The IMBA Europe Summit is one of those few moments where European mountain bike advocacy and trail building groups, the bicycle industry, land management agencies, public authorities, guiding companies and other stakeholders meet to share good practices, network, get new insights and build relationships for future MTB projects or programs. The 3 day program is mixture of keynote speakers, project meetings, breakout sessions, social events and of course, riding activities.
Kranjska Gora, Slovenia
The Julian Alps rising high above Kransjka Gora set the stage for the 2018 European MTB Summit. The strong Slovenian mountain bike community - honored as best MTB community 2017 - was the deciding factor to host IMBA Europe's annual Summit in Kranjska Gora. Our Slovenian partners Odprimopoti.si (Slovenian MTB consortium), Slovenska Kolesarska Mreža (Slovenian Cyclist Network) and the municipality of Kranjska Gora have joined forces with IMBA Europe and are keen to show the rest of Europe why Slovenia is the first certifed green country in the world and Kransjka Gora received the Slovenia Green destination certificate.
What to expect?
The IMBA Europe 2018 Summit is a three day program, starting Friday 20th of April. The official opening ceremony will take place at the Planica Nordic Centre on Friday evening. The Friday morning program is devoted to IMBA Europe member organisations and a project meeting of EO-MTBing. Friday afternoon, the Slovenian Open Trails consortium will host a meeting of the Slovenian inter-ministerial working group.
The afternoon program continues at 3.30 pm with 3 keynote speakers and a panel discussion to explore and discuss the different dimensions of sustainability in mountain biking and MTB development in the Alps-Adrea region. Speakers include Andreas Holzer from Villach Tourismus, Veikko Virkkunen from Parks & Wilfdlife Finalnd and Adrian Greiner, CEO of BikePlan (CH), experts in destination development.
From Friday evening (opening ceremony) until Sunday afternoon, the Summit program is open for public. Saturday starts with a plenary program in the morning, followed in the afternoon by breakout sessions in smaller groups. Topics covered are mountain biking and health, MTB management and research (presentation of new impact studies), advocacy & capacity building, MTB tourism and trail development, including a trail builders round table.
Speakers and workshop leaders for Saturday include: Jana Apih (Slovenia), managing director of GoodPlace, Institute for sustainable development of green tourism, Lisa Roberts (UK) of Leeds Becket University, Patrick Jansen (NL) of Tracks&Trails, Thomas Larsen Schmidt (DK) on behalf of IMBA Europe and the Danish Cycling Union, Tomáš Kvasnička, CEO of Singltrek sro, Morten Kamp Schubert (DK), developer of the Singletracker app for MTB communities, Sam Morris, president of the European Organisation of Mountain Bike Instructor Guides, Heiko Mittelstadt, trail advocate of DIMB, Valamar Hotels (HR) and Chip Rafferty of ABMG and MIAS.
During this Summit, we aim to discuss and redefine the meaning of sustainability in mountain biking while this term is used in a way that it lost its real meaning a bit. The perspectives of land managers, advocates, trail developers, tourism professionals, public authorities and managers of NP's and protected areas will come together during this years summit.
Saturday afternoon's program provides attendees the opportunity to network or to go out for a short ride on your own before the social program for Saturday evening takes off. Sunday morning, options vary from a technical site visit to the Robe Trail to a open session at BikePark Kranjska Gora to learn more from the European MTB guide-instructor program. Sunday afternoon is reserved for our traditional Epic ride, guided by local guides and professionals involved with EO-MTBing.
For registration, click HERE. Registration closes Wednesday 18th of April.
Getting there & away
Despite the fact that the Upper Sava Valley is embraced by the mighty mountains of the Julian Alps and the Karavanke mountains, Kranjska Gora is very easily accessible. Within half an hour of driving you can reach the motorway in Italy (Tarvisio), Austria (Villach) or Slovenia (Karavanke tunnel). There are railway stations nearby, and the Ljubljana airport is less than one hour drive away.
By bus: from Slovenia you can get to Kranjska Gora by the road Ljubljana-Kranj-Jesenice-Kranjska Gora.
By car: from Slovenia you get to Kranjska Gora by the road Ljubljana-Kranj-Jesenice-Kranjska Gora, from Austria from Villach through the Korensko sedlo border crossing or through the Karavanke tunnel, and from Italy through the Rateče border crossing.
By train/bus: the nearest train station is in Jesenice, where buses take you to Kranjska Gora 20 kilometres away from Jesenice, a half an hour trip. There are also railway stations in Tarvisio in Italy and in Villach in Austria. From there, you can continue the route by taxi, since none of the stops is more than 20 kilometres away.
By plane: Kranjska Gora is a 45-minute drive (66km) from the airport in Ljubljana, only 40 minutes from the airport in Klagenfurt (Austria), and another hour driving more from Trieste (Italy).
Accommodation & Venue
Preferred lodging at HIT Alpinea hotels in Kranjska Gora. Meetings of the IMBA Europe Summit will take place in the Ramada Resort / Ramada Hotels & Suites.
Exploring Kranjska Gora & the Julian Alps
The stunning natural beauty of Kranjska Gora and the surrounding Julian Alps provide some great opportunities to extent your stay in Slovenia. Kranjska Gora offers good access to the Triglav National Park and has a tradition in outdoor activities such as walking, mountain biking, horse riding, mountaineering and water based adventure sports. The Julian Alps is listed in Lonely Planets top 10 regions to visit in 2018.
Summit attendees can visit Bike Park Kranjska Gora or even ride a part of the long distance MTB route, leading trough Kransjak Gora all the way from Arnoldstein (AUT) to Trieste (ITA) at the Adriactis Sea.
- Visit Lake Jasna and Zelenci
- Guided hiking tours to Martuljk waterfalls or Planica-Tamar valley
- Valley of the Gate with the Pericnik WaterfallVisit the Slovenia Alpine Museum
- Visit the Nordic Center Planica
- Hike in the Triglav National Park
- Visit Tromeja, the 1508 high peak, located at the triple border between Slovenia, Italy and Austria
For more info, check the Kranjska Gora website
Then extend your stay in Slovenia with a least one day and join the IMBA summit after ride in Ljubljana on Monday 23rd of April. This ride starts at 10 am and will take you to the Golovec trails in the hills around the city. You'll be back around 1 pm to explore Ljubljana and taste some great food, hosted by Ljubljana Tourism.