Like Beekeeping? Love Radovljica!

Those interested in beekeeping should definitely make a beeline for Radovljica!

The Radovljica area has a wealth of beekeeping-related sights of interest, all within close proximity, thus making it ideal place to visit for beekeepers or those with an interest in beekeeping.

One such example is the group of 38 beekeepers from Estonia who I helped with their plans to visit Radovljica.

Whilst the main purpose of their trip was beekeeping-related activities, they also managed to find time to do some sightseeing in Ljubljana, took a traditional pletna boat to the island on Lake Bled, and visited Vintgar Gorge.

The main beekeeping day began with a visit to Kralov med in the hamlet of Selo near Bled, where owner Blaž Ambrožič told them everything, and more, that they could possibly want to know about beekeeping in Slovenia. I wrote more extensively about my visit to Kralov med in a previous blog, also about World Bee Day, which you can read here – https://adeleinslovenia.com/2016/05/17/world-bee-day-the-anton-jansa-honey-route/

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The undoubted highlight, whether a beekeeper or not, is the chance to see and experience up close the hive found on a nearby tree trunk and transported to its current home. The fact you can get so close is testament to the calm nature of Slovenia’s Carniolan grey bee.

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Next the group came to Radovljica, beginning at the Tourist Information Centre where they tasted local honey and chocolate, and had the chance to buy some gifts to take home. They even brought us some of their own Estonian honey, which, as you can see, the staff enjoyed tasting!

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We then took a stroll through the medieval old town to see the main sights of interest – the Šivec House Gallery, the Radovljica Mansion, St. Peter’s Church, and the other wonderful frescoed buildings.

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Then it was on to the viewpoint for wonderful views of the Julian Alps, the Jelovica plateau and the Sava river.

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The next stop was to Lectar Inn to watch the process of making and decorating the traditional ‘lectar’ gingerbread’ hearts, made with honey, of course!

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And a chance to buy souvenirs and/or gifts for loved ones.

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Having seen Radovljica, it was then time to Taste Radol’ca, with a traditional Slovene lunch, also at Lectar Inn, one of the participating Taste Radol’ca restaurants. During lunch, the owner Jože entertained us with a few of his favourite songs played on the harmonica – never something to be missed!

The final stop in Radovljica was to the Museum of Apiculture, housed in the Radovljica Mansion, where visitors can learn all about the history of beekeeping in Slovenia, watch a video (narrated in English by me!), and in summer watch the bees hard work diligently in the hive.

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The group’s very last stop on the jam-packed, or should I say honey-packed, day, was to the Gorenjska Beekeeping Development and Education Centre in Lesce. You can read more about the centre and its wide-ranging activities here – http://www.radolca.si/en/gorenjska-region-beekeeping-development-and-education-centre/

So, as you can see, the Radovljica area really is a beekeeper’s paradise!

If you’d like any more information about Slovenian beekeeping, or are interested in taking a tour of the town and/or visiting some of the above-mentioned sights, feel free to get in touch or contact Tourism Radol’ca – http://www.radolca.si/en/

© Adele in Slovenia

Let the Radovljica festive season begin!

In Radovjlica the Christmas tree, decorations and lights are up in the old town centre, the cafes and bars are serving mulled wine, and we’ve even had a bit of snowfall to add to the festive feel – so let the festive season begin!

The official switching on of the lights will take place on Friday 4th December at 4.45pm, so come and join the fun! It looks especially magic at night.

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There’s a full programme of events taking place throughout the festive season, with particular emphasis on entertainment for all the family.

In December the Advent Market will take place every Friday from 3-8pm and Saturdays and Sundays from 10am-8pm. As in previous years there will be stalls selling a variety of hand-made local handicrafts and products which make ideal gifts for friends and family – http://www.radolca.si/en/what-to-do/events-1/festive-december-in-linhart-square/83/110/

Some of the other highlights include:

  • A visit by St. Nicholas (Miklavž)
  • Fairytale Horses for Children
  • ‘This Happy Day’ with Bernese Mountain Dogs
  • A visit by Grandfather Frost (Dedek mraz)
  • Various concerts and performances featuring singing, dancing and street shows

New for this year, from 4-31st December, families can also take part in ‘Finding Grandfather Frost’s Postbox’ (Poišči nabiralnik Dedka Mraza). Start your visit at the Radovljica Tourist Information Centre in Linhart Square, where you can collect a booklet with instructions and tips about where to search. Then, just follow the markers to discover the treasures of the old town centre and complete the tasks at the seven points along the way. What a great way to discover more of Radovljica – for the young and the young at heart! More about this here (Slovene only) – http://www.radolca.si/kaj-poceti/dogodki/poisci-nabiralnik-dedka-mraza/83/1083/

Preparations are now underway for the Taste Radol’ca closing party at Joštov hram, which takes place this Friday, 4th December, starting at 8pm and once again the chefs are putting their heads together. This time its will be a simpler affair – more finger-food style – but I’m sure it will still be equally delicious! Tickets are available from Tourism Radovljica. http://radolca.si/kaj-poceti/dogodki/okusi-radolce-zakljucna-zabava/83/1023/

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Here are some of the winners of this year’s Taste Radol’ca photo competition, which rewarded those who sent in their photos of their meals at one of the participating restaurants. Congratulations to the winners and see you at the party!

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@AdeleinSlovenia 2015

New Cycle Map – Radol’ca & Bled

Suffice to say, the weather last week still wasn’t conducive to much in the way of hiking and biking (though the start of this week has so far been much improved), so, in such times, I turn instead to food – my other great love!

I enjoyed a great meal with friends at Joštov hram in Podnart. Blink and one could easily miss this small and, from the exterior, unprepossessing restaurant, which is tucked away in the Lipnica valley beside the Sava river. However, it really is worth making the trip there, both for the delicious food and for the warm welcome and hospitality received. My advice would be to leave it to chef and proprietor Miso, ably assisted in the kitchen by his mother, so a real family affair, to work his magic and rustle up a selection of the delicious Balkan food on offer. I’m sure, like us, you won’t leave disappointed and certainly not hungry!

Joštov hram is just one of the restaurants that participate in the Taste Radol’ca collaboration which I have written about extensively in previous blogs and more information can also be found under the ‘Taste Radol’ca’ header at the top of my blog.

Taste Bled was also launched this summer. The collaboration is still in its infancy but so far, the following restaurants have signed up to participate and it is hoped that more will come on board in due course:

  • Vila Prešeren
  • Grill Terrace and Restaurant – Best Western Premier Hotel Lovec
  • Julijana Restaurant – Grand Hotel Toplice
  • Hotel Astoria
  • A’l Art – Vila Istra

From this week, a new cycle map covering Radovljica, Bled and the surrounding areas will be available. The project came about thanks to a local, Blaž Bole, who saw a similar scheme in operation in the Netherlands and he, together with a team of volunteers, set about planning and installing a network of cycle signposts around the area. Having done the English translations for the map I have been lucky enough to be a part of its development and we are all justifiably delighted with the finished result. The number of signposts, each with its own number, has been added to gradually over the past 2 years, and now finally this map connects all the numbers and offers a wide variety of cycle routes in the surrounding areas. Cyclists can easily plot their own routes, choosing how long and far they wish to cycle, or there are also 10 suggested routes varying in length and difficulty; the shortest route is 25km with a 639m total height difference; the longest 99km with a whopping 3094m total height difference. Sights and places of interest along the way are also marked on the map, which, from this week, can be obtained free of charge from the Radovljica Tourist Information Centre. I have personally cycled all but one of the routes, the exception being the longest one although I have cycled most of that one too, and would be hard pushed to choose a favourite as each one is wonderfully scenic and varied.

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Also coming up this week:

On Saturday 13th there will be a concert performed by the Lipnica choir, to mark the day of the local holiday celebration. The concert will take place under the village linden tree in Kamna Gorica, beginning at 5pm and is free for all to enjoy.

At Bled Castle on Tuesday and Thursday this week there are medieval and renaissance performances beginning at 5pm – http://www.bled.si/en/events/2014/09/09/1875-Medieval-performances-at-Bled-castle

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Right, I’m off for a walk to make the most of this glorious sunshine – wow, I haven’t said that for a while!!!

© AdeleinSlovenia 2014