Golija/Golia is the highest mountain in southwestern Serbia, with length of 32 km in the form of the Latin letter S. The highest peak is the Jankov kamen, altitude: 1833m (Pancic J., 1898). Nature Park covers area of 75. 183 ha. Borders of Golija area are Ibar valley in east, the rivers Raska and Ljudska in the south, Moravica in the west and middle part of the Studenica valley in the north and northeast. Nature Park Golija is placed under protection for the purpose of preservation: forest ecosystems value; landscape and extraordinary beauty and diversity of landscape; cultural values and their surroundings (Studenica Monastery and Gradac Monastery); sustainability and quality of basic natural resources (water, soil, and plant cover), biological diversity: rare, endemic and relict species; geo-monument, represented by unusual and attractive forms of terrain and numerous water objects and phenomena in the form of spring, watercourses, and shivering lakes.
Nature Park Golija was proclaimed by the Decree of the Government of the Republic of Serbia in 2001 and entrusted to the management of JP Srbijašume.
Nature Park, with its natural and created values, fully met the criteria for nominating Nature Park Golija for Biosphere Reserve under the MAB Program (Man and Biosphere Program) so that a part of Nature Park Golija by UNESCO Commission decision, in October 2001 declared the Biosphere Reserve Golija-Studenica (area 53.804 ha).
Golija is covered with forests. Some parts of these forests have rainforest features. Golija is the most forested mountain in Serbia, with the largest and best forest complexes. Its southern slopes are covered with spacious meadows and pastures. Spruces have been preserved in bog land forests as specific and sensitive ecosystems.
Golija is a tertiary flora refugium in Serbia and is important as the centre of genetic, species and ecosystem diversity in the Balkans and in Europe. Floristic biodiversity of Golija has about 900 taxa from plant world. Special significance in the flora has endemic and relict species. Among preserved natural rarities, relic and endemic wood species is Balkan maple (Acer heldreichii) is distinguished, which is synonymous with the flora Golija.
Important botanical sites are: Dajić Lake, Košaninova Lakes, Trešava na Bijelim vodama, Palež, Jankov kamen, Ljute meadows, Vlaški bridge, Karalići, Izubra, Bojevo brdo, Devojačka voda, Odvraćenica, Biser voda - Vranji krš-Lisa-Borje.
The special cultural and historical value of Golija is the Studenica Monastery, founded at the end of the 12th, as the main endowment of Nemanjić dynasty founder, Stefan Nemanja. This is one of the most valuable buildings between Serbs and it is creating one of the most important centres of medieval events. Since 1986, it is on the UNESCO List of World Valuable Cultural and Natural Heritage.
Gradac Monastery, built in 1268, is endowment of Queen Jelena Anžujska, Princess of French descent, and the wife of King Stefan Uroš I Nemanjić. Lectures and records indicate that King Uroš ordered lilacs planting along the Ibar coast to beautify area in honour of Queen Jelena. This explains presence of lilacs in the river Ibar gorge. The monastery was erected in an older cult place, and the only preserved old building is the one nave church of Saint Nicholas.
Locations in Golia that should be visited:
- Studenica Monastery, motor road 11km from place Ušće
- Lower and Upper hermitage Saint Sava, path from the local road Ušće - Mlanča,
- Gradac Monastery near the settlements Gradac and Rudno.
- Rudno village is an air spa with an altitude of 1100 m. The rural households in Rudno offer excellent accommodation in houses - huts, traditional Serbian cuisine and forgotten specialties, which is confirmed by numerous culinary awards.
- Waterfalls of the Izubra River, from the DEvica village, path along the river Izubra.
- Shivering lakes: Dajić and Košanin
- Sighseeing post and Okruglica lake near Kumarica village
- Kumarica village near Ivanjica with rural accommodation facilities.
- The highest peak Jankov kamen, path over the river Golija, sightseeing Preko brdo, pasture of Đonovo polje.
JP „Srbija šume – Beograd
Sektor za šumarstvo i zaštitu životne sredine
phone +381 11 711 34 10,
RJ „Park prirode Golija - upravnik Dragoljub Šekler
Phone: +381 36 736 252, +381 36 736 049
E-mail: sgraska@Serbiasume.rs; firstname.lastname@example.org