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Posted on Saturday 04 August 2012 in General
Up for a little adventure during a holiday in Europe? Head to Durmitor National Park in Montenegro, where travellers can raft, hike and bike their way to a momentous vacation. This UNESCO World Heritage Site was formed by glaciers thousands of years ago, which resulted in some of the deepest gorges in Europe and a system of stunning rivers and underground streams. With dozens of crystal clear teal lakes and miles of luscious pine forests, Durmitor National Park is truly a natural wonder.
Get to know the geography
Covering more than 32,000 hectares of land in the northern region of Montenegro, Durmitor National Park is an untouched oasis where Jurassic-era mountains meet Cretaceous valleys. Characterized by limestone formations, the rolling ranges of the Durmitor and Tara canyons have attracted adventurous hikers for decades, eager to conquer the challenging terrain.
The River Tara weaves through a 1,800-meter deep canyon, and throughout the spring and summer, travellers arrive by the busload only to throw on a wetsuit and jump into a whitewater rafting boat to combat class IV rapids.
Water from Black Lake, the park's largest body of water, feeds two separate lakes that run underground. Even during a short half-day hike through the area, Aussies may see as many as a dozen pristine lakes and waterways.
Europe's last-standing black pines are located in Durmitor as well - some of these trees are nearly half a millennium old.
While travellers might not think they'll encounter a lot of wildlife during a European getaway - they can rest assured that if they visit Durmitor National Park, they'll have the chance to see deer, wolves, lynx and even bears. Birdwatchers can also bring along their binoculars to check off several rare winged creatures from their bucket list.
During fishing season, Aussies can rent a fishing pole and catch a few salmon in the morning before going biking or hiking for the rest of the day.
When to go
The best way to get to Montenegro is to take flights to Athens first, and after having a sufficient amount of feta cheese and olives, travellers can take a connecting flight up north.
During the summer, Durmitor's Zabljak mountain village, which is usually frequented for the excellent ski conditions in the winter, becomes a perfect spot for hiking, fishing, swimming and boating. If travellers want to avoid the typical summer and winter crowds, they should go during the fall or spring.
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