Thursday's Child: Passage by Rowboat

Thursday, January 27, 2011
Bled Island.  Photo used courtesy of Sava Hoteli Bled


This month I've written about our forays via car, airplane and raft.  But our most romantic means of transport was taking a rowboat across Lake Bled in the Julian Alps of Slovenia.

I wish I could tell you that ‘Bled’ is Slovenian for ‘fairy tale’.  It seems impossible that such a prosaic name could be given to such a picture-perfect location.  A glacial lake, surrounded by tree-covered mountains, with a tiny island in the middle.  You could easily believe that once upon a time Rapunzel was held in the church tower on the island.  And that only by rowing across the lake could the prince release her.

In truth, the voyage to the island wasn’t nearly full of the perils that would be required for a prince to prove himself.  It was a short twenty minute trip from dock to dock.  We all took turns rowing, although Andrew was the only one capable of steering the boat toward a destination rather than taking us in circles.  But the day was warm, the breeze was mild, and we were in no hurry.
Master oarsman
Bled Island was as lovely a destination as we had hoped. We climbed the stone stairway of ninety-nine steps that leads from the dock to the church. We admired the views back to the alps on the mainland.  We visited the church and rang the wishing bell, which guarantees that our wishes would come true.  As we took in the beauty around us, we felt as if they already had.
Departing Bled Island
The lake is small enough to walk around in a few hours, which is what we did the following day.  We climbed a steep pathway to reach the medieval castle that overlooks the lake. (Set on a high, rocky cliff, it’s a more likely place to have imprisoned Rapunzel.)  On our walk, we fed the swans, and stopped for lunch at a little restaurant with a perfect view of the lake and the island.  But for sheer fairy-tale beauty and tranquility, nothing beat the rowboat trip to Bled Island.

32 comments:

Faith said...

Such beautiful romnatic scenes Beth.. You're so blessed to have been there. The pictures are so beautiful. I am really glad you're having fun. You deserve it.

Joanne said...

How fortunate you are to have experienced this treasure. I would love to walk and explore a place like that ... thanks for sharing.

Monet said...

This looks like a fairytale to me. I love how you travel. You leave the beaten path and you discover so many places of beauty and charm. Thank you for sharing with me, my sweet friend!

Sue said...

Wow, the whole experience DOES sound like a fairytale! What a dreamy adventure:)

Mary said...

My husband and I are travelers, but we have yet to see Slovenia. It looks like an enchanting spot and is on our bucket list. We've only recently returned from India, Nepal and Tibet. I share you love of China and return as often as I can. I've really enjoyed my visit here and I'll definitely be back. I hope you have a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

5 Star Foodie said...

This looks like such a gorgeous destination to visit!

Catherine said...

Beautiful place and i like your travel stories, thank you for sharing.

Carol said...

Looks like a fairy tale place! It's beautiful! I love your posts, you take me to places I would never have know about, beautiful places!

julie said...

You are a traveling queen! You've been to so many amazing places. i can only hope to have as many adventures as you! Thank you so much for sharing them with us. This island looks so incredibly beautiful.

Belinda said...

The sun and the warmth just looks incredible...as I sit here freezing.

Julie Musil said...

Oh my goodness, how blessed you are. What a beautiful, peaceful place.

haze said...

Real life fairy tale place... Oh my God! I'm so jealous!!! Haha. :)

Lydia K said...

So incredibly lovely! I'd love to go there someday!

jillbert said...

Just lovely! I've been known to row in circles myself.

tenaciouslyyours.com said...

How heartbreakingly-beautiful! When I see places like that, I'm just astonished that someone had the vision to decide that something was meant to be there.

Katerina said...

These pictures are so picturesque. How many countries have you been visiting throughout the years?

Beth said...

Thank you for all of your kind comments. Katerina, I think I've been to 34 countries. I have truly been blessed with my travels.

shaz said...

Wow Beth, the colours here are just so magical.Look at the blues in the water, just picture perfect. Aha, so that's what Mr.Muse (or is it Mr. Meringue) looks like :)

Valerie said...

Lovely as always, Beth.
And I had to laugh at the bit about the steering the row boat. They really are hard to maneuver in the desired direction. :D

Kelly said...

What a beautiful family adventure! Who would think that Lake Bled would be Lake Beauty?

Chow and Chatter said...

wow beautiful :-)

Kittie Howard said...

Sounds like you're have a really great time, a little fairytale of your own, yay! I lived in Macedonia for two years and speak a bit of the language. Bled means 'pale' in Macedonian, probably the same in Slovenian. Hub and I have been to Slovenia several times, but never to Bled Island...hmmmm, you make me wanna go. Have fun, enjoy!

Emma said...

Oh my how beautiful! It really does look exactly like a fairy tale, what a great place to visit.

Amie Kaufman said...

My goodness, it looks beautitful--I want to run away from home to Bled! (And there should always be one master oarsman in each family. I'm definitely not the one in mine!)

Barbara said...

What fun, Beth. Bled Island is a gem find. We've done some rowing ourselves...sometimes it's the only way to get to these idyllic places.

Joanne said...

YOu know, I don't think I've ever gone anywhere in a rowboat before but it sounds fun!

ezsrecipes.com said...

What a gorgeous island. It really does look out of a fairy tale. I am so envious of your travels!

Claudia said...

You are indeed a writer for the young - invoking Rapunel on that impossibly pretty island. It looks like goodness just reigns there.

Reeni said...

What a beautiful place! How fun to take a rowboat to it. And I love how you connected it to Rapunzel - it does look like a magical place.

Raina said...

Just gorgeous. What a picturesque place. I can almost smell the fresh, crisp air:)

Angie's Recipes said...

Isn't the place just beautiful! I would love to visit it.

comfortablydomestic.com said...

What a beautiful experience. Bled Island truly looks as if plucked right out of a fairytale. I love hearing about your travels.

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