The Tolmin Gorge is one of many gorgeous places you can visit in Slovenia. Walk along the crystal clear Tolminka River, photograph the moss-covered canyons, and walk on a suspension bridge high above the gorge.
What is Tolmin Gorge?
Tolmin Gorge, also called Tolminska Korita, is a 1 km long gorge located on the southern end of Triglav National Park. This gorge has been carved out by the Tolminka and Zadlascica Rivers.
There are two levels to Tolmin Gorge. Boardwalk and gravel trails line the Tolminka River, ending at a stunning moss-covered, narrow gorge. You can also climb a series of steps to see the Bear’s Head and look down at the gorge from Devil’s Bridge.
Tolmin Gorge is a similar experience to Vintgar Gorge. However, it’s located off the main tourist trail, so crowds are generally lower at Tolmin Gorge than Vintgar Gorge.
To walk the entire gorge and visit all of the viewpoints, it takes about an hour and a half.
How to Visit Tolmin Gorge
Distance: 2 km
Price: Adults €5 – €8, depending on the season. The price is highest during July and August.
Location: Southern Triglav National Park, next to the town of Tolmin
Hours of Operation: Tolmin Gorge is open from the end of March through the beginning of November from 9 am to 7 pm, longer during the summer months (8:30 am – 8 pm June 1 through August 31).
Updated Hours and Pricing: Click here for updated pricing and hours of operation.
The easiest way to get here is by car. There is a very large parking lot right next to the entrance of the gorge. We visited Tolmin Gorge during an afternoon in August 2018 and had no problem parking.
Distances and Travel Times from Nearby Cities:
Bovec: 40 km, 45 minutes
Ljubljana: 105 km, 2 hours
Lake Bled: 77 km, 1 hour 45 minutes
Kranjska Gora: 86 km, 1 hour 45 minutes
During the summer months, there is a shuttle that connects the town of Tolmin with Tolmin Gorge. If the shuttle is not operating during your visit, it is a 1 km walk from the town to the gorge.
Visiting Tolmin Gorge
After you pay your entrance fee at the small ticket booth, it’s a short walk on a gravel trail to get to the gorge.
There are 5 main spots to visit at Tolmin Gorge:
- The Confluence of the Tolminka and Zadlascica Rivers
- The narrow gorge and thermal spring
- The Bear’s Head
- The Devil’s Bridge
- Dante’s Cave
The confluence is where the Tolminka and Zadlascica Rivers meet. This is the lowest point of Triglav National Park and one of the prettiest spots in Tolmin Gorge.
The view from the bridge
During our visit on a very hot August day, this was also a popular swimming spot.
You can swim here, so if you are interested, bring your swimsuit, sunblock, and a pair of water shoes. The water isn’t very deep but it’s a nice place to sit by the water’s edge and cool off in the summer months.
The view from the trail back to the bridge and swimming spot
The Narrow Gorge and Thermal Spring
Once you cross the bridge, take the trail to the left. In my opinion, this short, easy walk is the best part of Tolmin Gorge. Now you are walking on an elevated path along the crystal clear, aquamarine water of the Tolminka River. It’s gorgeous.
Walk through the wet, dark tunnel and emerge at this stunning viewpoint of the narrow, moss-covered walls of the gorge and the thermal spring.
On the trail. You can see the Devil’s Bridge at the top of this photo.
Walk back along the gravel path to the confluence. Once you reach the bridge, continue straight. The path will curve to the left and take you out to the Bear’s Head. This is where the walk gets to be more strenuous. Now, you are walking up and down lots of stone steps. It’s not too bad, but on a hot day, it can feel a little miserable.
Another view of the river from the trail.
The trail ends at this viewpoint where you can see the Bear’s Head, a boulder that is now wedged between two cliffs.
Walk back towards the gorge and then take the trail uphill towards Dante’s Cave and the Devil’s Bridge. This is the most strenuous part of the visit. A long series of stone steps climbs to the upper level of the gorge.
Once the trail levels out, you can make a detour to the right to visit Dante’s Cave.
Walk along the road until you get to the bridge high above Tolmin Gorge. This offers a nice view of the river below.
From here, it’s an easy downhill walk back to the parking lot.
How to Have the Best Experience
Make sure you wear a sturdy pair of walking shoes. Flip-flops and sandals are not a good idea. Parts of the trail are wet and very slippery, especially in the tunnels near the narrow gorge.
Get here early or late in the day if you want to experience Tolmin Gorge without the crowds.
Is Tolmin Gorge Worth It?
We visited both Tolmin Gorge and Vintgar Gorge and the four of us unanimously agree that Vintgar Gorge was our favorite. Vintgar is longer, more spectacular, more fun to visit, and easier to get to.
We enjoyed the visit to Tolmin Gorge. Some parts were great, like the short walk to the stunning, narrow gorge. The view from Devil’s Bridge is nice too, if you don’t mind the strenuous uphill walk to get here. Bear’s Head didn’t wow us and we didn’t enter Dante’s Cave so we can’t comment on whether or not that was worth it.
This is the kind of place that’s great to visit if you are already going to be in the area. If you have plans to road trip through here, or visit Bovec and the Soca River valley, then adding Tolmin Gorge into your day is a great idea. However, I wouldn’t drive out this way just to see Tolmin Gorge.
If you only have the time and energy to visit one gorge, Vintgar Gorge is more spectacular, in our opinion.
Where We Stayed
We stayed at the Apartment House Berghi in Kranjska Gora. We picked Kranjska Gora over Lake Bled because it was slightly cheaper, much easier to find accommodations, and located very close to the Vrsic Pass in Triglav National Park, one of Slovenia’s best hiking locations.
Kranjska Gora is a great place to make your home base for exploring Slovenia. This small town is filled with wonderful restaurants and is set with the backdrop of the jagged, rocky Julian Alps. Plus, it’s much less crowded than Lake Bled so we did not have to deal with daily traffic jams getting to and from our accommodation.
Are you planning a trip to Tolmin Gorge and Slovenia? Comment below if you have any questions.
More Information for Your Trip to Slovenia:
- 7 Great Things to do in Lake Bohinj in the Summer
- Lake Bohinj Travel Guide: Itineraries for 1, 2, & 3 Days
- 8 Amazing Things to do in Lake Bled
- 10 Days in Slovenia: The Perfect Itinerary for Your First Visit
- Hiking the Julian Alps of Slovenia: Vrsic Pass to Sleme and Slemenova Spica
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