A Guide to Slovenia’s Logar Valley (Logarska Dolina), Europe’s Best Hidden Gem
Nestled in the Kamnik-Savinja Alps, Slovenia’s Logar Valley (Logarska Dolina) is one of Europe’s most beautiful hidden gems. Discover the best of this stunning valley, including where to stay, the best day hikes and things to do, and plenty more in this guide.
The beautiful alpine valley of Logarska Dolina (Logar Valley), tucked into the foothills of Slovenia's Kamnik-Savinja alps, is probably the quietest and most peaceful place we’ve ever visited in Europe, and one of the best things to do in Slovenia.
It’s also one of the most picturesque, too.
Just one narrow road weaves through the middle of the Logar Valley, slicing through pretty green meadows dotted with stone cottages and rustic farmhouses. All around, imposing peaks tower 2,000m above you, crisscrossed with hiking trails, mountain huts, and stunning vistas.
A sight to behold at any time of year, it was particularly magical during our visit at the start of Autumn, when the last light of the day illuminated the pale mountains beyond with a tapestry of burnt orange, crimson and bright gold. It’s a place we didn’t want to leave, and dream often about returning to!
Whether you’re seeking outdoor adventure (of which Logar has plenty), an immersive natural escape, or simply the chance to relax and unwind in one of Europe’s most wonderful hidden gems, you’ll never regret adding the Logar Valley to your travel plans.
That’s where this guide comes in handy too; we’ve put together all the essential travel information you could need to plan your stay in the Logar Valley, including our tips on hikes, where to stay, what to do, and plenty more.
THE ULTIMATE LOGARSKA DOLINA TRAVEL GUIDE
WHERE IS THE LOGAR VALLEY / LOGARSKA DOLINA?
For a country so small, the Logar Valley feels a million miles away from anywhere.
Nestled in the foothills of the Kamnik Alps in Slovenia, northeast of the capital, Ljubljana, the Logar Valley (Logarska Dolina in Slovenian) is a classic u-shaped glacial valley, with one road in and out. T
he beautiful valley is encircled by peaks ranging between 1,500m - 2,400m, with the tallest, Planjava coming in at 2,394m.
The valley sits close to the border of Austria - we actually crossed the border on our departure, travelling to Bled.
HOW TO GET TO THE LOGAR VALLEY
By far, the easiest way to navigate to and around the Logar Valley is by car, as direct public transport options are few and far between.
We use Rentalcars.com.
FROM LJUBLJANA TO THE LOGAR VALLEY VIA KAMNIK
From Ljubljana, head east towards the Kamnik-Savinja Alps. Drive north on route 104 towards the town of Kamnik. Once through Kamnik, follow route 225 towards the pretty town of Luče, making a sharp left turn in Podlam onto route 924 (this turn is hard to spot, so go slow!).
From here, the road ascends through beautiful forested slopes with incredible views over the valley. There are a few hairpin bends along the way, so take your time and drive cautiously. Before long, you’ll arrive in Luce, joining route 428 and the famous Solčava panoramic road.
This leads you directly into the Logar Valley, and it's here that the best views of the Alps appear. Take your time, enjoying the incredible panoramic views and cute little villages along the way (stop here for the best view!).
All up, the drive from Ljubljana takes around 1.45 hours.
FROM AUSTRIA TO THE LOGAR VALLEY
If you're travelling to the Logar Valley from Austria you'll want to take the Seeberg Highway (B 82) through the village of Bad Eisenkappel, and then connect with the Pavlič Pass (Paulitsch Pass).
It's a very pretty drive, with plenty of bends and deeply forested roads.
Good to know | The nearest petrol station is in nearby Solčava village
READ NEXT | Our Slovenian road trip guide
HOW LONG SHOULD YOU STAY IN THE LOGAR VALLEY?
While the Logar Valley can be visited on a day trip, we recommend booking at least a few nights in the area to really make the most of your time here.
We stayed for two nights/one full day and definitely could have extended this time even more as we only really squeezed in one proper day hike.
If you’re keen to take advantage of the many hikes in the area or to enjoy the peaceful surroundings, we start with at least two full days on your itinerary.
LOGAR VALLEY ENTRY FEE
The Logarska Dolina is a protected National Park, which means you must pay an entry fee to enter the area.
The fees go towards the operation and preservation of the national park, as well as education and implementation of sustainable development programs for the Solčavsko region. More information here.
The entry fee is broken-down by vehicle size:
Motorbike | €5
Car | €7
Van | €8
Bus | €30
The entry fee does not apply if you enter by foot, bicycle (or arrive after dark, as we did). Payment is made as you pass the tollbooth at the entrance of Logarska Dolina itself.
If you’re staying outside of the valley and are entering daily you’ll need to pay each time you enter, hence we recommend staying inside the valley proper.
WHERE TO STAY IN THE LOGAR VALLEY
We stayed at Hotel Plesnik, a 4* hotel right in the heart of the Logar Valley, and with probably the best views over the area.
Plesnik is a traditional family-run hotel that's operated here for generations. It's quaint and typically alpine, but don't expect it to be dated; a recent renovation tastefully updated the rooms to a super modern and luxurious level.
The timber rooms are gorgeous and bright, with all the mod cons and the most comfortable bed we stayed in during our whole trip!
Hotel Plesnik is probably most famous for its incredible wellness centre too, where you can sauna, spa, and relax in your robe to your heart's content while overlooking the entirety of the valley. The spacious restaurant also serves up seasonal cuisine sourced from local suppliers.
Price | £££ / $$$
BOOK | HOTEL PLESNIK
PENZION KMEČKA HIŠA OJSTRICA
In addition to great alpine food, the Ojstrica farmhouse also has rooms available to rent for your Logar stay.
This family run penzion is in a beautiful location right in the foothills of the mountains, and the rooms are warm, cosy, and have everything you need. It’s a wonderful option for those looking for a great stay on a smaller budget!
Price | ££ / $$
BOOK | PENZION KMEČKA HIŠA OJSTRICA
THE BEST THINGS TO DO IN THE LOGAR VALLEY
GO FOR A HIKE
The sheer beauty of the valley and its mountainous surrounds makes hiking one of the best things to do in the Logarska Dolina.
There are plenty of trails ranging cross-crossing all over the region, from short day hikes to challenging multi-day treks that get right into the heart of the Kamnik-Savinja Alps.
A few Logar Valley hikes we recommend are:
HIKE TO SLAP RINKA (RINKA FALLS)
The Logar Valley is home to a number of waterfalls, but it's the beautiful 90m high Slap Rinka right at the end of the valley that is its best-known.
For a short(ish) day hike, follow the easy 10km return hike from Hotel Plesnik to Slap Rinka, which winds through pretty meadows and peaceful forest and gives you a great feel for the local area.
You can also drive through the valley and most of the way to Slap Rinka, and then hike the last 15-minutes from the parking area to the waterfall (this section is relatively steep). Do note that if you're staying outside of the valley, you'll need to pay the €7 car fee to do this.
There's also a cute hut at the top of the Rinka falls too, where you can grab a quick snack or cold refreshment to reward yourself after your hike. Do note that they only accept cash (we didn't have any) - but they were so lovely they poured us a glass of Blueberry Schnapps to enjoy in the sun anyway.
HIKE TO THE KAMNIK SADDLE (KAMNIŠKO SEDLO) HIKE VIA OKREŠELJ
A hard, but rewarding, hike we recommend takes you from the Logar Valley up to the Kamnik Saddle Lodge, via Okreśelj.
Starting at Slap Rinka, expect 3+ hours of hard uphill slog along the Savinja river and through mountain forests towards the summit and the Kamnik Saddle Lodge / Kamniško Sedlo.
In previous years, this trail would also take you past the Frischauf Lodge at Okrešelj (an hour past Slap Rinka). Unfortunately the lodge, a hugely popular summer hiking rest stop, burned down in 2019. At the time of writing, it's still under construction and due to be completed in 2022.
From Okreśelj, you'll continue following the signs to Kamniško Sedlo and the summit, where you can rest your legs and enjoy the view of the Logar Valley to the north and the beautiful Brana and Planja mountains to the east and west.
Note | This is a difficult hike that requires a level of technical knowledge and some gear (helmets, gloves, hiking poles). Also Kamnik Saddle Lodge is cash only, so plan accordingly.
THE HIKE FROM LOGARSKA DOLINA TO KOČA NA KLEMENČI JAMA HUT (KLEMENČI JAMI)
This popular hike departs near Hotel Plesnik and weaves up through forested mountains and meadows to the Klemenškova planina, where the Klemenči Jama Hut /tourist farm is located.
The hike itself is a pretty one, and once you reach the hut, you're rewarded with views over the surrounding mountains (the area is basically flanked on all sides) and with beautiful vistas back over the Logarska valley and beyond too.
The hike is relatively easy and should take about 1.5hours round trip (add extra time for enjoying the views and some food at the hut, of course!). The hut serves food seasonally, so do check whether it's open during your intended visit.
PEDAL THROUGH THE LOGAR VALLEY
In addition to all the hiking on offer, there are plenty of cycling trails around the Logar Valley too.
Whether it's a gentle cycle through the valley you're after, or a slightly more strenuous — but absolutely worth it — pedal along the Solčava panoramic drive, the roads are in great condition and perfect for all levels.
For the keen cyclists, you can cycle from the Logar Valley to the Alpine marathon route around the Kamnik-Savinja alps, or to Bad Eisenkappel and the nearby Austrian border where you can join up with cycling routes here.
GRAB LUNCH AT OJSTRICA FARMHOUSE / PENZION KMEČKA HIŠA OJSTRICA
Right at the heart of the Logar Valley, surrounded by the mountain giants of the Kamnik-Savinja alps, lies the Penzion Kmečka Hiša Ojstrica Farmhouse; a wonderful place to take pause and enjoy a long, soul-filling lunch after your day's hiking.
We stopped here for lunch after our Slap Rinka hike on an unseasonably warm day in late October, and the sun-drenched outdoor terrace was the perfect accompaniment to our tasty food.
The food in this region is hearty and representative of the mountain surroundings, and the Penzion serves up this traditional local fare with love. Our wild mushroom soup with buckwheat is a meal we still dream about to this day.
DRIVE THE SOLČAVA PANORAMIC ROAD
The Solčava Panoramic Road that leads into, and surrounds, the Logar Valley is one of the most beautiful parts of the entire region.
This 37km road makes for one of the best drives in Slovenia, weaving through cute little villages and taking in stunning views over the Kamnik-Savinja Alps and the valley below.
There are plenty of viewpoints and places of interest, like the Church of St Mary of the Snows, Church of the Holy Spirit or the Lintver Dragon monument, to stop at (all clearly signposted), plus lovely tourist farms to stay at or pick up some fresh local produce.
While most opt to drive the Solčava Panoramic Road, the most popular and central 21km section of the route is also a favourite amongst cyclists and hikers alike. However you choose to navigate it, it’s best travelled on a clear, sunny day when visibility is at its best!
VISIT ROBANOV KOT
The Robanov Kot Valley that neighbours the Logar Valley takes its name from one of Slovenia's oldest farms, Roban, which has been operating for more than 800 years.
The tranquil valley is somewhat of a hidden gem in the region; stunningly beautiful and even more sparsely inhabited than the better-known Logarska Dolina. Beyond the main entrance, access to the valley is via hike or bike, and the trail winds you through idyllic meadows, dense mountain forest and up to the Robanov Planina, where the Roban mountain dairy operates in the summer season.
It makes for a pleasant, peaceful day hike and is a great option for those looking to experience the beauty of the region without the summer crowds of the Logar Valley, and those with young families too.
If you get hungry, there's the Govc-Vršnik tourist farm, or homemade treats up at the Roban Dairy farm between July and August too.
To get to the Robanov Kot hiking trail start, leave the Logar Valley in the direction of Solčava village, then turn right at the signed turn. The drive should take about 10 minutes.
DISCOVER THE CULTURAL HERITAGE OF LOGARSKA DOLINA
The Logar Valley's ethnographic trail takes in the local beauty of the area, as well as some key cultural and historical sights too, like the Savinja river source, small museums dedicated to the local production history in the area, hunting towers and traditional wooden alpine storage huts. The trail also passes through the children's Fairy Tale forest and is home to many interesting local myths
The hike to Slap Rinka forms part of this trail (it ends at the falls), and the whole ethnographic trail can be taken in about 3 hours of gentle walking (one way).
RELAX AT HOTEL PLESNIK
Their dreamy wellness centre overlooks the stunning valley and peaks, and there are a multitude of different steam rooms, saunas, pools, spas and general relaxation spaces - each better than the last.
It's here that we spent most of our time (while not hiking, of course), moving from sauna to spa, before a quick dip in the natural pool (it was freezing), and then repeating the whole process again. It was basically the dream. The Hotel’s wellness programmes also include yoga and meditation for relaxation.
PARAGLIDE OVER THE LOGAR VALLEY
In our opinion, the only thing better than admiring the Logar Valley from atop a mountain is the birds-eye view you get when sailing through the skies above it in a tandem paragliding!
This 10—15-minute paragliding flight launches you into the heavens, where you can admire the beautiful alpine valleys and towering peaks from a totally new, unique perspective.
Basically, it's a dang epic thing to do in the Logar Valley, and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity you should absolutely consider doing. Flights depart year-round and cost €90 per person.
More info here.
ENJOY WINTER FUN
It might be a summer hiking Mecca, but when the mercury begins to drop, Logarska Dolina transforms into a winter wonderland perfect for snowy adventures.
The valley is an ideal place for cross-country skiing, with over 13km of trail and pistes marked out for everyone from beginners to experts. There's also a sledding area for young families near the church, and an Alpine skiing area is just 10-minutes drive away in Luče.
For the super adventurous, there are also plenty of waterfalls in the valley that you can ice-climb during winter, the most picturesque of which can be found at Palenk Waterfall tucked behind Hotel Plesnik.
TRAVEL INSURANCE | STAY SAFE IN SLOVENIA
We firmly believe that if you can't afford travel insurance, you really can't afford to travel. As the current pandemic has taught many; things can go wrong anywhere in the world and insurance is often the only way of mitigating any issues with minimal expense or stress for you.
For all travellers | HeyMondo - COVID-19 coverage, comprehensive travel + medical insurance, an app with 24-hour medical support, and no out of pocket fees. *Get 5% off your policy by booking through our link here.
For digital nomads | SafetyWing - COVID-19 coverage, comprehensive travel & medical, and policies can be purchased while already abroad.
Car Insurance | Insurance4CarHire - a great annual car insurance policy
*In normal times, we recommend using World Nomads travel insurance, but unfortunately they're not currently covering COVID-19 related claims.
SLOVENIA TRAVEL ESSENTIALS
We recommend bringing the following items with you on your Slovenia travels:
Reusable water bottle | We use the Grayl water purification bottles which allow us to fill up from any water source, anywhere in the world (including train taps!) - plus Slovenia’s water is clean, fresh, and delicious!
Biodegradable Wet Wipes | Keep clean on hikes without destroying the planet
Hand sanitiser | not something we’d actually recommend normally, but when hiking it can be a bloody great investment
READ | Check out our eco-friendly packing guide to travel through Slovenia consciously and comfortably
PLANNING A TRIP TO SLOVENIA SOON?
Check our these essential posts to help you have the best Slovenia trip ever:
THE BEST OF SLOVENIA | 14 incredible things to see and do in Slovenia, the best of Lake Bled, and our ultimate Slovenia travel guide with everything you need to plan your trip
SLOVENIA ROAD TRIP | Our complete Slovenia road trip guide
VRSIC PASS | Our guide to Slovenia’s highest mountain pass
ZELENCI NATURE RESERVE | A quick guide to beautiful Zelenci
TRAVEL INSURANCE | Don’t leave home without travel insurance (seriously, don’t!). Click here to get the best deals with World Nomads, our trusted travel insurance provider
PHOTOGRAPHY | Love our photography? Wondering what gear we use to get all of our photos around the world? Click here to view our detailed photography gear guide, as well as our top travel photography tips!
PLAN YOUR SLOVENIA TRIP WITH OUR GUIDES
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