Velika Planina

Eastern Slovenia

The journey to the top of Velika Planina unfolds in two stages: first a dramatic cable-car ride, and then a choice of either a 15-minute chairlift or hiking the rest of the way. Once on the pastures, there’s little to do except walk the pristine fields and drink in the views, surrounded by snowcapped mountains.

Velika Planina is where traditional dairy farmers graze their cattle between June and September, and the pastures are scattered with around 60 traditional shepherds' huts (and the tiny Church of Our Lady of the Snows) unique to the area. Regrettably, all but one of these, the tiny two-room Preskar Hut which is now a small museum, are replicas. The originals, dating from the early-20th-century, were burned to the ground by Germans in WWII.

While on the top, have a meal at Zeleni Rob, a small restaurant a short walk from the middle stop on the chairlift. It's said by some to serve Slovenia’s best štruklji (cheese dumplings). In summer, the area's friendly shepherds in their big black hats will sell you curd and white cheese.