The Slovene Coast, To Koper – Part Two!

Brrrr, it’s been freezing this week, unseasonably so. Usually this time of year can bring some nice warm days and with it some nice hikes in the mountains to enjoy the autumn colours. However, this week its been coats, hats, gloves and mugs of tea all round! I’m still optimistically hoping for an Indian summer, or at least a few nice warm autumn days – it can’t be winter, not yet!

How different to the previous week when I was basking in sunshine at the coast, more about which I promised to write this week. I packed so much into my day out at the coast there was too much to write. So if you didn’t read it, check out last week’s blog to read part one of my day out!

Slovenia only has a small coast line – 42kms to be precise. But as the saying goes ‘Small things come in big packages’ and this is certainly true. Koper is Slovenia’s largest coastal town and home to the country’s only port. It is therefore very much a working town and on first glance, looks somewhat industrial. However, it is worth a visit to the compact old town centre which has a hidden charm; narrow streets, town squares and several impressive buildings. An increasing number of cruise ships also now call at Koper.

The centre of the old town is Tito’s Square (Titov trg), which is dominated on the south side by the city hall Praetorian Palace (Pretorska palaca) whilst on the northern side of the square is the Loža (Loggia) building which was formerly used as a debating club for the townsmen but today houses a cafe and art gallery. Some of the other buildings of note in Koper are the Cathedral of St. Mary’s Assumption, the 36m bell tower opposite it (climb it for great views), and Brutti Palace in Revolution Square (Trg Revolucije).

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Koper doesn’t have much in the way of a beach but the paved embankment area has plenty of benches, a wide paved area and far reaching views and is a great place to just sit and soak up the views before or after a stroll around the town.

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Numerous events are held in Koper throughout the year but the one that I always make a beeline for is the Sweet Festival – Sladka Istra – held annually in September. For someone as sweet-toothed as me, it is heaven; stall after stall offering all manner of cakes, biscuits, drinks, chocolates and other heavenly sweet delights. I spent a plesant couple of hours browsing the stalls, tasting, deciding what to buy, sitting enjoy the sun, people watching and soaking up the atmosphere.

This week a new photograpy exhibition opened in the Mansion House (graščina) in Linhart Square in the old town centre of Radovljica. The photographer, Tomaž Sedej, is my neighbour so of course I was intrigued to go along and see his work. The photos are of children, taken over a long period of time, in different situations and environments and he has successfully captured some of their unusual adventures in more informal manners. I’m no expert but the photos really are quite unique and its well worth stopping by if you are passing. The exhibition is in the Pasaža Gallery (Galeria Pasaža) in the entrance hall of the mansion house and is open at all times for free viewings from 1st – 31st October.

Whilst in the area, you might also be interested in the following events taking place in, or near, Radovljica next weekend. On Saturday 12th October, there will be a Family Activity Day in the village of Ljubno. Beginning at 10am at the football playing fields, the day will include orientation adventures, nordic walking, a market and more. On Sunday 13th October, there will be a concert in the Radovljica Mansion House, performed by the Radovljica Veterans Choir. The concert will begin at 6pm and entrance is free.

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