So, it’s 2017, a new year and a new(ish) start for me too. Having spent the last 4 years extolling the wonders of my home town of Radovljica, this year, whilst I will still be writing plenty about Radovljica, I’m also turning my attention to another of my favourite historic towns in Slovenia – Škofja Loka.
When I was choosing where to live it was a toss-up between Radovljica and Škofja Loka, as both towns are my kind of place i.e. historic and picturesque medieval old towns with wonderful surrounding nature, opportunities for outdoor activities and conveniently located.
So, I hope you will join me in the coming weeks, months, and maybe even years, on my adventures in the Škofja Loka area, including the surrounding Poljane and Selca valleys, where there is a wealth of natural beauty, cultural and heritage sites, traditional and unique cuisine and a wealth of things to see and do.
The obvious place to start is with the area’s crowning glory – Škofja Loka Castle. The castle stands on a small hill above the main old town square and dominates the view as you arrive into the town. Whichever angle you see it from, and whether from near or far, its a mighty impressive building.
Even the uphill approach to the castle is scenic!
The original castle was built in 1202 by the Freising Bishops, who, during the period from 973-1803, owned the Loka Estate. The castle was completely renovated following an earthquake in 1511 that almost entirely destroyed it.
Loka Museum – among the most popular and visited of Slovenia’s museums. The museum is bursting with rich and varied archaeological, historical, cultural, ethnological, art and natural history collections.
Exhibits are housed in numerous rooms, galleries and corridors including Grohar’s Room – dedicated to one of Slovenia’s most important painters, Ivan Grohar – the Castle Chapel, the Round Tower and a special place in the collection is dedicated to the writer Ivan Tavčar, who hailed from nearby Visoko in the Poljane valley and wrote many of his greatest works at Tavčar Manor.
Space is utilised to the full and the walls of the ground floor corridors are adorned by paintings and frescoes, mostly based on religious themes from the baroque period.
One of the highlights is undoubtedly the preserved original drawbridge – one of the only of its kind in Slovenia – which was the original and only entrance to the castle.
As well as the glass-floored area where you can walk over part of the castle’s original foundations. A slightly unnerving but different experience!
There are great views from the castle over the town and the Sora river.
You should set aside at least a few hours to stroll up to the castle, browse the exhibits in the museum, take in the views and stroll around the castle park, where you can also visit the Škopar House (Škoparjeva hisa) open-air museum, a typical 16th dwelling that was moved from nearby Puštal and features an original black kitchen.
You can find out more about Škofja Loka Castle and Museum here – http://www.loski-muzej.si/en/ and visit the official Visit Škofja Loka website here – http://www.visitskofjaloka.si/en/
I can’t wait to discover more and hope you will accompany me along every step of the way!
Happy New Year to you all!
© Adele in Slovenia
13 thoughts on “A Spotlight on Škofja Loka”
What an enchanting, photogenic towm Skofja Loka is! I visited for a day by bus from Ljubljana and totally adored the place. Homan House, the Granary, Cappuchin Bridge, and the fast flowing, clean rivers. In fact the entire length of Mestni Trg is just breathtaking. Look forward to learning more than I managed on a day trip!
Hi Jon, wow, you’re a fast reader! Feedback within minutes of having published this new blog post! Thanks a lot, it’s always nice to hear from readers of my blog and I totally agree with your sentiments about Škofja Loka. I also think its a shame that many tourists miss it, and just visit the usual haunts (Bled, Ljubljana, Postojna…). So, I’m on a mission to get Škofja Loka better known and I will certainly endeavour to ensure you learn more than you did on your day trip! Best regards, Adele
I loved my day in Škofja Loka! I wandered the beautiful paths, listened to cheerful accordion music for a wedding party celebrating in the castle’s square, and fell easily into the slow, peaceful pace of the town.
I look forward to your blog posts, Adele!
Hi Andrea, lovely to hear that you have discovered and love Skofja Loka! Thanks for the feedback and do keep reading for more! Regards, Adele
Thank you,Adelle,you gave a really nice picture of my town.Marjana
Hi Marjana, oh super, you found and read my blog. There will be plenty more like it to come! See you soon, Adele
Happy new year, Adele. I am looking forward to your posts about Skofja Loka and its surroundings!
Thank you, Marjan and Happy New Year to you too. I too am looking forward to exploring and writing about Škofja Loka!
We’ve driven past the signs for Škofja Loka on the motorway, and always – *always* – say, “We really should make time to visit there one day” but we never do! Reading your lovely post makes me more determined now!
Are the museums etc. open at this time of year? I’m a big, big fan of social history, and the black kitchen, especially (given that I’m a food blogger!) is piquing my interest! Definitely would like to see the Škopar house.
Have you been to Piran’s museum? Your glass floor pic reminded me of the one there, and the slippers you have to wear, which are clearly designed for giants! I’m a UK 7, and even the smallest ones completely dwarfed my feet! Ha ha!
Wishing you a wonderful 2017 – I really hope we get to meet up. I’ll let you know when I’m going to be around your way… or if you’re venturing to Lju, ping me!
Gosh Nicole, I somehow managed to overlook your comment, as my first Skofja Loka blog provoked quite a lot of interest, which is of course great! Yes, you must take some time to visit the town. The museum is open year-round.
No need to apologise, Adele – we’re all busy!
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Encouraging start to such an appealing community! You got me with “black kitchen” and had to look that one up. Zdaj razumem! (It was as I thought.)