From Radovljica to Kamnik and beyond….

After the excesses of last weekend’s Festival of Chocolate in Radovljica, I was planning to be virtuous this week, and on the whole I was but I’ve never professed to be a saint and never intend to – I like my food too much! Fortunately I also love hiking, running and cycling – activities which allow me some indulgences!

It was a rather soggy start to last week, but since Tuesday afternoon it’s been beautifully warm and sunny. I’ve been taking full advantage of this and have been on my bike a few times and have also done a couple of walks – once to Valvazor and also to Smokuški vrh.

At the weekend I did another walk, which I have been meaning to do for a while, and can now finally say that I’ve done it. After driving to Kamnik, about 40 minutes from Radovljica, the path (Koželjeva pot) starts from Iverje (although I failed to locate this on my map and therefore parked a little further away and walked to the start) and continues to the source of the Kamniška bistrica river and the mountain hut Dom v Kamniški bistrici (600m). The path undulates through the forest, at times right at the water’s edge and occasionally climbing higher into the forest. It is pleasantly shady and cool by the water so would probably be an ideal walk on a hot summer’s day when shade is sought. In places some of the bridges have certainly seen better days and it was a little precarious however I’m told plans are afoot to repair these.

Pot ob kamniski bistrici 21 april 2013 001          Pot ob kamniski bistrici 21 april 2013 006

The most fascinating part of the walk is at the bridge, less than a kilometre before the mountain hut, where the Veliki (big) and Mali (little) Predaselj gorges are found at the narrowest section of the Kamniška bistrica riverbed. My photos don’t really do it justice as the depth and narrowness of the gorge made it difficult to photograph – so best you go and see it for yourselves!

Pot ob kamniski bistrici 21 april 2013 008                       Pot ob kamniski bistrici 21 april 2013 010

I couldn’t believe my luck when I discovered the Kamnikbus, which would return me to the car, was due in 5 minutes – what luck – although it left little time for taking photos and exploring – but rather that than a 3 hour wait for the next bus or a long walk back again! The source of the Kamniška bistrica river is a typical karst spring and is springs to the surface from beneath moss covered rocks creating the stunning, clean colour of the small lake opposite the mountain hut.

Pot ob kamniski bistrici 21 april 2013 012          Pot ob kamniski bistrici 21 april 2013 018

The Kamnikbus runs along the length of the valley, is such a great idea, it’s a shame there aren’t more services like this in the beautiful mountains valleys in this area. It would be great to encourage people to leave their car behind and take the bus, which would result in less traffic, less pollution to the environment and a more pleasant experience all-round.

On the way back, I stopped at the Arboretum in Volčji potok. I didn’t actually go into the park on this occasion, but stopped for a look around the garden centre which is huge and well stocked. It took me back to many a rainy Sunday in England spent wandering around Garden Centres for want of something to do!

Now is the perfect time to visit the Arboretum as its spring flower show means it is even more awash with colour – http://www.arboretum-vp.si/lang/index.php/en

To compensate for all that activity, a good dinner was in order and I certainly found it at the Lake House Inn (Jezerska hiša) at Bled Golf Course. There are 2 restaurants at the golf course and the Lake House Inn is the less formal of the two. The meal was delicious and in fact I enjoyed it so much, I’ve just booked to have my birthday celebration there later this month!

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