Among the Hamlets and Natural Springs
This traditional hike is held at the beginning of spring through the hamlets of the winemaking village of Erzelj, among countless natural sources of water, and a handful of culturally important attractions.
The village is spread out along the edges of local hills, which give way to a splendid view of the Vipava Valley, the Branica Valley, the Karst Plateau, and in nice weather even the Alps. The village covers 5 hamlets, namely Lenivec, Tabor, Vovki, Miški, and Messesneli. Today, Erzelj is best known for its delicious wine and welcoming homesteads, where you can taste the premium vintages for yourselves.
The traditional hike follows a trail called “Among the Hamlets and Natural Springs” (Med zaselki in studenci), which the locals did a great job of building and maintaining, and which they marked with the image of a dragonfly. This is fitting, as Erzelj and its surroundings is home to a good 30 different species of dragonfly, which are a huge source of pride for the village’s residents. The trail also weaves its way among several natural sources of waters that are said to be medicinal in nature. This traditional early-spring hike begins in front of Erzelj’s school. It continues along to the church of Our Lady of the Snows, then to Tabor, where there are ruins of the partisan hospital Vera, and then back to the school. Visitors shouldn’t worry: the trail is well-sheltered even when the Burja wind is blowing fiercely through the valley. Tradition holds that the locals treat those finishing the hike to a proper jota, sauerkraut or sour turnip stew with locally made sausage.
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