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5 reasons to visit Lazar’s Canyon and Bor

An Indian summer has given us a few more days to enjoy the benefits of nature. Instead of the West, whose seductive power we have already confirmed, we turn our compass towards the East. Always mystical and enchanting, full of surprises. We are going to the mining region of our homeland and the landscapes where nature still successfully resists man.

Lazar's Canyon and Bor


Wow! We couldn’t help but exclaim when our eyes saw the wonderfully carved cliffs covered with a green carpet. From a landscaped platform near the end of Lazar’s Canyon… Almost vertical giant walls overgrown with diverse vegetation extend their rocky hands to the other riverbank. To bridge the water. In some places, it is as if they are touching. And here and there, it seems they are tightly hugging. Somewhere, the boulders are indeed entrapped, and the two banks are connected. What’s at their bottom cannot be seen. The fence is installed at a safe distance from the edge. Do not even try to skip it, it is too steep, slippery, and dangerous. Sit back and enjoy. Here the words are silenced, and the imagination becomes playful.

The Lazar’s River and its tributaries – Demižlok, Mikulj and Vejska River – cut through the limestone massif of the eastern rim of the Kučaj Mountains and made a gorge. It is the longest and deepest in eastern Serbia.

With a multitude of crevices, ravines, and caves. The cliffs rise above 350 meters, and in the narrowest part, the width is less than seven meters. Like scenes from a fairy tale or a science fiction movie. Whether it was chosen as a sanctuary by elves and wizards is unknown. It’s not explored enough. But it is certainly a habitat of a diverse world of plants and animals. It is one of the most important biodiversity centres in the Balkans. This is the home of the Crimean Pine and relic species – yew tree and Serbian ramonda, a delicate purple flower.

„There used to be dozens of pairs of eagles, thousands of swallows, and chamois would walk everywhere in the evening”, reveals a local explorer whom we met at the viewpoint. „And then tourists rushed in and brought modern technologies, endangered them, and many ran away”, the nature conservationist recalls sadly and angrily the time when the human foot rarely walked here. But there is some good news. A few years ago, a couple of bears were brought in, and now five of them are lounging around the gorge. It seems that the giant growlers took to their new habitat.

Lazar's Canyon

Because of its wilderness and inaccessibility, it was a haven for fighters against the Ottoman Empire, whose soldiers did not dare to enter it. And when it comes to its name, there are several stories. According to one, it was named after Lazar, a fighter against Ottomans, who found his refuge here. And after the other story, it got its name after Prince Lazar, who stayed here with his horsemen. And it certainly has that unconquerable character. The name undoubtedly suits it.

Passing through one of the most impassable canyons is a great challenge even for true adventurers. It requires a lot of skill, good fitness, but also courage. It is visited during longer dry periods, in groups and preferably with a guide, with mandatory protective equipment.

We had to take a macadam road to the viewpoint we visited. It is rather steep, with larger stones all along it, so it is necessary to drive carefully. You can also walk along the landscaped path from Lazar’s Cave, the longest one in Serbia. There are several more viewpoints, each providing a completely new and different experience of the homeland. The Lazar Canyon is a natural monument. Its beauty is out of the ordinary and untouched, for now.

City of Bor


It was mentioned for the first time in the 18th century. It began to develop with the opening of the copper mine in 1903, and it gained the status of a city after the Second World War. At the entrance to the city, there is a small square with a revolving monument to a miner. An unusual welcome that immediately lets you know where you have come to. There is a boulevard surrounded by trees leading to the city centre. It’s also a park-museum. On a grassy island between the two directions, there are industrial and mining exhibits. The car does not allow you to observe it carefully, so it’s better to take a walk. The most striking exhibit is a dump truck. Without a photo with this yellow giant, hardly anyone will believe that you visited Bor. Just be careful when crossing the street, it’s pretty busy. It is one of the most beautiful ones we have seen, and certainly the most unusual one.

Museum of Mining and Metallurgy

We reach the Museum of Mining and Metallurgy. The renovation, which is much needed, is in progress, so its cramped space is even more reduced. But there are interesting things to see. The permanent exhibition shows the development of mining and metallurgy from prehistoric times to the present, the history of the Bor Mine, and the most important people. In addition to antique mining tools, the most interesting exhibits include a bronze belt from the 5th century BC and a set of gold women’s jewellery from the 2nd century AD, which is quite sophisticated. The Vlach corner is also charming, and it presents the material and spiritual culture of the Vlach community of Bor and its surroundings. In front of the entrance, sculptures by famous academic artists are exhibited.

Nearby is the central square and a monument to Đorđe (Georg) Weifert, the founder of the Bor Mine. Wander around the city and discover the buildings of French architecture, and if you have enough time, stop by the Zoo. Not far away is Brestovačka Spa, tucked away in fairy-tale nature with thermo-mineral water that even ancient Romans used for healing. And its famous historical buildings are must-see.

Small, but unexpectedly green, likeable and with quite a diverse offer. And its surroundings are even more diverse.


5 reasons to visit Lazar's Canyon and Bor

Stol Mountain


The road to Mt. Stol offers extraordinary scenes. It leads past the mines of the Bor Mine. Its size is difficult to describe. Mountains of excavations. They stretch indefinitely. And huge machines that never seem to turn off their engines. The Jama café used to be open to visitors here, 400 meters underground. It must have been a special experience to chat over coffee or a drink deep in the stomach of the earth.

And while, on the one hand, miners are tirelessly mining, on the other, nature is defying them. With its wilderness and lushness and rocky peaks of Veliki and Mali Krš mountains. The last section of the road to Stol is quite narrow, followed by a macadam road to the Mountain Home. In front of it, there is a field with goals for football competitions, and a few steps further, there is a pond with a decorated seating platform. Here you can relax and breathe in the nature. And enjoy the view of the highest peak, Goli Krš at 1,156 meters of altitude. As well as the view of forests, flower meadows, and limestone formations. The flat peaks and steep cliffs are a true paradise for hikers and scouts, and cyclists and all nature lovers climb the forest trails. Just nature and you. Alone. In perfect harmony.

Stol forests


At an almost mountainous altitude, at the foot of Crni Vrh, in the middle of the last century, man-tamed watercourses. Thus, tens of hectares of water oasis were created. Like a mirror reflecting the landscape. We sit on the shore at the Hotel Jezero, in a park with wooden benches with canopies. It could do with some decorating, primarily cleaning. If one ignores man’s arrogance and negligence, the scenes are like in a fairy tale. A magical autumn dance of sun rays and calm water. Complete serenity and quiet. It is only disturbed by a middle-aged gentleman who daringly swims all the way to the other shore. At that moment, a young man arrives on the SUP board and joins him. Thumbs-up to these true water lovers. They are not discouraged by the chilly October water. And, we felt the coldness by just looking at them. So, let’s warm up a bit. With Drive Cafe coffee. It is still warm. Always with a full, perfect taste. And we sweeten it a bit. With Drive Cafe croissants. Fresh and soft. Surrounded by this beauty, they are even sweeter.

Clear Bor Lake, surrounded by deciduous and coniferous forests, green glades, and meadows, attracts more and more visitors. Mostly in the summer, when thousands of swimmers seek refreshment on several landscaped and many wild beaches. Then it becomes lively, cheerful, and noisy. But the sunny autumn suits it. Then it becomes calm, quiet, secluded, and tame.

Bor Lake


We are driving towards the highway to Belgrade, believing firmly that there must be a convenient place to tame our hunger along the way. Because there is no place in Serbia with twenty kilometres of roads without a restaurant. There must be one. So, we arrived in Boljevac. The locals directed us to the Bravo café-restaurant. In the very heart of the town, with a large garden and sophisticated interior decoration. Is this a good place to eat, we wonder suspiciously. A friendly young waiter recommends oven-baked gnocchi with chicken. Perfect and abundant. And ribs with cream. They stick to the fingers. They must have been made by a skilled chef. In the end, we unanimously say: “Bravissimo!” to Bravo. So, there are some fancy establishments with traditionally prepared food. We went there by chance, and we are planning to return to it at the first opportunity.

Restaurant Bravo


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