An exceptional example of the gothic three-nave churches. It is adorned by beautifully designed vaults, an angel star and a black marble altar.
The natural promontory upon which Radovljica's old town stands, ends with the parish church of St. Peter. In front of the church is a beautiful square with an exhibition about the town's development.
The simple exterior appearance of the church dates from the end of the 19th century, when, due to stylish conformity, the church was restored to its original gothic form. The facade, the stain-glass windows, the entrance portal and its embellishents were renovated.
On entering the church you step into a hall, which is divided into three by pillars that support the ribbed vault, made up of an eight-point star. The vault of the central nave is embellished with an angel star. The presbytery also has a high star-shaped vault with figurines.
In the 18th century the original main Gothic altar of St. Peter was replaced by a black marble altar, the work of Ludovic Bombassi from Ljubljana. The statues of St. Leopold and St. Nicholas at the side are the work of Angelo Pozzo. In the presbytery there is a newer altar, oriented towards the congregation, the work of the sculptor Janez Jarm.
At the end of the southern nave is a shrine to Mary. The white Mary's altar is the work of Janez Vurnik Jr. from 1898. At the end of the northern nave is a tabernacle, which was designed by the local architect Ivan Vurnik in the 1930s, and was painted by his wife Helena Vurnik. On the side altars of Saints Roch and Sebastian, as well as St. Catherine, there is preserved paintings from 17th century altars.
In the 14th century the church and rectory was surrounded by a wall. Behind the church in a bunker from World War II there is a shrine to Edith Stein. In the rectory courtyards there is a preserved area where there was once a tavern. The shrine and tavern can be viewed by prior arrangement or as part of a guided tour of Radovljica.
It is likely that as far back as the 10th century a proprietary chapel stood on the site of today's church, which, at that time, was the only building on the promontory. With expansion of the town and its increasing wealth the church also grew. By the 13th century it had already become so well established that the seat of the archdiocese was moved from Rodine to Radovljica. Around the year 1500 a gothic church was formed from the three-nave romanesque basilica. The year 1495 shown above the door may indicate the beginning of the great renovation.
In front of Radovljica's church stands a bronze statue of Cene Avguštin. Behind the statue is an exhibition, based on his work, that details the development of the town.
Written by Adele Gray, january 2018
Though, in truth, I will never be a lover of winter and snow, since moving to Slovenia in 2007 I have learnt that in winter in the area where I live – Radovljica, in the northwest i.e. the alpine area - snow is a fact of life and, to some extent, have learnt to embrace it!
written by Rebecca Svetina, January 2019
I quite enjoy the start of the new year in my (now) hometown of Radovljica. The hype of the holidays has faded and we can enjoy the frost-kissed landscape and snow capped mountains, which makes the fairytale town of Radovljica even more idyllic.