The largest cave of the classical Karst and the most popular cave in Europe. A trip to Slovenia’s number 1 tourist attraction must be part of every tour to Slovenia.
Main attractions of Postojna cave:
- Stalagmites and stalactites, sometimes joining in columns
- Huge chambers and mysterious passages
- Tours combining walking and underground train ride
The tour of Postojna cave, which lasts approximately 90 minutes, will take you on a 5 km long journey through amazing passages and incredibly diverse cave 'landscape'. The visitors can see one part of a scenic underground maze from the train, and then enjoy the second part on foot and admire playful stalactite forms in no hurry.
Highlights of Postojna cave
The main atractions included in the Postojna cave tour include:
- the Congress Hall, a huge and beautifully lit chamber that derived its name after the 1965 World Speleological Congress was held here;
- the Curtain, a magnificent, paper-thin formation;
- the Great Mountain, a 45-meter high formation,
- the Russian Bridge, built in 1916 by the Russian prisoners of the Great War;
- the Beautiful Caves, who deserve their name because of the formations and colours on display;
- the Spaghetti Hall, with its needle-thin formations;
- the White Hall and the Red Room, which get their names from the calcium and iron stained formations respectively; and
- the Winter Chamber, which contains two of the major symbols of the cave: the Pillar and the Brilliant
Why is Postojna cave so popular?
In its 200 year-old history, the cave has impressed over 34 million visitors from all over the world, making Postojna cave the most popular cave in Europe.
The only cave with a double track railway - for 140 years, the Postojna Cave, as the only cave in the world, offers a unique and adventurous ride with a special train, which will take you into the cave, under spectacular underground arches, which are embellished with chandellier look-alike stalactites, through a beautiful subterranean world full of playful limestone sculptures.
Stalactite paradise on every corner - 21 km of passages, galleries and magnificent halls offer a unique experience of the underground world. The Postojna cave is definitely one of the most diverse cave systems in the world.
Five-metre jewel - The most beautiful stalagmite in the Postojna cave is called the Brilliant. Looking at this marvellous, shiny white limestone formation, you simply must agree it is fully worthy of its name.
A tourist attraction for 200 years - In 1819 Archduke Ferdinand I visited the cave and became the first official visitor. This gave rise to the tourism in Postojna and this date is considered the official start of modern cave tourism although signatures dated from the 13th century can be found in the cave.
The Human Fish - the dragon's offspring
Whilst Postojna caves are home to about 100 animal species, none is more interesting than Proteus anguinus or The Human Fish. When it was first discovered in Postojna cave centuries ago, local people believed it was an infant dragon.
The Human Fish is the largest permanent cave-dwelling vertebrate in the world. It got its name partly from Greek mythology (Proteus was the Greek sea god) and partly from Latin, as anguinus means snake.
Proteus can grow up to 25 cm (almost a foot) in length and although it lives in some other caves in Slovenia, it is usually associated with Postojna caves.
Postojna cave – other names
Postojna cave is called Postojnska jama in Slovenia, Adelsberger Grotte in German, Grotte di Postumia in Italian and Postojna luola in Finnish. Postojna cave is often misspelled as Postonja cave, Postona cave or Postuna cave.
Other attractions near Postojna cave
Predjama Castle reigns over the surrounding area, perched high up in a vertical cliff, not far from the Postojna Cave, in the idyllic village of Predjama. It is an interesting and romantic sight throughout the year: in the spring and the summer its surroundings are abundant with blossoms and flowers, in the autumn it is clad in the colours of surrounding forests and it is at its most enchanting in the winter when the surrounding area is covered in snow. It was referred to in writing for the first time in 1202.
Cave under Predjama Castle - archaeological finds in the cavity behind the castle testify to human habitation in the Stone Age. Remnants from the Roman times have been discovered in the entry passage called the Stable, along with signatures dating back to the 16th century, which can be seen in the Passage of Names.
Vivarium Proteus - the undisputed star among inhabitants of the Postojna Cave is the olm, Proteus anguinus, also known as the human fish, however the Karst underground world is inhabited by a large number of other interesting inhabitants.
Butterflies of the World - butterflies are wonderful animals, which stir a number of positive associations. They are a symbol of lightness, freedom, transformation and new life. We are delighted to be able to present the diversity and the variety of colours of these animals in all seasons.
Otok Cave (Otoška jama) - owing to its unique beauty, Otok Cave has in the past often been the location of film productions by both Slovene and foreign filmmakers. Otok Cave is a dry, horizontal cave with many speleothems. Otok Cave is linked to other caves through the passages of the subterranean Pivka River. Adventure tours have been designed for anyone who would like to visit those parts of the cave that are not open for regular tours, experience more demanding passages, cross over water obstacles and relive the exploration of caves. Adventure tours are done in small groups, guided by experienced guides and divided in three difficulty levels.
Pivka Cave and Black Cave - these are the final two caves along the subterranean Pivka River before the river finally disappears and resurfaces in the PlaninaCave. Both caves can be accessed from the surface through a collapse doline. While the entrance to the BlackCaveis gradual, the PivkaCaveentrance is encircled by vertical walls. Both Caves are beautiful examples of caves along a subterranean river above which ceiling has collapsed. The BlackCavefeatures beautiful flowstone formations and the biggest attraction of the PivkaCaveis a stunning view of the river, especially when the water level is high.
The Postojna Cave System for Adrenaline Lovers
Were you tempted to find out what was hiding in the passages you passed on foot or on the train during your visit to the Postojna Cave? Get to know the hidden beauty of the Postojna Cave: see the cave pearls of the Small Caves, »pagodas« of the Coloured Passage, descend into the kingdom of the dead or experience the intertwined network of the Postojna Cave System. Tours can be arranged on request.