Bovec, Kobarid and Tolmin

Bovec

The Bovec basin is depression among the mountains. During the Ice Age glaciers filled it with enormous amounts of rubble. For a long time, it was filled with water. The Polovnik ridge ( 1471 m ) shuts it off from the south and the Kanin ridge ( 2587 m ) from the north. Kanin boasts the highest ski center in Slovenia. Bovec developed on the high terrace above the Soča. During the  First World War, it was destroyed.

Today Bovec represents the economic center of the upper part of the Soča Valley. It is a small, fast-growing tourist town surrounded by natural beauties offering several possibilities for active holidaying in every season. The number of visitors is constantly growing.

The Boka River springs from the Kanin slope and as a mighty 30 meters wide waterfall immediately drops for 106 m. After a kilometer of torrential current, it flows into the Sofia. Soon after the confluence the Sofia winds around the Polovnik ridge.

The road splits at Žaga. One fork leads through the Učeja valley to the nearby border crossing with Italy and the other among steep wooded slopes through the Soča Valley to the southeast. Trnovo ob Soči is a well-known kayak center. Alpine architecture in this village already shows a strong Mediterranean influence.

Kobarid

Between Trnovo and Kobarid, the Soča runs through a deep gorge. On the east bank is a terraced world with several villages. Behind them rises the 800 m high west wall of Krn ( 2245 m ). Krn is the last Julian mountain with a height of over 2000 m along the Soča short stream and a bloody fortification from World War I.

The Kobarid Museum collection is dedicated to the Isonzo front, while the Italian Ossuary ( Kostnica ) in Kobarid and military cemeteries scattered all over Zgornje Posočje bear witness to the victims of the Isonzo front. At Kobarid ( 234 m ) the valley Staroselska dolina with several nice villages branches off west from the Soča Valley. The road through the valley leads towards the village of Robič and further on to the border crossing with Italy.

From Staro selo up the Nadiža valley, the road leads via the village of Borjana, half of which was in 1952 buried under an avalanche from the slope of Kobariški stol, to Breginj ( 550 m ), almost destroyed by 1976., earthquake. The south slope of Kobariši stol rises above the villages and its ridge stretches far west into Venetia. There are two other villages in the surroundings which, on the other hand, managed to preserve their old cores: Logje and Robidišče.
From Kobarid on, the Soča still flows over snow-white gravel. It is clean and characteristically green, sometimes blue. It flows through a kilometer wide fertile valley which shows a strong influence of the Mediterranean climate.

Tolmin

The Soča Valley widens at Tolmin. The Soča makes a big meander around Bučenica ( 510 m ) and Mrzli vrh ( 590 m ), while the road towards Nova Gorica leads through a dry valley and the village of Volče. Near Tolmin the Soča is joined by the Tolminka, and a bit further downstream, at Most na Soči, by the Idrijca. In the gorge between Kuk ( 638 m ) and Mrzli vrh under Selo pri Volčah, the Sofia is dammed, making thus a 42 hectares large and 32 m deep dam in Most na Soči.

Tolmin is situated on a high terrace between the Soča and the Tolminka rivers. An excellent defense position was even more protected by the Kozlov rob hill ( 426 m ) above the town atop which the Patriarchs of Aquileia built a fortified castle. They were succeeded by the Counts of Gorizia for a while. A silent witness to the severe fighting during WWI is the German Ossuary, while the Tolmin Museum exhibits archaeological and ethnological collections.

Among the steep slopes north of Tolmin lies the Tolminka gorge with its 60 m deep ravines ( Tolminska Korita ). The road above them leads to the glacial valley Zatolmin.

Poljubinj lies on a terrace west of Tolmin. A bit further down is Prapetno with a valley stretching west to Kneža. Further south, on the very shore of the dam, sits Modrej. Most na Soči is built on a rocky promontory at the confluence of the Sofia and the Idrijca rivers. The St. Maver’s Church in Most na Soči is mentioned in 1192 pontifical bull. From the tourist point of view, the town has been developing fast during the last decade.

Above the Zatolmin valley is a wooden church, Javorca, a WWI memorial. The Soča is trapped in a big dam at Most na Soči. Not many people go swimming in the Soča but fishermen, kayak paddlers, and rafts can be seen daily.

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