The Soča River rises in the heart of the Julian Alps. Its 138 km long route to the sea runs for the most part along the northwest edge of Slovenia.
It goes around the most important settlements from Bovec to Deskle and in Solkan, under a famous railway bridge, it leaves Slovenia. The Soča River is accompanied by the main road running down to Solkan on the one bank and the railway line connecting Nova Gorica with Bled and Jesenice on the other side of the river. Owing to its natural beauty, conservation and historical circumstances the Soča River has a special importance and value in the hearts of Slovenians.
The Trnovo Forest
The Trnovo Forest and the neighbouring Banjščice plateau are the most north-western spur of the grand Dinar mountains. The mountainous area of the Trnovo Forest is karst-like, with no running superficial water, full of closed hollows, hills of different height and mountains, caves, abysses, shafts and minute karstic forms: scallops, grooves, rockholes, etc.
Among the most impressive karstic phenomena are the caves with permanent ice and snow. The Paradana Cave, which is 385 m deep and 1550 m long, is one of the most renowned examples.
The Panovec Forest
Nova Gorica is one of the rare cities in Slovenia which can boast of having such a large, preserved and interesting forest with numerous domestic and foreign tree species in the direct vicinity of the town.
The Panovec forest lies between Kromberk and Rožna Dolina right at the southern edge of Nova Gorica. It is in the direct vicinity of the town, and of a suitable diversity. Paths and trails that run all around the forest attract a great number of visitors to the forest in all seasons of the year. Lovers of peace and nature, joggers, cyclists, riders, walkers, mushroom pickers and researchers meet each other in the Panovec forest.
The Big Ice Cave at Paradana
The Big Ice Cave at Paradana is known worldwide due to the classical description (locus classicus) of the inversion of the vegetation belts in its western part. The cave is 385 m deep and 1550 m long. Paradana is protected as a Natural Reserve. The Tourist society in Lokve, which is in charge of the cave, has marked a path leading to the cave.
In the Ice Cave ice blocks
10 to 40 kg in weight used to be cut. They were carried up to the surface in baskets and transported to Gorizia or Trieste by night. From there the ice was sold to the ships. In the earlier days the ice was exported even to Egypt
Park Rafut was planted in the second half of the 19th century over an area of 3 hectares. Within the park, there are a number of rare trees and shrubs. Due to the favourable soil and climatic conditions, many exceptionally beautiful exotic plants have been able to grow in this park. Many of these plants cannot be found elsewhere in Slovenia.
Here one can find uncommon examples of cyprus, sequoia, unique examples of camellia , cork-oak tree, and camphor trees among others.
Source: Turistični informacijski center Nova Gorica