This nature reserve is named after the pool at the western end of the wetlands, whose waters are noted for their blue-green colour, thanks to layers of lake chalk. This is the remnant of a once much larger lake, created after the last Ice Age.
Zelenci has always been admired by those who appreciate and enjoy beauty. Sir Humphry Davy, the famous English scientist, was among those who fell in love with this blue-green eye of the Upper Sava valley. “He was a frequent visitor to the area. He famously said that there is nothing more beautiful in Europe than the Sava valley,” says Nina Peternel, from the Local Tourist Organisation at Kranjska Gora.
This rich and picturesque landscape has attracted numerous painters, including Ladislau Benesch. Today, Zelenci is an inspiration for photographers. According to Nina Peternel, Zelenci is very “photogenic”; it is almost impossible to take a bad photo here.
However, the beauty of Zelenci is not only superficial. It hides tiny treasures, which cannot be found anywhere else in the world, or which are extremely rare: wetlands plants, such as the highly endangered slender sedge and brown beak sedge, and two carnivorous sundew species. It is also home to various endangered animal species, mostly amphibians, and numerous, also rare, bird and insect species.
It is interesting to note that despite the harsh winter conditions in this area, Zelenci does not freeze. The water has a permanent temperature of 5-6°C throughout the year.
Since 1992, Zelenci has been designated as a natural reserve. There is also a themed route which is suitable for families. Above all, this is a little bit of paradise where people can find peace and quiet.