One of the most pristine Alpine rivers, the emerald Soča has been writing its own stories for centuries: the Goldhorn fairy tale and legends of a miracle flower atop Slovenia’s highest peak, stories about shepherds on mountain pastures, narratives about remarkable natural wealth, family sagas of strong-willed and friendly people. The area is a lasting memorial to the cruelties of war, which left its distinctive mark on this natural paradise. Dominated by Alpine peaks and situated not far from the famous Triglav National Park with its Alpine Botanical Garden, the valley is a blend of distinctive cultural heritage and boasts a wide spectrum of protected natural resources. The Soča Valley, where nature meets culture, is a place of European importance.
Its intangible heritage belongs to mankind: It belongs to you! Experience it your own way: on the Walks of Peace with a guide who will make you feel like you are being escorted by a World War I soldier; meeting artists who turn river stones and sand into stunning shapes and forms; at tourist farms and ecofarms which pamper your senses with natural flavours and experiences; on adrenalinefilled runs down swirling rapids; on panoramic flights over mountains; at tastings of cheese delicacies; on your way along shepherds’ paths, affording views unlike anywhere else. Visit Slovenia’s first European Destination of Excellence, which—blending the past with the present, the natural with intangible heritage—lives hand in hand with principles of sustainable development. You will feel peaceful from head to toe to heart.
Feel the past.
Today, alive with playful light and sounds of nature, the valley is a vessel for numerous memories from its chequered past. Listen to the stories of World War I and you will hear the thunder of battle and open your heart to peace. If you come to the Soča Valley at the right time, you can experience first-hand the very special Soča River Stories—a two-day event that links memories of the past, the very best of tradition and resolutions for the future. Put on a soldier’s uniform and become a guard in the spectacular Kluže Fortress. Soldiers from both sides will share their views on war over a cup of army tea. Here you can marvel at unique handicraft artists and enjoy local delicacies.
Soča River Stories vividly portrays the war, cultural, ethnological and natural heritage of the valley, which surprises at every step: with outdoor museums, mule trails running across mountain slopes to front-line positions, and historical remains linked by the Walks of Peace. Kobarid, with one of the leading European museums, features unique war stories of soldiers and civilians. An ossuary of Italian soldiers at St Anton, German ossuary near Tolmin, a medieval fortress with a tunnel at Kluže… Everywhere you turn there is cultural heritage that the locals have preserved thanks to their traditional lifestyles. Log pod Mangrtom Hike (The Walks of Peace Foundation)
Taste the Soča Valley!
Life is different in the valley that connects Slovenia’s highest mountains with the Adriatic Sea. Here people rely on their own strength, their own ingenuity. Soča River Stories offers an astonish array of unique wool and wax products, stone and sand art, the rhythmic pace of folklore dances, and beautiful folk singing. And the valley’s true flavour lies in its cuisine! Sheep and cows grazing on pastures above the valley give milk for genuine Bovec and Tolmin cheeses. Native Soča River fish, the Soča trout draws fishermen to the river and pleasure-seekers to local restaurants. The local čompe is unlike any potatoes you have ever had. Bovec krafi and Kobarid štruklji make sure your experiences in the Soča Valley leave sweet memories.
The Soča Valley, with its natural splendours, has long been a favourite among seekers of active experiences in Europe. The valley of staggering waterfalls and playful cascades, pools and ravines offers unforgettable, expert-guided kayaking and rafting tours, canyoning down mysterious tributaries, and other thrilling adventures. The valley’s natural attractions can be seen from the air, paragliding or from an airplane. Caving and hang-gliding enable special interaction with nature. Well-kept hiking, mountain and bicycle trails lead to amazing places and people. In winter, Slovenia’s highest-altitude ski resort at Kanin affords stunning vistas all the way to the sea!