Hi I'm Damjana!

I'm a proud contributor for Sloveniaforyou.com and I come from
the famous wine region of Goriška Brda which borders the Italian
border about 15km from Nova Gorica.

If you haven't been there yet then you must come,
it's a very special place with vineyards and amazing views
all around.

I love travelling abroad and have been to Cuba, UK, Grand Canaria,
Sicily and Sardignia.

I am finishing my studies and graduating from tourism
studies in Portoroz and I also work near my home. I am
doing a special study on the influence of typical slovenian
culinary on tourists who visit our country.
I'd love your opinion!

I also love animals, we have a puppy dog and cats
at our house.

Please come and join us in beautiful Slovenija and I hope
I can inspire you to visit the places I write about.
You are most welcome in Slovenija!

If you have any questions, drop me a line at
info@sloveniaforyou.com and I'll do my best to reply!

DAMJANA'S SLOVENIJA

MY GORIŠKA BRDA

GORIŠKA BRDA, WHAT'S ALL THE FUSS?

The Goriška Brda region is famously referred to as the Tuscany of Slovenia. Visitors are greeted with sweeping rows of vineyards and beautiful rolling countryside everywhere you turn.

This makes you feel alive :)

While looking around it is obvious that the main activity here is producing wine, olive oil and fruit. It is spread over 72sqkm and has approx. 6000 habitants called "Brici".

Goriška Brda (Hills of Gorica) is surrounded and incised into Italy, thats why the influence of both countries is seen in our cuisine, habits and language. The climate is submediterranean; two mountains Sabotin and Korada help protect this area from cold Alpine winters.

The location could be a good starting point if you want to reach the Adriatic sea or Alps at the same time; both are only about 50km away, an hour by car. You have Venice only 120km away, and the capital Ljubljana only 100 km away. Both cities have airports, the nearest one is Trieste-Ronchi which is only 40 km from Goriška Brda.



WHAT TO DO in BRDA?

I suggest you visit in spring, summer or in autumn. You can visit traditional villages like Šmartno, which is becoming more well known lately and finally things are moving in terms of tourism!
Today tourists can see how houses here are made on the inside, how we prepare dinner, and there are also a few feasts\festivals which bring many tourists to taste with their eyes and lips some wine and others specialities.





CASTLES in BRDA

Although in Brda there were many castles, the most well known and preserved is the Renaissance castle of Dobrovo, which is also used as a symbol of the Wine cellar Dobrovo ( since 1957).
You can decide to take a guided tour and if you are lucky you can also listen to some cultural performances.

The Castle of Vipolže is famous especially during the feast of St. Martin (the day when grape juice turns into wine); Inside the castle, in the "medieval cellar" its possible to taste a variety and large offering of wine from Brda and sometimes also foreign wines..
This experience you must try if you visit Brda in November, it will remain in your heart forever!


A TOUCH of NATURE

If you like an easy hike, you can climb Mt Sabotin (609 m), where on top you will find the Peace Park which reminds everyone of World War I.
Sabotin was a part of it, and there you can still explore abandoned trenches, tunnels and caverns. You can get also a guided tour, more information you will get in tourist centre.
The peaceful edge near Neblo will surprise you with a natural stone bridge and Kotline pools where you can take a pleasant dip in summer.




DON'T MISS

* In Gonjace village you must climb the 23 metre high tower to see Brda around you and if you are lucky and the weather is fine you will see as far as the sea!
* In autumn is the great experience of picking grapes; you can ask some wineries if you want to lend a hand!
* Famous Cherry Festival, around first week of June every year, there will be a presentation of a traditional Brda marriage, traditional carts parade every year to represent the past and future trends in Brda (sometimes in a funny way..) and there will be cherries of all kinds plus sweets, juices, grapes, etc..

* Try to visit one of the tourist farms and taste delicious dishes there. Home made sliced treats, like "pršut" (prosciutto) or "šalam" (salami), frtalja (fried mixture of eggs and typical flavoured spices, polenta (made of corn meal yellow or white, cooked in water, in a traditional way boiling over the fireplace in a appropriately suitable dish. Different types of toc (special sauce) is the best decision with polenta.. But there are many many others dishes which you should try.
* Feast of rebula wine (indigenous white wine) and olive oil - around 2nd week in May
* Dreams in Medana and fairytale village Šmartno - end of August
* Music Festival, Medana, mid-September
* Feast of St. Martin (wine feast) Vipolže, Šmartno, 2nd week in November

Thanks for reading about my home and stay tuned for my next feature!
Damjana Bensa

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