Samobor mountain range and Žumberak

Samobor mountain range and Žumberak

A mountain range of unique beauty

Samobor and Žumberak mountains form a unique mountain relief located between the river Sava and its tributaries Krka and Kupa. In many ways, this is a typical hilly and mountainous area. Despite the natural splendour, accessibility, and the fact that the Croatian capital Zagreb is just a few dozen kilometres to the southwest, this mountain area is quite unfamiliar to the general public.

Oštrc, Samoborsko gorje
Alan Čaplar

As per their position, Žumberak and Samobor mountains are a transitional area between the Alps and the Dinarides. It displays the features of both systems – typical Alpine features are steep mountain slopes, deep valleys and sharp peaks, while Dinaric characteristics are sinkholes, caves and limestone sinking creeks. For geographers, Samobor mountain range is just a small eastern part of Žumberak mountains. The mountain area that is commonly called Žumberak (in the narrow sense) and Samobor mountains are separated by deeply incised wooded valleys of the Žumberak river and the Bregana stream. Almost the entire area is surrounded by Nature Park Žumberak - Samobor Mountains. 


Žumberak mountain’s backbone is a long mountain ridge stretching in parallel with the border line between Croatia and Slovenia. This elongated ridge is known for its flowery grassland and beautiful views, especially towards the Croatian side of Žumberak. Its west side ends with the peak Sveta Gera, which is the highest peak of both Žumberak and the Pannonian area of Croatia. The highest point of Žumberak is marked with a high concrete geodetic pillar, from which a spectacular view is offered of all sides of the mountain. The starting point of all trails to Sveta Gera is at Sočice village, located in an isolated mountain valley full of natural phenomena and cultural monuments, like the Old Town at Kekić Draga and the waterfall Sopot.

Okić
Alan Čaplar

Okić, Oštrc and Japetić are the main hiking endpoints in Samobor Mountains. A dense network of mountain trails offers almost endless possibilities for short and long mountain tours.

 

Numerous archaeological findings from different historical periods prove that this area has been continuously inhabited, since prehistoric times to the present day. The most valuable archaeological sites are in the area of Budinjak and Bratelji villages. It is one of the most significant Iron and Copper Age sites in southeast Europe. Also, it is interesting to see the remains of medieval towns Tuščak, Old Town Žumberak and Okić. Okić is considered to be the oldest noble fortress in northwest Croatia.

Dragonoš
Alan Čaplar

Žumberak is the only mountain in Croatia that is truly an ethnological treasure.  Numerous wooden houses, working tools, traditional costumes and documents are an important part of the overall Croatian cultural heritage. Rich flora and fauna, numerous springs and natural watercourses, the remains of medieval towns, archaeological sites from different historical periods, religious objects of Roman Catholic and Greek Catholic heritage and interesting rural areas are good reasons to visit Žumberak and Samobor mountains. Although this large area offers many interesting things, numerous hiking routes and exploring possibilities, it still manages to successfully keep a pleasant mountain peace.