lake bohinj slovenia

The one-day highlights of Triglav National Park, Slovenia

Triglav is the only National Park in Slovenia, located in the Julian Alps. The park has dozens of river systems, alpine lakes, waterfalls, churches, and museums. But if you only have one day in Triglav National Park, you can see some of the area’s most famous highlights including Lake Bohinj and Savica Waterfall.

What to do in Triglav National Park

All 880 kilometers squared of Triglav are impossible to get to in one day. Hiking trips of the Soča Valley and Julian Alps can take anywhere from three to five days. You can also dedicate an entire day to something like the Seven Lakes Valley hike, but you’d still be seeing only a small part of the park.

triglav national park highlights

This itinerary of highlights is for people who want to do easiest and laziest thing possible. This is for everyone who wants to see some of the nicest and most famous sights in Triglav National Park, but only if they’re conveniently accessible by car and short beautiful hikes.

Note that this highlights itinerary does NOT include Vintgar Gorge, which is probably one of the most stunning and convenient attractions in Triglav National Park. However, this is an activity we did while we were in Bled since it’s so close to the city. Although it’s technically possible to do the gorge the same day as a drive out to Lake Bohinj, you probably wouldn’t have nearly enough time to spend at each place.

For more information about visiting Vintgar Gorge, read more here.

How to get to Triglav National Park?

The way to Triglav depends on where you’re going. If you want to go up to see the Great Soča Gorge, for instance, Triglav is located 2 hours away from Ljubljana and 1:30 away from Bled. If you want to visit the Lake Bohinj area like we did, it’s just a 1:10 minute drive from Ljubljana and a 30-minute drive from Bled. We stayed in Bled and visiting Lake Bohinj was the most convenient option because it allowed us to maximize the time we spent hiking and visiting some of the local sights and minimized the time spent driving from one place to another.

lake bohinj slovenia

However, it’s also possible (and cheaper) to stay around Lake Bohinj than it is to stay in the more popular Lake Bled. If you have the opportunity to do that for one or two nights, you would have more time to peacefully see everything. But even if you’re driving in, you’ll have plenty of time.

Lake Bohinj

triglav national park highlights

Lake Bohinj is about 12 km around, which could take 2-5 hours to walk around it. Though this was originally going to be our plan for the day, we quickly realized that part of that hike is not along the lake, which doesn’t all have a path carved all around it. So you would have to walk on a path that’s across the road next to the lake, which didn’t seem nearly as beautiful. Instead, you can park near the Goldenhorn statue, which is closest to many of the town’s hotels and restaurants. From there, you can walk to the scenic spot Vir, which has a lakeside restaurant and plenty of benches to sit on and enjoy the view. There are also some small beaches where you can rest or even swim. The waters are exceptionally clean.

triglav national park highlights

Alternatively, you can park at Vir, which aside from being beautiful, is a great jumping off point to some of the nearby viewpoints that are accessible by hiking. For instance, the Vogar viewpoint is about an hour walk from Vir and takes you through some lovely meadows and the small village of Stara Fužina. Mostnica Gorge is 45 minutes from Vir in the same general direction.

Vogel Cable Car

lake bohinj slovenia

If you’re want the views without the work, you can also take the Vogel Cable Car, which is less than a kilometer away from the western end of Lake Bohinj. The 4-minute panoramic ride takes you to Brown Rock which lies at an altitude of 1525 meters. From this point, you can see a bird’s eye view of the lake as well as the snow-capped Julian Alps, including its peak, Triglav. The cable car can provide an easy gateway to alpine hikes up around Brown Rock, or if you’re lazy and pressed for time, it is an easily accessible viewpoint with a place to get a snack or a coffee. It’s open daily from 8 am to 6 pm. Parking at the cable car station is free for those taking the cable car but it can get full.

If you’re doing several Bohinj attractions like the Vogel Cable Car, Savica Waterfall, a panoramic boat ride on Lake Bohinj, you might save money by getting one of the Bohinj packages that include multiple attractions at one bulk price.

If you’re visiting the area with a dog, you’ll be happy to know that all mentioned sites and attractions are dog-friendly.

Savica Waterfall

Savica Waterfall is the source of the Sava Bohinjka River which flows all the way to Lake Bohinj. It’s a spectacular sight that gushes out from a limestone spring in the rock wall and splits into two distinct falls. The site is amazing even before you pay the entrance fee since the small rapids make their way down from Savica to the parking area. Each person pays a few euros to enter, and the visit is a non-stop uphill climb on countless stone steps through the woods. The walk itself was beautiful, with some benches along the way to stop and admire the nature around you. When you finally emerge to the end point where you can see the falls, the view is breathtaking. However, I can imagine it getting crowded during peak season and at peak times of the day.

lake bohinj slovenia

A note about accessing Savica Waterfall: The road up to the parking lot narrows quite a bit and you may have to pull off to allow other cars (or even huge tour buses) to pass. Parking is also supposed to be steep at 5€ per car, but we didn’t see any machines or parking attendants, so we parked for free and had no issues. It could have been because we went in May and parking is only enforced in peak summer season. Be prepared with cash just in case. You probably don’t want to make the treacherous drive back down twice to find an ATM.

From Savica Waterfall, the drive to Bled is just 45 minutes, and the drive to Ljubljana is 1:20 so you don’t have to spend a lot of time in the car after you’re already tired from a day of hiking. If you’re not already staying in Bled, a stop there would create a very easy way for you to enjoy Lake Bled and Vintgar Gorge the following the day since you have to drive through Bled anyway to get out of Triglav National Park. Happy trails!

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