In general, I'm avoiding superlatives and 'high-flying' words.
I will try to do the same in writing down these words right here, even though Logar Valley automatically makes me think of 'perfect'.
The Alps extend over 7 European countries, there are innumerable wonderful valleys.
Why Logar Valley is so special?
It's about nature's generosity, adorably maintained by the generations of local families.
It's about sustainability and respectful co-existence.
It's about tough life in a remote corner in the middle of the Alps, rewarded by a heavenly peace.
It's about local garden-to-table finger-licking food.
It's about the smiles of the hosts, proudly expressing their devotion to the place and heart-warming hospitality.
It's about feeling, that special feeling of living the moment in perfect harmony with every element of the Universe.
About 7 km (4,35 mi) long Logar Valley is situated in northern Slovenia, in the embrace of mounts Ojstrica, Krofička, Brana, Planjava, Turska Gora, Rinke, Mrzla Gora, Skuta.
It is a quite narrow valley with an average width of 250 m (820 ft).
In total, the size of Logar Valley Landscape Park is 24 sq km (9,3 sq mi).
The harmonious co-living of humans and the rest of nature was the main reason for declaring Logar Valley the protected natural landscape park in 1987.
The same reasons led the CIPRA (Commission Internationale pour la Protection des Alpes) to give Logar Valley Landscape Park the first prize in excellence within the 'Future in the Alps' category.
Logar Valley makes part of the Solčavsko geographical region, another destination in Slovenia owning the title European Destination of Excellence (EDEN).
The entire area of the park is protected also by the NATURA 2000 regulations.
Amazingly rich in flora and fauna, it boasts various endangered and very rare flowers, over 1000 butterfly species, various mountain animals such as ibex, chamois, golden eagle, peregrine falcon, and even a local sheep breed, the Jezersko-Solčava one.
Not only that.
Logar Valley is one of the richest fossil sites in Europe.
In the nearby Potočka Zijalka archeological site, Europe's oldest bone sewing needle dating back over 30.000 years was found besides of other remains of the primitive Cro-Magnon man.
There are caves that the time carved into the steep slopes of the Kamniško-Savinjske Alps, many of them rich in fossils and other proofs of geological movements and changes through time.
Logar Valley is divided into 3 sections, the lower one Log, the middle Plest, and the upper Kot.
The Trail through Logar Valley comprises its beauties in an easy walkable way, passing lonely farms, meadows, forests, streams, and many other natural and heritage wonders.
Slovenia, except for the drier coastal part, is rich with water.
There are innumerable water springs that turn to wonderful waterfalls in more than 300 cases, making Slovenia a paradise for waterfall lovers.
Let's have a look at some of the ones in Logar Valley.
Under the Okrešelj Basin, above the upper part of Logar Valley, the main source of Savinja River provides the water to a stunning 90 m (290 ft) single waterfall, which is among the highest in Slovenia.
The stream is conditioned by the rain, so you can expect less flow, or even just a few drops, in the driest part of the summer, from June to August.
In the Orlovo Gnezdo (Eagle's Nest) cottage you can have a refreshing drink and snack in form of a stew, before continuing the way up to Frischauf's Hut at Okrešelj Cirque.
The walk is considered semi-difficult.
The series of waterfall span over some 80 m ( 262 ft) high rocky slope, not far from Plesnik Hotel in the middle section of Logar Valley.
After heavy raining, the water is falling down in great cascades.
In the wintertime, it becomes a lively spot for quite extreme adrenaline seekers, the ice climbers.
Above the main waterfall crossroad, there is a fairy-tale gorge with smaller, but mesmerizing falls.
Hidden a bit further up in the slopes above Logar Valley, this series of waterfalls is not reachable in the easiest way.
There are no specific signs, on certain parts of the trail you are expected to be well-prepared and equipped hiker.
At the mostly dry stream of Kotovec, contributary to Savinja River, you will spot Brložnica footbridge, and from there a barely seen path leads up to the astonishing whole of waterfalls, among them the highest single fall of about 40 m (130 ft).
Recommended getting more information about access to the tourist information point at the entrance to Logar Valley.
This natural site is maybe not as photogenic as the previous ones, it is among the smaller waterfall systems with the span of some 20 m (65 ft).
On the other hand, the area of the Rastovški Waterfalls is among the richest in fossils within Logar Valley and an important European site of this kind.
Botanics in Logar Valley
On every step, the magical natural environment is taking your breath away.
Amazingly picturesque amphitheater-shaped glacial Okrešelj Cirque contains probably the highest concentration of vegetation within the Solčavsko region.
Since the end of the 19th century the Frischauf's Hut, originally built by mathematician and explorer of the Alps Johannes Frischauf, is welcoming the visitors who want to enhance the knowledge of Alpine flora and fauna.
The hut is a popular spot for 'schooling in nature' as we call it in Slovenia, a part of education executed in the natural environment around the country, contributing higher awareness and consciousness about sustainability already in childhood.
The hut is momentarily under reconstruction due to a fire in 2019.
Okrešelj is reachable from the Rinka Waterfall, in the upper part of Logar Valley, in a bit more than one hour walking a marked path.
Culture and traditions in Logar Valley
Humans found out Logar Valley is a great place to live way back in the prehistoric times.
As already mentioned, the nearby Potočka Zijalka archeological site boasts archaic tools like scissors, needles, knives, jewelry of the time.
Through the time people developed a specific way of living in the remote, but abundantly fertile Logar Valley.
Local vernacular architecture is adapted to the circumstances and conditions in such an environment.
These particular wooden constructions served to store the goods, especially grains and local dried meat delicacies.
Some of the barns we can easily consider architectural masterpieces with all that fantastic decoration and carved ornaments.
'Kašte' as we call them, make an important part of the architectural heritage of the entire Solčavsko region, including Matkov Kot and Robanov Kot valleys.
The industrial revolution plunged even into remote areas like Logar Valley.
In the 19th century, charcoal burning caused almost the disappearance of beech trees.
That was one of the periods of a deeper impact on the natural balance in the area.
On the Trail through Logar Valley, the charcoal burner's hut was set up as a memory to one of the local traditions of the past.
Every year a merry event organized by the Slovene Charcoal Burners Association takes place at it.
In the 19th century, after the decline of the feudal system, farmers could become the owners of the forests.
In the area of present-day Slovenia, the first forestry school was founded in 1869 in the village of Kozarišče, a stone throw from the Snežnik Castle in the Inner Carniola region.
In the Logar Valley, forests have been carefully maintained by forest rangers and the local community.
The Woodcutter's Hut brought up on along the walking trail, is intriguing the imagination about the tough life of forest workers, equipped just with axes and hand-saws, struggling on the snow-covered slopes mostly in the rough winter and a bit milder spring.
The forests of Logar Valley and the surroundings are among the most diverse arboreal areas in Europe, boasting immense quantity of autochthonous larches, elms, lindens, beeches, birches, hop-hornbeams, ash trees, pines, yew trees, and plenty of others.
There are even some exceptional trees.
Logar's linden tree in the lower section of Logar Valley with a girth of 4,85 m (16 ft) and height of 24 m (79 ft) has been resisting the challenges of time for over 200 years.
As the symbol of the valley, it was the main feature in the legendary 'Slovenija, moja dežela' tourist advertisement in the 80s'.
Plesnik's elm in the middle section of Logar Valley is known as the most gracious elm in the country.
Larch on Klemenča Jama is a massive tree with a circumference of 4,5 m (15 ft) and 28 m (92 ft) of height, reportedly the largest in Slovenia.
It is located close to the mountain hut in the hollow-shaped Klemenča Jama, a spectacular panoramic spot, and a starting point for the further hikes to Mt Grofička or even Mt Ojstrica and other peaks of Kamniško-Savinjske Alps.
Alpine dairy farming
Among the oldest traditions of Logar Valley and other districts of the Solčavsko region.
The results are top-quality dairy products.
Cheeses, curd, cottage cheese, whey, and much more you can taste at the farms sparsed around the steep slopes and valleys.
In the upper part of Logar Valley, close to the road leading to Rinka Waterfall, the Herdsmen Hut is one of the still original constructions in the area, dating back to the 1930s'.
Built for herdsmen of the Logar family is now turned to a cool place with great local food and accommodation.
Food in Logar Valley
The main foods in the Solčavsko region are predominantly meat-based.
This is the heritage and tradition, lasting for millenniums.
This doesn't mean though that vegetarians and vegans can't enjoy it.
There is a wide variety of fine foods of that type, from vegetable stews to apple egg-less dumplings.
Due to a characteristical demographic image, at the farms around the Logar Valley and even more remote Matkov Kot and Robanov Kot valleys you can try very diverse food from farm to farm, as every family has one's own secret recipes.
Some like to cook, some to roast, some to bake.
In the end, nobody is thirsty or hungry.
I remember my grandmother saying it's important just to prepare well and include the essential ingredients for a healthy body and mind.
The fresher, the better.
It is one of the most prominent Slovenia's products, in the past served just on special occasions such as Easter or Christmas.
Dried in wooden barns, sometimes even cooked, minced meat product with a protected geographical indication.
Made of the finest local pork meat, no artificial additives or other chemicals.
Things to do and outdoor activities in Logar Valley
Relaxing and enjoying great local food are the main 'activities' in such a place.
Luckily in Slovenia, this can be achieved in various ways.
Hiking the peaks of the Kamniško-Savinjske Alps is a great pleasure for mountain lovers.
Let me mention at this point that many of the trails leading up to the highest peaks demand a high level of mountaineering skills, experiences, and proper equipment.
For the less adventurous there is already mentioned a quite flat Trail through Logar Valley, ending at the Rinka Waterfall below Okrešelj Cirque.
You can let yourself be free by cycling forests and ridges, stopping at several scenic spots and panoramic viewpoints.
Paragliding, horseriding, climbing including ice climbing, skiing, and sledding are some of the most practiced outdoor activities in Logar Valley besides the above-mentioned ones.
Logar Valley is a perfect getaway for families and people from big cities.
There are not many places where you can relax and feed your spirit as Logar Valley with other secret places of Solčavsko region is.
Getting in touch with the animals on farms, local garden-to-table food, sustainability, and self-sufficiency brings people's awareness and consciousness about the importance of keeping the natural balance to another level.
Events in Logar Valley
There are plenty of local and family parties almost every day.
At this point, I'm going to mention merely the main events.
I think there's no need to mention that on all the events you have zero chances to be hungry or thirsty.
June is quite rich with events.
On the Days of Mountain Wood, you can dive into the world of local woodenware and handcrafts.
The hike to mountain mound of Matkov Škaf is another event, organized by the local Solčava Mountaineering Club.
About 30 m (100 ft) deep and 15 m (50 ft) wide natural phenomenon emerges under Mt Mrzla Gora rocky face.
The Kamniško-Savinjske Alps Hiking Festival is a delight for hikers.
Organized professional guidance along the trails is enriched by accompanying programs, such as documentary movies evenings, concerts, and exhibitions on the way.
Herb Festival takes you on a trip to the local herbal medicine world.
Don't forget, Logar Valley is a realm of Alpine herbs.
In August you can attend the Chainsaw Carving Festival where you can admire the skills of the experts in this peculiar local folk art.
If you visit Logar Valley in September you could go for an autumn rerun of already mentioned Alpine Hiking Festival.
In the same month, the Bicka Festival reveals all about the local Jezersko-Solčavsla sheep breed.
Due to the coming winter and Christmas time when it's time for the presents, we usually equip ourselves with wool products, an useful gift the receiver never forgets.
How to get to Logar Valley?
Slovenia's Alpine gem is one of the most remote valleys in the county.
It is accessible just from a few directions if you travel on your own.
In general, I would not recommend relying on public transportation.
Via Pavlič Pass
This route is usually utilized when reaching Logar Valley from the northwestern part of Slovenia, so from either Bled or Bohinj or Triglav National Park shortly passing a bit of Austria.
Via Kamnik and Velika Planina
This route is taken by the visitors approaching Logar Valley from the capital Ljubljana, passing the Velika Planina area, one of very few surviving high mountain settlements in Europe, deserving an individual blog about it.
At one point a road knot makes several regional roads come together, and from there one leads up to the entrance of the valley.
Via Dravograd and Mežica
A panoramic ride along the Drava River is a brilliant option of getting to Logar Valley from Maribor, second-largest Slovenia's city on the northeast of the state.
In Mežica, you can have a unique experience of cycling or kayaking the tunnels of a former ore mine.
Where to stay in Logar Valley
Logar Valley is the most known about its lonely farms.
For centuries forgotten, now revived into unforgettable sites for all who want to take a step into the Alpine dream.
Hosting the Potočka Zijalka exhibition details, it is also a great place where to take a rest on your ways around the Solčavsko region.
A renowned eco-farm with renowned home-made products.
An accommodation with top food in the meadows of the middle section of Logar Valley.
Bed and breakfast hot-spot of Logar Valley.
Around the Logar Valley
The valleys of Matkov Kot and Robanov Kot are worthy to spread a discussion on them separately.
Feel free to contact me for more information about the perfect Alpine holiday.