Perućica safari: Off-roading Europe’s last jungle

Ljiljana Krejic | Live the World

November 23, 2022

If you are going to explore eastern Bosnia during one of your next travels, you will for sure try the top-notch rafting in Europe’s deepest canyon and visit the Sand Pyramids of Bosnian Colorado. However, your stay in this region will not be complete if you do not explore Sutjeska, the oldest and biggest National Park of Bosnia & Herzegovina. There are plenty of ways to discover this oasis of untouched nature, crystal-clear waters, wild animals and surreal views. Among others, you can try the hiking trails of Bosnia’s most beautiful mountain - Mt. Zelengora, where you can check what European Yosemite looks like from an eagle’s perspective. But a true surprise awaits you in the most hidden part of this mountain range – a gorgeous primeval forest. The best way to see Europe’s last jungle is to opt for the Perućica safari, exciting off-roading with all-terrain vehicles.

Perućica rainforest: “the lungs of Europe”

© National Park Sutjeska / unknown author

Situated almost on the border with Montenegro, Perućica is the last primeval forest in Europe. Also called "the lungs of Europe", this rainforest is a part of Sutjeska National Park. Its beech trees are more than 60 metres high, and endemic black pines stem from the rocky terrain that protects the ancient forest. Some of the trees here are more than 300 years old. Another important feature of Perućica is the Skakavac Waterfall (80 m), one of the highest falls in the country, that is formed on the Perućica River. You should know that very few people had a chance to discover this place due to its extremely rough landscape. With highly dense forests, some parts of the jungle are even inaccessible. Due to its beauty and richness, the rainforest Perucica was declared a strictly protected nature reserve and is exclusively used for science and education. Therefore, you can visit Europe's last jungle only with a licensed tour guide.

Nature that no man’s hand ever altered

© Rafting Centar Drina-Tara / unknown author

When arranging your safari tour, it may be best to reach out to Rafting Centar Drina-Tara, a leading provider of adrenaline and adventure activities in this region. The off-road tour usually starts in their rafting center in Bastasi. After one hour of driving with all-terrain vehicles, you will reach National Park Sutjeska. From there, your first destination will be Perućica with its splendid Skakavac Waterfall, where you will feel pure, untouched and wild nature that no man’s hand ever altered. Next, you will head to the mountain pass Prijevor, a plateau at the foothills of Mt. Maglić, Bosnia’s highest peak. There, you will have a chance to enjoy a fantastic panorama of surrounding peaks - Trnovački Durmitor, Studenac, Badnja, Volujak and Zelengora, followed by a delicious, home-made meal in the mountain huts called “katuni”. The rest of your off-roading will bring you to Tjentište, the core of National Park, to see a historical memorial of the World War II battle on the Sutjeska River. An attractive ride in four-wheelers that will make you see the impressive and unspoiled nature will surpass all your expectations. 

Where to stay

When you come to explore Perućica, finding accommodation might be a bit tricky. Hence, I have two suggestions that will make your stay even more enjoyable - Outdoor resort TaraSport and Rajska Rijeka. Both options have great facilities, like facing the beachfront and offering a variety of outdoor activities. In addition, both accommodation providers have restaurants that offer a wide range of local and international dishes, including vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free and dairy-free options. 

An unforgettable day in awe-inspiring setting

If you are a nature lover, there is much to love about this part of Bosnia & Herzegovina. Off-roading Europe's last jungle will sharpen all your senses. Excitingly, you will discover some of the Balkans' most remote regions, which very few had a chance to uncover. Perućica safari perfectly blends adrenaline, adventure, serenity and peace. It will offer you an unforgettable day in an awe-inspiring setting. For those who want a more extended tour, there is an option for a jeep safari on Bosnia's most beautiful mountain – Mt. Zelengora and some of its eight glacial lakes.

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