A hidden miracle of nature in the Karst

Published: 11.11.2016

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A hidden miracle of nature in the Karst

The Karst is a unique region in the west of Slovenia. It was formed by the stone with a soft heart and water that created a mysterious aboveground and subterranean world of incredible shapes.

A hidden miracle of nature in the Karst

The Karst is a unique region in the west of Slovenia. It was formed by the stone with a soft heart and water that created a mysterious aboveground and subterranean world of incredible shapes. Numerous karst phenomena are unique by themselves, and you will discover plenty of them walking or biking in the Karst Living Museum. Visit the world famous Škocjan Caves and magnificent Lipizzaner horses. Taste karst life in a glass of teran wine that goes wonderfully with a slice of kraški pršut (Karst prosciutto ham).

 

Masterpiece of nature

The Slovenian Karst is one of the most unique regions, which was formed by the water, stone and wind. Explore the Karst Living Museum that, extended over 700 hectares, presents the natural and cultural inheritance of the Karst with typical karst phenomena. A part of the museum constitutes the area of Classical Karst with the highest intensity of Karst phenomena – caves, disappearing streams, sinkholes, uvalas, karst springs, ponors and many more. The first scientific research of the karst phenomena took place in this area, therefore all the natural phenomena in the world that were formed by nature in a similar manner are named after it.

Vilenica Cave near Lokve was also created in this way, and is the oldest tourist cave in Europe that hosted the first tourists as early as 1633. Until the middle of the 19th century, it was famous as the most beautiful, biggest and most visited cave in the Karst. Today, it has been overtaken by the Škocjan Caves near Divača in terms of numbers of visitors, which are entered on the UNESCO World Heritage List due to their deepest underground canyon, rich archaeological heritage and high biodiversity. They have taken pride of place among the natural monuments of the world since 1986. Only a few kilometres from the caves, the famous Lipica Stud Farm, which is considered the oldest European stud farm, is located. Here, the noble Lipizzaner horses have been bred and trained according to classical dressage since 1580. See the presentation of their riding school, in which the horses impress with elegant movements and the performance of the most demanding figures of classical dressage.

 

Protected origin of the Karst culinary specialities

The tastes and local specialities of the Karst are what make it specialy. The dry and gusty Bora wind that is typical for the region particularly spices up the taste of the local cuisine. It is used for the drying of pork kraški pršut which matures by being exposed to it for more than twelve months. The air or wind is also a particular element in maturing the grape variety refošk, from which the famous kraški teran is made. Both pršut and teran have the protected European designation of origin, as well as Kraška panceta (Karst pancetta) and Kraški zašinek (Karst zašinek).

You can also taste other local wines, such as vitovska grganja, malvazija, as well as sparkling wines made from them, when visiting the Karst Wine Road. Treat yourself to kraška jota (Karst jota), homemade pasta, a delicious slice of karst cheese and a spoon of sweet Kraški med (Karst honey) that also has the protected designation of origin.

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