5 things you must do in Bela Krajina, Slovenia
First things first: where and what is Bela Krajina, I hear you ask?
Bela Krajina is a small region in south east Slovenia, on the border with Croatia. In fact, it's easier to reach by flying into Zagreb airport (Croatia) rather than Ljublijana, and then just cross the border. The region is completely composed of beautiful landscapes, quaint villages and small towns, so avoid it if you're after that bustling city life. Do not, however, miss this region if you want some peace and quiet.
Now that we've settled that and where you'll be staying when in Bela Krajina, here's our top 5 things you must do, in between relaxing and enjoying the beautiful feeling of doing absolutely nothing.
1. Hike to Kolpa's spring
The River Kolpa is this region's lifeline, and it's a clear, unpolluted body of water that comes to the surface in the northern part of the Krsko plain. The river surfaces from underneath the 30m tectonic wall of rock. This rock is a stark white and creates a beautiful contrast with the green landscape. This place is little known, so you're assured to have it for yourself - it's the perfect spot for a picnic, so go prepared!
The Berryshka distillery on the outskirts of Kočevski Rog is a real treat to discover. A family run business, you'll be shown around the whole place, from where the fermentation of the berries takes place, to the bottling of the tastiest liquors you'll ever taste. They currently offer a vast range of flavours, but our firm favourites were the blackberry and the walnut liquors. Even better than the liquor alone? They give it to you in a chocolate shot glass. Let me repeat that: chocolate. shot. glass.
3. Taste locally produced wine
The Suklje vineyard has been around since 1895, and has steadily grown, producing a number of different wines, from rich reds to light whites. Also a family run business, they invite visitors into their first vineyard and farm to taste their spectacular wine and enjoy the stunning surroundings. What we really loved about this visit was the friendliness of our hosts, together with their obvious passion for wine making and the region.
4. Make your own traditional egg, and see linen made
In the little village of Adlešiči, Nada Cvitkovič produces beautiful products made out of white linen, and draws the prettiest Easter eggs I've ever seen. Both products are traditional for the region, and Nada invites visitors over to learn about these local traditions - as well as make the eggs yourself! This visit makes for a fun hour, and I'm pretty sure kids will love it, especially the part where they get to paint their own Easter eggs to take home!
5. Visit the town of Metlika
Metlika is a really, really quiet town in the region, and when I say quiet, I mean almost-deserted kind of quiet! Don't feel alarmed though, the town is completely safe and makes for a very pretty walk around. Check out the Bela Krajina Museum at Metlika's town centre, which is a gorgeous castle at the centre of the town. You won't need more than an hour to explore this town, but it's definitely worth seeing if you're around.
Getting around: Renting a car is definitely the best way to get around in Bela Krajina and explore all the little hidden spots. Big Berry also offers all these activities and many more when staying at their resort too, so that's a huge plus! Get started on your next summer vacay, asap :)
Disclaimer: The Anti-Tourist was invited over by Big Berry to discover the Bela Krajina region: opinions, however, remain my own.