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Biking in Slovenia

I’m too old for hard-core mountain- or cross-country biking, but I still prefer gravel roads and dirt trails with an occasional (careful) single-track descent over asphalt. If that sounds familiar, you might find my collection of bike tours useful.

Notes

  • The biking tours are the green dots on the above map. Hiking trips with English descriptions are red, hikes without descriptions are gray.
  • I started publishing my tracks in early 2021. Don’t expect miracles.
  • I’m publishing GPX files instead of turn-by-turn descriptions.
  • You’ll find notes attached to every tour, identifying interesting places worth visiting, navigational hints, or alternate paths.
  • I usually drive to somewhere and bike from there. The starting point is usually where I managed to park my car. You might also find parking opportunities in tour description.

Recent Tours

Pasja Ravan from Polhov Gradec (28.9 km, Δ=660 m)

Pasja Ravan used to be the highest peak in Polhov Gradec hills until the Yugoslav army decided to level it to build a radar station. Yugoslavia is long gone, and so is the radar station. Still, the gravel road to the top remains – an ideal opportunity to bike there and enjoy fantastic views from the ridge separating Gorenjska from Notranjska.

Križna Gora and Javornik (24 km, Δ=790 m)

Getting to Pirnat Lodge at Javornik from Col is easy – you can drive there – but it’s way more fun to take a detour via Križna Gora and another one through Vodice on the way back.

Betwixt Gorenjska and Primorska (20.3 km, Δ=440 m)

The eastern part of the boundary between Gorenjska and Primorska (two historical regions in western Slovenia) lies on Idrijca and Sora’s watershed. We’ll explore a picturesque ridge on that watershed with great views of Kamnik Alps, Julian Alps, and Idrija hills.

Velika Milanja on Volovja Reber (18.8 km, Δ=520 m)

Volovja Reber is a long ridge on the southwestern edge of the Snežnik plateau. It’s one of those magical places where you rarely encounter a fellow hiker or biker, even though it’s only a few kilometers away from an overcrowded main road. Let’s enjoy the beauties of karst meadows and pastures while biking to Velika Milanja – the highest peak in the ridge with an unusual rocky top.

Exploring Hrušica: Polšak Hut and Roman Fortress (19.2 km, Δ=420 m)

We’ll start in Kalce, bike through the forests on the slopes of Hrušica, drop by a renovated homestead in the middle of nowhere, and visit the ruins of a Roman fortress. Take this tour when you need to clear your head, de-stress, or mull over new ideas. You won’t be disturbed by traffic, hikers, or spectacular views.

Exploring Karst: Lukovec and Mali Dol (17.5 km, Δ=290 m)

This time we’ll explore the forests and meadows at the northern edge of the Karst plateau, north of Kobjeglava and Komen. We’ll pass Lukovec and try to find our way through the narrow streets of Mali Dol.

Exploring Karst: From Hruševica to Kosovelje (17.7 km, Δ=160 m)

It’s easy to meander around Slovenian Karst on a bike as it’s crisscrossed with paved roads. Still, it’s more interesting to stay on gravel roads and try to find old overgrown dirt tracks, this time taking us from Hruševica to Kosovelje.

The Path of Nine Ponds (1 km, Δ=100 m)

This is not my lame attempt at reaching Zen… the farmers in Slovenian Karst used ponds with clay bottom to collect rainwater, and there’s a nice path linking nine of those ponds as well as several small caves around Kobjeglava and Tupelče.

Vipavska Brda (Vipava Hills) from Podnanos (17.3 km, Δ=560 m)

I’ve been watching the tiny church of Sv. Socerb (Saint Servulus) high above Vipava Valley for over a decade as I was climbing in Gradiška Tura. I’ve heard of a dirt track leading from it back to the valley years ago, but it took me a long while to go and find it. You might want to do it sooner than that and enjoy the spectacular views of the Vipava Valley and Nanos on the way.

Karst Edge and Praproče from Rižana Valley (14.8 km, Δ=450 m)

Hordes of tourists visiting the famous church in Hrastovlje might spend a few seconds admiring the rocky cliffs high above the village. We’ll explore them, and the lovely meadows north of the Karst Edge.

Slavnik from Podgorje (on a bike) (12.1 km, Δ=510 m)

I’m lamenting the loss of the dirt track leading to Slavnik every time I hike there, but the gravel road it was bastardized into comes handy if you decide to get to the top with a mountain bike.

Žibrše (18.6 km, Δ=400 m)

Žibrše are a cluster of hamlets peppered across the southern edge of Rovte hills. You’ll enjoy fantastic views while exploring them, and you might be lucky enough to stumble upon a rare wildflower in late May or early June.

Up, Down and Around the Karst Edge (22 km, Δ=520 m)

Karst Edge is the wondrous land where the limestone cliffs of continental Slovenia meet the soft flysch landscape of lower Slovenian Istria. This time we’ll explore dirt tracks on its easternmost part – from Podgorje to Kavčič.

Pizza @ Tavžentroža (24.4 km, Δ=470 m)

Tavžentroža has the best pizzas in Rovte hills. Let’s bike there from Zaplana to make sure we’ll be building a proper hunger along the way 😉

Vrhnika – Zaplana – Star Maln (19.2 km, Δ=420 m)

If you happen to be in Vrhnika, take a mountain bike and explore the hills above the town. One of the shorter tours takes you to Kuren, Zaplana, Strmca, Star Maln and back to Vrhnika.

Marezige – Trsek – Popetre (18.3 km, Δ=520 m)

After enjoying the vistas of Adriatic Sea, it’s time for a trip deep into Šavrinsko gričevje (Šavrinje hills). We’ll start in Marezige, cross Rokava and Dragonja valleys, visit Trsek, enjoy the views from the road to Popetre, and return to Marezige via Lopar or Gradišče.

Marezige – Šmarje – Vanganel (18.9 km, Δ=500 m)

You’ll love biking through old Istrian villages high above Adriatic sea. Some of the vistas you’ll encounter are probably among the best ones you can get in Slovenian Istria.

From Zaplana to Rovte (22.2 km, Δ=470 m)

This circuitous tour will take you around western part of Rovte hills. Stop at the highest point and enjoy the view of Julian Alps with Triglav.

From Marezige to Boršt (23.3 km, Δ=470 m)

The tour from Marezige to Boršt will take you onto scenic hills around Rokava valley. The descent from Labor to Dragonja valley (should you choose to do it) is just the icing on the cake.

Lake Cerknica (18.7 km, Δ=110 m)

Biking around Lake Cerknica was always a pleasant experience, and it got even better since the local tourist organization marked four trails, from a family-friendly one to a slightly more demanding trip to Rakov Škocjan.