Let’s learn about Slovenia #14 – Kostanjevica hill, Monastery & Sveta gora
Kostanjevica Hill stands the south of the town Nova Gorica, home to the Church of the Annunciation of Our Lady and a 17th-century Franciscan monastery with rich treasures from the past.
The last members of the Bourbons, the French royal family, are buried in a crypt beneath the church.
Charles X himself, and members of his family and entourage including his son Louis-Antoine de France, and his grandson Henri d’Artois, nephew of Louis (neither Louis-Antoine nor Henri ever reigned as kings. He fled France following the revolution in 1830, finding refuge in Gorizia, and eventually eternal peace. Also buried there is Pierre Louis Jean Casimir, a Bourbon nobleman who also died in exile (in 1839).
Opposite Kostanjevica Hill, north of the town is Sveta Gora (Holy Mountain), a peak of 682 m that has attracted pilgrims for 450 years. The view from there is exceptional, and on a clear day visitors can see as far as Istria, Venice, the Dolomites, and the Kamnik and Julian Alps.
The mountain top is home to a magnificent basilica, where concerts are occasionally held, a Franciscan monastery, and a museum of the Battles of the Isonzo.