The characters in my book Evertrue live in the hilltop town of Preznova, in a land of mystery and wonder and good old-fashioned magic, but in actual fact my imagined settings are based on some real, and very spectacular scenery, in the beautiful country of Slovenia. The cave system in my story is modelled on the Postojna cave system and many of the fictional caves in my book are named after real ones!
Lonely Planet says that there “are dry galleries, decorated with a vast array of white stalactites shaped like needles, enormous icicles and even fragile spaghetti. The stalagmites take familiar shapes – pears, cauliflower and sand castles – but there are also bizarre columns, pillars and translucent curtains that look like rashers of bacon.
From the Velika Gora cavern you continue across the Russian Bridge, built by prisoners of war in 1916, through the 500m-long Beautiful Caves (Lepe Jame) that are filled with wonderful ribbon-shaped stalactites and stalagmites two million years old (it takes 30 years to produce 1mm of stalactite). The halls of the Beautiful Caves are the furthest point you’ll reach; from here a tunnel stretches to the Black Cave (Črna Jama) and Pivka Cave.”
The caves are very deep underground, so deep in fact that you need to use a train to get there. There are dragons in the caves… well, that’s what folklore claims the Olm is – a baby dragon, but I’m not so sure.
The beautiful Postojna Castle.
From the glacial (but warm!) waters of the Soča river, past lakes and waterfalls, we find the beautiful Triglav National Park. Slovenia is a small country, being about the size of Wales, and it sure is lovely! I fell in love with it instantly and am hankering to go back there someday.