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Our next full day tour was with a company called Slovenia Explorer, we were undertaking a tour called Coastbusters – Seaside in one day. We first stopped at Socerb Castle offered views of the Slovenian coast and the Gulf of Trieste. And also we we saw our only cat in the whole of Slovenia ! And he was a cutie !
We then onto Hrastovlje, which is a small village in Slovenian Istria, most famous for its 12th century Church of the Holy Trinity. I was so looking forward to this as this is where you can find the “Dance of Death”. The church was also an important stronghold against the Ottoman invasions and is still surrounded by a 16th century wall.
Dance of the Dead is a macabre piece of art portraying a group of eleven people dancing hand-in-hand with as many skeletons leading them towards the other side. The fresco is a symbolic representation of the fatality of the plague, the merciless disease responsible of the death of nearly 1/3 of the European population between 1347 and 1352. What’s more, one of the things that contribute to the uniqueness of this artwork is the fact that every person dancing has a different social or economic status. Yet, no one is able to escape its destiny. And that is so true of this world. No one is better than anyone else. We will all have the same fate. It is a beautiful piece of art that I am so pleased to have seen in the flesh !
We drove through Koper, so I did not get many good pictures. Before we arrive at Secovlje salt fields. This is where you can learn about the traditional salt production and the balance that was established here between man and nature. But it was not my cup of tea. I felt we spent far too long here when we could have done a walking tour of Koper.
We then drove onto Piran which is listed as a tourist highlight of the Slovenian coast, I was a little disappointed. It was very small, no beach just rocks which people put their sunbeds on and sat on top. We had lunch in the square and then had a ice cream on the harbour.
The main square is named after Giuseppe Tartini, a famous violinist and a composer who was born in Piran. On the hill above the square you can see the signature Church of Saint George, we walked up to the view point just before the rain started and that was the end of our tour.