The Slovenia Times

New nature park created in Pohorje

Environment & NatureSociety
The Lovrenc Lakes, a rare example of pristine high-altitude wetlands. Photo: Nebojša Tejić/STA

Woody high-altitude wetlands and mountain pastures that have long attracted visitors to Pohorje, a lush massif in northeast Slovenia, will enjoy special protection with the creation of a new Pohorje Regional Park.

The park stretches over 52 square kilometres in the upper altitudes of Pohorje and includes pristine natural environments that boast a variety of natural phenomena.

It has a unique combination of dense conifer forests and open grassy areas, including high-altitude pastures.

But Pohorje is perhaps known for high-altitude wetlands, picturesque environments that are home to a multitude of species, many of them protected. The best known among them are the Lovrenc Lakes and the Ribnica Lake.

It also boasts one of the largest virgin forest remnants in Slovenia, Šumik.

After the government approved the motion to create the park in January, the six municipalities of the area, Zreče, Vitanje, Mislinja, Lovrenc na Pohorju, Ruše and Slovenska Bistrica gave their final go-ahead at the end of April.

The decree establishing the park designates two protection areas, one where management will be severely restricted to protect wildlife and fauna, and one where existing tourism, forestry and agricultural practices will be allowed to continue.

Efforts to protect the area go back more than 100 years, with the first protected area status having been declared in 1967. The initiative to create the Pohorje Regional Park was launched in 2017.


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