A WEEKEND GETAWAY: PODČETRTEK
Since we come from beautiful country called SLOVEnia we have decided not to explore only foreign lands but to become “tourists” in our own as well. And we’ll be glad if we inspire you to ever visit this little chicken-shaped country (Yep. If you don’t believe, google it 🙂 ).
So, since my feet are usually cold (oh, who am I kidding, feet and everything else) and Bojan is recuperating from an injury and therefore not on bike yet I have managed to convince him to spend a weekend in saunas (usually he complains it is impossible to breath in there 🙂 ) In Slovenia there are numerous Spas & Wellness Centers and we headed to one of the best, Terme Olimia in Podčetrtek, which is located in the east of Slovenia.
HERE ARE 5 THINGS YOU SHOULDN’T MISS WHILE IN PODČETRTEK
This is deer& mouflon farm with accommodation, restaurant, private wellness and a place to held weddings. Actually I didn’t know the later so when we were checking-in I casually mentioned that is so charming that is perfect for a wedding and Bojan gulped. Twice. 😀 The place is really beautiful, local cuisine is delicious and everybody super friendly. It is a family-oriented business which I really liked and we were chatting happily with grandma who worked in their shop with local specialties. I couldn’t resist a hand made cookie bigger than my palm 🙂 There is also a planetarium, wine shop and of course, best of all, groups of animals who wander freely around and if you call them they willingly come to take a bite of a corn and you can easily pet them.
In addition to their main ranch they have also smaller gesthouse in the middle of the village, called Pod Grebenom where there are nice, cozy rooms and super cute teahouse/coffee house.
Simple, local, kind and professional and what is for us really important – pet friendly. Nano had fun. And of course, his nose was all the time in the air due to nearby deer 😀
This superb Spa& Wellness Center offers everything from indoor & outdoor pools, two sauna complexes (largest in Slovenia) with whirlpools, massages and spa programs. It’s easy to spend a day there…or a week 🙂 We bought whole day ticket for Wellness Orhidelia (40€) and despite that it was a busy weekend and we couldn’t get “our own” deckchairs (mainly due to those who leave towels on them whole day 😀 ) it didn’t feel crowded and it was really relaxing atmosphere. We have decided that next time we will treat ourselves with a night in their Hotel Sotelia (where one night costs approximately ten times more than our usual hostels 😛 ) to fully spoil ourselves.
MONASTERY AND A CHOCOLATE SHOP
In the village of Olimje there is a Baroque church with the adjacent monastery which can definitely look at least as great as Eiffel tower at Instagram photos 🙂 The friary is inhabited and run by the friars of the Order of the Friars Minor Conventual (Minorites). Part of monastery that I was most interested in was an old pharmacy from 17th century which is one of the oldest in Europe and its herbal garden in front of monastery. If there is a group visit, friar guides you around but since we were alone, I became tourist guide and improvised 🙂 In the “new part” of the pharmacy there is also a shop with herbal teas and tinctures made by friars. Recommended.
Nearby the monastery there is a chocolate shop with mouthwatering sweets. Pralines that we had bought vanished before we managed to drink coffee at Pod Grebenom.
Another great property worth visiting, where beside accommodation there is a restaurant with delicious food and they offer different activities, including golf and wine tasting. We planned to stay here but since Nano wouldn’t be able to go with us in this case we chose Jelenov greben instead. Anyhow, there are roumors that a room or two will be soon pet-friendly. Lets keep our paws crossed! 😉 Anyway we stayed here for dinner and it was…yummy, yummy, yummy. And wallet friendly 🙂
The region offers many options to explore so take your time and enjoy experience. Few of them are:
Museum of old farm equipment
The Kozjansko Regional Park – biosphere reserve under the protection of UNESCO
And…not far away is also a town Rogaška Slatina (again with their own Spa and Medical Center), famous also by their high quality crystal which can be found also in White House.
You can find more about these sights also here.