Where there are rivers and water there are bridges and Green Slovenia has a lot of different, very beautiful bridges for you to look out for along your way too..
We have the longest stone arch bridge in the world over the Soca river, little Hobbit bridges leading to stunning waterfalls, bouncy swing bridges across perilous gorges, Napoleon bridges built by the little guy's armies to cross Slovenia, 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 stunning rivers (like above left) and it can take quite some nerve to cross one.. as the nearer the centre of the bridge you go, the bouncier it gets!
What about this stone cracker of a Napoleon bridge over the stunning Soca river near Kobarid (80 mins).. would you believe, local 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..
This wonky swing bridge (above left) brings you across the Bela 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 circular cliff wall.
Wow.. look carefully in the photo above left and you can see an amazing stone bridge hidden in the centre of the picture. The bridge is one of Slovenia's secret treasures hiding away at the bottom of this prehistoric natural stone valley, but just 20 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 natural bridges.
You can even swim here in the summer if there is enough water 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 certainly want to cross both of these bridges above.. the first is a little similar to the stunning Mostar bridge in Bosnia. It 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 right is one of two wooden Hobbit bridges over the river that lead 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 and Green locations you will ever see..
We found this quite ordinary, but beautiful wooden bridge (above left) during a daytrip adventure into the Julian Alps on the way to hiking to 2 waterfalls.. but without the bridge there was absolutely no way we were getting across this explosion of crystal clear water.
And check out the stunning "Soca Bridge" (Most na Soci) which sits at the end of an unbelievabubblly emerald / aqua coloured lake flowing from Slovenia's incredible Soca river.
There is a dragon legend and even a paddle steamer trip you can do to fully explore this beautiful stretch of water where the Soca river collides with the Tolminka river.
Above left is a 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.
There is an even more spectacular bridge deep inside Skocjan cave where you are already so far underground in the massive cavern, but cross high above an underground river thundering through the cave a long way below you!
No visit to Ljubblyjana is complete without a stroll acroos the beautiful 3 Bridges in the centre, (above right) and there is a very large choice of trendy relaxing cafes to sit and watch the world go by near the bridge.. (also very handy public toilets under the bridge, Mum and Dad)!
You cross this first little bridge (above left) to go over the river that flows from the beautiful Rinka waterfall at the end of the Logar valley (120 mins), the water is crystal clear and drops 90m down, so this little bridge is a fab spot to get a shot of both the waterfall and the Eagle Nest's cafe!
It can be a little scary crossing some swing bridges and the next bridge (above right) 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! Very often you can see kayaks underneath, just gliding down the river like drops of rain sliding down a window pane..
And these are not hobbits (above left) on one of those hobbit bridges we mentioned earlier.. they are real Australians!
Above right is one of those two natural stone arches which are 3km apart at either end of the stunning nature park, Rakov Skocjan (20 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!
We should add, one is called "Little Bridge" (Mali Most) and the other is called "Big Bridge" (Veliki Most).. but when you see them for yourself, you will realise that the Little Bridge would certainly be called Big bridge, if it wasnt for the existence of the other one!
So now you know there are bridges of all shapes, sizes, genres and materials to find on your travels.. if you see a sign for "Napoleon Most", then go look for a bridge built by Napoleon's war machine, but the last thing you need to be prepared for is an encounter with one of Slovenia's "Devil's Bridges".. there are a lot of these too!
Devil bridges usually span a particularly perilous, scary high point or deadly drop over a river crossing and the very thought of crossing them could inspire fear into the first villagers who ventured across!
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 done and agreed he could have the soul of the first one to cross it.
Well, the villagers often found a sneaky way to outwit the Big red man and this is how they did it.. they went and sent a dog over the bridge first to con the Devil! Needless to say he got very angry and this never ends well!
One thing is for sure, whether you cross the 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!
We will drop a few more beautiful bridges into the gallery below here for you to look out for on your Slovenian adventures..