire the bridge enjoying some top quality ice cream or a nice coffee!
And the second bridge above is one of two Hobbit bridges over the river that leads to the uberstunning Kozjak waterfall (90 mins) near Kobarid. When the river level is high you have to walk across these bridges, otherwise you can walk along the spectacular riverbed up to one of the most amazing waterfalls you will ever see. We call it Kojak for short and you would be well advised to bring a lollipop with you to suck whilst you gaze in awe at the waterfall.
Above is another bridge on the way out from the Unesco protected Skocjan cave (20 mins).. we recommend if you are fit enough you go direction "left" when leaving the main cave and if you are quite fit you will be rewarded with a bypass of a lovely waterfall as the water gushes out of the cave and vista after vista of the massive hole below as you walk up the stone steps.
We don't have a photo.. deliberately, of probably the most famous bridge in Slovenia.. the other bridge at Skocjan cave (20 mins). Instead we will describe it. Imagine a cave so big you could hide a dragon in there.. reminiscent of that massive cave where Bilbo Baggins threw the ring into the fire.. you will be over 100 metres under the ground and look up.. you will see an Indiana Jones style bridge stretching high up more than 50 metres over the underground river that thunders along the base of the cave.. And you will walk over this bridge.. wow!
You will easily find the famous 3 Bridges in the centre of lovely Ljubljana (30 mins) and there is a very large choice of trendy relaxing cafes to sit at and watch the world go by near the bridge.
You cross the first little bridge above to cross the river that flows from the beautiful waterfall at the end of the Logarska valley (120 mins), the water is crystal clear.
It can be a little scary crossing some swing bridges and the next bridge above is no exception. It hangs across the Soca river and is on one of the hiking routes that lead to the amazing Kozjak waterfall (90 mins). Wobbletastic!
And these are not hobbits on one of the hobbit bridges, they are real Australians! / Above right is one of the two natural stone arches which are 3km apart at either end of the stunning nature park, Rakov Skocjan (25 mins), just on the other side of Postojna from the Lodge. Both arches were formed thousands of year ago when a prehistoric cave collapsed and nowadays you can walk under or over both of them, depending how much water is gushing in and out of over and underground rivers!
So now you know there are bridges of all shapes, sizes, genres and materials to find on your travels, but the last thing you need to be prepared for is an encounter with one of Slovenia's "Devil's Bridges"!
They are usually spanning a particularly scary high point or perilous river crossing as the fear they inspired must have led to the naming of the bridge. Each Devil's bridge story is a little different, but you will usually hear that the locals made a pact with the Devil to get their bridge and agreed he could have the soul of the first one to cross it.
Well, here's a free tip if you ever meet a villager at the start of a high bridge here and they offer you a deal to NOT take it as the sneaky locals almost always sent a dog over the bridge first to con the Devil! Needless to say he got very angry!
One thing is for sure, whether you cross Devil's bridge on the way to Little Bridge gorge, above left or the Devil's bridge towering above the ferocious flow from the Tolmin gorge, above right, you will have a mighty fine view!