Prokletije landscape

Prokletije National Park - discover our youngest park of nature

In 2009. Montenegro proclaimed yet another national park – Prokletije national park. 

This impressive Montenegro mountain range rises above broad valleys, narrow canyons and mesmerizing lakes, ever so inviting. However, even though all of this sounds lovely and picturesque, Prokletije mountains are considered to be very wild and dangerous, not to mention that some parts of them still remain undiscovered. 

If you planned on conquering some of its’ peaks, that is precisely something we wouldn’t recommend you to do alone, especially if you are inexperienced when it comes to mountaineering. Prokletije has a great tourist potential in terms of which it has a lot to offer – whether you just want to hike in a more than inspiring natural surroundings or observe rare flora and fauna. 

If this is something you had in mind on doing during your visit, we present you with the youngest national park in Montenegro – welcome!

Prokletije National park - the rocky border of Montenegro

Prokletije mountain range is situated along the border of Montenegro, Albania and Kosovo, with the highest peak in Montenegro being Zla Kolata (2534 m), making the highest peak of the entire country too. 

It stretches for over 16 630 ha, and is rich with large and small streams, springs and wells of  fresh drinking and mineral waters, rivers, underground aquifers. 

The relief of Prokletije National park is rocky, with numerous peaks, gorges, steep slopes, alpine type river valleys and other types of natural phenomena, that paint a picture of highly inaccessible and mysterious, not to mention grand mountain massif. 

Prokletije National park zones and accompanying lakes

There are a few zone in Prokletije National park – Karanfilsko-Bjelicki zone is the most rugged, with peaks that exceed the 2000 m in height, and then there are Visitorska zone, Bogicevica zone, Bora and Kofiljace zone and Stratacko-Zavojska zone. 

All of them are adorned with some form of glacial lakes, streams or springs, as well as truly breathtaking mountain ponds. Some of the lakes that really stand out and that you can visit in Prokletije National park are – Koljindarsko, Hridsko, Vizitorsko, Ropojansko, Tatarijsko, Bjelaj, Vezirova Brada pond, and a small lake on Treskavac. 

Hridsko is one of the Montenegro lakes with the highest altitude, positioned at 1970 m above the sea level. However, when it comes to beauty, it is tied with Vizitorsko lake, positioned at 1820 m, with the floating island made of grass. 

Prokletije National park restaurant

Prokletije National park Montenegro - rich history and cultural past

Prokletije National park got its’ name after the homonymous mountain range of the same name, also known as “The Alps of Montenegro”. 

The name itself is quite sinister, given that when translated it means “cursed”, which probably references to inaccessibility of the peaks that have always represented a true challenge even among the most experienced of mountaineers.

Prokletije National park boasts with a rich cultural heritage too – it is crawling with countless sites, fortresses, churches, mosques, settlements, cemeteries, not to mention the less tangible bunch such as folklore, beliefs, costumes and ethnological motives. 

Extremely valuable remains and ethnographic richies

The remains of the settlements present in the Prokletije National park date from Paleolithic, Copper and Bronze ages, times when Illyrians and Roman Empire ruled these lands. The significant portion of prehistoric material remains are drawings depicted on the rock on the Vezirova brada, and a rock near Grbaje. 

Many architectural, artistic and historical sites are declared for monuments, due to their cultural value, and the same goes for folklore, music and other customs that bear the great ethnographic significance. Some of the preserved sites are the old mosque from 15th century, Redžepagića tower, church dedicated to St. Brezojevica, and the Gusinje-Vizier mosque from the 18th century.

When it comes to traditional architecture of the area, many residences have been made of wood, wood and stone combination, or stone only, and today are preserved in a form of monuments too. 

Prokletije National park natural surroundings

Prokletije National park is a part of two municipalities – Plav and Gusinje, with both of them boasting with an incredible natural potential. 

The main natural attraction of Plav region is Lake Plav, also known as the biggest glacial lake on the Balkans. Lake Plav is also the spring of Lim river, on of the most significant rivers in Montenegro. 

Another treat for visitors is the already mentioned Hridsko lake, nestled in the coniferous forest, with peaks Mali (small) and Veliki (big) Hrid reflecting in its’ clear waters, that are believed to bring back beauty and health to women, as well as happiness in general.

The importance of Prokletije habitat - discover flora and fauna of Prokletije

The most dominant feature of Prokletije National park is diversity of its’ plant and animal species, making one of the most distinctive area on the Balkans.

On the park’s territory there is over 1700 species of plants, representing half of the Montenegro flora, and that makes for 40 plant communities and 50 endemic, sub-endemic and endangered species. This makes Prokletije vegetation one of the richest in the Balkan peninsula, with the flora of the rocky area being particularly noteworthy.

Arctic-alpine flora also resides here, with 77 arctic-alpine species of former glacial flora that can be found in the specific altitude and habitat in Prokletije National park.

Lake on Prokletije mountain

Prokletije animal life

As it is a mountain region with Alpine climate, this too had an impact on animal life, that is also characterized by great diversity. In national park’s area you will encounter rabbits, wolves, brown beas, lynxes, wild boars,roe deer, and over 161 recorded species of birds. 

Here is what you can do in Prokletije National park

Within the lines, we’ve already told you what sights you should definitely visit once you find yourselves on Prokletije mountain range. 

We’ve told you about the Hridsko lake, also known as the Lake of Happiness, as well as lake Plav, another mountain beauty worth stopping by, but what Prokletije is probably the most famous for in terms of activity is – hiking. 

Prokletije National park hiking guide

Like we said, the most popular activity of Prokletije national park is by far mountain hiking, and the reasons for it are more than obvious. 

In terms of most visited Prokletije hiking trails, mountaineers mostly climb Volusica nd Popadija, two of the most beautiful peaks with outlooks to match. Given the fact that over 50 peaks have an altitude greater than 2000 m, while 20 of them is taller than 2500 m, it is no wonder Prokletije represents a challenge, even amongst the veteran alpinists.

In fact, Prokletije is very favourable among professional alpinists and mountaineers who come here to practice on its’ wild and rocky hiking trails.

Popular Prokletije hiking trails

That Prokletije mountain range isn’t only spikes and jags, prove two broad valleys – Grebaja and Rapojana. 

Grebaja is basically a starting point for every marked Prokletije hiking trail there is, while Rapojana is an another valley from which is possible to reach some of the peaks.

Conquering the peaks of Prokletije has proven to be an extremely challenging adventure, and that especially refers to Zla Kolata, Ocnjak and Karanfili peaks – the most attractive, and yet most difficult to summit, but once you triumph – it is all worth it.

However, if you’re not up for a real challenge just yet, there are always Volusnica (1879 m), Talijanka (2056 m) and Popadija (2057 m), but remember – whatever peak you decide to conquer, do not do it even start doing it without the basic guidance of experienced local guides.

Visit Prokletije while staying in Porto Montenegro

Prokletije mountain is notorious for offering an unforgettable active holiday, amazing you with unspoiled natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. Prokletije makes for a perfect excursion during your holiday in Montenegro, even if you’re coming just for the long weekend!

If you are a guest of our luxury resort, we suggest you make a road trip to our youngest national park during your visit, even get on some of the popular hiking trails you will most certainly enjoy!