Šent Peter (until 1952)
|Traditional region||Lower Carniola|
|Statistical region||Southeast Slovenia|
|• Total||2.47 km2 (0.95 sq mi)|
|Elevation||194.3 m (637.5 ft)|
Otočec (pronounced [ɔˈtoːtʃəts]) is a settlement on the left bank of the Krka River in the Municipality of Novo Mesto in southeastern Slovenia. The area is part of the traditional region of Lower Carniola and is now included in the Southeast Slovenia Statistical Region.
The name of the settlement was changed from Šent Peter (literally, 'Saint Peter') to Otočec (literally, 'small island') in 1952. The name was changed on the basis of the 1948 Law on Names of Settlements and Designations of Squares, Streets, and Buildings as part of efforts by Slovenia's postwar communist government to remove religious elements from toponyms.
The local parish church is dedicated to Saint Peter and belongs to the Roman Catholic Diocese of Novo Mesto. It was first mentioned in written documents dating to 1406. It was rebuilt in the 17th and 19th centuries.
Otočec Castle was first mentioned in documents in the 13th century, and the walls are said to date to 1252. The castle is built on a small island in the middle of the Krka River east of the main settlement of Otočec. Of the 30 small islets in the Krka River in this area, the castle is on the largest island, which was formed by cutting a southern channel around the castle in order to form a moat around it.
The islet is linked to both banks of the river by two wooden bridges (a northern bridge and a southern bridge) so that it is possible to drive from either the north side or the south side, straight through the islet, to the opposite side of the river. There is parking at the entrance of the northern bridge and on the islet itself, but there is no parking at the entrance to the southern bridge.
This castle is the only water castle in Slovenia, and it has now been converted into a small luxury hotel. It is also a member of Relais & Châteaux, which is a global fellowship of individually owned and operated luxury hotels and restaurants. Bradt Travel Guides calls it "one of the most famous hotels in Slovenia." The castle also has a world–class restaurant on–site.
- Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia
- Novo Mesto municipal site
- Spremembe naselij 1948–95. 1996. Database. Ljubljana: Geografski inštitut ZRC SAZU, DZS.
- Premk, F. 2004. Slovenska versko-krščanska terminologija v zemljepisnih imenih in spremembe za čas 1921–1967/68. Besedoslovne lastnosti slovenskega jezika: slovenska zemljepisna imena. Ljubljana: Slavistično društvo Slovenije, pp. 113–132.
- Urbanc, Mimi, & Matej Gabrovec. 2005. Krajevna imena: poligon za dokazovanje moči in odraz lokalne identitete. Geografski vestnik 77(2): 25–43.
- Slovenian Ministry of Culture register of national heritage reference number ešd 2475
- Večerić, Danica (31 August 2006). Slovenia. The Oliver Press, Inc. p. 7. ISBN 978-1-881508-74-8. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
- "Otočec Castle". Slovenia.info. Retrieved 30 June 2012.
- Slovenian Ministry of Culture register of national heritage reference number ešd 505
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