Usually, a story about any national park would be about nature. The animal species, the medical herbs, active vacation, relaxation etc. Without a doubt, national park Lovćeh has all of that. With the help of We can sum it up like this:
- 1300 plant species, many are aromatic, medical and endemic.
- 200 bird species, flying around
- 85 sorts of butterflies, also flying around :)
- 100 sorts of ants (pro tip: take a magnifying glass)
- 11 sorts of reptiles (watch your step)
Also, you have your usual suspects, bears, wolves, foxes, wild pigs, rabbits, deer, and so on.
But animals and plants are secondary when we talk about an actual experience in this national park. You see, national park Lovcen is located in the city called Cetinje. Therefore the mountain Lovcen is in Cetinje. And on the mountain Lovcen there is a mausoleum, devoted to the great ruler of Montenegro, where he is buried. This is the main story when word “Locen” is mentioned.
His name was Petar II Petrovic Njegos. Njegoš was not only a ruler but a versatile and capable man who was also a poet and a bishop at the same time. Successful and praised for all roles he had in Montenegro from 1835 to 1851. The most astonishing thing, when he is concerned, is the difference between the things he achieved as an artist, a poet and the life circumstances he lived in. On one side there were hardly 30 boys (one of them Njegos) who were trying to learn reading and writing skills in the newly founded first elementary school in 1834. On the other side, Njegos created his masterpieces, on which the society with the most progressive material and spiritual culture could only envy.
These significant movements in culture, religion, and politics were happening in Cetinje. Therefore, this former capital city becomes the most developed town, the most important town. Not only by the influence of Njegoš, but by the other rulers as well. This is reflected in “The first state printing house in the world” which was established in Cetinje in 1493. Year after in the place called “Obod” in 1494, a monk named Makarije printed the first book in Montenegro called “The Octoich of the First Voice”. Only 33 years later than the first book was printed in Gutenberg's printing shop.
As you can see, Cetinje was a very important city, and therefore very protected by Montenegrin soldiers who proved themselves over and over again. Unlike many bigger and more populated cities in Asia and Europe, Cetinje was never conquered by the Ottoman empire, even after 3 attacks. In 1692, when Turks pushed through the door of monastery in Cetinje, Montenegrin soldiers lighted the gunpowder hidden in the monastery and together with the attackers and monastery, blew themselves up.
Now you get a picture of importance and love for Cetinje. Today, however, Cetinje doesn't have the shine and importance it used to have. Nevertheless, due to its historic heritage, old buildings, museums, mausoleum and statue of Petar Petrovic Njegos at the second highest peak of mountain Lovcen, this city is loved by tourists in Montenegro.
Interesting fact, when asked why he didn’t want to be buried at the highest peak of Lovcen, he said
A greater Montenegrin than me will be born one day.
Let's wrap it all up with a quote by Bernard Shaw, taken after his visit to Lovcen
There, too, I have to become speechless and enjoy.
Cetinje is distanced around 46 kilometers (28 miles) from our hotel in Petrovac. By car, it will take you about an hour, for a perfect day trip at this, one of a kind city. To simplify the visit even more. Our partner tourist agency Medini organizes trips to Cetinje with very well informed guides which are quite helpful for a city with many stories to tell. Our guests can confirm the excursion at the front desk, and we take it from there.
There you go, a national park, a historic heritage, a unique experience. In Montenegro and near Hotel Eleven in Petrovac.