Selnica ob Dravi
Selnica lies in the Central Drava Valley. It has an interesting cultural history. The natural and cultural heritage in the municipality of Selnica ob Dravi is represented by the area of Sveti Duh na Ostrem Vrhu and the Viltuš Castle with its exceptional artistic and cultural value. We must also mention the church of Saint Margaret in the centre of Selnica, the church of Saint John the Baptist on Janževa gora, and the statue of Saint John of Nepomuk, the patron saint of rafters. The municipality also includes the oldest hydroelectric power plant on the Drava River in this part of Europe – HE Fala. It houses a museum of technical heritage, recognised as a cultural monument of national importance. The current rich cultural life is preserved by many cultural and artistic societies.
The Viltuš Castle is the sleeping beauty of the Drava Valley, which, just like the Sleeping Beauty, is waiting for its prince to save it from years of sleep and loneliness. Next to the castle there is a botanical park, which was at the time of the planting one of the most beautiful gardens of the kind and a true exotic for the average connoisseur of ornamental plantations.
Shoe collection on the premises of the Soven company
The Hodnik family donated to the tourist society Selnica near Drava a rich shoemaker's collection, which dates back to the 30's of the last century. The collection includes business documentation, tools, footwear models, etc.
The parish Church of St. Margaret the Virgin
The original church was probably Romanesque and smaller than the present. In the Gothic style the presbytery that terminates in five sides of an octagon and the belfry were built, and the church enlarged, as can be seen from the architecture of the building. The tower was later additionally built in the Baroque style, as was the church, where two chapels were added: in 1730 the chapel of St. Barbara and in 1760 the Mary’s Chapel.
Fala Hydroelectric Power Plant Museum
In the grounds of the oldest hydroelectric power plant on the Drava River, renovated and still in operation today, is a monument for visitors – the original powerhouse containing a preserved horizontal Francis turbine. This renovated turbine, with a partially open turbine cover, allows a look into how the power plant operates and transforms water power into mechanical energy.
In 1986, it was decided that the old part of the Fala hydroelectric power plant would be preserved in its original form as a piece of cultural heritage. When, ten years later, the first seven generators of the Fala hydroelectric power plant finally stopped working, Dravske Elektrarne Maribor, in cooperation with the Maribor regional unit of the Institute for Cultural Heritage in Slovenia, carried out renovation works on the powerhouse, preserving all the units and the auxiliary equipment. Therefore, the design of the electric plant, which is also called the Fala Hydroelectric Museum, is based on the principles of providing information and education; it opened its doors to visitors in 1998.
In 2008, the museum part of the Fala hydroelectric power plant declared a cultural monument of national importance by decree of the Government of the Republic of Slovenia.
The apple tree is the most widespread and most important fruit species in Selnica Valley and on the surrounding hills. For centuries before us, the people of Selnica massively planted apple trees on their plantations and gardens. Very early in the day they learned of all the good properties of homemade apples, which are of different shapes, sizes and colours, as well as of hundreds of noble sweet-sour flavours. Set out to the Apple Trail and get to know all the secrets of apples.
Walking or cycling along the Apple Trail is suitable for family trips, groups, and individuals, as it runs along a plain field and does not require physical effort. On the way the walkers meet local suppliers (fruit growers, goat breeders, lumberjacks, etc.). If the visitors are announced in advance, a tasting of local products can be arranged, a visit to see the processing of sheep wool near Soven, a visit to the Technical Museum of the Fala Thermal Power Plant, which received the Slovenian Heritage Protection Prize in 2014, or the visitors learn about local culinary delights such as ‘loparošnica’.