Moraca Canyon, Montenegro

Moraca Canyon, Montenegro

The Morača Gorge is one of the most beautiful river gorges in Montenegro. The name comes from the river of the same name.

An example of the power and strength of nature

The Moraca Gorge is located in Montenegro and is traversed by the Moraca. The river flows through the center of the country and has its origin at Kapa Moracka Mountain near Ljevista, which is part of the Kolasin municipality. From the 2226 meter high mountain, the Moraca flows through many gorges, including the Moraca Canyon, and finally flows into Lake Skadar.

On a trip or study trip through Montenegro, a detour to the Moraca Gorge should definitely be made. A wonderful, unforgettable landscape can be admired there. In addition, the visitor can walk in Karl May’s footsteps and pay a visit to the Moraca monastery.

Sights and activities

The Moraca Gorge can be easily reached from Kolasin. The small town is one of the most important ski resorts in Montenegro. In addition, because of the good mountain air, Kolasin is a climatic health resort.

The Morača Gorge is also spectacular and famous for the unique road that leads through the gorge. The E-65 with countless tunnels and curves along the cliffs is a unique experience. It was built to connect Podgorica with Kolasin.

Another option is to rent a car in Montenegro’s capital, Podgorica, and follow the road to the Moraca Gorge. Because of the many bends and the heavy traffic, good nerves are sometimes required for the journey. There are some accommodations along the gorge, such as Hostel Izvor, around 5 kilometers from Podgorica.

Hikers as well as friends of white water tours or kayaking get their money’s worth in the Moraca Canyon. In terms of white water, the tour through the 4.5 kilometer long gorge route is very interesting.

Follow in Karl May’s footsteps

Lovers of Karl May films can visit some of the locations of the 1964 adventure film “Der Schut” in the Moraca Gorge. Podgorica served as one of the standing quarters at the time and several spectacular scenes such as the unmasking of the Mübarek, the shooting test, Kara Ben Nemsi’s fight against the Alajys and Rih’s death were created in the Moraca Canyon. Some scenes in the overwhelming landscape were also recorded at Moraca Monastery.

Ostrog Monastery

Image: Ostrog Monastery in Montenegro

Memory of Saint Vasilija in Montenegro

The rock monastery is located near Niksic and can be easily reached from Podgrica. The gleaming white Ostrog Monastery for Orthodox Christians lies in a rock face 900 meters above the Zeta Valley. As one of the most important religious places in Montenegro, it attracts up to a million visitors annually. Orthodox and other Christians as well as Muslims pray together here. Despite its numerous pilgrims, tourists and souvenir stalls, it is a strangely calm-looking place. In a guest house near the Lower Monastery there are clean dormitories, while in summer pilgrims in front of the Upper Monastery are provided with sleeping mats free of charge.

The lower monastery is 2 kilometers below the main shrine. Here visitors can admire the vivid frescoes in the Trinity Church. Behind it is a natural spring where travelers can fill their bottles with deliciously cold and sweet water. From here the believers hike up the steep road to the summit. Halfway through, the stone walls of the small domed church of St. Stanko the Martyrs shimmer towards them.

Sensational views over the Bjelopavlićko plain

The upper monastery is called “Miracle of Sv. Vasilije ”because nobody seems to understand how it was built. It was built in 1665 in two large caves and gives the impression that it grew out of the rock. Vasilije Jovanović, a bishop from Herzegovina, brought his monks here after the Ottomans destroyed the Tvrdoš monastery near Trebinje. Saint Vasilije lived in the monastery until his death in 1671, where his body was subsequently kept. With the exception of the 1940s, the monastery and shrine are visited by thousands of believers every year. Pilgrims queue to enter the atmospheric shrine where the cloth-wrapped bones of the saint are kept. To get in Visitors must wear long skirts or trousers and cover their shoulders. Most women also cover their heads with a scarf.

Biogradska Gora National Park in Montenegro

a primeval forest in the middle of Europe

The Biogradska Gora National Park in northern Montenegro occupies the main part of the Bjelasica mountain range between the Tara and Lim rivers. The area is 60 km² and includes the area of ​​the municipalities Kolašin, Mojkovac and Berane. As one of only three remaining primeval forests in Europe, it has a diverse flora and fauna. The most famous feature of the park is the Biogradska Gora lake. This glacial lake reflects the forests, mountains and the sky and is a breathtaking sight for nature lovers and photographers.

The creation of the national park

The protection of the natural riches in the Biogradska Gora National Park dates back to 1878, when Kolašin was finally liberated from Ottoman occupation and the area was annexed by the Principality of Montenegro. As a token of appreciation for the liberation from Ottoman rule, the local population presented the forest area around Biogradsko Jezero to the Montenegrin prince Nikola I. Petrović. It has been preserved in its natural state ever since. In 1952 the forest area and the lake were declared a national park.

Moraca Canyon, Montenegro