06 November 2016

Discovering Slovenia: Brestanica

In October, for our anniversary we always take a weekend off and spend the time alone just the two of us. 

But that doesn't mean that we stay put. No, that means that we try to visit places in Slovenia that we haven't been there yet. And of course try to taste local dishes, so the restaurant is always on a plate.

This time we decided to visit the south-est part of Slovenia as we found a great restaurant, according to reviews, in the area. So, we searched for an interesting place to visit while staying in those parts of Slovenia.

Brestanica, a small village popped up. And we went. And it was well worth it. Thought its smallest (not even 1000 population) it has some remarkable monuments.

With its rich history, its name dates back to the 838, which makes it one of Slovenia's oldest places. A newly renovated castle dominates the place and its exhibitions take the visitor through stories of its past.

It was a home to the dynasty of Reichenburgs. Later, until the 2nd world war it was serving as a monastery to the Trapist monastic order form France. They were know for chocolate factory far around, so reputable that the Hapsburg monarchs ordered their chocolate and monarch Franc-Josef I awarded them for the quality of products the title of "Imperial", which has become a trademark of their products.

You can stop at the castle's cafe to taste a trapist beer and some delicious cakes. There is also a chocolatier and a shop where you can by the taste chocolate Trapists once have made.

The history that follows is not so pleasant. During the 2nd WW the castle served as the biggest resettlement camp for the deportation of Slovenes in Slovenian, as the Germans in an attempt to germanise the country.

Since 2012 the castle houses a museum of Deported Slovenes and it takes us through its interesting and divers history.

Brestanica also can boast with the biggest church in Posavje region, which makes an interesting contrast to the smallness of the place.

But don't be fulled by this smallness, Brestanica is also a home place of the 2008 Olympic gold medallist in Hammer Throw, Primož Kozmus. 

Quite remarkable for such a small place, wouldn't you say?

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