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Sakarun Beach: Caribbean flair in Croatia

Sakarun Beach: Caribbean flair in Croatia

The Sakarun, also named Saharun Beach, is a sandy beach on the “long island” Dugi Otok and this picturesque bay is one of the most beautiful in Croatia. On this unspoiled beach you will find Caribbean flair in the middle of Europe: crystal clear turquoise waters, fine white sand and a perfect blue sky makes your Sakarun Beach trip unforgettable.

Bathing at the Sakarun is one of the best things to do on the island of Dugi Otok. This beautiful sandy beach is also a popular destination for excursions from Zadar town. Daily visitors come from the Zadar region to experience one of the most beautiful beaches in Croatia. Nevertheless, until now, the beach was spared by mass tourism. Its visitors are individualists and peace seekers who appreciate the incredible atmosphere of the sandy beach. Yes, the Sakarun is a true paradise. The fine white sand and the turquoise blue colors are a real postcard motive and a visit is a highlight of every trip to Croatia.

The approximately 800 meters long Sakarun Bay offers enough space for sun-seeking holidaymakers. The marvelous bay is lined with fragrant Mediterranean pine trees, which gives especially in midsummer cool shades. Especially for families and children the Sakarun beach is a popular place for spending a wonderful day at the beach. Since the beach falls off very shallow, the little ones can splash around and build sandcastles on the long white sand beach. Despite the Sakarun being located by the open sea, it’s protected by the long bay and thus always provides pleasant bathing temperatures.

Also, sailors love this unique beach and drop their anchor there for a while. As the Sakarun is a hidden beach and there are no hotels yet, swimming in the beautiful bay is a truly beautiful experience and also a true insider tip under boaters.

Right on the beach there are no restauantes, but there are 2 nice little bars that offer coffee, cool drinks, ice cream and a few small dishes. Especially beautiful is the wooden terrace of the Amarcord Beach Bar, from where you have incredible views. In the preseason the mood on the beach is really relaxed and the atmosphere is unbeatable.

How to go to Sakarun: Ferry from Zadar to Brbinj

The most comfortable way to reach Sakarun is to go there by car. To get from Zadar to Sakarun it is best to take the ferry to Brbinj. The crossing with the car ferry takes about 1:45 hours. After arriving at the ferry port of Dugi Otok (Brbinj) it is again about 15 km to the sandy beach. The Sakarun is located on the northwest side of the holiday island Dugi Otok. Nearby are the small towns of Veli Rat, Soline and Božava, which are smaller holiday destinations.

From the main road on the left side, a narrow gravel path leads to Sakarun beach. At the end of the road you are going to find enough parking facilities. Currently, parking at Sakarun Beach costs 10 kuna per hour.

If you are not traveling by car, travelling to Sakarun can be a bit tricky: There is a regular bus service on the island of Dugi Otok, but it only runs every 4 hours. From Božava you can reach the Sakarun beach with a small tourist train. This runs in the main season about every 2 hours.

 

Accommodation – Sakarun Beach

Directly at the Sakarun beach there are (as yet) no hotels or apartment complexes. But on the Island Dugi Otok you will find a good selection of accommodation in the immediate vicinity of the beach. Popular places near the Sakarun are Bozava, Soline and Veli Rat. Since there are only a few places to stay on the island of Dugi Otok, it is advisable to book your accommodation in advance. If you want to stay longer on Dugi Otok, you can also consider staying in the beautiful port city of Sali which is located at the end of the island.

Camping Sakarun

Camping on Sakarun is officially not allowed. The island of Dugi Otok offers its guests two different campsites: Camp Kargita, near the lighthouse in Veli Rat and the Camp Mandarino in Soline.

 

Holidays on Dugi Otok and Sakarun Beach

The island of Dugi Otok is not only a popular destination for daytrips from the Zadar region, above all, the “long island” is a dreamy holiday destination in Croatia. In addition to the picturesque beaches and little villages visitor will have the chance to explore lots of interesting sights. Particularly noteworthy is the Telascica Nature Park and the Kornati islands National Park.

More about Dugi Otok you can find here: Dugi Otok and Sakarun beach

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3 days in Vienna Itinerary: Travel and Sightseeing guide

3 days in Vienna Itinerary: Travel and Sightseeing guide

Visiting Vienna for 3 days is a fantastic option to explore the exciting city and all the amazing sights. In that amount of time you can visit all the best parts of the city including the main sights and top attractions. For sure, you will love this old new city, the vibrant life and the delicious Austrian food. There is so much to see and to do and definitely, this 3-day itinerary will give you a great overview of the must-see sights and the travel highlights.

In this article we are going to share our 3 days itinerary for an unforgettable trip to Vienna and additionally at the end of this post we have a special hotel recommendation for you.

Here is our suggestion for a 3-day itinerary in Vienna:

 

Vienna itinerary, DAY 1

Start your Vienna trip with exploring the beautiful Belvedere Palace and the magnificent baroque gardens. At first walk from the Upper Belvedere down to the Lower Belvedere and enjoy the outstanding beautiful scenery. We really loved the flower gardens and the reflecting pool in front of the palace. Even though the Belvedere is one of Vienna’s most impressive palaces, at morning time you will have all the area nearly to yourself. In case you are a fan of art you definitely should consider a visit of the Belvedere museums too: A permanent exhibition at the Upper Belvedere displays among others the world-famous Klimt´s Kiss.

At early lunch time we recommend a visit to Vienna’s most popular market, the Naschmarkt which is just a short walk from Karlsplatz. Make a stop at the St. Charles Church, an eye-catching religious building with a magnificent blue cupula. Not just in summer, but also in winter the Karlsplatz is really worth a visit at this time a traditional Christmas market is taking place in front of the church.

Without a doubt the Naschmarkt is one of the coolest places to have lunch in Vienna and a popular meeting point for young and old. In generally, the market has around 120 market stands and restaurants, selling exotic products and delicacies from all over the world.

The Ringstrasse is a 5,3 km long road that circles Vienna’s city centre. On that street, you are going to pass some of the most remarkable and breath-taking buildings of the town. The most noteworthy sights are the Parliament (at the moment under construction), the City Hall, the Imperial Palace (Hofburg) and the Burgtheater.

If you have some time left we recommend a visit inside the glorious Burgtheater. You can visit this theatre without seeing a performance by taking a guided tour (daily 15:00). There you will learn a lot about the fascinating history of the Burgtheater and you will get a look behind the scenes. On top you are going to see the breath-taking beautiful grand staircase and the famous ceiling paintings by Gustav Klimt.

A lovely option is to tour the Ringstrasse on the tourist Ring Tram or you can also catch the public city tram (Nr.1 & Nr. 2)

For the evening we round of our first day of sight-seeing with a visit to Vienna’s amusement park the Prater. Why not dine out at the Schweizerhaus restaurant for tasting its famous Schweizerhaus Stelze or a traditional Wiener Schnitzel?!

For entering the Wiener Prater you won`t have to pay any entrance fee, you just have to pay for the attractions you would like to ride. Even if you are not that kind of adrenal junkie you will love exploring the nostalgic Prater with its unique atmosphere. Recommended is a ride with the Giant Ferries Wheel which is Vienna’s landmark.

Vienna itinerary, DAY 2

A trip to Vienna won’t be complete without visiting one of the numerous museums. Actually, we loved visiting the Museum of Natural History. The huge museum exhibits over 30 million objects and we had been fascinating by the dimension. Also, the Art History museum located at the opposite is well worth seeing.

Absolutely interesting is the MuseumsQuartier, spreading over 90,000m2 encompassing 60 cultural institutions.

If you are around also take the chance to look inside the Palace of Justice! Step inside and you will find yourself in one of the most impressive locations you will find in Vienna. The grand staircase dominates the huge hall and the imposing interior will take your breath away! Most of the people don`t know that the building is open for the public and the entrance is for free.

Furthermore from the roof-top Cafè you will have an amazing view.

After spending the morning inside a museum, you should hit off to see the world-famous Lipizzaner horses. Best you cross the picturesque square Michaelaplatz to buy tickets for the Spanish riding school. Just take a rest at the baroque square and watch the traditional Vienna Fiaker passing by.

Visiting the white Lipizzaner show was just lovely. It was so interesting to watch the horsemanship accompanied by classical music. Good to know: This noble horse and the traditional stallions can be seen for free, just peep in at Reitschulgasse 2.

Another must do in Vienna is a visiting an original Viennese coffee house. You are going to find plenty of them inside Vienna’s Old town. All along, the Viennese coffee house is a typical institution of Vienna that plays an important role in Viennese culture. Have a break, enjoy a delicious “Melange” coffee and soak in this elegant and very specific atmosphere.

Later, we recommend to have a look inside the Austrian National Library, the State Hall. The imposing baroque hall impressed us a lot! More than 200.000 tomes are exhibited and four picturesque Venetian baroque globes grace the ancient library.

Most surprising for us was the visit inside the Imperial Crypt also named the Capuchin Cryp.That place contains the bodies of the Habsburg rulers: 149 Habsburgs, including 12 emperors as well as 19 empresses and queens, have their final resting inside the crypt. Popular examples are Franz Joseph I., Empress Elisabeth and Crown Prince Rudolf and visitors can observe their magnificent free-standing tombs.

Don`t leave the town without window shopping at the Graben, Viennas most exclusive shopping street! Even if you don`t likes shopping, walking down the Graben street towards the St. Stephen´s Cathedral. With its beautiful architecture like the Peterskirche the short walk is really pleasureable.

 

Our tip: The cathedral is one of the main attractions of Vienna and the inside as well as the outside are worth a visit. But also recommendable is the view from the top of the St. Stephen´s Cathedral.

You are going to have the best view of Vienna at the northern tower (Pummerin).

As few of the main sights are located along the Ringstrasse, for example, the Opera house and the Burggarten. Take a break at the wonderful Palmenhouse at Burggarten and enjoy the picturesque scenery. As soon as the sun goes down head of to see the Opera house:  At night the Opera is stunningly lit and looks drop-dead gorgeous!

Vienna itinerary, DAY 3

After breakfast, set off to Schönbrunn Palace! Because it’s Austria’s most visited tourist attraction you should be there early. That’s why at morning time you will find a calm and peaceful location. Take a stroll along the magnificent Schönbrunn Gardens and inhale the grand imperial atmosphere. Also you shouldn’t miss to walk up to the Gloriette and get rewarded with one of Vienna’s most breathtaking views. Take some time to explore the Schönbrunn Palace. We had been surprised about all the picturesque smaller gardens, fountains and statues.

There’s even a Palmenhaus and the world’s oldest zoo, the Schönbrunn Zoo to explore. The entire area is part of the imperial summer residence and is even listed as an UNESCO world heritage site.

The palaces itself is enormous, with a total of 1,441 rooms. Certain parts of the castle and exhibitions can be visited.

If you are interested in outstanding architecture you should definitely go and see the popular Hundertwasserhouse. This architectural masterpiece was designed by Friedensreich Hundertwasser and constructed between 1983 – 1985. You have to know that The Hundertwasserhouse can only be viewed from outside but the exterior façade draws attention to itself and gives a fantastic foto motif.

Our tip: Hundertwasser also transferred the incinerator at Spittelau in something extraordinary!

 

Hotel Altstadt Vienna – Hotel Recommondation

For our latest city trip to Vienna we had been guests at the hotel Altstadt Vienna. It’s located in Vienna’s hippest and fashionable 7.th district “Neubau” in Spittelberg also named as Boboville. In fact the hotel is a venerable traditional Viennese patrician house that offers around 60 hotel rooms. All of the rooms are held in a unique design, each of them is different and so inspiring. Different designers and architects created the interior of this unique boutique hotel and we really loved our stay in the beautiful Lilli Hollein Suite.

Everything felt so much like home and even better. There are so many nice touches like free afternoon tea and sweets-buffet, outstanding breakfast, free homemade ice-tea for hotel guests to the helpfulness of the staff and free newspapers and magazines galore.

Also unique was having the excellent breakfast inside the lovely salon area: An incredible delicious  buffet with different kind of  cheeses, hearty breads and rolls with all kinds of spreads, healthy cereal, smoked salmon, smoothies, Viennese coffee, high quality tea and even prosecco – in the background classical music – a great way to start the day!

For bookings or more informations ->  Click here 
For bookings or more informations ->  Click here 

On top the hotel is conveniently located just a short walk from the subway and tram. Museumsquartier, Natural History Museum & Art History Museum, Rathaus and Burgtheater are all in walking distance and great restaurants and bars are just around the hotels corner.

 
And that’s it for our guide to spending 3 days in Vienna – if you would like to read more about Vienna, check out -> 16 Top Things To Do In Vienna


 


Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Transparency: For this stay we were invited by Hotel Altstadt Vienna. As usual, our opinion remains unaffected.


Therme Geinberg in Austria – Oriental timeout in Upper Austria

Therme Geinberg in Austria – Oriental timeout in Upper Austria

 

Sometimes you need just a timeout – a place to come down and forget your busy life. Last week we decided to stay a few days at the Vitalhotel Spa Resort Therme Geinberg in Austria, just near der German Border.  We have already seen some pics about that place on Instagram – and so we were very excited about visiting this wonderful hotel & the picturesque spa area.

The check in was just lovely! We were welcomed with a glass of sparkling wine and with the information of a free room-upgrade. Thanks to the reception team – you made our day! Immediately we felt comfortable and welcomed. After checking in, we went up to see our room: We really loved the walk-in closet and from the balcony we enjoyed a wonderful sunrise in the next morning. The rooms are furnished in a tasteful design and with some stylish details. In general all the personal was amazing, heart-warming friendly and always helpful.

What we liked the most

The Oriental World

The Oriental World with its Hamam was definitely one of our highlights while we stayed in Therme Geinberg in Austia. A breath-taking beautiful spa-area in oriental design. We felt like being taking back to Marrekesh, everything looks really chic with lots of details and warm colors.

Don´t miss to visit the beautiful Hamam with its warming navel stone and the steaming Serail-bath. With only 4 Euro you will get a peeling glove and a healthy soap to peel your body. Enclosing the Hamam you are invited to take a rest inside the beautiful oriental lounging area and have a lovely cup of apple tea. This sofa area is so relaxing, a perfect place to stay for a while and enjoy.

Also there is a picturesque open courtyard to cool yourself down, inhale some fresh air or make some nice instagram shots 🙂

The public sauna area was really busy when we were there, so we were more than happy that on the rooftop of the Oriental World a quite sauna was installed.

Visiting the Oriental Word is included for hotel guests and open from 9.00 am-8.00 pm.

 

Thermal pools area 

The pools area is really huge, we had the possibility to choose from 5 different pools including thermal, freshwater and saltwater pools, lavish indoor and outdoor thermal pools and a saltwater lagoon. This idyllic water world also host a cocktail bar where you can enjoy tasty cocktails inside the whirlpool 🙂 yummy.

Our favorite was the beautiful cascading thermal pools – a quiet area with a fantastic design and a great view.

An absolute advantage is that hotel guests can use the thermal pools area already from 7.00 am. At that time you will have all the pools by yourself. It was amazing swimming outside in the steaming hot water while the air temperature was -12 degrees.

Breakfast & Dinner at Therme Geinberg

Both of it are first rate! Honestly, we are not the biggest fan of dining inside of hotels. The restaurant of the Vitalhotel Therme Geinberg surprised us a lot: We had been spoiled with an extraordinary fresh, healthy and tasty buffet. We loved the huge desert-bar, included finest cakes and different kinds of creams – so delicious.

When we are traveling we are always early birds – luckily the breakfast always starts at 7.00 in the morning.  The buffet has a wide range of different foods to choose from – including fresh egg meals, fresh pancakes, delicious coffee, fruits, the finest hams, Prosecco…everything a breakfast lover`s heart desires.  And for all the late risers – it’s open until 12!

What to do around Therme Geinberg/Austia

There are a few spots near Therme Geinberg that can be visited if you need a break from the break 😉

  • Stift Reichersberg
  • Europareservat
  • Schärding
  • Obernberg

The Vitalhotel Spa Resort Therme Geinberg in Austria offers it all – beautiful light-flooded rooms, really friendly staff, excellent cuisine and a perfect spa area – thanks a lot Vitalhotel Therme Geinberg for the pleasant stay.


Top 7 things to do in Marrakech

Top 7 things to do in Marrakech

 

Marrakech, also called the red city, is the number one destination to visit in Morocco. Each year, this fabulous city attracts numerous tourist form all over the world. Visitors are overwhelmed by all the wonderful impressions and by the wide range of things to do and to see in Marrakech. The North African city is home to some vivid medinas, colourful souks, mysterious snake charmers, mint tea and numerous top-rated tourist attractions. All in all, a perfect place to spend an unforgettable time in Morocco. In this blog we are going to tell you more about the best things to do in Marrakech, the best sights and the top excursions around.

So, let’s explore this awe-inspiring city! Here are our top 7 things to in Marrakech:

 

1. El Badi Palace

The El Badi Palace, a ruined palace is located inside the Medina of Marrakesh. It was built 15 years from 1578 – 1593 and the name of the palace means the “the incomparable place”. Today visitors have the possibility to visit the ancient ruins and imagin how amazingly beautiful this palace must have been. Colonnades out of marble, expensive materials like gold, a central pool and 360 very rich decorated rooms – in any case, the palace must had been impressive in former times.
The El Badi Palace is a pretty impressive historical site and one of the best sights of Marrakech.

Entrance Fee: 2 Euro

2. Majorelle Garden

The Majorellen Garden, also called Jardin Majorelle, is a hauntingly beautiful botanic garden created by the orientalist artist Jacques Majorelle in 1923. Back in the 1980 the famous designer Yves Saint-Laurent restored the gardens and today the Jardin Majorelle is known as one of the most impressive sights in Marrakech. The Garden and the Villa can be visited daily and because of its outstanding scenery the Majorelle Gardens are really popular among tourists.

Entrance Fee: 7 Euro

3.  Koutoubia Mosque

The Koutoubia Mosque’s minaret is an astounding 77 meters high and so it’s the largest mosque in Marrakech. Visiting the mosque inside is only allowed to believers. Anyway, the Koutoubia mosque which is built out of red stone is a real eye-catcher and the beautiful rose gardens around are inviting for a break.

4. Djemaa el Fna

The Djemaa el-Fna is the most popular market square in Marrakech and is as old as the city itself. All the storytellers, water sellers, snake charmers and dancers make a visit to that place a unique Moroccan holiday experience. Our tip: Enjoy a cup of mint tea at the terrace of a rooftop café and watch the hustle and bustle from above. In the evening the Djamaa el-Fna gets filled with numerous foods stalls and both locals and tourists love eating out there. Visiting the Djemaa el-Fna promises a unique experience and is definitely one of the top things to do in Marrakech.

5. Medina & the Souks of Marrakech

No trip to Marrakech is complete without getting lost in the huge medina, the old fortified city which is a labyrinth of narrow streets. Surely, you will explore something new behind each corner. Also, the popular Souks (markets) are located inside of the medina. They offer it all from spices, fruits and vegetables, to antiques, wools and silks, crafts and Moroccan lanterns.

6. Bahia Palace

The Bahai Palace is drop-dead gorgeous and shouldn`t be missed in any case! No wonder that the palace is also called the “brilliance”: The complex contains an 8000 m2 large Moroccan styled garden, a gorgeous colourful court with a central basin and surrounding palace rooms with decorated columns, wonderful mosaics and decorated ceilings. Definitely a must see in Marrakech!

Entrance Fee: 2 Euro

7. Medersa Ben Youssef

The Medersa Ben Youssef was an Islamic college and one of the largest Medersas all over Morocco. Tall arches, a fine open-courtyard and carvings and mosaics makes the Medersa really awe-inspiring. The more than beautifully detailed architecture makes the Medersa Ben Youssef one of the top places to visit in Marrakech.

Entrance Fee: 2 Euro

Some other nice things to do and to see

 

If only exploring the town wasn’t enough for you, here are some other great things to see:

-Menara Garden: The Menara Garden, also named Jardin Menara is located outside of the Medina. Take a walk around the basin and enjoy the wonderful scenery.

-House of Photography in Marrakech: The Maison de la Photographie is a photo museum that is located inside a beautiful riad and exhibits photography from the earlier days.

-Place des Ferblantiers: Located in the heart of the Mellah, this beautiful square is popular for its unique Moroccan lamps.

-Saadian Tombs: Saadian Tombs are one of the most best preserved final resting places in Morocco.

-Bab Agnaou: Is one of the 19 gates in the south of the Medina.


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Hiking to Kozjak Waterfall – a fairy tale nature experience

Hiking to Kozjak Waterfall – a fairy tale nature experience

 

The magnificent Kozjak Waterfall, also named Slap Kozjak, is probably one of the most scenic nature spots to visit in Slovenia. The waterfall is not far away from the small town of Kobarid and can be reached easily by a comfortable and easy hike. A short trail leads through an incredibly beautiful scenery of vast green meadows, next to the famous emerald green Soca River and inside a mystical deep forest and, at the end, the wonderful Kozjak Waterfall located in a cave-like area. A real paradise if you love nature spots and waterfalls!

Hiking to Kozjak Waterfall

The hiking Trail begins in a green meadow on the opposite of the parking slot. After a few minutes you will reach the famous emerald green river called Soca River where the foot path winds along the side. We were fascinated by the breath-taking river views along the hiking trail. If you dare you should definitely walk on the thrilling high wooden hanging-bridge, it’s very scenic and definitely worth it!

Just after walking a bit further you will reach the forest and the nearer you come to the Kozjak Waterfall the forest becomes deeper and more mystical. You will be amazed by this magical trail!

The Kozjak River streams in the Soca River and on its way it creates 6 waterfalls. On the hike you are going to see 2 of them where the second one is the main one. Passing the first waterfall the scenery gets even more enchanted: tiny stony bridges without handrails are crossing the river and wooden walkways attached to the high rock walls are leading towards the bursting waterfall. After a short walk you reach the Kozjak Waterfall, hidden in a big semi-cave. Without a doubt, the ambience there is absolutely breath-taking and beautiful – a place filled with wonder. Nearly there you can already hear the powerful falls.

At the end of the trail there is a small wooden viewing platform where you can get close enough to see the whole beauty of the 15 meters high waterfall. Especially in the morning when the forest is misty and tourists are still away, a visit to the Kozjak Waterfall is an unforgettable experience!

Swimming in the Kozjak Waterfall

Swimming in the Waterfall is in general possible. Above all in summer time, some people swim in the natural pool but keep in mind that the water is ice cold and a bath is at your own risk. The Kozjak Waterfall is part of a protected nature area and because of that swimming inside the pools isn`t recommended.

How to get to Kozjak Waterfall?

Drive by car from Kobarid in direction to the Napoleon Bridge, cross the bridge and turn toward Dreznica. After approximately 150 meters there is a parking lot on your right side (near Kamp Koren).

Duration:

The walking duration of your hike to Slap Kozjak is around 25 minutes starting from the parking lot 150 meters past the Napoleon bridge or 45 minutes from the town Kobarid. The trail is well marked and easy to walk.

Entrance Fee:

The entrance to the Slap Kozjak is for free, you only pay for the parking.

Best time to visit:

Early morning or late afternoon.

Where to stay in Kobarid (Kozjak Waterfall)

The two best option for staying is the town Kobarid or the lovely sleepy and amazing town of Dreznica.
In both places you are going to find plenty of apartment options.

Apartments Kobarid
Apartments Dreznica

In our opinion, the Kozjak Waterfall is one of the top waterfalls in Slovenia and we highly recommend a visit!

Best Places To Stay

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Tolmin Gorge, Slovenia: Info, Tips and best Photo Spots

Tolmin Gorge, Slovenia: Info, Tips and best Photo Spots

 

The Tolmin Gorge in Slovenia, which is one of the top nature sights in the Soca Valley area, is the lowest entrance to the Triglav National Park. Remarkable is that two rivers, the Tolminkav River and the Zadlascica River shaped the gorge to one of the deepest and most spectacular ones in Slovenia. The 2 km walk through the Tolmin Gorges is not too long but in that short amount of time visitors get a few amazingly beautiful spots along the trail: Bear`s Head, The Devils Bridge, Dantes Cave and the thermal spring.

In general the circular walk through the breathtaking Tolmin Gorges is going to take you approximately 1 ½ hours. Starting point is the ticket office from where a small trail leads you inside the Gorge. Take a free map from the office to make sure to see all the great natural attractions inside.

The Tolmin Gorge trail offers really dramatic views down to the waters. Visitors are going to walk on a small path just next to the high rocky walls. Whereby, some parts of the gorge are even 60 meters high and the cool waters are incredible emerald blue. Surely, you will be enchanted by all this breathtaking natural beauty!

Under the Devils Bridge, there is a small thermal spring with a temperature around 20°C. By comparison the temperature of the Tolminka River is only 5-9 °C. That part of the Gorge is really scenic and remarkable so don`t forget to bring your cam with you: The path leads through some tunnels, next to the 60 meters high rocks, which was just marvelous.

 

A bit further on, the trail gets a little more strenuous and visitors have to hike a few stairs up to the other part of the gorge where the Bears Head can be found. A large rock stuck inside the walls of the canyon. Form the two viewing platforms you are going to have an awesome look over the canyon and the very rich green vegetation. Further on is the Dante`s cave which can only be visited during guided tours.

The final part of the Tolmin Gorge trail takes you across the dizziness inducing Devils Bridge. If you dare, have a look down to the river – the view is just incredible! By the way, the name Devils Bridge is quite common in Slovenia: Bridges that leading over a dangerous narrow hollow bear that name.

How to get to Tolmin Gorge

The parking slot is located just next to the entrance and the Gorge can be easily reached from the town Tolmin (5 Minutes by car). In July/August a shuttle service Tolmin – Tolmin Gorge is arranged.

Duration:  All in all the 2 km long hike takes around 1 hour plus, depending on your level of fitness and how many stops you take. Actually plan longer, there are plenty of photo opportunities.

Entrance Fee: 5 Euro for adults and the parking is for free.

Things to do near the Tolmin Gorge

If you are around the Tolmin area you should consider a visit to the awesome Javorca Memorial Church of the Holy Spirit

Where to stay at Tolmin Gorge

The best option for staying is the town Tolmin. In this place you are going to find plenty of apartment options.

The Tolmin Gorges in Slovenia are one of the most popular natural sights in the Soca Valley area. We were amazed by this scenic Gorge, the emerald blue and crystal clear waters and the high rock walls. A really fantastic place inside the Triglav National Park.


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Javorca – Visiting the Memorial Church of the Holy Spirit

Javorca: Visiting the Memorial Church of the Holy Spirit

 

The memorial church of the Holy Spirit in Javorca is a wooden sacred place which was built 1915-1917 in remembrance of the fallen Austro-Hungarian defenders. It’s located in the secluded mountainous region of Tolmin inside the Triglav National Park and even received the European Heritage Label in 2018. The church of Javorca is a masterpiece of art and a symbol of peace. For us it was definitely a highlight of visiting Tolmin and the Triglav NP.

A visit to the Memorial Church of the Holy Spirit is related to a short but steep 20 minutes hike. Although, the way up to is a bit strenuous, at the end you are going to get rewarded with the most marvelous scenery. Cows grassing on the alpine pasture, there is an absolute tranquility and at the background you can marvel at the high chain of the Julian Alps. Above all, the view from the church terrace is mind blowing!

The church was built nearly completely out of wood and so it needs constant maintenance. With the entrance fee of 4 Euro you are going to support the renovations of this wonderful place and a professional guide explains all about the history. Especially the interior of the church is really worth a visit. All the 2564 names of the soldiers who felt in the surrounding battlefields are written on wooden walls-boards. On each side of the altar are large painted angels and everything is decorated in a beautiful blue Viennese Secession style (the church was planned by the Austrian architect Remigius Geyling).

The Javorca alp region is a fantastic starting point for several hiking trails to the surrounding mountains, as well as a selected point of the Walk of Peace trail. This trail connects the memorials of World War I. The church is one of the selected points on the famous Walk of Peace trail, which connects memorials of World War I on a 320 kilometres long trail.

How to get to Javorca´s Holy Spirit Church

The church is, besides Tolmin Gorge, one of the major points of interest in this region. For getting from Tolmin to Javorca you have to drive approximately 7 km through a very narrow road and then a 20 minute hike. The church of Javorca can be viewed inside from May through end of October (June-September daily). Shuttle services are offered in summer time.

Entrance Fee: 4 Euros
Parking Fee: Free parking

Things to do near Javorca

If you are around the Tolmin area you should consider a visit to the scenic Tolmin Gorge. 

 

Where to stay at Javorca

The best option for staying is the townTolmin. In this place you are going to find plenty of apartment options.

Apartments Tolmin


Read more about Slovenia:
Tolmin Gorge, Slovenia: Info, Tips and best Photo Spots
Top 7 Waterfalls in Slovenia
Top Things To Do in Lake Bled – must see sights & views

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Koh Bulon Lae travel guide: Thailand`s island paradise

Koh Bulon Lae travel guide: Thailand`s island paradise

 

Where are the last gems of Thailand? Are you looking for a quiet, idyllic and native Island ? A place far up from mass tourism, rave parties and 7Eleven? Visit Koh Bulon, a tiny island located in the Satun Province in the Andaman Sea and rated as one of the most amazing islands in Thailand. Without a doubt, this island is really unspoiled and far away from mass tourism. Generally it is the most perfect spot for couples, families and backpackers looking for an ultimate  dream-island experience!

We have the ultimate insider tip for you:

Koh Bulon – one of the most beautiful islands in Thailand

 

Koh Bulon – a paradise for backpackers

Wow, what an island! Koh Bulone is an perfect postcard island! With its white sand, palm trees, turquoise blue water and one of the most beautiful beaches  in Thailand that island is an dream for backbacker – And the best is, that this island is still an insider tip! We had done lots of Island hopping in Thailand but Ko Bulon surprised us the most. If you are planning to see some of the best islands, you should definitely visit this beautiful place.

Beside the amazing beaches, also the water is perferct clear. Sometimes you can  see fish swarms  with more than 100 fishes swimming around you and on  the land you can even see very huge lizard’s. With all this impressions, Ko Bulon became quickly our favorite of all islands in Thailand.

There is not realy much to do on this Island – probably that’s why it is also so special. Just hang around all day in a hammock and enjoy the idyll! It’s so nice just to strawl around the beaches, playing some games with friends and hanging out in one of the few beach bars.

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If you are looking for banana boat, goa parties or fancy cocktail bars you are definitely at the wrong place. There are just a handful of cute beach huts, small restaurants and quite bars. Instead of air-conditioning you will find in the most bungalows ventilators and most of the showers are cold. There are no ATM’s on the island, so make sure you’ll have enough cash. Soon you are going to get a real Robinson Cruiso feeling. The ideal place to calm down and escape the hectic daily routine.

 

How to get to Koh Bulon?

Best to reach Ko Bulon by speedboat. They are operating among others from Krabi, Phuket, Ko Lanta and Trang. For the timetables you can check out 12Go.Asia . As soon as the ferry arrives at Ko Bulon, a long tail boat will come out to catch up the transfer passengers. (50 baht)

Powered by 12Go Asia system

 

Accommodations on Koh Bulon

There are just a few resorts and bungalows on Ko Bulon island. If you are traveling in the main season you should make a reservation to make sure you get a hotel room for the required period . We stayed at the Bulonhill Resort, which was a budget option. If you would like to stay in a middle class resort we recommend the Pansand Resort and the Bulon Resort. There are no luxury resorts until now 🙂

Note! The most hotels are closed from the period around June to October.

Read more about Thailand:

Thailand Island Hopping: from Krabi to Koh Lipe
Koh Ngai – The Paradise Island Travel Guide

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Top 7 Waterfalls in Slovenia

Top 7 Waterfalls in Slovenia

 

Slovenia is an awesome travel country full of first class nature spots including deep virgin forests, high mountains, enchanting lakes, crystal clear rivers and impressive waterfalls. Above all, amongst nature lovers, the waterfalls in Slovenia are known for their incredible wild beauty. There are around 300 waterfalls in Slovenia to explore and so it’s not easy to choose where to go. In this article we are going to share with you the ones most worth seeing.

So let’s explore the breath-taking waterfalls in Slovenia. Here is our list of the 7 top waterfalls in Slovenia:

 

Pericnik Waterfall

With a ten minutes’ walk from the parking this 52-meters waterfall is easy to reach and without special effort you have the chance to visit one of the most powerful waterfalls in Slovenia. You can walk very close and actually you can even walk behind the falls, which is an incredible experience. In any case, you will be amazed by the immense power and the dramatic location. The Pericnik waterfall can be visited all year round and also in winter when the waterfall freezes an excursion is highly recommended.

Entrance fee: Parking fee at Pericnik Waterfall is 2 Euros for three hours and the entrance is free.

Walking distance: 10 minutes’ walk from the parking lot.

 

Savica Waterfall

Without a doubt, the Savica Waterfall with a height of 78 meters is one of the most popular ones in Slovenia. The water originates in the Triglav Lakes Valley. At the base of the falls the water is crystal clear and the incredible green emerald color amazes visitor from all over the world. Because of the crowds, we highly recommend a visit in the early morning. At that time of day you are going to have this magical scenery for you own. The Slap Savica is conveniently located near Bohinje and Lake Bled, so if you are around, you better not miss this nature juwel.

Entrance Fee: At Savica Waterfall you have to pay 3 Euros entrance fee and 3 Euros for the parking lot.

Walking distance: From the main parking, a 20 minutes’ walk on more than 500 stairs will lead you up to the fall and the viewing platform

Boka Waterfall

The Boka Waterfall has an overall fall of incredible 144 meters, with a single fall of 106m. Already from afar you can see this impressive fall! The waterfall is really huge and powerful, and it looks like it’s coming directly out of the mountain. What makes the fall so special is the sheer height of its sources and the fact that the water falls over the edge almost immediately after rising from the underground. Boka Waterfall is the highest Slovenian waterfall and absolutely a must-visit.

Entrance fee: None

Walking distance: 15 Minutes steep walk to the first viewing platform.

Virje Waterfall

The Virje Waterfall is situated near Bovec and is known as one of the best attractions in that region. Somehow, the fall with its incredible green colors looks a bit like out of a fairy tale and the place itself has a truly tranquil atmosphere. Also, if you like, you can actually try to swim inside the green pool next to the 12 meter high fall.

Entrance fee: None

Walking distance: 1 hour walk from Bovec or an easy 5 minutes’ walk from the parking lot down to the falls.

 

Kozjak Waterfall

The Kozjak Waterfall with 15 meter may not be the highest waterfall in Slovenia but, and that’s for sure, one of the most impressive ones. Already the hike to the fall is mind-blowing! The ambient of the hiking trail leading towards the waterfall is just spectacular: A deep forest with narrow high walls and stunning rocks make this place so special. The impressive waterfall with its beautiful pool is one of the top waterfalls in Slovenia and definitely a must-see!

Read more  about -> Hiking to Kozjak Waterfall – a fairy tale nature experience

Entrance fee: Entrance is free, parking fee approx. 3 Euros.

Walking distance: 1 hour comfortable walk from the town Kobarid or 20 minutes’ walk from the parking lot 150 meters after the Napoleon Bridge near Kamp Koren.

Sum Waterfall

The magnificent Sum Waterfall is located inside one of the most popular Gorges in Slovenia, the Vintgar Gorge near Lake Bled. Beautiful small trails, wooden bridges and narrow passages leading the visitors to the breath-taking Sum Waterfall. With a height of 16 m the Sum waterfall is the highest fluvial waterfall in Slovenia and for sure one of the best waterfalls to visit.

Entrance fee: A visit to the Vintgar Gorge cost 4 Euros, parking is for free.

Walking distance: A pleasurable 45 minutes’ walk starting from the Gorge entrance.

Rinka Waterfall

The Rinka Waterfall is located at the alpine valley of Logarska Dolina near the Austrian border. It falls over a steep wall and with 105 meters it is the second highest waterfall in Slovenia. The waterfall itself can be visited in all seasons of the year and in the winter the fall is a popular place for ice-climbers.

Entrance fee: none

Walking distance: A short 15 minutes’ walk starting from the parking lot to the base of the waterfall.


Read more about Slovenia:

Top Things To Do in Lake Bled – must see sights & views
Piran & the Slovenian Coast – top places to visit
Postojna Cave and Predjama Castle – A must see in Slovenia
Hiking to Kozjak Waterfall – a fairy tale nature experience

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Borneo Backpacking Itinerary: Travel and Route Guide

Borneo Backpacking Itinerary: Travel and Route Guide

 

Borneo with its true eco-tourism, awesome nature and the high chance to see plenty of wildlife is Malaysia´s number one place to visit for backpackers. More and more, Borneo and its 140 million years old rainforest is getting interesting for travelers all over the world and also for us, backpacking in Borneo became an unforgettable adventure.

In this itinerary, we will share our experiences of travelling through Borneo (Sarawak and Sabah) and Brunei. Also, you will read about the top backpacking highlights and the best nature and wildlife spots you shouldn’t miss. Additionally we will show you a perfect Borneo travel route where you are going to see the best things of this phenomenal and adventurous travel destination.

Borneo Travel Route? Here are the top things to see and to do in Borneo:
  • Kuching – the city of cats and starting point for the nearby national parks
  • Semenggoh Nature Reserve – getting close with the Orang-Utans
  • The Bako National Park – explore one of Borneo’s most beautiful National Parks and visit the Nose monkeys
  • Gunung Gading National Park – Jungle Trekking and the world biggest flower
  • Exploring the fascinating Niah Caves and/or Mulu Caves
  • Brunei – be amazed by the colorful mosque of Brunei
  • Climb the top of the highest Mountain ins South East Asia the Mount Kinabalu with 4095 m
  • Kinabatangan River Cruises – wild Orang-Utans and Pygmy Elephants

So let’s explore Borneo: Here is our itinerary for an ultimate backpacker  travel route:

Sarawak-Borneo

Kuching

After 2 exciting month of backpacking through Thailand and West Malaysia we decided to visit Borneo in East Malaysia. Borneo is absolutely famous for its wide range of National Parks and wildlife – so for us – the perfect travel destination! We took a flight from Kuala Lumpur to Kuching, where we stayed a few nights. This city with its tranquil riverside is not just lovely but it’s also a fantastic starting point from where you can do great excursions to the nearby National Parks. In Kuching you will also find the tourist National Parks Office – they are doing a great job and provided us with useful information about National Park fees, accommodations and how to get there.

Kuching in well known for its backpacker scene and the wide range of hostels, guest houses and hotels. Here are some of the best places to stay.

Gunung Gading National Park

Have you ever heard about the Rafflesia tuan-mudae flower? It’s the world biggest flower and we were very lucky to find one of them blooming in the Gunung Gading National Park! This flower is the main attraction of this park – check at the National Park Service if one of them is blooming at the moment. The Park is easy to reach by public bus from Kuching – inside the park there are guided jungle hiking tours! To spot a Rafflesia inside the deep rainforest was an absolute travel highlight.

Bako National Park

This Park is situated ap. 40 km from Kuching and can be reached by boat from Kampong. We recommend staying there for one or two nights – there are lots of adventurous hiking trails to explore!
We loved hiking through the tropical rain forest – there are various types of flora and fauna and lots of wildlife! It was amazing to see the proboscis monkeys (long nose monkeys) just a few meters next to us. Additionally, we got in touch with long-tailed macaques, boars, flying foxes and a few snakes. On top, we found some beautiful carnivorous plants and we explored amazing beaches. For us the Bako National Park is the ultimate MUST SEE in Sarawak!

Semenggoh – Orang Utan Nature Reserve

The Semenggoh Nature Reserve is a wildlife center for Orang Utans, where you have the possibility to see these monkeys at their feeding times. Normally they spend their time roaming around in the rain forest, but when it comes to a free meal they return to the center of the park. We had a lot of fun watching these guys. The best chance of seeing Orang Utans is between 9-10 and 3-4 o`clock.

If you would like to see these amazing monkeys you should definitely visit this park!

Niah Caves National Park 

Briefly said, we loved exploring the Niah Caves National Park! ! This National Park is beautiful, so calm and less touristy but it offers some interesting and impressive sights: There is the huge main cave which is home to thousands of swiftlets. It’s possible to pass the caves on a trail, but make sure to take a flashlight with you. The caves are unlit but you can go there on your own. After that trail you will find the Painted Cave, which is also interesting to see. The jungle walk is easy to manage and on the way to the caves you will also pass some Iban longhouses. Although all the main attractions of the Niah Park can be done in one day, we stayed inside the park for one night. If you want to read more about the adventurous Niah Caves, check out “Visting the Niah Caves in Borneo”

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Gunung Mulu National Park

If you are interested in visiting Caves you would also have the possibility to go to see the Gunung Mulu National Park. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site and famous for its karst formations inside the rainforest and for its 200 km of caves passages.
This excursion will probably be more expensive than the Niah Caves because you have to take a flight to the park and inside the park there are plenty of excursions offered.

We chose the Niah Caves because they can be reached easily with the bus going to Batu Niah. From there you can take a taxi (3km) to the park entrance. We really liked that the park is less touristy and you can explore the caves by your own. Additionally the main caves are very impressive too.

Brunei

Next stop on our route through Borneo was Brunei. The country is located between Sarawak and Sabah, so why not visit this small exotically named country? We took the land route from Miri to Bandar Seri Begawan with a private taxi bus that we luckily found at Miri bus station. Visiting Brunei was quite cool, above all it’s a country most travelers haven’t been to before. A must see is the Sultan Omar Ali Saifuddin Mosque with its golden domes, for us one of the most beautiful mosques we have ever seen. You can also do excursions to see the proboscis monkeys.

Accommodation in Brunei should be booked in advanced. Here you will find some great deals. Our choice is the Kunyit 7 Lodge, a  unique homestay set in Brunei Water Village.

 

Sabah-Borneo

Kota Kinabalu

2 days later we headed off to Kota Kinabalu, the capital of Sabah. It’s a good starting point for nearby excursions like the Mari Cultural Village, the Islands of the Tunku Abdul Rahman National Park and the famous Mt. Kinabalu. Additionally, you will find plenty of guest houses and affordable restaurants –perfect for backpackers. We decided to climb up the Mount Kinabalu, which is just 50 km from Kota Kinabalu.

Mount Kinabalu 4.095 m

The Mount Kinabalu is a World Heritage Site and additionally with, 4.095 meters the tallest mountain in South East Asia. If you love hiking like us and you fancy high mountains you should definitely put Mt. Kinabalu on your “to do list” for Borneo. The climb up to the peak took us two days, and was a fantastic adventure. You will walk through different kinds of flora and fauna and finally you will reach the peak at sunrise. Make sure that you are trained and fit for the long walk!

Hiking the Mount Kinbalu was an amazing Borneo adventure, if you love mountains make sure you don`t miss this hike!

Kinabatangan River Cruise

For our last stop in Borneo we visited the Kinabatangan River, which is popular for its unique wildlife and ecosystem. We took the bus from Kota Kinabalu to Kota Kinabatangan which was an adventure by itself – the place is not easy to reach but that’s the price if you want to go deeper inside the rainforest.

On the road to Kinabatangan with the luxury bus 😉

All in all our stay at Kinabatangan River was fantastic, we had a small lodge just next to the river. From there we did thrilling guided jungle walks and guided river cruises. We saw lots of wildlife including crocodiles, snakes, horn bill birds and we were so lucky to see wild Orang Utans. Also, with some luck, you will see the Pygmy Elephant. If you want to read more about, check out “Kinabatangan River Cruise – wildlife safari in Borneo”.

We stayed at the Nature Lodge next to the Kinabatangan River. The beautiful location just next to the river and the fantastic jungle and river tours had been a highlight on our backpacking trip through Borneo.

 

So that’s it for our itinerary of backpacking in Borneo. Now you are ready to start your adventure. Enjoy!


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Disclosure: Some of the links below are affiliate links. Meaning that if you click on certain links, and then subsequently purchase a product, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.


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