Europe Magazine July 2019

LATVIA

NORTHERN EUROPE

SLOVENIA

CENTRAL EUROPE

Photo copyright: Jānis Romanovskis

Photo copyright: Slovenian Tourist Board, Aleš Frelih

WELCOME TO THE SUITI! WELL PRESERVED TRADITIONAL CULTURE OF KURZEME

VELIKA PLANINA THE LARGEST SHEPHERDS’ SETTLEMENT IN EUROPE

A Latvian Catholic community in the Suiti region with 2800 inhabitants living on 402 square kilometres in the Western part of Latvia. Suiti Cultural Space is a unique example of European intangible cultural heritage, which was inscribed on UNESCO List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding in 2009. The Suiti people are very proud of their distinct identity and character. Their self-isolation helped to preserve a very rich traditional culture and customs, which in such a compact area is a unique phenomenon not just for Latvia. For Latvian culture this small Suiti region means its own national costume, its own dialect, over 52,000 re- corded folk songs, and very detailed marriage and oth- er customs, many of which are still today practiced in the daily lives of the Suiti. Today the Suiti region is an interesting place to visit: it has three Catholic churches, a castle, beautiful sea- coast, historic architecture, rural landscape, rich for-

est, many natural resources – and stubborn and inde- pendent minded people.

Discover one of Slovenia’s most captivating natural sites, the Velika planina plateau, with one-of-a-kind shepherds’ settlement. This is the place where nature, history, typical flavours and unique local architecture meet. Here, you can not only admire the beautiful views of the picturesque Kamnik Alps, but also discover the unique settlement on Velika Planina where shepherds still bring their cattle in the summer, making it the oldest preserved alpine settlement of its kind in this part of Europe. There are about 200 huts on the mountain, all built in traditional style, of which 63 form the herder’s settlement. In summer, 380 head of cattle are traditionally brought to the alp. This is what makes Velika planina the best place to learn about the fascinating life on the mountain pastures and sample the dairy goodies.

Preskar Museum Hut

Worth visiting is Preskar Museum Hut, which showcases the life of shepherds in the 19th century. Here you learn about everyday habits and customs and even find out what helped the herders catch mice, and how they managed to stay awake on the pasture. Remember to ask about the story of Trnič, the cheese of love. Close by is the Snow Mary Chapel, which existed before WWII but was burned down by the German soldiers. Herdsmen built a new one in 1988. In summer, holy masses are held every Sunday and thousands of visitors attend the Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve.

About Velika planina About Trnič Inspiration on Instagram

Self drive tour - the Suiti Land

EUROPE MAGAZINE / JULY 2019 ISSUE

22

EUROPE MAGAZINE / JULY 2019 ISSUE

23

Made with FlippingBook - Online catalogs