Papirniški trg square
The tour starts in Papirniški trg square in Vevče. This is the final stop of the bus line No 12 and there is a small car park there, where you can park your car. The square is surrounded by apartment buildings from the second half of the 20th century, which were built to accommodate the workers of paper producer Papirnica Vevče , which has a rich history and is a landmark of this part of Ljubljana.
The tour starts in the direction of the Ljubljanica River, but not across the bridge, but across the railway, after which turn left immediately to Pečinska ulica (Cliff Street). There are hardly any cliffs there; only apartment buildings are there and nothing else.
Kh, kh ... kašelj (cough)
Turn right on Kašeljska cesta Road and through the old centre of Zgornji Kašelj village , which is protected as a monument, to Mazovčeva pot Path, where you should turn right. The village you just went through is a little bit untidy, but it is interesting, especially its name. The origin of its name is not known; it appears in many jokes and anecdotes as a metaphor for something placed at the end of the world, or something that does not exist at all. But Kašelj does exist and it is not as unimportant as believed. It is now part of the city of Ljubljana, but it used to be an independent settlement, well, somewhat away from the city centre. The place is known for growing cabbage and it is believed that this is how it got its name. There is a special type of cabbage originating from Germany, more precisely from Castell, Bavaria, somewhere halfway between Nuremberg and Frankfurt am Main. It is believed to be called 'kastelsko zelje' (Castell cabbage), which the locals turned into 'kaštelsko zelje' and then into 'kašeljsko zelje', which finally led to the name Kašelj. It is possible also that the place is named after kastel, a Roman square-shaped fortification, which used to stand there. The words kastel and Kašelj are very similar, especially if the stress in kastel is put on a. The remains of a Roman building were indeed found in Kašelj, allegedly of a villa rustica, which is believed to had survived the arrival of Slavs, and that was probably the reason why it had been fortified (it was an actual 'castle'). To fully engage your imagination, let us mention that 300 years ago, the place was called by the German name Käschl (the story about German Castell is therefore not true), and that more than 400 years ago, the owner of the Fužine Castle, Janez Khisl (also a similar name) had a part of his property in Kašelj. There are many possibilities.
The tour continues along Mazovčeva pot Path over a bridge across the Ljubljanica River towards Sostro. On your left is the Kašelj Hill, with Debni vrh (530 m) as its highest point . On the right, the road first goes along the Ljubljanica River, and then along the Dobrunjščica Stream. You can cross the Dobrunjščica Stream by going over a wooden footbridge , which is located just below the road. You arrive in the charming village of Zavoglje with the old Church of St. Urlich in its centre. What originally used to be a Gothic church was burned down during the Turkish invasions, and later a new, smaller church was built at the northern side of the remains. This area was probably populated long before, which is proven by pieces of Roman tombstones and Gothic sculptures built in the façade. The stone from which it is made originates from the Kašelj Hill.
On your way to Sostro, turn right to Litijska cesta Road and then immediately left, to Sostrska cesta Road. A large church with one bell tower can be seen from there. Sostro is a place with an unusual name, which is believed to be related with the Osterberg Castle on the Kašelj Hill. Valvasor noted that the hill was first named Sosterberg, ('Oster verh' or 'Ostri vrh' in Slovenian), which is believed to be the origin of the Germanised name of the castle – Osterberg, the name of the owner of the castle – Ostrovrhar and the name of the place – Sostro. Another theory is that the name of the castle originates from the German word 'Ost', meaning east, and that its name means 'Eastern castle'. It is indeed located in the eastern part of the Ljubljana Basin, but it is hard to believe that those who named it failed to come up with a more ingenious name. Namely, the names of other castles are much more imaginative.
The aforementioned church is the parish Church of St. Leonard , which was built after the 1895 earthquake. Behind the church is the turnaround for the city bus line No 13 and a popular 'cycler's' inn. But this should not be too interesting right now, as you continue your way towards Sadinja vas.
The name Sadinja vas probably originates from 'Sodijnja vas', where 'sodij' or 'sodja' means village judge, who had the right to pass judgments for minor offences. It is interesting that there is another village with the same name in Slovenia, near Dvor pri Žužemberku, and there is also Sodji Vrh, a village near Semič, and a family name Sodja. Go through the scattered settlement to the crossroads with Cesta v Karlovce Road, and turn right towards the quarry. Here, go a bit downhill and then a bit uphill, until you come to the very entrance to the quarry, where you leave the asphalt road and turn right to the narrow sandy path . Go through the field and past the chapel and then turn left to the cart track, which is in a rather poor shape, but will nevertheless take you to Podmolnik. A legend speaks about a castle, which is believed to have stood on the nearby Marenček Hill (415 m) , on the right. There are no noticeable traces of a castle on the hill top, but there are some indications of flattening of land , which was most probably done by human hands. Foundations are not to be seen either. They are perhaps covered with a layer of soil. The protruding rocks, when examined carefully, give the impression that they had been put in rows. It could be that they are actually the remains of the castle. Archaeological sources note that there used to be a prehistoric fort, which was later settled by the Romans.
First houses will show up even before you get used to keeping balance on the cart track. This is Podmolnik . The place is known for Podmolnik kosezi, farmers who remained independent land owners long after the introduction of serfdom. One of them is mentioned in a land register from 1496. An asphalt road welcomes you in the village. Follow the road and turn right in the direction of north, and take a slight descent towards Zadvor. At the beginning of the descent, there is a right turn to a macadam road leading to the reservoir of the local water supply system, while a parallel path, in a somewhat poorer condition, leads right to the top of the Marenček Hill. If you feel like it, you are welcome to take the path. The hill top is accessible, and the slope is not too steep, but there is not much of a view from up there as the top is too overgrown.
Fitness trail to the finish line
A monument to the National Liberation War announces that this is the place where the Partisan group called the Molnik Company was established. In the forest above it, there is the famous Zadvor Cabin , which offers plenty of exercise opportunities and, of course, culinary delights. They are said to serve good home-made sausages there. There are plenty of opportunities for recreation. Besides a fitness trail (one of the first fitness trails in Slovenia) and other facilities, cross-country skiing tracks are prepared there in the winter.
The road leads through the area called Ceglenica, which can be translated as brickworks, and the village of Žabja vas. Below the road on the right there are two ponds , abandoned clay pits, which were later flooded. A bit further ahead, there is the crossroads with Cesta II. grupe odredov Road; continue straight to Litijska cesta Road. Be careful here. It is difficult to scan the incoming traffic, so it is somewhat difficult to cross Litijska cesta Road at this spot. Next on the route is the old centre of the village of Zadvor; at the end of the village, there is a high slope over the Ljubljanica River, which offers a nice view of flood meadows below. Paper factory Papirnica Vevče and former Vevče swimming pool, which used to be supplied with hot water by the factory, is ahead. It is now abandoned. The Vevče sports centre is located on the opposite bank of Ljubljanica.
Go between the factory and swimming pool, and when coming to the bridge, be careful to prevent the wheels slipping into a rail track groove and consequently, a nasty fall. It would be awkward to fall just before the finish.
This was one of the shortest tours. Somewhat more than half an hour was needed for these 12 kilometres. It is indeed 'mačji kašelj' (piece of cake).