Zasavje

 

In central Slovenia, the undulating Posavsko hribovje hills spread on the both sides of the Sava River. Wagon roads once led across their picturesque peaks, but today the hills and the mountains above Litija, Zagorje, Trbovlje, and Hrastnik are mostly popular excursion destinations. These towns beside the Sava and close to the most important Slovene railway lines are full of mining traditions, and the unique workers’ colonies remind us of the almost two hundred years of mining. Another witness to the past of the region is the Revirski Museum in Hrastnik with its ethnological, firefighting, and hunting exhibitions.

 

Although these places carry the distinctive stamp of mining and industry, many rural traditions and natural and cultural features have been preserved in the areas around them. Not far from Litija, once an important river port, is Vače, known for the Vaška situla, a valuable find from the Iron Age. A larger-than-life sized replica of the vessel is on display in the village. GEOSS, the geometrical center of Slovenia, is in the neighbouring village of Spodnja Slivna. In Dol pri Litiji, local people still build piles of wood for making charcoal. From Litija, visitors can take a pleasant drive to the Renaissance Bogenšperk Castle, one of the best-preserved castles in Slovenia. A walking trail also leads to the castle, and visitors can explore the Posavje hills as well on the numerous bicycle trails and a well-maintained horseback riding circuit.

 

Zagorje lies exactly on the 15th meridian, which is marked by a special city marker. Another attraction of Zagorje is its location at the confluence of two streams. Along the Medija stream is an astounding group of twenty rock pillars, three to twenty meters high, called Okamneli svatje (the “Fossilized Wedding Party”). A small free-climbing area has been arranged here. The path by the stream leads to Izlake and Medijske Toplice with healing thermal water.

 

From Trbovlje, the center of the Zasavje region, hiking and bicycle trails lead to Mount Kum, the highest peak in the Posavsko hribovje hills, which charms visitors with its views, to Mount Mrzlica and Čemšeniška planina, to Čebine and Partisanski vrh, and to numerous other viewpoints. A stroll through the city is also interesting: from the oldest Count or Peklarjeva House to the museum miner’s residence arranged in one of the workers’ colonies to the church above the city center. In neighbouring Hrastnik, ethnological, firefighting, and the hunting exhibitions are on display in the Revirski Museum. Along with its mining tradition, Hrastnik also boasts rich tradition of glass production.

 

In a narrow valley between the hills of this land of mining, Radeče is a renowned center of papermaking. In this city below the steep Grajski hrib (“Castle Hill”), a picturesque iron bridge from 1893—now a protected monument of Slovenia’s technical heritage—spans the Sava River. Among the attractive surrounding destinations is the protected valley of the small Sopota River.