Land of Forests

Slovenia = the green heart of Europe 💚

By Slovenian Tourist Board

Forest view from Kostel by Jošt GantarSlovenian Tourist Board

Slovenia is the first country in the world to be declared a Global Green Destination. Forests cover about 60 per cent of its territory. More than one third of the country has been incorporated into the EU network of protected areas, Natura 2000. 

As many as 48 major protected natural areas and nature parks can be found in Slovenia, including 52 natural reserves, and 1,217 natural monuments. With more than 22,000 animal and plant species, Slovenia is one of the most biodiversity-rich countries in Europe.  Green, which I love.

The story of green Slovenia

Tree Top Walk in Rogla by Unitur d.o.o., photo: Iztok MedjaSlovenian Tourist Board

Interesting facts

🌲 The overall area of Slovenian virgin forests amounts to the equivalent of 500 football fields. The Snežnik-Ždrocle Forest Reserve and the Krokar Virgin Forest were entered on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Autumn forest in Bela Krajina by Jacob RiglinSlovenian Tourist Board

🌲 Forests cover some 60 per cent of the country, making Slovenia one of the four most forested countries in Europe. Almost every fourth Slovenian owns a forest. Forest cover is even greater in the Kočevsko region, where over 80 per cent is covered by  forest.

Family trip to Lovrenška jezera by CJ STUDIO d.o.o., photo Ciril JazbecSlovenian Tourist Board

🌲 With nine tonnes of accumulated carbon dioxide per hectare a year, Slovenian forests are European record holders in CO2 absorption.

Family trip to Lovrenška jezera by CJ STUDIO d.o.o., photo Ciril JazbecSlovenian Tourist Board

🌲 Only a few tens of kilometres away from the Slovenian capital Ljubljana, a former European Green Capital, you can find yourself in the midst of pristine forests. Virgin forests. There are 14 virgin forests in Slovenia and their total area amounts to 540 hectares.

Kočevje forests by Ciril JazbecSlovenian Tourist Board

Primeval beech forests on the UNESCO List

Two Slovenian forest reserves, the Krokar Virgin Forest and the Snežnik-Ždrocle Forest Reserve, are part of the primeval beech forests of the Carpathians and other European regions, which are on the UNESCO List of World Heritage Sites. These forests are some of the best-preserved parts of beech forests, which play a crucial role in the impact and development of beech ecosystems in Europe and will continue to do so in the future.

The Krokar Virgin Forest is part of the Kočevsko forests situated on the edge of the Kolpa River valley. The Kočevsko is considered the most forested region in Slovenia as forests cover more than 90 per cent of the entire area. The Krokar Virgin Forest is particularly mysterious, and people can experience its precious ecosystem only from afar, by taking a walk along the maintained Borovec nature trail.

Bear watching in Kočevje forest by CJ STUDIO d.o.o., photo Ciril JazbecSlovenian Tourist Board

The ancient beech trees of the Snežnik-Ždrocle Forest Reserve can be found deep in the Snežnik forests under the most majestic mountain in southern Slovenia, and they are also special due to their unusual growing conditions, having close proximity to the sea and growing on the upper tree line.

Gorjanci Hills by Andrej TarfilaSlovenian Tourist Board

On Slovenia’s southern border in the Dolenjska region, the impressive Gorjanci Hills can be found, which are covered with centuries-old deciduous forests. A virgin beech forest extends under its highest point, Trdinov vrh, a popular hiking destination. Among the ancient beeches, sycamore, Norway maple and mountain ash can also be found.

At the other end of Slovenia, in the middle of the extensive Pohorje Hills, the Šumik Virgin Forest stretches for 19 hectares along the Lobnica Stream. This pristine Pohorje forest consists of age-old beeches, spruces and firs, while experts can also find numerous rare plants here. The Veliki Šumik and Mali Šumik waterfalls are particularly picturesque sights, too.

Črno jezero lake, Pohorje by Jošt GantarSlovenian Tourist Board

🌳 Slovenian virgin forests 🌳

🍃 Krokar 
🍃 Prelesnikova koliševka 
🍃 Pečka 
🍃 Strmec 
🍃 Kopa 
🍃 Rajhenavski Rog 
🍃 Bukov vrh 
🍃 Ždrocle 
🍃 Gorjanci-Trdinov vrh 
🍃 Krakovo
🍃 Belinovec
🍃 Donačka gora
🍃 Šumik

Zajamniki by Ciril JazbecSlovenian Tourist Board

Slovenians and forest

Slovenians have always been closely connected with forests and woods, which provided work and shelter. Numerous towns in Slovenia maintain the tradition of their ancestors when it comes to building houses or producing useful and decorative products from wood, such as the Ribnica woodenware, uniquely painted beehive panels, wicker baskets made of tree branches and other things.

Credits: Story

 ✏️ Story by: Slovenian Tourist Board
 📷 Photography by: Ciril Jazbec & Tent Studio

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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