Places like this exist outside of postcards??

Trip Start Nov 15, 2005
Trip End Aug 15, 2008

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Flag of Slovenia  ,
Sunday, June 18, 2006

A perfect turquoise lake. A castle perched on a cliff high above. A church on a tiny island in the middle of the lake. Picture that, then realise that it's even more stunning than you're imagining. Bled town is a bit ugly, but then it's perfectly possible to spend days there without ever really seeing it - I only walked through it on my last night there, and it came as a bit of a surprise to see it at all. I'll put it down to a cosy and well situated hostel, and be grateful for that.

Bled can be very touristy, and deservedly so; it's stunning (and was incidentally much loved by my (sort of) great x whatever grandfather, Sir Humphry Davy). Even better, it's very, very easy to escape the crowds - simply walk for 20 minutes around the lake and find your own little spot to sit, or (even better) up a hill to one of the viewpoints, and chances are you'll not run into anyone and you can imagine that this peaceful little corner of Slovenia isn't quite so busy as you had thought. That is, if you can ignore that damn 'wish bell' in the church, which is constantly rung throughout the day by those that take the gondola ride out to the island, and really gets on your nerves after a while. I blame the pope.

A short walk from the lake (if that wasn't enough to draw people to Bled) is the stunning Vintgar Gorge. For some reason, I did the walk back to front and walked upstream, which I think is a much better way of doing things. It also meant that a saw very few people, and wasn't shamed into staying on the prescribed wooden path - so often the views were so good, I needed to get a bit closer to the river than was strictly allowed to properly appreciate them. I wish the walk could have lasted longer, as the 1.6km really wasn't enough to do jutice to the place.

Simply beautiful. And even better, for once I could actually take some pictures worthy of a postcard. I'll get them up asap.
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