It is hard to believe that a place of such priceless beauty can be found less than an hour away from Zagreb. Zumberak and Samobor Highlands Nature Park stretches over the hilly southern slopes of the Zumberak Mountain. It is a popular weekend destination for hikers, climbers and nature enthusiasts from central Croatia – and beyond.
Zumberak’s distinctiveness is rooted in the unique blend of karstic phenomena with canyons and creeks enriched with wildflower-speckled landscapes. Lush beech and oak forests, rich orchards and vineyards give way to open stretches of meadows and pastures. Scenic churches dot tiny villages as if set in time, creating an idyllic rural atmosphere. The animal life is also incredibly rich, with numerous species of birds, mammals, reptiles and amphibians.
We will pick you up in your accommodation and head towards Zumberak-Samobor Highlands. The Park abunds in hiking trails of varying length and difficulty. Our usual route leads to the highest peak Japetic at 879 m (2884 ft). It offers some of the most spectacular views not only of the park, but also of undulating northwestern Croatia and the nearby Slovenia. The beech forest surrounding Japetic is a protected reserve, home to beautiful examples of rare flora and fauna.
Before or after hiking there will be time to stop in the small town of Samobor which is a real hidden gem of Baroque architecture. We definitely recommend a coffee break on the main square and famous local desert „kremsnite“.
Since the famous Plesivica wine road is very close, there is an option to visit the charming vineyards and enjoy wine tasting and lunch in one of the best local cellars.
Recommended things to bring: hiking shoes, small backpack, water bottle, waterproof jacket, camera
ROCK CLIMBING AND PARAGLIDING: There are two rock climbing spots within the park and three paragliding locations. One of the most popular is Japetic, which comes as no surprise since the highest peak offers the most spectacular views of the surrounding area.
ARCHAEOLOGY: The area of today’s Nature Park has continuously been inhabited for the past 7,500 years, as suggested by numerous archaeological sites from different periods, located within the Park. If you are a history buff, you can visit Archaeological Parks in Budinjak and in Bratelji. In addition, Zumberak Nature Park is also home to ruins of once spectacular medieval forts, such as Tuscak, Old Town Zumberak and Okic. The ruins of Okic are particularly striking as they tower over the surrounding nature on a high rock. The Old Town Okic is one of the oldest inland medieval towns.