Day 253 – SLOVENIA and ITALY: Pliskovica to near Cormons


A somewhat suitable end to Peter and I’s trek across the karst region of Slovenia, was a day of visiting cemeteries. We found many along our route, two of which were the resting places of more than 10,000 soldiers who died on the Socho (Isonzo) Front in Slovenia during the First World War from 1915 to 1917.

10,000 soldiers buried in Gorjansko cemetary, Slovenia

In the Brje pri Komnu cemetery, 2,400 soldiers who died in the Brje military hospital are buried. In the Gorjansko cemetary 10,000 soldiers of various nationalities are buried.

In Nova Gorica, we visited an old Jewish cemetery. Unlike the other two cemeteries, this one is not sign posted, and there is no obvious path to the entrance. It seems almost forgotten.

Jewish cemetary in Nova Gorica, Slovenia

On a lighter note, we had our hardest climb of these four days today. 150m pretty much straight up. The church at the top made for a good reward for the hard work.

Church tower near Miran, Slovenia

And how’s this for a big bridge? The biggest stone arch in the world in Nova Gorica. This arch has been destroyed twice, but has also been rebuilt twice. Jolly good.

Biggest stone arch in the world, Nova Gorica, Slovenia

Like all good things, our trek over the karst by recumbent bike had to come to an end. Peter escorted me to the border with Italy and we said our farewells.

I feel very privileged to have cycled with Peter for these four days. He is very well learned on the history and geography of the region, and a pleasure to be with. I had become accustomed to being able to forget about the cycling, and just enjoying the surroundings – something that is hard to do when you have no one to talk to on the road.

For Peter’s version of events, take a look here. In Slovenian, but he takes great photos.

So thank you Peter for taking the time to cycle with me in Slovenia. Thank you for arranging accommodation and connecting me with interesting people along the way. I hope we can cycle together again one day. Perhaps in New Zealand even?

Fern frond on the West Coast of New Zealand / シダ

Fern frond on the West Coast of New Zealand


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11 thoughts on “Day 253 – SLOVENIA and ITALY: Pliskovica to near Cormons

  • Lars Otto

    Hi Rob.

    What a great adventure you have had so far. I´m glad to see that most people over the world are friendly, contrary to common belief. By "exposing" that you help make the world a better place.It´s been a real adventure for me as well to follow your journey the last two months. That made me finally decide to buy a Street machine and explore the roads the recumbent way myself.

    What a fantastic bike.

    Why not head your bike towards Norway? I´ll show you around in my part of this beautiful but hilly country. It will remind you alot of your home country with fjords, glaciers and wild forests. If not, good luck on the rest of your trip.

  • Daniel

    Rob, I can absolutely and full-heartedly recommend cycling Norway! The folks there are really nice (and BTW don't drink much alcohol due to the high price :-). When you go there, ride on the Rallarvejen, it's just breathtaking! I've been cycling there 2 years ago with my upright MTB. There's a nice website of a wondeful cycling tour: vikingtour.no

    Lars: One sponsor of the the VikingTour actually sells recumbents: http://www.pedalor.no/ I don't know whether there are many others "up there" (stupid phrase). Lutz is a nice guy with a lovely son. I can also recommend the German "used recumbent list" (http://hpv.org/shop/gebraucht/) if you understand German. There are some SMGT(e)s on it right now. And if you want to test first, there's a great event taking place here at the end of April: http://www.spezialradmesse.de (with English version). Only if you have the time, will and means to get there, of course. Where exactly in Norway do you come from?

  • akimoto

    Hello Jollynut,

    I have to make a compliment. Your photos are the best. If you find the time, just write one or two sentences why your pictures are more brilliant than in other travel blogs.

    Good to see that you had a great time in croatia and slovenia. Now you are in Italy and Swiss is only a couple of days away.

    Have fun

    Akimoto

  • Aunty Jenny

    Hey Rob. Photos are great as usual. Fancy being in Italy! You lucky thing!! As you know, i have started a new job, and one of the other ladies who started at the same time has seen your blog! She likes it! How crazy is that. Actually the four other people who started the job the same time as I did, are really nice. I'm the oldest by 14 years, but they seem to be managing to put up with me! After 2 weeks training, my head hurts, and I'm sure nothing more can be stuffed in there. You have been seeing some amazing places lately. All that amazing history. By the way, did you here that Lil's car got crashed into recently? She has only had it a couple of months. Luckily it wasn't her fault, but it is going to cost $2600, almost the cost of the car. At least she doesn't have to pay. How much time do you think you will take going thru Italy? You are nearly at your semi journey's end. You will probably feel strange not biking everyday.

  • Rob Thomson Post author

    Akimoto, one thing I have learned is that often the quality of the photos has little to do with the camera. The compact cameras these days take some really good shots. Also, taming white balance is a must.

    But really, a lot of the time the photos are a fluke.

  • Lars Otto

    Hi Daniel, I just got my bike from Lutz. Funny that you know him. But then he is the only recumbent dealer in Norway, and he is german. Here in Trondheim there are only four recumbent riders, including me. If you ever pass Trondheim contact on: lars_eide70@yahoo.no

  • Rob Thomson Post author

    Lars, Norway is definitely on my list of places to cycle. When that will be however, I don't know. Perhaps I could try it out in winter with spiked tyres. Looks like summer may be full of summer camp. When is the latest that you can comfortably cycle there in Norway (for both north and south of the country)?

  • Rob Thomson Post author

    Aunty Jenny, all going well, I have until the end of this month to be in Switzerland for the start of the spring camps. So I'll probably take it easy through Italy. Unless of course the pull of the mountains gets too tough.

  • Lars Otto

    I suppose you could bike comfortably till october(november)in the south. After that you could be stuck in snowblizzards in the mountains.If you are cycling on the westcoast you can be comfortable all year, but you will get wet(that´s maybe uncomfortable for you) and have daylight for only 6 hours. Up north it gets dark all day, but I have met a few crazy dutch and german bikers going up north in the darkest period. It all depends on what you mean by comfortable. I bike all year around my city(sealevel), but it´s worse once you gain some altitude.

    Take everything I say with a pinch of salt as I haven´t done much winter cycling in other parts of the country at wintertime. Norway has a very variable climate from north- south and east-west. For info on routes: http://www.bike-norway.com/default.asp?lang=eng
    Rallarveien that Daniel mentions :www.finse1222.no/Engelsk/rallar.htm

  • Daniel

    @Lars: I've been in Trondheim 2 years ago on my Tour to and in Norway but I didn't take the time for getting to know the city as I did in Bergen.

    Maybe we can arrange something to get Rob to Norway for a week. I've already mentioned the VikingTour. This year it's takes place 21.-27. July. Lutz and Geir, the organizer of the tour, are good friends as far as I can tell. And Lutz is always interested in having some recumbent riders with the tour. So I think there's quite a potential in that. Rob, maybe you want to check the route first under http://www.vikingtour.no – they'll transport all the luggage for you which is really quite handy in that fjordy terrain. What do you think about it?