DESCRIPTION OF LOCATIONS
Slovenia is a European country with a geographical position in the far north of the Mediterranean and in the far south of Central Europe. It borders on 4 countries, in the west with Italy, in the north with Austria, in the northeast with Hungary, and in the east and the south with Croatia. It lies at the junction of the Alpine, Mediterranean, Pannonian and Dinaric worlds. The area of 20,273 km2 is classified as a medium-sized European country. Slovenia is a European country and provides many new interesting photo footprints. In the lens we can capture a diverse landscape, a varied animal selection and many natural features. According to the international criteria of Green Destinations, Slovenia is the first country to become the green destination of the world. As mentioned earlier, it lies at the junction of the Alps, the Mediterranean, the Karst and the Pannonian world. In one day, we can take a photo of the sunrise on the top of Slovenia's highest mountain - Triglav and the sunset at the sea. We can also be a tourist for half a day in Ljubljana, while the other half is spent waiting for the best bear photo. Despite its small size, Slovenia is characterized by a large variety of animal species, which depends on the diversity of the environment and vegetation and the geological past. Only a small proportion of species are known to live on our territory. According to estimates from 2000, around 19,000 species of animals are to be found on the continent, marine animals are poorly researched. Subterranean animals are interesting because of the way of life and not so much variety, only a few species are known. Slovenia is one of the few countries where wolf, bears and lynx still live, which have long since disappeared in most Western European countries. This testifies to her incredible animal wealth. Lake Eagles and deer you will meet in wetlands along the Drava, the wolf, the lynx and the bear in the mountain forest, the chicken nests in the Karavanke forests.
In addition to the wide choice of lens animals, we can also enjoy culinary delights. In Slovenia, love passes through the stomach. Different tastes and dishes can be found in 24 gastronomic provinces and three wine-growing regions. Slovenian tables have always been rich in local mineral waters, and recently interesting beers of Slovene boutique breweries. The tastes of Slovenia in the Alps are different from the coast of the Adriatic Sea; in the Karst they differ from those in the Pannonian Plain, and each region has its own rounded gastronomic areas. Slovenia has 170 authentic dishes! Their characteristic is that they are prepared from locally produced ingredients. We have a lot of protected authentic Slovenian cheeses, meat products, sausages, oils, honey and other foods. Typical dishes and wines can be found in typical taverns in all Slovenian landscapes. Assets from domestic ingredients are offered on tourist farms as well as on hiking, mountain and cycling routes.
CARINTHIA AND MEŽICA VALLEY
Animals for photohunting:
Carinthia is one of the Slovenian regions in the north-west of Slovenia, on the border with Austria. It covers the area of three valleys - Mežica, Drava and Mislinja valleys, and three mountain ranges - Pohorje, Karavanke, and the Savinja Alps. It is known for its unspoilt mountain nature and forests with a wide network of mountain roads. The paths of Carinthia offer a variety of exploration trips.
The Mežica valley lies along the Meža river and is surrounded by high mountains. On one side, it is beautified and protected by Peca - being the easternmost two-thousand-meter mountain in Slovenia and belongs to the Karavanke Mountains, and on the other side it is surrounded by the Kamnik- Savinja Alps. The untouched mountain nature assures the tranquillity and the rest for the soul. The Mežica valley is known for its various natural features, diverse animal life, and unique cuisine and, of course, the friendly and open-hearted people.
In the area of the Mežica valley, many species can be caught in the lens, including those that are considered endangered in the world. From our hunting grounds, you will be able to take pictures of chamois, capercaillie, eagle, deer and roes. We will also try to present to the photographers other natural features - the ones underground. With the closure of the lead and zinc mine, the Mežica valley gained a great potential for the development of tourism. Now we have the opportunity to photograph cave life and visit the Peca underground.
Accommodation and cuisine:
We chose three local tourism providers in the Carinthia and Mežica valley for our new tourist product The Photohunt in the Eastern Slovenia region. Our goal is to offer our guests various accommodation options, which must all offer excellent cuisine.
KAJŽAR TOURIST FARM
It is one of the best and renown excursion farms. When arriving to the farm, the guest is immediately delighted by the beautiful view of Mežica and Peca. They will offer you the best of the Carinthian culinary delicacies, such as a buckwheat porridge, boiled strudel, a piglet from the wood-fired oven, cured meat products, and home-made organic dairy products. The varied culinary selection and the excellent location are the main advantages of our first location.
MARIN TOURIST FARM
The Marin Miler tourist farm is located in the highland village of Šentanel. Here you will be able to sleep in a real farm house, and will be served the authentic Carinthian meat dishes at their inn. The house specialities are lamb and boiled strudel made with their own dried fruit. You will also be offered home-made marmalades and drinks from their own orchards, as well as other delicacies.
The Delalut Inn and Hotel is located along the Ravne-Prevalje main road. The hotel is contemporary and can accommodate up to 40 guests. The hotel offers a fitness gym and a sauna. Their kitchen offers many international specialities. They also boast a comprehensive wine menu that will impress even the most demanding guests.
Animals for photohunting:
This region in the south-east of Slovenia connects the Land of the Woodenware, the Land of the
Kočevje Bear, the Land of the Cviček Wine and the Land of Zeleni Jurij.
The third Photohunt location is located in the Loški potok municipality on the border between Slovenia and Croatia, at the juncture of the playful Karst and the mysterious forests of Notranjska- Kočevje and Gorski Kotar. It is located on the terraces above the Čabranka river on the steep slopes below the Travski vrh. It offers plenty of natural sights and unspoiled nature that are calling you to visit. The secrets from the vast forests of Notranjska-Kočevje and Gorski kotar will not leave you indifferent, since the most mysterious stories and forest beasts can be sensed that we could not commonly meet.
The unspoiled nature of these forests is a popular bear habitat. There, all the Photohunt enthusiasts and adventurers can catch a sight of the brown bear and create new photo collections. In addition to the main attraction which is obviously the bear, you can find there the famous "snake spruce" which is an exceptional natural rarity and therefore declared a natural monument. Because its branches are shaped like snakes' tails, it is known as a "snake spruce". An example of such a spruce grows in our village of Loški Potok. Another special rarity is the gold spruce which also grows in Loški Potok and is also declared a natural monument.
The nearby surroundings of the Loški Potok also contains several sights and reasons for visiting and to create excellent photos. In the Bloke Lake, the biggest tourist attraction is certainly the Glamping Lake Bloke - where everything is made of wood from the hands of the locals. Another interesting sight is the Križna jama - a world-famous Karst cave with a special feature of many underground lakes with speleothem barriers - an exceptionally conserved site to find the bones of a cave bear.
Ribnica is the geographic, historical, cultural, economic, and administrative centre of its municipality. It is located in the middle of the Ribnica lowland between the ridges of Mala and Velika gora along the Bistrica river. The Ribnica valley extends south into the two large settlements of Prigorica and Dolenja vas with the large Dolenja vas lowlands in the west all the way to Sodražica, from where the world ascends towards the north to the picturesque Slemena, and to the Loški Potok at the south- west. The large forests, the lack of soil for cultivation and long winters there, did not offer much of a livelihood, so the domestic crafts, especially pottery and woodenware were a very important source of income. These crafts have also made these places famous all around the world.
The vast forests, merging with a real Kočevje primeval forest in the south are something every inhabitant should be proud of. In this area, we find the six remnants of the primeval forests out of a total of twelve Slovenian ones. In these forests, all the indigenous beast species dwell. And for all the Photohunt enthusiasts the bear is the most interesting trophy. There, you can also meet wolves, wild cats, and lynx which was re-settled in 1973. Likewise, the forests are filled with various bird species, including many raptors and the capercaillie.
Glamping Lake Bloke spreads over 5000 m2. Upon entering the park, two forest men will greet and warmly welcome you. All the facilities in the park are built of domestic wood and give a touch of homeliness. The park is rich in various wooden sculptures, made of selected oak wood, and the fence is unique, built from the wood of acacia. The guests who wish to have a breakfast included with their accommodation, will be served by a local breakfast on the special hand-shaped wooden "root" trays.
LOGAR TOURIST FARM
At the "PRI DOVIČEVIH" guest house, they offer accommodation and food produced in line with the organic standards. And they prepare it in a very special way - everything you are served contains a touch of culinary mystery. They offer a rich selection of local delicacies.
STYRIA (RAČE AREA) and PRLEKIJA (ORMOŽ AND LJUTOMER AREA)
Animals for photohunting:
Styria is the largest Slovenian region, divided into the Upper Styria and Lower Styria. The central vein of the Upper Styria is the Drava river flowing between Kozjak in the north and Pohorje on the south side. The Lower Styria is the area around the Savinja river. Pohorje is more than 1,500-meter-high natural oasis with forests, waterfalls and precious peat bogs. Styria is also known for its Drava and Ptuj lowlands and wine-growing hills.
One of the important complexes of the compact lowland mixed forest and standing waters on the outskirts of the Drava lowland, is the Rački ribnik - Požega landscape park in the surroundings of the Rače municipality. The park is a living space for rare and endangered plant and animal species - which is not meant only in the regional and Slovenian scale. There are over 210 species of birds, 50 species of dragonflies, and 12 species of amphibians present there, if only the most noticeable and the loudest are mentioned. Therefore, you can capture more than 200 of bird species in your lens, a third of which will also be nesting in this park. The most common nesting bird species are:
- Little Grebe l Mali ponirek l Tachybaptus ruficollis
- Great Crested Grebe l Čopasti ponirek l Podiceps cristatus
- Moorhen l Zelenonoga tukalica l Gallinula chloropus
- Coot l Liska l Fulica atra
In the time of the spring and autumn bird migrations, flocks of cormorants, ducks, geese, seagulls will stop there, and raptors are also common:
- Osprey l Ribji orel l Pandion haliaetus - Marsh Harrier l Rjavi lunj l Circus aeruginosus
The above bird species are just some of the many to be found at the Rački ribnik landscape park.
Prlekija belongs to the Pannonian land between Mura and Drava rivers. It is characterized by the Slovenske gorice and the typical agricultural industries - viticulture and fruit growing. In the lowlands, the most fertile soil is in the Apače valley and the Mura lowland confined by the Mura river. It is also located in the northeastern part of Slovenia, bordering Croatia and also Austria, surrounded by hills, plains and rivers.
The Ormož municipality is part of Prlekija and is known for its three extraordinary goods - the wine, unspoiled landscape, and its people. The most famous feature in Ormož is the Ormož lagoons. Those are 55 hectares of a anthropogenic wetland lying in the Drava river ecosystem near the Lake of Ormož. It is composed of shallow pools with reeds and cattails, and is surrounded by a flood forest, a rare remnant of a river ash trees in Slovenia. The wetland is of exceptional national and international significance for many endangered bird species.
At the Ormož lagoons, the Photohunt enthusiasts may catch the important nesting sites of the water birds and the key stopping place for the migrating birds in Slovenia. Already 29 nesting species of water birds have been reported, among which there are also the endangered and rare species such as the little bittern, little crake, ferruginous duck, black-winged stilt, common redshank, and the common tern. At the time of migration, 30 species regularly appear here and the number can reach to tens of thousands of birds during the migration period, among which the wood sandpipers and ruffs are the most numerous.
On the hillsides of the Ljutomer-Ormož hills, where heavy clay soil produces top grapes, the Hlebec family owns over 40,000 fine grapevines of Chardonnay, Sauvignon, Rhine Riesling, Muscat Ottonel, Riesling, and traditional Furmint varieties. They will take you through a richly stocked wine cellar where they use contemporary technology to produce wine. The wine is ripen by a traditional method in oak barrels, barrique barrels, and archival bottles. They also provide culinary delights. They serve selected home-made dishes and local specialities, such as meat from »tunka«, minced lard, mushroom soup, baked duck, home-made sausages, blood sausages etc. And the best thing is the "Prleška pogača" cake made from the home-grown buckwheat, cabbage, pumpkins or apples.
PUKLAVEC TOURIST FARM
The Puklavec Tourist Farm lies on the top of a hill in Zasavci with a wonderful view of the surrounding wine growing hills to all sides, all the way to Jeruzalem and further. The farm offers a range of dishes and a wide selection of quality and top-quality wines. With love, knowledge and diligence, the Puklavec family cultivates 12 ha of vinyards with 45,000 vines producing wonderful wines that have been a delight to wine-enthusiasts and connoisseurs for many years. In addition to excellent wines, they also offer other delicacies grown at the farm. The culinary selection for their guests is very varied. The main speciality of their cuisine is certainly the home-grown turkey, baked in the wood- fired oven or the St. Martin's goose based on the family recipe. They will also never run out of the good pastry to satisfied even the most demanding gourmets.