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Upper Idrijca Landscape Park

Size: 4.474 ha

Year of foundation: 

Municipality of Idrija

Idrija Tourism Board

47 natural values (31 of national and 16 of local importance), 7 small protected areas (1 nature reserve – IUCN: I, 6 natural monuments – IUCN: III), the park is entirely within ecologically important areas and Natura 2000 sites

International importance:
2013 - Idrija UNESCO Global Geopark, 2012 - UNESCO world heritage list – Mercury heritage. Almadén and Idrija.


Upper Idrijca Landscape Park
Zavod za turizem Idrija

Mestni trg 2
5280 Idrija

+ 386 (0)5 37 34 070

[email protected]

Upper Idrijca Landscape Park

Panoramic view

Situated in the upper part of the Idrijca River Valley, the Upper Idrijca Landscape Park offers its visitors a unique experience of intact nature. It is a world of secluded paths, wild ravines, lush forests, and a rich technical heritage. The steep slopes of the deeply incised ravines are the habitat of rare and endangered animals and plants.

Wild lake
Natural water pools
Klavže water barrier
Megalodontid shells
Idrija primrose (Primula x venusta)
Chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra)

The varied terrain carved out by the Idrijca and Belca rivers and their tributaries reveals gorges, geological cross-sections, numerous waterfalls, picturesque pools, and water springs. The rich geological structure with numerous karst phenomena and the interweaving of the Mediterranean and Alpine climates contribute to the high diversity of flora and fauna.

In the past, the extensive forests produced an important raw material and energy source for the operation of the mine; today, they play an economic, biotopic, and protective role. They are the habitats of numerous plant species, among which there are many botanical peculiarities. Particularly noteworthy is Hladnikia pastinacifolia – paleoendemit which grows only on 4 km2 in the Trnovo forest and nowhere else in the world, and three species of primulas: endemic Primula carniolica, Primula auricula, and their hybrid, Primula x venusta. Many other protected species also thrive here, such as the lady’s-slipper orchid, the flower of the sweet-lady, holly, the Carniolan lily, the Bertoloni columbine, the round-leaved sundew, and yew.

The park is also home to many endangered animal species and all three large carnivorans: bear, lynx, and wolf.

The mighty klavže water barriers on the Idrijca and Belca rivers, the Kamšt and Rake water canal, the Feldban narrow-gauge military railway, and the Slovenian Military Partisan Hospital Pavla are just some of the sights from the area’s rich technical heritage.


KP Zgornja Idrijca
Zavod za turizem Idrija

Mestni trg 2
5280 Idrija

Upper Idrijca Landscape Park


  • 97 % of the landscape park is covered in forests which have remained in good condition despite 500 years of exploitation for the Idrija mine.
  • The clear waters of the Idrijca River and its tributaries are home to numerous species, also the protected marble trout, the European bullhead, and the stone crayfish.
  • In the immediate vicinity of the Wild Lake – a cave, a spring, and a lake –, more than 150 different plant species can be found. Its specific position makes it an excellent environment for both Alpine and Dinaric plants.
  • The flora and fauna of the landscape park has been researched by famous naturalists, including G. A. Scopoli, who served as the mine physician in Idrija and discovered and described many new animal and plant species.
  • Klavže are water barriers on the Idrijca and Belca rivers, built to collect water and float timber into the town of Idrija where the mine needed it in extremely large quantities. Due to their magnificence, some call them the Slovenian pyramids.


  • Hiking
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Paddleboarding
  • Technical heritage


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