The Allure and Secrets of Matkov kot Forest

http://www.turisticnekmetije.si/en/lepote-in-skrivnosti-gozdov-matkovega-kota

 

The Matk tourist farm lies at an altitude of 1,165 m, overlooking the renowned Matkov kot, one of the most secluded glacial valleys in the Kamnik-Savinja Alps. The Matk family has co-existed with nature here for centuries. At 700 hectares, the farm was one of the largest in the land during the interwar period.

Here, in the solitude of Solčavsko alpine farms, tranquillity and a primeval approach to nature, man and intemperance prevail. The breath-taking view from the farm stretches across the peaks of Olševa, Raduha, Ojstrica and Mrzla gora. There are boundless opportunities here to interact with nature for all those who have an appreciation for the peace and quiet of the forest.

 

Day 1
You will arrive at the farm in the afternoon to a warm welcome from your hosts Janja and Klemen and a shot of blueberry or spruce-tip liqueur or a glass of home-made juice.

The charming and tidy rooms are furnished with timber from the farm’s own larch, spruce and ash trees.

In the free time before dinner, you can explore the farm, which began organic farming 15 years ago and recently started using biodynamic preparations. The farm breeds many indigenous domestic animals, including cika cattle, Jezersko-Solčavsko sheep, Krškopolje pig (indigenous pig breed), the Carniolan honey bee (which provides the honey), Slovenian Alpine goats and chickens. For your amusement, there are also a donkey and a mare with her colt sauntering around the farmstead. Farm animals grazing in the fields give the farm a special charm in the summer.

Dinner consists of seasonal dishes and fruits of the forest. Afterwards, herbal teas will be served and the programme will be presented to the accompaniment of Klemen’s zither.

 

Day 2
In the morning, you will be woken by birdsong and bell chimes as the animals make their way to pasture. At daybreak, before breakfast, as the sun rises magnificently over Olševa and casts its rays onto the surrounding peaks, you can take a tranquil stroll and savour the quietude of the forest.

For breakfast, you will have a choice of white coffee, tea made from herbs collected from nearby meadows and woods, home-made cured meats (smoked bacon, salami, savinjskiželodec), pâtés, wholesome cottage cheese, butter and jams prepared by housewives Marija and Janja.

After breakfast, your hosts will prepare a packed lunch bundle of home-made treats for your forest hike. This is how meals were once taken by the original « olcars » – the woodcutters and hunters of these forests. The casual hike through Matkov kot forest is suitable for families with children. You will be furnished with a description of the trails and a map marking vantage points, old trees, the Tunfec waterfall, charcoal pile sites, the remains of lime kilns and a stream of the Jezera, all that remains of a former lake. At a casual pace, the hike takes four hours, including stops. Mountaineering enthusiasts can extend their hike to Matkov škaf, for which suitable equipment is required.

The forest exhibits a different character for every season of the year. Spring, summer, autumn or winter, each season paints the forest in different colours and gives it different scents. The life of the forest is turbulent and intransigent. Only the most tenacious trees and shrubs can withstand the raging storms and rocky ground. From the farm, which extends from an altitude of 900 m to the very top of Mrzla gora mountain (2,203 m above sea level), a wide variety of tree varieties can be surveyed. Spruce forests display darker colours and because they do not shed their leaves in winter, they provide good shelter for animals and human alike. Beech forests flaunt a captivating green, particularly in May. Maples are luxuriant and decorative, and larches embellish rock faces up to the treeline. Dwarf pine protects mountain leas and low-lying woods from landslides and erosion. Willows thrive on gravel, whilst ash trees, hazels, catkins and wild cherry trees grow close to meadows and fields. The farmhouse and outbuildings are surrounded by old fruit trees which bloom in spring, provide shade in summer and bear fruit in autumn: cherries, applesandpears.

After a sapping but pleasant hike, you will return to a dinner of home-made specialities made by Janja and Marija. In the evening, you will be able to unwind and watch the sun set over the surrounding mountain peaks.

 

Day 3

After breakfast, you can seek out a pleasant corner of Markov kot forest and recharge your batteries for the coming days. Before leaving, you will be shown home-made wood products made by the in-house woodworker.

After breakfast, you may choose to follow the panoramic route that overlooks the Logar Valley to get a view of the breathtaking peaks of the Savinja Alps, the steep meadows and the alpine farms. We recommend lunch at the Klemenšek farm, which has a spectacular view.

 

The price for a weekend package is EUR 90 per person and EUR 1.27 tourist tax per person per day.

 

The programmeincludes:

  • 2 x half board (rooms of the highest category – ‘4 apples’)
  • a hike through Matkov kot forest, furnished with a description and map
  • a meal bundle for your hike

 

Free for children under 5, half-price for children from 5 to 7, 30% off for children from 7 to 10.

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