My ultimate life dream is to travel and write about my travels. Since now I don’t travel often, I am more interested in traveling in the region of ex-Yugoslavia. It is not because I am Yugonostalgic. The reason is simple – for the first seventeen years of my life I lived in Yugoslavia and learned much about her natural beauty. I still have not seen all her beauty, although it is on my bucket list to do so.
Currently, most of my travels are business related and I often record them as travel reports. I like walking and on my main blog I started a hashtag #hodajsamnom (#walkwithme) in order to promote walking as the best way to get to know a new place. That is why I try to make my travel reports as walking reports from destinations I visit, whenever I get a chance.
#Walkwithme through Kozara
Mid-October this year I was attending a Public Relations Conference Proactive which took place on the Kozara mountain, in the Monument hotel. This was my third time to go there. I have already written about Kozara on several occasions and noted some of the reasons why this mountain has an enormous tourism potential.
This time, the weather was ideal for walking. My favourite time of the day is morning and I really enjoyed seeing the sunrise. I live in Zenica, the town which rarely has a beautiful sunrise because of the fog and the opportunity to witness such a beauty highly contributed to my delight.
Kozara is a national park. I imagined her mountain peak is much higher, but actually it is only about 1000 in altitude. I never visited Kozara during winter, but I saw it has well maintained slopes which surely means you can ski here. Friends from Banjaluka told me they go to Kozara on a hiking tour or a picnic whenever they have spare time. That Saturday, I was also convinced when I witnessed the area in the front of the hotel was full of people. They came to enjoy this beautiful day as well. The walk to the monument is the most common tour and everything is in a good condition except the stairs. Some of them are cracked and it is not safe to walk on them. However, I believe this will be fixed soon. The monument itself is truly gorgeous. The author is Dušan Džamonja and the construction lasted for only 15 months, to be fully completed in 1972. This year I squized in the inside of the Monument. I used to say – if I can get into it, I do not need a diet. My friend Gordan took this picture – featuring my blogger friend Dara and myself.
Spomenik A photo posted by Gordan Petrovic (@gocfonstrauss) on
Behind the Monument you can see the names of the people killed in the Second World War. With so many names and too many of the similar monuments across Bosnia and Herzegovina, we should be able to learn something and be reminded. Unfortunately, the history has shown that we are not very good students.
There is also a Museum in close proximity to the Monument. I visited this Museum a couple of years ago and decided not to go in this time. You can see the photos from that visit on my main blog (unfortunately, it is still in the process of translation, but stay tuned!)
There are fairy tale bungalows near the monument. I think they fit ideal in this environment. Maintained slopes are near them, and their prices are acceptable so they are a good substitute for people who do not want to spend time in the hotel. Each of them can accommodate six people. They have bathroom and small kitchen. My friend Dara told me they are common option to rent for New Year’s Eve for people from Banjaluka.
First #Walkwithme walk we have on that beautiful Saturday. We started on the trail from the hotel and arrived at the labyrinth. I did not take a photo, so here is the photo which took my friend Dara.
— CaraDara (@DaraPicard) October 17, 2014
This labyrinth is art installation of the Ars Kozara association. We almost permanently lost our friend in it. He went in to see how it is look like, and then he circled, and circled, and circled… I was just thought he would have to skip to get out, when he found an exit. After that we went on the trail provided for bicycles, through the forest. That was a wonderful walk, all through a huge forest in complete peace and quiet. At one moment we were wondered are there some animals, bears for example. Fortunately, we have not met anyone. First half of the walk was awesome because we went downhill. After that, we faced something that reminds me on important life lesson – every downhill is followed by the rise. Our rise was not so easy to overcome. At the half of that rise, my friend and I stopped to rest for a couple of minutes, fighting for breath. Turned out our condition is on very low level. I have never felt so happy when I see a concrete until then. Of course, the trail is not the reason for our troubles. It is our lack of preparation and low condition. But I must admit I enjoyed using my lungs in their full capacity and walking on dry leaves and foundation that is not concrete. We all need connection with nature and that is something I remember whenever I have a chance to get off the paved paths and walk on the grass or soil. That gives me much more rest and such walks give me more joy.
On the website National park Kozara you can find a lot of information. If your travels take you here, I recommend to step by and take a walk. Breathe in a peace and clean air and, if you are interested – a touch of history.