Heritage Trails from the Idrijca to the Kolpa
Heritage Tours from the Idrijca to the Kolpa
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Culture & the Landscape

Our abundant natural environment has, for millennia, provided a wealth of raw materials for everyday life, and nurtured advances in applied science, technology and local crafts. The forests provided beams with which to build Idrija's ancient mines, mercury and cinnabar themselves part of a natural bounty. Rivers offered transportation for even the largest of timbers, with damns and waterwheels being built to harness the power of the waters to man's advantage.
For centuries the people of our villages and farms have made wide use of wood, from hay-drying poles and racks to the building of beehives, fruit-drying kilns, barns and houses, many of them with fine carved or painted features. The museum in Ribnica has exhibits of traditional wooden wares, a craft recorded here as early as the 14th century, and including agricultural tools, troughs and tubs as well as domestic items such as plates, dishes, sieves and spoons. Our rich forests provided plentiful food for early man and continue to provide modern people with abundant wild produce, although for centuries the fertile valleys have also been farmed. Agriculture is a vital part of our way of life, and our farming methods remain essentially traditional. The flood plains, fertile valleys and high meadows are farmed for grain crops, flax and hay, livestock provides meat and milk products, and small groves of apple, pear and plum trees are abundant.