Šara, the mountain situated on Serbia’s southern border. Its present-day name derives from the Serbian word “šareno“ (colourful) – a testament to the magnificence of its alpine landscapes and the range of vivid colours it displays.
Šar Mountain’s natural beauty and importance have also awed international institutions, prompting them to designate it a prospective UNESCO World Natural Heritage site.
Its peaks rise more than two thousand metres above sea levels and the highest peak on the Serbian part of the mountain is Bistra. However, nothing you’ve heard about Šar Mountain will prepare you for the beauty of its 70 lakes, often referred to as “mountain eyes”.
Šar Mountan will delight nature lovers with its rich comprising nearly two thousand different species, 18 of which cannot be found anywhere else on the planet. Ramonda nathaliae is an ancient flower that has become the national symbol of Armistice Day in World War I. It has an incredible ability to “resurrect” itself even after it has seemingly completely withered.
With its hundreds of animal species, Šar Mountan is one of the areas with the richest fauna in Europe, which is why Rusenica, Popovo prase, Ošljak and Golem bor nature reserves were established here.
Rusenica, carefully preserves fewer than one hundred remaining Balkan lynxes, Europe’s largest cat species.
There is more to Šar Mountan than just its natural beauty. Over the centuries, it has seen numerous conquerors, witnessed by the remains of Roman, Byzantine and Mediaeval settlements found here.
Also, between the 12th and the 16th Centuries, as many as fifty churches and monasteries were built on its slopes, including the Monastery of Saint Peter of Koriša.
Equally imposing are the remains of Emperor Dušan’s town and the 14th-Century Monastery of the Holy Archangels near Prizren.
At the Church of the Most Holy Mother of God in Gotovuša, first built in the 16th Century, a mosaic of an even older church dating back to the Byzantine period was recently found.