First a short introduction. My name is Mark and I am a Dutch biker who moved from The Netherlands to Slovenia and am involved in the Bikegalaxy company. One of the questions people repeatedly ask me when I told them about my move to Slovenia is “Why Slovenia?” Well, I will tell you….
It has REAL seasons! Summer is warm (hot) and winter cold (rrrrrrrealy cold) and everything in between. Biking in October with 20 degrees Celsius in shorts and in April, I can go ski in the morning and bike in the afternoon!
Lake Bohinj is very nice, and has been my ‘hometown’ lake for the first period in Slovenia. It is less crowded than Lake Bled, much bigger and more visited by locals, so it is better in multiple ways. And after a summer ride on the bike, it is a perfect spot to cool down and take a swim.
Outdoor mindset like I’ve never seen. When the sun is shining and ski slopes are open, a lot of people go ski for a couple of hours before work. Or, if that’s not possible, people go out after work to enjoy nature for a hike, bike, back country skiing…..etc. They just go!
Very good food, coffee and beer at fair prices. It’s a perfect combination to me. Starting the day with a nice breakfast, leaving for a bike ride, but first a coffee. A good coffee! When done riding, it’s time for a beer (or two). That’s what I call the right spirit!
Excellent quality of water and air. Just all the colours of lakes and rivers…. so clear you can almost always see the bottom (unless it rained a lot of course). Nice to swim, beautiful to see!
Soca Valley, need I say more? It was my first experience with Slovenia during the European Championship Singlespeed Mountainbiking, what an amazing beauty of nature! The mountains, rivers, colours, all of it! No wonder people fall in love with this valley.
Ljubljana is the biggest town, but still quite small! I am not used to walking the whole center in just ten minutes or so. And the atmosphere is great, people eating and drinking outside, even in winter. A beautiful old town and trails close by! Love the fact that Golovec is almost in the old town and you can easily stop for a drink in Ljubljana between riding.
Of course I’m very interested in your biking trails! Back home a lot of new trails are being build, really a lot! People are working on one of the biggest connected networks of the world and that’s really impressive. But the trails in Slovenia…..man o man. Those are really fun! Just keep on peddling up and then all the way down! More technical, more natural, more loveable!
Views, amaaaaazing views! Of course the views in the mountains are better than in some flat areas. But the diversity of views on lakes, other mountains, the sea, valleys, streams, old buildings, bikeparks, etc. etc. Just go around the corner and you will have a complete different view. The diversity of nature and climates are really helping in this.
Enormous caves en other hidden gems. Just a couple of the biggest caves are only for tourism, but I understand there are thousands…… Slovenia isn’t so small after all ;)
Nature is still pretty much untouched. The fact that not every stone in the country, mountain, hill or trail has a sign on it, not every trail is perfectly man-made and shaped, but still left to the forces of nature (ok, sometimes that’s a problem). Surrounding countries have sometimes turned into some sort of ‘amusement park’ with signs and routes everywhere.
It has less people, so it’s more fun! The size of Slovenia is half the size of The Netherlands and Slovenia has around 2 million citizens. So, a little calculation will do the trick….. Two times (to be as ‘big’ as The Netherlands) 2 million makes 4 million citizens to live in The Netherlands to be equal. Well, wrong! We have just over 17 million citizens!! And over 12 million of them are living in an area as big as Slovenia!
As flat as a pancake…. like we say in Dutch about our country. No real mountains, unless we name every 30 vertical meters up a mountain! But since I am mountainbiking a lot, well….. You get the point. Slovenia has such a variety of hills and mountains! I love it.