The eastern Karavanke mountain range on the border between Slovenia and Austria is home to the Karavanke Geopark. It’s an area of extraordinary geological heritage whose purpose is to conserve, popularize and sustainably develop geo-heritage by means of geo-tourism. In addition to rocks, minerals and fossils, there are also other extraordinary natural and cultural riches and people with innovative ideas: the life blood of the region. The Karavanke/Karawanken Geopark is a cross border geopark connected and divided by the mountain range with the same name. The Geopark is located between two Alpine mountains that exceed 2,000 metres: the Peca and the Košuta. It is marked by the rich, geological variety between the Alps and Dinarides.

The geopark is a member of the European Geoparks Network (EGN) as well as the Global Geoparks Network (GGN), assisted by UNESCO. The geopark lies at the boundary of the African and Eurasian tectonic plates. In the collision of the plates, a rock mass rose out of the seabed, forming the Alps, one of the longest mountain ranges in the world. The result of the collision produced a several-hundred-kilometres long Periadriatic fault zone, which runs directly through the Geopark Karavanke and reaches deep below its surface. The surface we see today has been forming for millions of years, and the powerful forces of nature have shaped extraordinary stalactite caves on Mt. Obir. The landscape is overgrown by unique plants, such as the Zois’ bellflower, the carnivorous sundew, and the gentian. The locals live in co-existence with nature, and by that they preserve the natural heritage for generations to come.

The Geopark Karavanke prides itself on beautiful minerals, rare in other parts of the world. These are the orange-coloured wolfenite, the brown-coloured dravite, the white-coloured calcite, the silver-coloured galenite, the usually overlooked sphalerite, and mercury. Some of these minerals used to be mined for ore under Mt. Peca and Mt. Obir but can nowadays be seen in museums.

All the information about the Geopark Karavanke is provided by the Podzemlje Pece Tourist Mine and Museum on the Slovenian side of the geopark, and by the Obir Caves in Bad Eisenkappel on the Austrian side.

 

GEO ADVENTURES

  • one-of-a-kind bicycle ride through the old mining tunnels of the Peca/Petzen
  • more than a thousand kilometres of signposted cycling routes
  • hiking and climbing in unspoiled nature
  • discovering the underground world of the former Mežica and Obir mine
  • a walk along the collision of two lithospheric plates
  • family outings and unforgettable adventures through geological history
  • museums, collections, churches, the architectural heritage of workers’ settlements and technical heritage
  • spas and mineral water
  • local cuisine
  • …discovering the unknown …

BY PLANE

Airport Jožeta Pučnika, Aerodrom Ljubljana, d.d.,
Zg. Brnik 130a, SI-4210 Brnik-aerodrom, Slovenia
Telephone: +386 4 20 61 000 |E-mail: info@lju-airport.si

Kärnten Airport – Kärntner Flughafen Betriebsgesellschaft m. b. H.
Flughafenstraße 60-64, 9020 Klagenfurt am Wörthersee, Austria
Telephone: +436 415000|E-mail: office@kaernten-airport.at

BY CAR

Ljubljana – 110 km
Maribor – 80 km
Klagenfurt/Celovec – 50 km
Graz – 130 km