Planning a dream trip with your fly-fishing gear? Or maybe you just need a break, ideally spent outdoors by a beautiful river? Welcome to Slovenia, welcome to Idrija and River Idrijca to the first Idrija International Fly Fishing Festival 2016, which will take place from 6th- 8th of May.
In the light of the upcoming Fly Fishing festival in Idrija the upcoming weekend we talked to festival’s founding leader, Miha Lenič. Originally from the town of Brežice in eastern Slovenia, he says he fell in love twice – first when he met a girl from Idrija, and the second time when he discovered river Idrijca. Energetic water management engineer, is also an active environmentalist, and at heart a very keen fly fisherman.
Interviewer: Marijana Podhraski
Where and how did the idea about having a fly fishing festival in Slovenia come from?
The escalating pressure of tourism and with it, the fingerprint that men leaves in nature, calls for action. Natural sources must be exploited sustainably and fly fishing is one of the ways to do this, while having fun and keeping healthy. Festival program will support promoting the most wonderful way of spending time outdoors, that is fly fishing of course.
The festival is a unique opportunity to connect river lovers, fishermen, local community in a fun social event together with an environmental cause of preserving wild rivers and the Idrija trout. We said that the only thing we require from visitors, in order to get along with us, is that they care and respect our river.
Why did you choose the Idrijca river?
The choice of location by the Idrijca river is an obvious one, since catching the trout here presents a top-notch fly-fishing challenge. Idrijca is one of the rivers in Slovenia that form the so called “holy trinity” together with Soča and Unica.
“We are on a mission to bring the world’s attention to Slovenia’s beautiful rivers and establish community support to protect and preserve Slovenia’s rivers and its endemic trout.”
Tell us a bit more about the festival’s program.
The rich festival program is created in a way that will satisfy any fly fishing enthusiast, but is diverse enough that the ones that do not fish will have fun, too. Due to the strong relationship we built with the local community we provide special treatment for anyone that wishes to stay for more days.
Fly fishing is gaining popularity also abroad where great films about this sport are being made. On Saturday evening (May 7th) we will have a chance to watch a special selection of these movies done by a Canadian producer IF4 (more at: http://www.flyfilmfest.com).
Reputed professional fly tiers will demonstrate their skills with demo workshops, where participants will have a chance to try to tie the right fly for Idrijca by themselves. Exhibitors of fly-fishing gear will be selling quality pieces with special discounts all weekend on the fair in the center of the town.
We will eat some local food at a fishing lunch, those interested in photography will be able to learn new tricks from a professional photographer on a workshop and more and more. For more information on festival and the its program check our event website: http://www.idrija-flyfest.si. For the details about fishing you can contact us directly at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
At all times when visitors will not be joining our program activities, they will be fishing, discovering Idrija’s great cultural and historical legacy or doing other activities such mount bike riding and mountaineering in the surrounding hills.
Since you’re a local in Idrija now, could you share with our readers any other sightseeing suggestions?
Because the town of Idrija is more than a 500 years old mercury mining town, it has many historical sites and offers for a whole day of sightseeing.
We suggest starting the day with visiting the Anthony’s shaft, which is the only part of the mine open for tourists and where an hour long guided tour into the mine is held. After that you can have a short walk visiting the old town, having a look in the small shop selling Idrija’s lace and having a coffee in the town’s cafe. The local Municipality museum is worth visiting if you have an affiliation in technical accomplishments of the mine and the ore exploited here.
Another alternative is to spend the day walking a nice road and exploring beautiful spring forests surrounding river Idrijca and Belca upwards wasserrad “Kamšt” can be arranged or having a 20 minute drive to water barrier “Klavže”. Another trip can be made if driving 20 minutes passing town Cerkno and visiting the gorge hidden partisan war hospital Franja.
These are some suggestions if you would not like to spend a lot of time driving. If that is not the case you can also visit Goriška Brda or Vipava valley; two famous vine growing regions of Slovenia (one-hour drive both) or follow the road that runs beside Idrijca river to Soča and stop at Most na Soči (a picturesque emerald colour lake) and up until reaching town of Tolmin, where you can walk the natural sight of gorge “Tolminska korita“.Follow @letsgoslovenia