Friday, September 16, 2011

Slovenia & Stallions

On Sunday we sailed away from Venice...
See the two vaporetti water buses I was talking about?  They have the orange stripes at the top.  
...and we awoke to these stunning views of Koper, Slovenia, from our stateroom balcony!

I had read that the city of Koper pretty much closes down on Sunday, the day we arrived; and Randy really wanted to see the stud farm of the famous Lippizan stallions.  So, we joined the tour group the ship was offering and off we went on a 45-minute bus ride into the fall scenery of the Slovenian countryside.  There was a guide on the bus who filled us in on tons of interesting Slovenian factoids.  I have to admit that this tour would not have been on my radar screen (even though my mom had taken me to a performance of the Dancing Lippizans for my 16th birthday)--I thoroughly enjoyed it!  Once again, hooray for the spice of spousal differences :D
This stable was built at the end of the 15th century!

This particular sight of Lipican had been breeding these special horses since around 1400.  The grounds were beautiful!  We enjoyed a tour of the stables, a museum tour and a special performance--they really do dance!

I did not know that these beautiful horses are all born dark and gradually turn white as they mature.  Amazing!

On the way back to Koper, we were treated to a tour of a great winery--and tasting ;).  Slovenia has an ancient wine industry.  Who knew?  Check out this realllly old olive tree outside--not quite as ancient as the ones we saw in Israel, but still impressive

When we got back on ship, we were greeted by this CUTE elephant created by Aldrin, our stateroom attendant!  Ciao for Now :D

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