Caporetto, is the name given to one of the bloodiest series of battles in World War One. The town is now Kobarid, in the Soca Valley in modern day western Slovenia, so just within my definition of the Balkans.
The beautiful Soca river (formally Isonzo) Valley in Slovenia is a tourist playground today, with mountain walking, paragliding and watersports. If you are going to spend any time there, I recommend the local tourist map 'The Isonzo Front' that marks all the main sites including forts, trench lines and cemeteries.
For the visitor today, there is an excellent award winning museum at Kobarid (Caporetto). Three floors of exhibits and a 20 minute documentary. The staff are very helpful.
We finished the
day off at the Austro-Hungarian fortress of
Kluze. Built in 1882, on the site of
earlier castles, it dominates the pass between Bovec and Tarvisio in Italy.
There is a museum inside the fortress which is well worth a look.
In 1904 the Austrian’s built an additional artillery position, Fort Hermann, just above the fortress. There is a path up to it, although I wouldn’t recommend the direct route up the side of the mountain that troops in a hurry used. Look carefully at the photo and you can see the iron ‘ladder’ they spiked into the rock.
There is another fortress at the southern end of the valley at Tolmin
For further reading there is:
Caporetto 1917 - Victory or Defeat.by Mario Morselli
Caporetto and the Isonzo campaign - John MacDonald
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