Bosnia and Herzegovina
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Bosnia and Herzegovina COME DISCOVER

Come discover for yourself the true Bosnia and Herzegovina, the ancient lands that once divided east and west but who now unite them.


Medjugorje

In the village of Bijakovici in the parish of Medjugorje, on the 24th of June 1981, according to the testimony of six, at the time young parishioners, (two boys and four girls), the Blessed Virgin made her appearance.

Lately, Medjugorje has become one of the most famous and most frequentely visited pilgrimage places in the entire Catholic world.

Following the interest of pilgrims from the entire world to visit Medjugorje, numerous tourist facilities have been built. Therefore, today, Medjugorje offers approximately 10.000 beds in various categories of accommodation with the catering, trade and other services of an extremely high quality.

Ever since then, thousands and thousands of pilgrims from all over the world have been arriving to Medjugorje, and according to some general estimations, Medjugorje has been visited by more than fifteen millions of pilgrims, incomparably more of them from abroad than from the country

According to the claims of some tourist representatives and news reporters from all over the world, Medjugorje has become the most famous and most frequently mentioned place in this part of Europe

Pocitelj

Pocitelj is a mediaeval town situated 3 kilometres away from Capljina along the left bank of the river Neretva.

The beauty of Pocitelj is enhanced by the river Neretva with its natural beaches and fishing grounds of many sorts of good fish.

Pocitelj construction distinguish 3 eras: Matija Korvina Hungarian King time, when for the first time was established remarkable strategic place valuable; created settlement under the oriental influence time when the public objects were built and military were removed to distant place; and time of received strategical valuable once again after that Venice took over a Gabela. Despite the Middle Ages peculiarity Pocitelj has Oriental characteristics and the most accentuated buildings from that time are: Mosque, Medresa, Turkish Bath (hamam), Han and Sahat Kula.

On the step rock above the river the king Tvrtko In 1383 built a town tower, which played a strategic role for those who were controlling the road from the sea along the valley of Neretva in the continental inner land.



 

Neum
Favourably situated on the central part of the south Adriatic Sea coast, Neum is a new tourist town which has developed new views on some of the values it always had, new ideas and new approaches. Even the linguistic root of its name means new, originating from the word neon, dating back to ancient times prior, to the Congress in Salona in 533 when we note the first mention of Municipij -“ City Hall, Municipality, which historians read as NOUENSE and NEUNENSE.
Neum is rich with Stechci - tomb-stones, which are the emanation of the national spirit, passing down the messages that run for centuries throughout the time in parallel with the Church records in that bulwark of Christianity.

With its 24 km of splendidly diversified coast, Neum is the only entrance of Bosnia and Herzegovina and off course of Herzegovina-Neretva Canton to the sea.

There are approximately 6.000 beds, out of which 2.000 beds are in the high class hotels and th

The proximity of the significant, interesting and attractive towns and tourist destinations such as Dubrovnik, Mostar, Ston, Capljina, Hutovo Blato and Medjugorje raises the entire tourist offer of Neum to a higher level (through the outing tourism) making it even more attractive.

e rest of 4.000 beds are in other forms of accommodation, mainly in family managed pensions.

 

 
National Park Sutjeska
This park is one of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s oldest parks. It is famous for the Partisan victory over the Germans in WWII and large stone monuments commemorating the even still stand.

The park itself is 17,500 hectares of magnificent wilderness. It hosts the one of the last two remaining primeval forests in Europe called Perucica. Its certainly a last glimpse of Europe old woodlands. Beech trees tower over 180 feet high and endemic black pines stem from the rocky faces that protect the ancient forest. Skakavac waterfall can seen from the scenic view look-out point  this two hundred feet plus waterfall is dwarfed by the massive blanket of green trees that cover the valley. Sutjeska River has carved a stunning valley through the middle of the park and divides Zelengora (Green Peaks) Mountain from Maglic and Volujak Mountains. Bosnia’s highest peak is located in the park right on the border with Montenegro. Maglic’s highest point is 2,386 meters is a great challenge for good hikers.

The park has a hotel in Tjentiste  the flat valley along the River Sutjeska) and a cafe and restaurant as well. The hotel is socialist style and not particularly attractive but the nature found within the park borders is hard to find anywhere in Europe. There are several newly renovated mountain huts on Zelengora Mountain that are fabulous for hiking and walking. Bear and wolf sightings are not uncommon.

 


Conservation area Rakitnica
 Rakitnica River Canyon is one of the most unexplored canyons in southern Europe. Few have travelled its mystical waters that carve the 800 meter deep canyon 26 kilometers from the village of Umoljani to where it reaches the Neretva River in Herzegovina. Part of the Adriatic Sea basin this natural phenomena has for millions of years carved its way through Bjelasnica and Visocica Mountain. The entire length of the canyon is lined with endemic types of flora and fauna. The crystal clear water, fed by the high mountains above, is potable for the whole length of the canyon region.
Conservation areas & National Parks "Prenj, Cvrsnica, Cabulja"
 This central Herzegovina region of the Dinaric Alps hosts over 32 types of endemic plants and trees. It has been proposed by scientists and ecologists to establish this mountain chain as a National Park.
By connecting these regions with Blidinje Nature Park and the Bjelasnica/Igman proposed national park BiH could approach the 16% of protected lands to preserve its biodiversity.

In the heart of the central Dinaric Alps is the roughest set of mountains in the country. Starting on the northern edge of the Mostar county line these ranges climb north all the way to Konjic in northern Herzegovina. Locally this chain is known as the Herzegovina Himalayas, particularly Prenj for its sharp tooth-like peaks that seem never ending. The lowlands, however, are very accessible and offer the most scenic drive in whole country. This area is known for its numerous endemic species of wildflowers only found in this region of the world. It is home to dozens of sleepy Herzegovina villages where one can find traditional cheese, meats, and the local moonshine called rakija (from plumbs) or loza (from grapes). Honey and trout are also trademarks of this region and often along the main road (M17) they’ll be local villagers selling honey and apple vinegar. Jablanica Lake has great trout and carp fishing and has many hotels, pansions, or private rooms on the lake.
The mountains offer the best and most challenging hiking in Herzegovina. Prenj Mountain hosts a wonderful glacier lake named Boracko near the town of Konjic. Not far from there is the Neretva Canyon where several whitewater rafting operators have camping facilities, fishing, caffes and an unforgettable rafting adventure through this magical canyon.

Cvrsnica Mountain is the most accessible of these three mountains for hiking. Only six miles south of Jablanica is the valley of Diva Grabovica. From here there are a half a dozen hikes of some of the most awesome terrain in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This area was largely spared during the war and is mine-free throughout the entire valley. The trails are marked but it may be very difficult to find them from the onset. Starting at 200 meters above sea level some of the hikes take you to over 2,000 through forests of massive beech trees to the endemic black pines at the higher altitudes. There are other easier hikes as well equal in beauty. For those of you just looking for an easy taste of nature the village of Diva Grabovica is a fascinating place for a nice stroll. The valley itself is very contained so if one stays in the vicinity of the village its nearly impossible to get lost.

Cabulja is definitely one of its kind in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Just north of Mostar off the M-17 is the Dreznica Valley. There is an eleven mile road of breathtaking canyons twelve in all. It’s an ideal place for a slow drive to admire the view or even better to hop on a mountain or road bike. The road is paved to the end of the valley where it tails off into a small dirt road. The Drezanka River carves the deep valley between Cvrsnica and Cabulja mountains and offers great swimming and fishing at the mouth where it feeds the Neretva River.


Una River
The Una, a right tributary of the Sava River,is a river in the western part of Bosnia and Herzegovina;in its lower course it borders the Republic of Croatia. About 1.000.000 inhabitants live in its river basin, the area of which is 10.400 sq.km. The Una River springs from the norts-east side of the Strazbenica Mountain, and flows through the following places and towns:Martinbrod, Kulen Vakuf, Ripac, Bihac, Bosanska Krupa, Bosanska Otoka, Bosanski Novi, Kostajnica, Dubica. It flows into the Sava River near Jasenovac in Croatia. The main tributaries are the Unac, Sana, Klokot and Krusnica rivers.

Over 170 types of medicinal herbs grow by the Una River; a rare plant-Campanile unensis , the Una blue-bell, was named after the Una Rivers bright blue colors. 28 kinds of fish live in this river and the biggest among them, the huchen, can weigh up to 30kg. Small crayfish can be found in sandy silts, which is a sure sign of clean water. The colourful riverbed of the Una River and the rapids and waterfalls is the result of a live, longlasting and rare biochemical process of creation of sedimentary rocks without which the Una River would lose its basic characteristic.

 
 Mountains and Forest
 Today’s geological structure of the terrain in Bosnia and Herzegovina is the result of a long geological past in which various events created a variety of rock formations magmatic, sedimentary, metamorphic, and many ore deposits. Paleozoic, Mesozoic, and Cenozoic eras may be seen throughout this region. The intensive neo-tectonic processes have created a special diversity of relief in BiH.

In the middle part of the county there are young mountains of the Dinaric system and they mostly consist of limestone. Their peaks are often higher than 2000 meters. These high rock ranges consists of the following mountains: Vran (2074m), Cvrsnica (2228m), Cabulja (1789m), Velez (1969m), Prenj (2155m), Bjelasnica (2067m), Visocica (1974m), Crvanj (1921m), Treskavica (2088m), Lelija (2032m), Zelengora (2015m), Ljubisna (2242m), Volujak (2297m) and the highest peak of the country Maglic (2386m). These mountain ranges are divided by deep 1,000 meter high canyon valleys: Neretva, Drina, upper flow of Bosna and its tributaries. The mountain ranges of Ivan (950m), Makljen (1123m), Kupreska Vrata (1324m), Cemerno (1293m) and others present the natural connection between Herzegovina and Bosnia and integrate the two into a unique socio-economic relationship.

To the north, next to the river Sava and the low basin of the Bosna River there is flat valley called Posavina. This valley is surrounded by a long stretch of low panonian mountains: Majevica (916m), Motajnica (652m), Vucjak (368m), Prosara (363m) and Kozara (977m) who appear like lonely islands coming out of the valley. The lowest part of the country presents the narrow part on the coast, next to Neum-Klek, together with the valleys of Humina. The low limestone valleys are also characteristic of this region, the biggest one being Popovo Valley towards Trebinje and Dubrovnik.


Lakes and Rivers of Bosnia nad Herzegovina
 The watercourses of BiH belong hydrographically to the Black Sea and the Adriatic Sea catchment areas. The main river of the Black Sea catchment is the Sava River which carves the entire northern border of Bosnia with Croatia. Almost all the major rivers in Bosnia flow into the Sava, which is a large tributary of the Danube. The only direct tributary to the Adriatic Sea is the Neretva River in Herzegovina. There is also a massive region of karst fields (over 4,000 square kilometers) that do not feed the Adriatic directly but flow underground and surface as either springs and sources in the coastal area (such as Hutovo Blato) or submarine springs that exit in the sea itself.
Bosnia and Herzegovina is a flowing gem of fresh water. Its high mountains feed the rivers that carve deep canyons that flow south. Towards the north Bosnia is rich in mineral water and thermal springs. Clean water must certainly be regarded as BiH's greatest natural resource.

A special characteristic of Bosnia and Herzegovina's water systems are the plethora of waterfalls dotting the landscape. Among the most beautiful and biggest are the: Strbacki cascade (23,5 m high  quantitively the biggest waterfall in BiH), Martin Brod on Una river, Pliva waterfalls in Jajce (27 m), Kravica and Kocusa waterfalls on the Trebizat River. The waterfalls of smaller flows are markably higher: Skakavac (98 m) near Sarajevo and Skakavac in Perucica Forest (75 m). Among the highest waterfalls on the Balkan peninsula are the cascades of the Studeni stream which fall 400 meters into the deep canyon of Rakitnica  the most unexplored canyon in southeast Europe.

BiH has few big natural lakes in comparison with its richness in river flows. The biggest lake is Boracko Lake in the eastern valley of Prenj, then Blidinje Lake between the mountains Vran and Cvrsnica. Around the lower flow of the Neretva River the Deransko-Svitavsko Lakes create the wetlands of Hutovo Blato bird reserve. In the mountain regions of: Prenj, Cvrsnica, Satora, Vranica, Treskavica, Crvnja and Volujka we can find beautiful, clear, glacial lakes. The river lakes in our country were mostly formed cause of settling of the crystalline and they can be found on: Una, Pliva, Trebizat, and Sanica rivers. By regulating the waters of Livanjsko and Duvanjsko valley one of the biggest european artificial lake was formed  Busko lake  with an avarage area of 55 km. Jablanica and Modrac lakes formed due to hydroelectric dams and are now popular tourist spots.

Flora and Fauna
 

Two large floral regions intersect, as many things do, in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Euro-Siberian and Meditterranean floral regions have created such a diverse bio system that well over half the total number of flowering plants on the Balkan Peninsula can be found here. Its richness is only comparable to the adundance of plants in tropical and sub-tropical regions. The existence of ancient relict species have been preserved due to especially favourable conditions from the times of deluvial glaciations right up to the present. There are over 3,700 identified species of flowering plants in BiH and hundreds of endemic species. The countryside in spring is carpeted with wildflowers, many of them endemic to the Dinaric range. Gentiana Dinarica can be found on Bjelasnica Mountain, Micromeria Thymifolia's powerful aroma will grab your attention in the Herzegovina highlands, the gentle violet and white flowers of Euphrasia Dinarica dot the landscape around Konjic, and find the one of kind Edraianthus Niveus or Vranica's bell on the hillside near Prokosko Lake. Medicinal herbs have long been used here to cure illness, heal wounds, improve circulation, or to spice up a home-cooked meal.

Bosnia and Herzegovina is blessed with many wonders of nature. Perhaps one of its greatest gifts are the marvelous forests that cover a little bit less than half the country. Although there has been devastation due to unregulated clear-cutting the countryside and mountainsides are home thick forests of beech tree, oak, evergreen, chestnut, spruce and literally dozens of other types of trees.

The great variety of the plant and tree communities are created by the unique climate of coastal and continental influences. Inland Bosnia forests demonstrates a strong similarity to northern and central Europe. Herzegovina and western Bosnia, covered by large areas of karst, are characterized by vegetation typical of the coastal and mountainous regions of the Meditteranean.

Perhaps the most precious of all European forests is Perucica in Sutjeska National Park. Here is one of the two remaining primeval forests in whole of Europe. Below Bosnia and Herzegovina’s highest peak, Maglic Mt., is hidden the magical valley home of the last old forests in this part of the world. Massive beech trees are complimented by high black pines on the rock faces surrounding the valley. A hike through the heart of these woodlands is an unforgettable and awe inspiring experience.




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