Pešter plateau

PRIRODNE ATRAKCIJE - ENGLISH

Pešter plateau

Pešter plateau was declared the Special Nature Reserve in 2016. It covers 3,118 hectares, developing a unique habitat complex with diversity in flora and fauna.

It is 45 km away from town with Trojan being the highest peak at an altitude of 1,430 meters.

Due to its specific geography and climate, the Pešter plateau is also known as the Serbian Tibet in summer or the Serbian Siberia in winter.

This plateau is the biggest of its kind in the Balkans and one of the largest in Europe with an altitude of about 1,150 m. During the 1950s the lowest recorded temperature here was minus 39 degrees Celsius, which is the lowest ever in Serbia.

Even though Pešter was once covered in pine trees, which led to a formation of a vast peatland, there is not a single tree in sight today. That’s probably one of the reasons these hills look so mild. Also, this is the largest peat find in the Balkans and they say that 95 percent of all the flowerpots’ soil in Serbia comes from Pešter.

The area is also full of interesting legend and stories. They say that the highest peak Trojan was named after an ancient nobleman and that in the Pešter lake below, a three-headed dragon lived at the time. As it got out once a year taking one person from the village, when the time has come for the nobleman’s daughter to be sacrificed, he called out to famous warriors and knights for help.

They say that St George was among those who answered. As he struck the stone in the foothill, to try out his sword, fresh water sprung out. The spring that bears the name of Đurđevica is the only spring in the entire plateau, the one that never dries up or freezes (even though the temperature can often go below 30). They say that even human footprints can be discerned in the stone next to the spring, along with horse hoofs traces.

As the story continues, St George beheaded the dragon. The legend stuck with locals through time and so, surrounding villages got somewhat symbolic names. For instance, where the dragon swung its tail and broke trees, that is where the village Krnja jela (Broken Fir Tree) stands today.

Another authentic thing to see in Pešter Reserve is a small house called stanovi or katuni, a specific cattleman’s place without water or electricity, where they dwell over summer for as long as their cattle can feed outside. Thus, milk and cheese are of an exquisite quality here, given that the cattle are grazing on the pastures abundant in herbs. There are 1,230 species of healthy herbs in Pešter.

When it comes to Pešter lake, this is the place to be in May, early in the morning, when so many bird species come around, all singing and bathing. The reserve is renowned for housing 99 protected species of birds. Also, a few rare orchids grow here at the beginning of June.

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