Mountains and Lakes Hut-to-Hut

HIKING TOUR · SELF-GUIDED

Mountains & Lakes Hut-to-Hut

Long-distance Hike Amidst Sky-Piercing Summits and Mirroring Lakes

Hut-to-Hut Hike in the Julian Alps & Lakeside Relax

LJUBLJANA · TRIGLAV NATIONAL PARK · JULIAN ALPS · SEVEN TRIGLAV LAKES · LAKES BLED & BOHINJ

Experience a 7-day Hut-to-hut hiking journey in the Julian Alps, the northwestern corner of Slovenia with the best features of the Triglav National Park, the Julian Alps and the Via Alpina Trail. Feel the vibe of the friendly capital city Ljubljana. Discover dense spruce & larch forests of the Pokljuka Plateau, the high alpine karst of the Seven Triglav Lakes Valley, Slovenia’s most photogenic lakes Bled and Bohinj. Enjoy the high mountain traverse over the rough and rocky terrain of the highest Slovenian peaks, optionally climb Mount Triglav summit. Taste traditional Slovenian mountain food topped with overnighting in traditional mountain huts. 

Prefer a guided hut-to-hut trip? Check this one!

Hiker during a hiking trip in Slovenia, Julian Alps

Day 1: Hills and parks of Ljubljana

Upon arrival at Ljubljana, you’ll meet your trip designer to talk through the details of your upcoming adventure, then hit the town and recommended restaurants.

Explore the city on foot, but crawl Ljubljana’s lush parks, historic trails and nearby hills by bike to feel it’s the vibe. Even if you’re not a fan of urban life, you’ll love countless churches, parks, monuments and architectural buildings within the old town. Walk over the three bridges, the food market and the tree-lined road to finally reach the castle hill with the best panorama of Ljubljana. Its oldest part is just below the Ljubljana castle, whereas the newer part is nestled across the numerous bridges over the Ljubljanica River, from the Dragon Bridge to the Cobbler’s Bridge. By the waterfront alongside both riverbanks are many terrace cafes, where you can enjoy some of the best coffee and finest wines in the country with the best view of the castle.

Immerse yourself in the city life, hike some of the nearby hills where the locals jog their afternoons away or enjoy the traditional street theatre or summer festivals illuminated at night, all within walking distance of your overnight location.

Overnight: 3* hotel in Ljubljana

 

Day 2: Hike the Pokljuka Plateau lookout ridge

In the morning you’ll be taken from Ljubljana to the trailhead on the Pokljuka Plateau in the Triglav National Park – your starting point for the long days of hiking through the heart of the Julian Alps, past beautiful mountains and lakes, from one refuge to the next.

Lonely, but well-trodden trails with a gentle incline lead past secluded mountain meadows above Pokljuka, where you can visit local shepherds and sample some of their exceptionally tasty, freshly-made dairy products. Further on you’ll hike in the pristine landscape of the Julian Alps, where you’ll have amazing panoramas at hand. A 360 view gives the Krma Valley, the valley of the Lakes Bled and Bohinj, as well as the Karavanke and Kamnik-Savinja Alps and the mountains above Bohinj.

You’ll unload your backpack at the hut where you’ll spend the night and go chase the lookouts along the numerous summits on the ridge above the hut, with several ascend and descend options to match your fitness level best.

Hiking: 9 km / elevation gain +730 m, -400 m / approx. 5 hours (+ optional extensions)
Overnight: mountain hut with shared rooms 1/20 and shared washroom
Transfer: 1 hour

 

Day 3: Hike to the central Julian Alps

This morning you’ll navigate west, towards the Central Julian Alps and spend most of the day hiking single trails along the mountainsides. You’ll be surrounded by majestic mountains, limestone walls, serene meadows, with numerous side trip options to nearby peaks with the perfect view of Mt. Triglav, jagged ridges and valleys.

Just before reaching the Vodnik mountain hut on Velo polje, you’ll hike the most fascinating part of the tour. It stretches across the southern slopes of Mount Tosc and offers views all the way to the mountains rising above the Soca river.

Tonight’s mountain hut, along with all others on your way, is owned by the Slovenian Mountain Club, yet looked after by generations of local families and friends since the late 19th century. So you’ll get to experience its long and rich tradition.

Hiking: 11 km / elevation +650 m, -400 m / approx. 5 hours
Overnight: mountain hut with private or shared rooms 1/2, 1/4, 1/6 and 1/10 and shared washroom

 

Day 4: Hike the Seven Triglav Lakes Valley

From a cosy mountain hut underneath Mt. Triglav, right in the heart of the Julian Alps, you’ll either hike towards Triglav or beneath it.

The self-guided mount Triglav climb, to conquer Slovenia’s highest summit, only 2864 meters (9,400 ft) above sea level, mustn’t be underestimated as the path along the ridge is very exposed with the gaps reaching a few hundred metres on both sides. Moreover, the weather can make the climb trickier, thus having a guide for the summit climb is recommended. Whether a guided Mt Triglav climb is of your interests, inform us to arrange it for you.

On the other hand, the path below Triglav leads across the alpine pasture Velo Polje, with a small cheese dairy. It is the last in the Bohinj’s cheese tour, nestled under the stunning summit of Miselj Vrh. From here on you’ll walk on rocks and gravel on barren alpine terrain, perhaps even spot edelweiss flowers or a herd of alpine ibexes. You’ll cross the ‘lunar surface’ of the Hribarice Plateau, descend the Valley of the Seven Triglav Lakes along the pleasantly undulating trail with beautiful but small lakes. Note that going in considered an offence. Thus rather put your feet up and enjoy the sinkholes and karrens with other karstic formations instead.

Reach the hut for the night next to Double Lake, where you’ll enjoy a well-deserved beer (or schnapps).

Hiking: 14 km / elevation +700 m, -750 m / approx. 7 hours (+ optional side trip)
Overnight: mountain hut with private or shared rooms 1/2, 1/4, and 1/6 and shared washroom

 

Day 5: Hike the mountain pastures above Bohinj

Begin the day with a breath of fresh air over an early morning coffee on the shore of the Double Lake, to savour the little silent moments one can only experience here. Later on, you’ll leave the gravel trails and limestone paths behind for the greener alpine pastures, where you’ll meet hikers coming from Lake Bohinj to enjoying their share of the mountain food and idyllic huts, farms and grazing livestock.

After a long descent, you will reach Lake Bohinj – an absolute jewel and a gift of nature, located at the end of a dead-end valley within the Triglav National Park. At its beach, it is finally time for a well deserved, refreshing summer swim in the most beautiful Slovenian lake.

Lake Bohinj and its surroundings are perfect for paddling, biking, hiking, rock climbing horseback riding or chilling in a hammock. If you wish to spend a couple of relaxing days of this hiking trip in this alpine paradise inform us to arrange it for you.

To continue to Lake Bled, hop on the bus and spend your last two nights there.

Hiking: 16 km / elevation +755 m, -1600 m / approx. 6 hours
Overnight: 3* hotel or local guesthouse in Bled
Transfer: local bus, hourly departures, duration: 40 min

 

Day 6: Explore the legends of Lake Bled

Spend the day as you fancy. Yet note that you’ll wake up just a few steps away from one of the most picturesque continental lakes in the World, which is Slovenia’s main attraction, the very Lake Bled. Thus here, an early start is best to explore its most popular highlights, such as Bled Castle and Bled Island. Whereas any time in the day is great for sports activities like hiking and biking.

Not to miss out, opt for a nice bike ride through small countryside villages, a walk through the famous Vintgar Gorge and a stunning viewpoint above the lake to notice the island’s church. There legend has it that a widow consecrated a new bell to the church in memory of her adored husband, but it was dropped into the lake. If you’d like to tackle it, swim, row or stand-up-paddle to the island. Leave before dark though, as only the fairies can dance the night away here.

In the evening enjoy the town’s colourful lighting and explore numerous choices for a gourmet dinner, as some of the countries finest restaurants are located here.

Overnight: 3* hotel or local guesthouse in Bled

 

Day 7: Thank you and welcome back

After a hearty breakfast, your hut-to-hut hiking adventure in the Julian Alps ends. Before leaving Slovenia, steal the last moment for a peaceful morning swim in Lake Bled to keep you warm at heart until next time.

Inclusions

Exclusions

  • Arrival at Ljubljana and departure from Bled.
  • Meals and drinks not specified in the Inclusions.
  • Travel insurance.
  • Personal expenses.
  • Other services not specified in the Inclusions.

Optional

  • Single traveler supplement: 400 €

Activity Level 3 – MODERATE hiking

Expect to walk 5-7 hours per day, with 10-15 km (6-10 miles) in distance and up to 1000 m (3300 ft) of elevation gain on the hardest day. It might not sound much, but so far no one has ever said that it was too easy. Therefore you must be in reasonable shape and have some hiking experience to fully enjoy this tour.

 

What are the trails like?

The trails are uneven, sometimes rocky, narrow, and with loose gravel. Moreover, you will need to overcome several steep sections on the uphills as well as on the downhills. On some days you will hike partly in the shade of a forest, on others above the treeline, but mostly without any shelter along the way.

Our Mountains & Lakes Hut-to-Hut hiking tour can only be done when the mountain huts in the central Julian Alps are open. They usually open in the last week of June and remain open until late September. The first half of July and September generally see few fellow hikers. August is the peak month and the trails & huts are busy. The temperatures in September start decreasing, especially when the sun sets.

What is the weather usually like?

Weather can change a lot. On the highest peaks, it can snow even in summer (although it is not very common). If the weather is nice it can be very hot. Even above 30 deg C (90 deg F), which is a must for sunscreen, sunglasses, and a hat (for shade)! If the weather is bad and windy you will need really warm clothes. Be prepared for temperatures as low as 0 deg C and 32 deg F. This does not mean you have to bring a thick down jacket and thermal pants, but just keep in mind that it can get cold and unpleasant. Check our recommended packing list.

We also recommend having a thin (lightweight) layer to cover your arms, legs, and the back of your neck to prevent sunburns.

Of course, don’t forget your swimsuit and a small towel! Lakes and rivers are calling for a refreshing swim!

Essential read: our Best time to hike in Slovenia blog post.

You will spend three nights in typical Slovenian mountain huts and 3 nights in centrally located 3* hotels or family-run B&B’s:

Hotel example:
Ljubljana: City Hotel***
Bled: Garni Hotel Berc***

What are the mountain huts like?

The huts in the Slovenian Alps are quite basic, but they offer everything a hiker needs: food, drinks, and accommodation. Most of the huts are accessible only by helicopter (no roads). Thus food supply is limited, so expect simple menus of mountain food like different stews (vegetable or with meat), pasta, and sausages. They also sell chocolate, soft drinks, water, beer etc. The usual breakfast would be eggs, ham, cheese, butter, jam… 

The huts we use on this hiking tour have normal flush toilets. Two of them have running (drinking) water, and sometimes even hot showers.

Expect to share a room, toilets, bathrooms, or washrooms. Rooms are from 4 to 12 beds. When available, we will book private rooms.

Domen Strle
Slotrips trip designer & guide

Domen Strle, Slotrips trip designer and guide

As a kid, I was introduced to the beauty of mountaineering through mountain summer camps with my local alpine club, where I established my love and respect for nature. I have since become an active member of the club, an alpinist, a recreational mountain biker, a ski mountaineering enthusiast, and a certified hiking guide. This has enabled me to share my fondness for the mountains with others. These days, I spend an equal amount of time exploring not only rugged mountains but also local history & culture, and good food. Ultimately, I have blended my passion, knowledge, and skills into a profession that I love and enjoy.

Meet the team

“My wife and I hiked the Laugavegur trail in Iceland last summer

A hut-to-hut hike – and absolutely loved it. For our honeymoon, we were determined to find another hut-to-hut hike in a new destination. Our research led us to Slovenia and the Julian Alps. After some research, we reached out to Slotrips and couldn’t be happier we did. Domen and team were polite, professional, fluent in English and did an incredible job customizing our trip. In total, we exchanged more emails than I can count; Slotrips asked thoughtful questions, responded to all of ours in a very timely fashion, and ultimately sent us on *the perfect* honeymoon adventure. While my wife and I don’t typically visit the same country twice before trying someplace new, I had such a wonderful experience in Slovenia and with Slotrips that I may have to make an exception!”

Seth List
from USA

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How do your self-guided tours work?

You will be surprised! We have done (and are still doing) a ton of work to make sure your independent active holidays in Slovenia (and across the borders) are flawless, fun, and hassle-free. With the implementation of modern technology and our extensive local knowledge, we believe we are on the right way of delivering exceptional hiking & biking experiences that you are able to enjoy at your own pace. Read more about our “self-guided added value”.

What to bring for this walking tour?

Check our recommended packing list.

Do I need a sleeping bag?

Not necessarily. The huts provide blankets and one-time-use paper sheets. However, we highly recommend bringing a lightweight cotton sleeping liner (travel sheet), because you’ll sleep better on it and avoid making unnecessary waste and help preserve some trees. 

Is luggage transfer between the mountain huts possible?

No. You will need to carry your belongings throughout the entire hiking tour. Yet your main luggage will be stored at the hotel in which you’ll stay after the hiking tour.

Can I swim in the Triglav lakes?

No! The lakes are fairly small, especially during the summer drought. The water in and outflow is super small and the water barely changes. The lakes’ micro-ecosystem is very fragile and we must not endanger it with our sweat, sunscreen etc. Moreover, it is considered an offence by the Triglav National Park organisation.

Do the mountain huts provide vegetarian/vegan meals?

Food in mountain huts is quite basic. There are options for vegans and vegetarians, but the selection is very limited. If you have any special dietary restrictions or needs, we recommend bringing your own snacks and treats.

How is the optional extra climb to Mt. Triglav?

Climbing Mt. Triglav is an optional addition to this hiking tour. The summit can be very crowded during summer, especially on weekends. The last 300 vertical metres (1.5 hours) of the ascent and descent is a Via-Ferrata. It is secured with steel hand lines and stemples, yet very exposed in some sections. Even though an experienced mountaineer may not even notice the exposure, the less experienced will definitely feel in need of guidance. The IFMGA licensed mountain guide will take care of your safety and provide all necessary equipment and professional guidance, which is essential when the weather is not perfect. The guide will meet you below the ridge, where the climbing part begins and part with you upon return. Before and after the summit climb you are hiking on your own. Have a look at this video for a better understanding of the terrain.

Can I add more adventures?

Sure! Do you like rock climbing, rappeling down amazing waterfalls, horse-back riding across lovely meadows, kayaking on turquoise rivers, paragliding with stunning views of the Julian Alps, climb a via-ferrata to one of the jagged peaks in Triglav National Park? Let us know and we will deliver your adventures!

Price

750 € per person

Photos by Slotrips and STO (Ciril Jazbec, Michael Matti, Ales Zdesar, Daniel Ernst)

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Because we care! We love Slovenia, we breathe the great outdoors and are passionate about delivering authentic, fun & immersive self-guided holidays in Slovenia. You can count on us!

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Price: 750 €
An elevation profile of 3 day Alpe-Adria trail, between Tonkina koca and Kekec Homestead
An elevation profile of 3 day Alpe-Adria trail, between Kranjska Gora and Tonkina koca
An elevation profile of 3 day Alpe-Adria trail, between Kekec Homestead and the town of Bovec

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