Deep forests, dramatic gorges, waterfalls and spectacular viewpoints mark the scenery of Tara National Park in Western Serbia. Established in 1981, the National Park preserves the vast forest of coniferous trees, mostly fir and beech. The forest is strictly protected and in some areas has been left untouched for many decades. With reference to the growing wood mass of the forest and the fact that no other area in Serbia features a similarly dense forest, the area is sometimes nicknamed “Serbia’s lungs” by locals.
Tara National Park is located in the Dinaric Alps in the Western half of Serbia, not far from the Bosnian border. Nearby towns with overnight and dining options include Bajina Basta, Mitrovac and Kaluderske Bare. Many smaller towns in the area offer spas and bathhouses that have long been a draw for visitors. Others come to enjoy hiking trips through the area which contains many scenic attractions. From the hiking trails along the mountain slopes, many great vistas can be had, sometimes looking as far as neighboring Bosnia. Hikers should be aware that the region is home to animals such as lynx, wolves and a growing number of brown bears and use caution.
Apart from the namesake mountain with an elevation of 1544 meters, the steep gorges carved by the Drina river are favorited by tourists. Boat tours to experience the towering walls of these ravines are available. Other spots worth seeing include the scenic Lake Zaovine at the mountain, a railway museum in the town of Mokra Gora and the historic Raca monastery built in the 13th century, near Bajina Basta.