The Slovenia Times

Roman dugout on maiden voyage on Ljubljanica river


Inspired by a dugout from the Roman times pulled out from Ljubljanica in July last year, the dugout was hand-carved from an oak log using various tools, including reconstructed Roman woodcutting tools.

Measuring four metres in length, the boat can carry three to four people. The construction was headed by the archaeological group STIK and the Institute for Underwater Archaeology.

An event for visitors is planned to accompany the embarkation of the dugout, which will set off in Vrhnika in the morning; visitors will be able to take a walk through a Roman military camp, a Roman market and even a kitchen.

Headed by a team of experts, the dugout will cruise through the most important archaeological locations on Ljubljanica. Organisers have invited all those who wish to participate to join them with their own boats.

The boat is expected to arrive at the Špica town beach at 6 PM, where it will be blessed.

According to the Institute for Underwater Archaeology, the aim of the dugout construction project, entitled Deblak, is to reconstruct historical vessels which once sailed on Ljubljanica, as it was an important economic route since prehistoric times that was also mentioned in the writings of the Greek geographer Strabo.

Every year, a vessel from a particular period will be constructed in Vrhnika as part of the project to present the life of vessel constructors and users from that time.

Measuring some 15 metres in length, the original dugout is the biggest in Slovenia and one of the biggest in Europe. It is currently in the hands of restoration experts.

Once restored, it will be put on display at the adventure exhibition grounds in the town of Vrhnika.


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