The north of Montenegro consist of contrasting sights carved and arranged to their magnificent perfection by nature. The high mountains are joined by vast tablelands and deep river canyons, all mixed in a memorable array of experiences. The ideal example of this is Mount Durmitor, which together with the small town Žabljak is the in Montenegro. More than forty of its craggy peaks rise above 2000 meters, among them Bobotov kuk (2523 m), the highest in the country. Facing the massif lies the contrasting highland plateau of Jezera that got its name after innumerable smaller and lager lakes.
Further, both Durmitor and Jezera are bordered by river canyons of Tara, Sušica and Komarnica. The canyons of its region are world renowned above all the one of Tara. With its 1,300m from its overlooking mountain tops the river it is the deepest in Europe and second only the Grand Canyon in the whole world. Rafting on its magnificent clean waters, passing virgin forests, giant pines and innumerable waterfalls is once in a lifetime experience. The other two canyons also hold records: the initial part of Komarnica canyon, called Nevidio ( “Not Seen”) is so narrow that no living man passed it until 1965 when fully equipped mountaineers disclosed its mysteries. The canyon of river Piva has been cut in two by the high dam in Mratinje –one side of its remained the inhospitable canyon, while the other was transformed into a long lake of staggeringly blue color. There are many fascinating but relatively unexplored mountains in this region such a Maglić at the very border Bosnia-Herzegovina., a charming place with its Trnovačko jezero Lake just below its peak, Sinjajevina with its vast pastures above the forests, or Lubišnja in the very north with its small villages unchanged by civilization. The whole of this region is scarcely populated and there and many wild and desolated places, left to nature and to wild animals. Knowing that one cannot survive on his own in the wild, the peasant of the north are always willing to help and will glady treat you their modest houses and tasteful dairy products.
The climate is harsh and uncompromising: the winters start early and last until May, with lots of snow which leaves many of the places cut off from the rest of the world for months. To prepare for them people need to work hard, stacking hay for the cattle and pilling wood for heating. The pleasant summers are to some excent hotter only the vicinity of Nikšić where air from Zeta climbs to its wide field. Nikšić, the second largest town in Monetengro, is the cultural and economical hub of the North. It is known for its iron-works, the brewery and numerous odl bridges traversing the rivers that get lazier in this wide field.
Historically looking, this is a part of hold Herzegovina, named after the 15th century lord Herzog Stefan, whose seat was the Soko-grad above the confluence of Tara and Piva, on today’s border with Bosnia. It is also the hub of the East Herzegovinian dialect spoken from West Serbia to Croatia, whose resounding beauty captures attention whether in everyday speech or in traditional singing accompanied which is still played by many here. Due to Vuk Karadžić linguist and reformer of Serb alphabet, this dialect has form the middle of 19th c. been taken as the basic for the literary Serbo-Croatian.
The historical monuments in this secluded area are scattered in its wild scenery and sometimes hard to find. Surprisingly, most of them come from the era of early Turkish dominance (16th c.) when many people ran to the security of the places sheltered by mountains and forests. Here they built new monasteries , the most beautiful of them being those of Piva and Sveta Trojica close to Pljevlja. Though today there aren’t many Muslims left here, Husein-pasha’s Mosque in Pljevlja with its 42 meters high minaret remains the most beautiful monument to the long presence of the Ottoman Empire of Montenegro.
Montenegro Hostel Team