Izola (Slovénie)

[TRAVEL BOOK #4] – The Slovenian coast by bicycle

J+ 42, 1620 km.

From Cerej to Sečovlje, the Slovenian coast by bicycle.

After leaving Trieste in particularly busy traffic (and our first involuntary ride on the motorway – we squeezed our butts), the arrival in Slovenia via the cycle lane, hidden in the woods: a real breath of fresh air!

Frontière Italie-Slovénie dans les bois
Border in the woods

Small mountainous country with a green nature full of contrasts: you can imagine that we preferred to go along the coast in Istria rather than to go into the hilly hinterland (even if it is really very tempting)!

So our stay was quite short before continuing to ride towards Croatia. (The Slovenian coast is about 50km long, so it’s quite manageable in one day but we wanted to take our time).

Koper, Izola (and a small detour to Piran) we let ourselves be guided by a very nice cycle path (shared with some scooters) that follows the coast: the Parenzana (an old railway line).

Coucher de Soleil sur Isola au loin
Sunset on Izola
Izola (Slovénie)
Izola (Slovénie)

It’s really well signposted and well developed for cyclists, so much so that when you pass a car, you almost blow its horn!

We decided to climb a bit to get away from the coast to find a place to pitch the tent. A very nice view on the Adriatic Sea and the Secovlje salt marshes to sleep, not bad!

Vue sur le coucher de soleil sur les Salins et la mer Adriatique depuis la tente à Korte (Slovénie)
View of the sunset over the salt flats and the Adriatic Sea from the tent in Korte (Slovenia)
Les salins de Sizzolo
The Sizzolo (Secovlje) salt flats, seen from below !

We met some big jellyfish in the port of Izola.

Méduses dans le port d'Izola
Jellyfish in the port of Izola

Here we are in a country where we understand nothing! Contrary to Italian, it’s impossible to refer to the languages we know to read the signs, to do the shopping and simply to communicate! But we are saved, we know how to say Dober Dan (good morning) and Pivo (beer). And after countless repetitions, we finally know how to say thank you: hvala lepa.

We then had 3 nights of rest in a guesthouse overlooking the Croatian border! Anai was sick with fever and it would have been a bit complicated to pedal and sleep in the tent! To get some fresh air, we went out with the bicycles to explore the surroundings (3 km around)! And pschiiiiiit, first puncture on the counter! Well, easy, the bicycle was not charged and we were not far from our base!

It was time to pay for our stay. To pay by credit card, Toni, our host, came to pick us up by car to take us 2 km away to his restaurant (he has an Eftpos terminal). It is 8.30 pm, the regular customers leaning at the bar are already very happy! We sit down, Toni offers us a drink: “hard” or “soft”, we opt for the hot chocolates (investigation over: they are still the same “microwave danette” as in Italy). Maidda comes to tell us that she is happy to see us and that she is completely drunk. She wonders about the content of our cup, which doesn’t seem to be beer. We end up getting the hard stuff: two shots of an alcohol that Toni pulls out of a big copper bottle. With a smile, he tells us that it’s “homemade, 82 degrees, anticovid eh! Indeed, it’s strong.

Le fameux alcool à 82°
82° alcohol

He sits with us at the table for a while, and advises us to “cut across” to Rijeka rather than follow the coast: it will be less long! Indeed, seen like that. As we hardly manage to finish our shots, Anai jokes that we just have to put it in the bottles to leave. As Toni had disappeared, he comes back just at that moment and hands us a bottle of water: “This is for your trip! With this, you’ll be able to speak all languages”. We take it, thinking that it must be water! The bottle still seems to be closed. It’s only 1h30 later, once back home, that we decide to check it once and for all. We tell you here, in case we forget: it is NOT water. Not at all! Not sure if it passes all the borders.

We let you discover the other photos from Slovenia!

Drapeaux de prières

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