"Our World is Beautiful" Photography Competition

One of my favourites was selected among the top half percent of 183.000 registered photographs to a pan-European Photography Competition "Our World is Beautiful" sponsored by CEWE. 

 Three Swans by Matija Horvat

Three Swans by Matija Horvat

You can check out top 1000 photographs here. There are many great photos! And of course, I would like to be a little patriotic... ;) Among first 1k photos there is 16 Slovenian photographers. All of our awarded work is visible here

And as usual - higher resolution version of "Three Swans" is published in my photo stream and all major social media.

Trakoscan Castle

Trakoscan was built in the late 13th century in northwestern Croatian defense system as a small observation fortress for monitoring the road from Ptuj to Bednja Valley. According to legend, Trakoscan was named after the Thracian fortress (ARX Thacorum) which allegedly existed in antiquity. Another preserved legend says, it is named after the knights Drachenstein who in the early Middle Ages, ruled the region.

 Aerial shot of Trakoscan Castle

Aerial shot of Trakoscan Castle

Toponym was first mentioned in written records in 1334 year. Lords of fort in the first centuries
is not known, yet we know that the end of the 14th century. owners Counts of Celje, which the same time ruled with entire Zagorje County. The family soon become extinct and Trakoscan
shared the fate of their other towns and estates that were divided and changing owners. In these division Trakosćan such a unique property at first belongs to warlord Jan Vitovac then to Ivanis Korvin who gave it to his deputy John Gyulay. The family kept the castle for three generations and became extinct in 1566, and the estate was taken over by the state.

 Castle from nearby park.

Castle from nearby park.

For services rendered king Maximilian gave the estate to Juraj Draskovic (1525-1587), first personally, then as the family heritage. So finally in 1584 Trakoscan belongs to Draskovic family.

In the boom years of building castles in Croatian Zagorje, in the second half of the 18th century Trakoscan was abandoned. Neglected, it begins to deteriorate rapidly so just in the second half of the 19th century, the family re-interested in its estate in the spirit of the new era romantic return to nature and family traditions. In this spirit marshal Juraj V. Draskovic in residential castle and the surrounding park was transformed into a romantic garden. The next generation occasionally stay in Trakoscan until 1944 when they immigrated to Austria soon after the castle was nationalized.

 Tower between large trees

Tower between large trees

You can find more higher-resolution photos of Trakoscan in my Photo Stream or all main social media.

Waterfall Šum

Visitors in Bled knew Waterfall Šum more than 100 years ago, before Vintgar Gorge was discovered. By the path, leading from Spodnje Gorje to Blejska Dobrava through Strma stran it is possible to descend to the Radovna. Roaring magnificently, the river is rolling over big rocks. From the bridge you can enjoy a wonderful view of the thundering waterfall, falling 26 m deep. 
Milky white waves are crushing into holes in rocks and each other, strong hits changing them into white mist. 
In winter water is rolling over big rocks in front of vertical walls, covered in ice, where splashing water drops are creating enormous icicles.

 Crystal-clear Radovna and waterfall Šum

Crystal-clear Radovna and waterfall Šum

Higher-res photo and much more can be found on my photo stream.

Peričnik Waterfall in all its Winter Glory

Waterfall Peričnik (consists of two falls - 52 meters and 16 meters high) is delightful waterfall in the Triglav National Park, located in the gorgeous mountain valley of Vrata. The waterfall itself is stunning and very photogenic, it drops spectacular 52 metres and is one of the highest waterfalls in Slovenia. The unique thing about Peričnik is that you can walk behind the waterfall. But in my opinion it is the most beautiful in the wintertime when it turn into innumerable icicles and floes in delicate shades of blue and green.

 Peričnik waterfall from the air

Peričnik waterfall from the air

It is also possible to climb to the upper waterfall. This one has a 16-meter drop. In the winter climbers ice-climb it. I was fortunate to shoot two climbers in action.

 Ice-climbers

Ice-climbers

Higher-res photos are available on my photo stream or social sites.

Supermoon over Jamnik

The moon is a familiar sight in our sky, brightening dark nights and reminding us of space exploration, past and present. But the supermoon on last Monday was especially “super” because it’s the closest full moon to Earth since 1948. We won’t see another supermoon like this until 2034.

 St. Primus church and supermoon above

St. Primus church and supermoon above

The moon’s orbit around Earth is slightly elliptical so sometimes it is closer and sometimes it’s farther away. When the moon is full as it makes its closest pass to Earth it is known as a supermoon. At perigee — the point at which the moon is closest to Earth — the moon can be as much as 14 percent closer to Earth than at apogee, when the moon is farthest from our planet. The full moon appears that much larger in diameter and because it is larger shines 30 percent more moonlight onto the Earth.

Morning glory from above

In Vrbnik valley, on an area of a little over 100 hectares, there are over 120 wagons of zlahtina grapes produced which are then made into a famous dry white wine, champagne and distillates. Vrbnicka zlahtina is a known indigenous sort of the island of Krk specific for only growing in Vrbnik valley.

 Aerial shot of the old town centre.

Aerial shot of the old town centre.

This grape sort was intruduced to Krk at the end of 19th century, and to Vrbnik valley between the two world wars. The name of the wine, zlahtina, comes from the adjective zlahten, which in Slavic means noble. The wine ranges from light yellow to straw yellow colour, its aroma is gentle and its taste is fine and specific. Zlahtina goes best with sheep cheese, all types of fish and sea food.

The humble way of life of Vrbnik inhabitants initially did not make Vrbnik an especially attractive place for tourism, but it has shaped it as a day trip destination where every visitor of the island of Krk has to come in order to taste zlahtina along with other gastronomy specialties of the island.

For higher-res photo visit my photo stream.

The Town that lives for Wine

Vrbnik is a town like you’ve never seen before. When you enter its nest of old houses and start exploring the curvy direction of its narrow streets, you will be transported hundreds of years back in time without being aware of it  at all. 

 Old town of Vrbnik

Old town of Vrbnik

You don’t need to know anything about the history of Croatia and the island of Krk, but as soon as you come to Vrbnik, you will realise that it uncovers itself for you at every step. You will feel the tradition, the hard way of life, the connection of man and nature because here the life depends on the vineyards which feed the town. Vrbnik gratefully comes alive when the year is fruitful and humbly goes through a less fruitful year.

For high-res photo visit my photo stream.

Baška from the hights

The Baška area on the south-eastern part of the island is particular for some of its curiosities. When we climb from the Punat valley, and at a height of around 330 m, we pass through the Treskavac hills, surrounded by the highest hill on the island (Obzova, around 570 m) and we then suddenly find ourselves in front of the Baška hill-encircled valley, where we remain surprised, almost breathless. This is because we are not prepared for this kind of play on nature, the bond between the mountains and the sea.

 Town from the sea.

Town from the sea.

The Croatian birth certificate - the Baška tablet was found here in 1100. Baška is also recognizable as having one of the largest and most beautiful pebble beaches on the Adriatic, which is in a semicircle and more than 1800 metres long. The naturally fine sand provides, especially for children and non-swimmers, pleasure on the beach, as the sea level increases gradually. Like other villages on the island of Krk, even this village's old part contains narrow streets and houses positioned one close to another so that the atmosphere is typically Mediterranean. Apart from its beautiful beach, Baška is also interesting  for its characteristic architecture, numerous cultural and historical monumentsand its surrounding tour paths. 

 Town from the land with nearby isles of Prvič, St. Grgur & Rab on horizon.

Town from the land with nearby isles of Prvič, St. Grgur & Rab on horizon.

Like other villages on the island of Krk, even this village's old part contains narrow streets and houses positioned one close to another so that the atmosphere is typically Mediterranean. Apart from its beautiful beach, Baška is also interesting  for its characteristic architecture, numerous cultural and historical monumentsand its surrounding tour paths. 

 Baška Harbour from above.

Baška Harbour from above.