Pečinka Cave is located in the vicinity of the village of Lokvica, which was totally destroyed during the war. It is a 150 metres-long slanting cave with a vertical drop of 22 metres. It is of natural origin (70 % of the present cave) but continues into a man made tunnel, leading up to the top of Pečina hill (308 m). The cave is rich in calcareous sinter, but its formations are rather damaged. It is also interesting for the archaeologists, since during pilot excavations at the beginning of the 20th century numerous fragments of prehistoric pottery and human bones were found.
In order to make the best possible use of natural caves and abysses, the Austro-Hungarian Army formed a speleological construction detachment at the Seventh Corps, which numbered 500 men. It was headed by the speleologist and engineer, First Lieutenant Alois Peter Bock. From 10 March till 15 April 1917 the Slovenian natural scientist and speleologist Pavel Kunaver (1889–1988) was also active in this Detachment. They researched and arranged several hundreds of caves, of which many were tailored for the military’s needs. The construction works were mainly carried out by Russian POWs.
During World War I, Pečinka Cave served as a shelter for soldiers. It was first in the hands of the Austro-Hungarian Army, but in November 1916, during the Ninth Isonzo Battle, it was occupied by the Italian troops and controlled until the Austro-Hungarian breakthrough in the Twelfth Isonzo Battle of October 1917. The cave was furnished with bunks for soldiers and cabins for officers. On the top of Pečina hill (308 m) there was an observation post where a searchlight was located. Due to its strategic position the hill was named the Eye of the Kras. Nowadays, Pečinka Cave is set up for visitors.
Kras – Underground Secrets of Caves
Park of Peace Cerje – Retracing the Footsteps of a WW1 Soldier
From the local road Miren–Opatje selo turn left at the indication sign for Cerje onto a side road and drive on tarmac road for another 2 kilometres. Turn right for Lokvica at the next bigger crossroad. After 200 metres, at the first olive groves, turn left. Leave the car by the road and walk for about a kilometre to the cave. The trail is indicated with the Walk of Peace signs.
You can also leave the car at the parking area below the Monument of Peace Cerje and continue on foot. On the left (towards the village of Lokvica) the indication signs of the Walk of Peace will show you the way to Pečinka Cave.
Center za obiskovalce Pot miru, Pomnik miru Cerje
(The Walk of Peace Visitor Centre, Monument of Peace Cerje)
+386 31 310 800
Center za obiskovalce Pot miru, Kobarid
(The Walk of Peace Visitor Centre, Kobarid)
Gregorčičeva ulica 8
+386 5 389 0167, +386 31 586 296
Only guided tours of Pečinka Cave are possible.