Kanal ob Soci is a picturesque medieval town in the middle of the Soca Valley. With its rich cultural heritage, the town is a popular destination for tourists, as it offers plenty of opportunities for recreation, hiking, cycling, fishing, and swimming.

The town of Kanal (short of Kanal ob Soci) is the 4th most important town in the region after Bovec, Tolmin and Kobarid. In addition to the remnants of World War II left behind from the Isonzo front, you can enjoy a fantastic view of the Julian Alps.

Due to its size, the settlement is mainly located on the left bank of the river Soča. On the eastern border, on the left bank of the Soca, runs the Bohinj railway, which we have already written about.

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Kanal ob Soci

Map - Where is Kanal ob Soci?

The town is located next to the river Soca in the Soca Valley - not far from the border of Italy and Slovenia. Between the hills of Kolovrat and the Banjšice plateau, the town is 104 meters above sea level.

You are about halfway between Nova Gorica and Tolmin. The Slovenian coast is 1.5 hours away by car.

  • Distance from Bovec: 1 hour / 50 km
  • Distance from Kobarid: 35 minutes / 30 km
  • Distance from Tolmin: 20 minutes / 22 km
  • Distance from Nova Gorica: 25 minutes / 22 km
Kanal ob Soci map - Bovec distance
Good to know: Kanal is not in the Triglav National Park

More about the city

It can also be inferred from its name that the city developed along the river Soca. Kanal's first settlers were artisans and merchants, and the settlement has evolved over the centuries. It used to be an important crossing point on the river.

The old town boasts a rich cultural heritage that enchants many. Here you will find the picturesque Kontrada Square and Kolar House. In the summer months, concerts, theater performances, and other events await guests.

If you walk across the famous bridge over the river Soca (which is also one of the symbols of the city), the trail takes you to Pecno Park. The park is set up in the woods, where you can walk a lot and can admire various sculptures.
There is also a round trip around the city, on which you can take a pleasant hike, with a beautiful panorama of the countryside and the city.

Kanal, Slovenia
Interested in more Slovene cities? Read more: Cities of Slovenia

The history of the city

The first mention of the settlement dates from 1140, in 1336 the name of Dvor Svete Marije, and in 1350 its bridge. The city center was fortified in the Middle Ages.

There was also a small castle here, but it was destroyed in 1264 and then converted into a residential building after the First World War. In the 19th century, small manufacturing plants were established.

Video of Kanal ob Soci



The first bridge was built by the Romans in ancient times, but it is now destroyed. The current bridge was built after World War I. Kanal's bridge is about 17 meters high and diving events are held every year in mid-August. They are also said to be planning to build a new bridge to reduce its current load.

Neptune's well

In the center of the village, next to the parish church, is a well built in 1815.

Parish church

The church, dedicated to the Assumption of Mary, belongs to the Diocese of Koper. The present church was built in the Gothic style in the 1430s on the site of its predecessor in the 13th century. The surviving Gothic element is the sanctuary, the nave was remodeled in Baroque style from 1632 to 1670, and the façade from 1787 to 1795 in neoclassical style.

The original bell tower was built in 1632 but was demolished in World War I and then rebuilt in Renaissance style. The left (north) chapel dedicated to St. Anthony of Padua was dedicated in 1662 and the right (south) side chapel in 1698 in honor of the Mother of God.