Zelengora: Bosnia's most beautiful mountain

Ljiljana Krejic | Live the World

November 23, 2022

How often did it happen to you, a true nature lover, that you were invited to explore the most beautiful mountain in one country? How often was it a place you and your peers have never heard of? And how many times have you desired to be alone while discovering that kind of beauty? If that is your dream, let me invite you to Zelengora, the most beautiful mountain of Bosnia & Herzegovina, a hidden gem of National Park Sutjeska. Ornamented with conifer forests and gorgeous glacial lakes, yet unknown to passionate hikers, Mt. Zelengora is rightly called the awe-inspiring beauty of this country.

Eight “mountain eyes” – Zelengora Lakes

© National Park Sutjeska / unknown author

As its name suggests (zelen=green, gora=mountain), Mt. Zelengora is a vast mountain range of 160 km2, covered by green forests and even greener meadows. This massif is located within the National Park Sutjeska, the most important in Bosnia & Herzegovina. Mt. Zelengora spreads from Mt. Lelija on the north to Neretva River on the southwest and Sutjeska River on the east. Its most valuable treasures are eight glacial lakes, also known as the “mountain eyes” of Zelengora. Scattered all around the mountain, these hidden gems are a genuine paradise for all nature lovers. Yet, very few of them know about Zelengora Lakes.

Hiking, cycling, swimming, photo & jeep safari

© istock/mapraest

Considered the gentlest of all mountains in the Dinaric Alps, Mt. Zelengora is not a demanding mountain and, therefore, an ideal choice for family holidays. Its vast area is excellent for hiking, trekking and cycling thanks to its arranged and well-marked trails. Swimming in the crystal-clear lakes and collecting herbs, mushrooms, and berries are just some pleasures you can have here. Photo safari and jeep safari are also available. At Mt. Zelegora, you can find several mountain huts and shepherd cottages called “katuni” that provide accommodation and delicious homemade food.

Last Europe’s habitat of brown bear

© National Park Sutjeska / unknown author

The unspoiled nature of Mt. Zelengora boots in rich flora and fauna. Eagles, wolves, and chamoes sightings are common here, and if you are lucky, you might even see a brown bear since this mountain is its last European habitat. Thanks to its remoteness and a complete absence of pollution, on the vast green meadows, one can find a huge number of endemic plants, particularly medicinal ones. When it comes to berries, this place is heaven for all blueberry lovers. Every August, an event called “Days of blueberry” gathers many passionate nature lovers at Mt. Zelengora.

Where to stay

When you come to explore Mt. Zelengoa, finding accommodation might be a bit tricky. Hence, I have two suggestions to make your stay even more enjoyable - Vila Volujak and Vila Maglić. Both villas are actually charming wooden cottages boasting a seasonal outdoor swimming pool and stunning mountain views. Vila Maglić even has a sauna. They are situated at Tjentište, the starting point for all your trips within Sutjeska National Park. An à la carte, continental or vegetarian breakfast is available every morning at the property. 

Amazingly peaceful corner

© National Park Sutjeska / unknown author

An untouched nature, crystal-clear water, wild animals and surreal views – that is Zelengora, the most beautiful mountain of Bosnia & Herzegovina. Who would not like to observe magnificent lakes hugged by splendid mountain and adorned by pure wildness? Who would not like to be among the first to discover such an amazingly peaceful corner? While in the National Park Sutjeska, I would strongly advise you to check out where to have an eagle’s eye view on Mt. Maglić & Perućica, before exploring Europe’s last jungle and conquering Bosnia’s highest summit.

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