A sneak peek into Lukomir - Europe’s last village

Ljiljana Krejic | Live the World

November 23, 2022

Wondering how the life in mountainous remote villages in Europe looked like two centuries ago? Curious to explore the most isolated and still inhabited place in the Balkans? A place where the ratio of sheep vs. dwellers is 200:1? Well, the perfect window into the past is called Lukomir Village.

A sort of living ethnological museum, where the customs of nomadic tribes are still practiced, the village of Lukomir is a “harbour of peace”, as its name suggests. Situated at almost 1,500 m, it is the highest permanent settlement in Bosnia & Herzegovina. Only 54 km away from Sarajevo, this unique village is hidden along the southern ridge of Bjelasnica mountain.

According to the Historical Architecture Society of the United Kingdom, Lukomir is considered to be one of the longest continually inhabited villages in Europe. Most of the buildings are more than 200 years old. They are built of stone with cherry-wood roof tiles and adapted to inhospitable mountain climate, in order to resist the heavy snows. Actually, the village is inaccessible from the first snows in December until late April.

Not only that the buildings are more than 200 years old, but also the villagers still wear traditional hand-knitted clothing, and they cultivate their herds as they have for centuries. Speaking about the inhabitants, you will be surprised to see only 20 villagers live permanently here and they are all 60+ years old. They make their living from selling traditional hand-knits, wool products from sheep.

Actually, this place was inhabited already in 14th century, proven by medieval tombstones stećci, scattered around the village. The uniqueness of this place, as well as its importance have been recognized by UNESCO, that enlisted Lukomir with its steći, as one of the World Heritage Sites.

The surroundings of Lukomir are equally worth paying a visit. They will actually take your breath away, especially if you are up for hiking. Therefore, expect a spectacular view of Rakitnica Canyon and Visočica Mountains, as well as a stunning Peruće Waterfall.

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