The mountains of the Republic of Croatia mainly belong to the Dinaric range, a small number are an eastern extension of the Alps, while the remaining part of the old land mass. Croatian mountains are the rarest inhabited part of Croatia, they covers the area between the central Croatia and the Croatian Adriatic coast. All important historic roads were trudging through this space. And he gets more and more importance, and because of its natural beauty and unspoiled nature becomes increasingly attractive tourist destination. Mountainous Croatia make up the northwestern part of the Dinaric mountains. We share it in the Gorski Kotar, Ogulinska (or Potkapelska) valley and Lika.
Most of the mountains in Croatia are part of mountain massif Dinarides. Highest peak in Croatia is Dinara (1831m) on mountain Dinara. Other mountains in Croatia are: Velebit, Biokovo, Gorski Kotar, Svilaja, Ucka, Medvednica, Papuk, Psunj, Pljesevica…
Dinara is the highest mountain in Croatia. Although it does not protrude with remarkable height – it does not exceed 2000m, with its configuration and length represents one of the most impressive mountains in Croatia. Its massif, 20km long and almost 10km wide, ascends as natural boundary wall between Dalmatia and Bosnia and separates like a wall two different worlds: mediterranean and continental. Its amazing several hundreds meters high southwest wall by its size attracts glances of everyone who finds himself at the foothill. Especial beauty at the same time provide abundant flowery meadows and forests. Climbing to the top of Dinara demands good shape because approaches are long, steep and difficult. Croatian mountaineering association with mountaineering clubs in Knin and Kijevo organizes every year collective ascent to its top. Dinara (1831m) is the highest peak in Republic Croatia. On its tops there are several stony apexes overgrown with dwarf-pines. At one of the apexes oriented towards the Peruča lake is situated a geodetic pillar, and on the other metal cross. Owing to its altitude and location, the peak provides the view to almost all mountains in Dalmatia and Bosnia, and especially attractive is to the Peruča lake in the depth.
Various wild beasts inhabit the mountain, such as wildcat, wolf, fox, jackal, weasel, pine marten, brown bear. As to cloven-hoofed animals, wild boar, doe, and chamois are common. Dinara bird life is also rich, and the most common are capercaillie, partridge, hawk, and golden eagle. Dinara is hosted endemic rodent species known on Croatian territory as Dinaric mouse, it is an endangered species.
Biokovo is the second-highest mountain range in Croatia, located along the Dalmatian coast of the Adriatic Sea, between the rivers of Cetina and Neretva. Its highest peak is Sveti Jure at 1762m. Biokovo is one in a line of Dinaric Alps stretching along the Dalmatian coast – northwest of it is Mosor and southeast of it are Sutvid and Rilić. In the east, the Šibenik runs in parallel. The Biokovo mountains dominate the whole landscape, towering above all the little resorts on the Makarska Riviera, providing a spectacular backdrop to an already beautiful coastal area. Biokovo descends toward the sea in very steep and bare limestone rocks, under which is a narrow and green littoral belt. Major peaks include: Sv. Ilija (St. Elias) (1.640m), Sibenik (1.314m), Stropac (1.145m), Vrsac (1.411m), Sinjal (1.333m). The views from Biokovo are spectacular – on the clear day one can see all Dalmatian islands as well as large part of Dalmatian coast to the south, and to the north, towns of Vrgorac and Imotski and their surrounding villages. Sometimes, when it’s very clear, one can see a peak of Monte Gargano in Italy too. The Bikovo profile is very characteristic. In 1981 Biokovo was declared a Nature Park because of its extraordinary value, flora, fauna and beauty, on the area of around 195 square kilometers. Because of it’s geographical position, Biokovo is a mountain that has continental as well as Mediterranean climate. The beauty of Biokovo has always attracted explorers and visitors. There are over thirty marked trails leading up the mountain on the seaward side and eight on the landward side. Biokovo is the mountain that one can visit either by car or bicycle as well as on foot from various parts of Adriatic coast and Makarska Riviera.
Velebit is the largest though not the highest mountain range in Croatia. The most popular spots on Velebit are: the peak of Vučjak, the botanical gardens on Zavižan, Rožanski kukovi, Štirovača and the Paklenica National Park. Nature park Velebit with its area of almost 2,000km², the Velebit Nature Park is the largest protected area of Croatia, larger than all other protected areas taken together.Velebit has long been recognized for its exceptional natural beauty and biodiversity. Almost the entire Velebit Mountain Range was proclaimed to be a nature park in 1981. Park has an exceptional diversity of geomorphological forms. The most attractive and most valuable parts of South Velebit are surely the impressive canyons of Velika Paklenica and Mala Paklenica. Mountain is a true patchwork of the most diverse habitats that are home to countless plant, fungus and animal species – a wealth that is yet to be explored in its entirety. The position of Velebit and its specific geological, geomorphological and hydrological conditions have influenced the development of very rich and diverse wildlife. This is the landscape of alternating lush forests and meadows with distinct rock and scree vegetation. Plant life is abundant in both volume and diversity of species. Large number of rare, protected and endemic plants have also been recorded in the Velebit area. Because of its length, numerous mountain lodges and the high-altitude Premužić trail, Velebit is very suitable for long walking trails. Velebit has one more thing that many mountains lost long ago, its innocence. There are no huge huts, no hordes of people, just peace and nature.
Mosor is a mountain range located near the town of Split on the Adriatic coast. It stretches from the pass of Klis in the northwest to the Cetina River in the southeast. The highest peak is Veliki Kabal (1339m), and one of the most visited peaks is Vickov stup (1325 m). Mosor mountain lies above Split, the capital of Dalmatia, and it was always a number one choice for hiking among local population. Many trails are existing on this location and some are marked for hikes. There are not so many places where you can enjoy in the sea view while climbing a mountain. The highest hill top of the mount Mosor is 1339m high and most of the time it is covered with snow, but it delivers a beautiful view on the wider surrounding area and some Dalmatian islands, like Vis for example. From this top you can also observe Biokovo or even the mountains in the neighbouring country Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The mountain Mosor is very rich with herbal and animal species. In the foot of the mountain prevail Mediterranean herbs and greenery, but further up grows typical mountain vegetation. Although not too rich with water resources, the mount Mosor hides several little springs; Trpošnjik, Živica, Studenac, Sedernik and Ljuvac, in which you can find some of the rarest water reptiles in the world, like the unusual “human fish”. Mosor has many pits and caves, which are worth visiting and especially interesting for mountain enthusiasts.
Kamešnica is a mountain that’s located at the border of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia in Dalmatian Zagora, near the town Sinj. It is extension of Dinarides. The tallest peak named Konj (1852m) is in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the second tallest peak Kurljaj (1809m) is in Croatia.When the weather is clear ,from the top of the mountain you can see the islands of the Adriatic Sea. Quite often, the peak is above the clouds, giving its visitors a special feeling. Kamesnica has a climate characterised by its position in two main climate regions: continental and submediterranean.
Thanks to its geographic position, the Kamesnica Mountain is home to many animal and plant species. The mountain is however hardly accessible and thus the ecosystem of its northern parts have been completely preserved and unspoiled. Natural scientists have always been interested in studying water springs, pools, and caves – home to lush and diverse flora and fauna.Kamesnica is a destination with many hiking paths, perfect for hiking.
The geographical or geotectonics area of the Risnjak National Park belongs to the system of Dinaric mountains which represent the natural bond between the Alps and the Balkan mountains. It is a strong limestone area with very specific ecological, geomorfological and hydrological characteristics. The National Park has a complex structure of carbonate rocks whose formation date back to the Palaeozoic and to the Quaternary age. The oldest rocks from the Palaeozoic age are located in the upper flow of the Krašičevica and part of the Kupa River valley.Rocks dating back to the Triassic period are located at the middle heights above sea level around Leska, Bela Vodica and Biljevina. Younger rocks from the Triassic and Jurassic periods are located on the higher areas of the Risnjak and Snježnik mountains. The National Park’s relief is characterized by numerous limestone features such as dry meadows, underground stream caves, deep caves and limestone fields which are the result of climatic and hydrological effects. The area around the Risnjak and Snježnik mountains is representative of a typical forestal high limestone area in Europe. The Risnjak and Snježnik mountain massifs represent a natural connection between the Alps and the Dinaric mountains and due to this fact are considered an important ecological corridor for plants and for large animals, such as the brown bear or wolf.
The mountain of Svilaja extends over the area of about 30 kilometres, from Sinjsko Polje to Drniško Polje Valley near the town of Drniš. At an elevation of 1509 metres, the summit of Svilaja dominates this part of the Dalmatian hinterland. Svilaja is middle Dalmatian mountain and have all characteristics of Dalmatian mountain: Karsts, limestone, flora and fauna. North side is very much aslope and covered by a beech wood 2001. Svilaja burned down in a big fire were almost all beech and black hornbeam wood was exterminated. Hill sides of the mountain are rarely populated. For touring and sightseeing it is the most interesting the top of (1509m) Svilaja-Bat, and also worth mentioning are (1485m) Rozgin Umac, Kita (1413m), (1340m) Turjača and Kijevski Bat (1206m) Even though its geographic characteristics are much more modest comparing to the other mountains, undoubtedly, Svilaja gives marvellous view from its tops. From the top Svilaja you can see: mountain Rilić, Sveti Ilija-Pelješac, islands: Korčula, Hvar, Brač, Svetac, Jabuka, Kornati, mountainVelebit – Sveto Brdo, N.P. Paklenica Dinara, which is the highest top of Croatia.