This morning, after your ship arrives in the port of Koper, you will meet your guide and driver for the full-day exploration of Slovenia’s highlights.
Your first stop will be the village of Lipica located near the Italian border and surrounded by small pine forests and vineyards. You will be invited to visit the world-famous stud farm and riding school of the Lipizzaner horses, the gracious “four- legged aristocrats”. The stud farm was founded in 1580 by the Austrian Archduke Charles in order to provide horses for the Habsburg army and the court in Vienna and nowadays proudly continues the 400-years-old tradition of breeding and training the famed white horses. The regal Lipizzaner stallions were made famous by the Spanish Riding School in the Vienna’s Hofburg Palace. You will tour the Lipizzaner stables and may enjoy an unforgettable performance of the classical “high school” of dressage riding.
Afterwards, continue to the unique Skocjan Cave. This cave system was formed by the Reka River and has been on UNESCO’s list of world heritage sites since 1986. You will begin your guided tour at the Visitors’ Center and walk to the man-made entry into the Globocak Collapse Doline. From there your guide will take you through the Silent Cave (Tiha jama), the massive cave where the Reka river flows and the Tominc Cave (Tominceva jama), before accessing the surface again. The little hike to the waterfall once you exit the caves is not to be missed! Please note that the temperature inside the cave is around 50 degrees. Please wear appropriate clothing and footwear.
Alternatively, you might want to visit the scenic Predjama Castle – a true masterpiece of medieval architecture. The castle was built under a natural rock arch high up a limestone cliff overlooking the valley. The first castle was actually a small fortress deep inside the cave to make it more inaccessible and easily defended. Over the centuries, the original Gothic castle was redesigned and reshaped many times, gradually moving away from the cave. The present castle was thus called Predjama, meaning ‘in front of the cave’.
On your way back, your guide and driver will take you to the small and charming town of Piran – a true open- air museum of medieval architecture and culture and one of Slovenia’s main tourist attractions. It is believed that the town’s name comes from the Greek word ‘pyr’ meaning ‘fire’ after the fires illuminating the entrance to the harbor to assist the passing ships.
Similar to Koper, Piran too became part of the mighty Venetian Republic in the 10th century and most of the town’s elaborate and beautiful buildings come from this period.
Your driver will take you back to Koper and your ship in time for its sailing.
Exeter Services: Vehicle, Driver & Guide (8 Hours)