We arrived into Trieste airport in the dark. The crisp night air and eerie empty airport made us feel like we had arrived into a ghost town.
Trieste is in Italy, a tiny sliver of Italy to the left of Slovenia’s border. Picked up by our airport transfer we headed into the dark night, 45 minutes drive across the border to our first stop, the Tourist Farm Breg. Driving into the dark we could see very little, the roads were small and empty, soon we came upon a sign that said ‘Slovenia 0.5km’ only to find the road was barricaded and closed.
With recent events and talks of borders closing we started to wonder if we would even make it to Slovenia. Fog, dead ends, darkness :/
The sat nav kept taking us round in circles and bringing us back to the same closed road … ‘Zavijemo Levo’ (sounds like sulvito livo) said Miss Sat Nav.
My first words in Slovenian ‘turn left’.
We eventually saw a passing car and asked for directions. They pointed towards a steep windy road, so we slowly made our way up through the fog, Chloe and I looked at each other. Where were we? what would we would find next?!
At the top of the hill we had reached our destination. Hurrah!
It was almost as if we were meant to go this way in the first place.
It didn’t seem there was any other way up to the restaurant, though you couldn’t see more than a few feet in front of you.
A lady appeared over the balcony and took one look at our cases with a panicked look and promptly told us ‘no sleep here’.
‘Erm no I don’t think we do but we are meeting our guide, Bruno? Are we in the right place? Just dinner?’
She soon warmed to us and that friendly smile of Slovenian people I quickly become fond of appeared and we were bustled into the empty restaurant. It was the quiet time between the St Martin’s Day wine festival and Christmas season, so it was just us in the restaurant.
We sat, we drank, we waited, we drank some more and then in came the rest of our group. Our guide Bruno from Slovenia and three journalists from Croatia, Italy and Austria, the trip had really begun!
We ate some locally sourced, home cooked food, filled our bellies with more food than I thought possible (little did I know what was to come) and soon it was time to head off into the dark night to find our accommodation for the night.
Tourist Farm Breg is a local ethical farm, hotel and restaurant, using many locally grown products and cooking seasonal food. We were made to feel very welcome here and I had my first feelings of Christmas as the restaurant was decorated with tasteful wooden Christmas decorations. I only wish we could have seen it in daylight as I am certain the views beyond the entrance were magnificent.
Our accommodation was 25 minutes away at the San Martin Hotel. A modern hotel with clean lines and comfy beds. I pushed my two singles together to make a big double bed. Just how I like it.
Shattered from a long journey and eating too much food I fell promptly asleep, dreaming of what the next few days might bring.
I awoke to nothing short of spectacular views. A sunrise over rolling hills of vinyards and traditional Slovenian villages.
Mesmerising views, mouthwatering food, friendly people… I think I’m going to like it here.
You can get a little taste of more Slovenian stories to come in my Sunday musings post… believe me things just got better and better.