Bus departs at 6.00 am from Ljubljana in direction of Celje, destined to Podčetrtek, and Olimje, a small village in the Kozjansko regional park.
Here, in Podčetrtek we visit the Jelenov greben farm estate (the name means the ridge of the deer estate), where the deer and mouflons move in a fenced area of 20 acres. These animals are timid, yet some will come to a person, since they are used to getting treats from people. The deer will eat corn from the palm of one’s hand. We will also have a snack of home made produce before we continue the tour.
Olimje was proclaimed the most beautiful village in Europe in 2009. Ever since, it has won many prizes in many categories. We shall visit the Church of Mary’s Assumption, a stunning baroque building, adjacent to another structure, a castle, now a Franciscan monastery and home to the brotheren Minorites. The monastery is in fact a casle, which has been rebuilt and altered many times. In the Renaissance period it got today’s form, a four-wing-rectangular castle. One of the chambers holds a precious treasure: a herbal pharmacy dating back into the 17th century, decorated with frescoes, legacy of the Pauline monks who had lived here over a century. After visiting the pharmacy, we take a walk through the backyard gardens, where the friars cultivate over 200 specimens of medicinal plants.
Lunch in one of the local or nearby inns. For dessert we stop at Chocolaterie in Olimje, an exquisite chocolate boutique and a manufactory, where a variety of chocolate delices are made. These delightful artistic pieces of sweets are usually completed by hand.
In the evening or late afternoon we go back to Ljubljana.