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34 km   660 m   2:30 h









Along the forgotten border river


If you stop on the way, take a deep breath and look around, you see a wild, deserted and forgotten land. There are ruins, scarps, terraces and most of them have signs of a life going on here in the past. Well, there are still some lonely farm houses in the lower part of the valley, but not in the upper part. There used to be many water mills along Dragonja river. You can still see ruins today.


In winter time, when there is usually snow in almost whole Slovenia, it is possible to have a nice bike ride here in Primorska region (near the sea). The temperatures can reach up to and over 10 degrees Celsius even in January.


In general, the Slovenian coast line is quite densely populated and as such it is not that nice to visit with a mountain bike. The valley of Dragonja river is an exception. There are a lot of possibilities to explore the valley on a bike. Don't let the described trail limit you in any way!


It is worth mentioning that mornings are quite cold in winter, since sunshine comes late into the valley. Described trail goes along Dragonja river and crosses it six times! There shouldn't be any problems with crossings, since there are enough big rocks in the river to walk on. Altogether there are nine crossings over the water, so it is better not to ride this trail after heavy rain, since water level can get too high in the rivers.


Starting point

Dragonja village can be reached from Portoroz via Secovlje border crossing (4 km) or from Koper - go in direction of Dragonja border crossing or look for signs for Buje (Croatia). Starting point is a small bus stop in SE of Dragonja village.


Trail description

The trail goes along the valley, upstream Dragonja river. In the first part, there is a nice macadam road up to Skrline, where Pinjevec or Rokava river flows into Dragonja. After crossing Pinjevec, you continue upstream Dragonja on partly quite rough cart track. Further up, there is a nice singletrack waiting for you! From Skrline on, the valley is deserted and wild. You can have a look at ruins of water mills and other different buildings. Because orientation is difficult in this area, the Road book is reset to zero at the point, where power lines cross the valley. You climb out of the valley via Truske village. The last part of the climb onto the crest is on local asphalt. But that doesn't bother much, since the road is not busy at all and is very scenic. There is a nice view from the crest, to the Alps, Trieste, Koper and also to Croatian Istra. All the villages that you go through (Truske, Borst, Labor) are worth a closer look. From Labor you descent back to Dragonja valley on quite rocky and rough cart track (nice DH!). You return to the starting point via Skrline the same way.


Other possibilities

A) You can ride only the loop of the trail (from no. 7 to no. 44). The starting point is Skrline in this case. You get there from Koper via Marezige and Zupancici.


B) If you don't want to ride the same way back, you can climb up the western crest over Dragonja valley, e.g. up to Kostabona and along the crest back to the starting point.


C) If you are running out of time, you can shorten the trail - at no. 24 go left on a rough cart track (quite demanding uphill) directly towards Borst (you come back to described trail at no. 39).










 Starting point




 Riding time

 Total ascent


 Starting height

 Max height



Dragonja village


33.78 km

2 h 30 min

660 m


34 m

358 m

99.8 %



 Cart track




4 km

6.5 km

15 km

8.5 km





no. 193, 194

page 209, 210






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25. januar 2004 

Copyright Marjan Tkavc