The Vjetrenica cave (in translation wind cave) is one of the most important caves in the Dinaric Alps mountain range, which is famous worldwide for its karstic and speleological riches.
The largest cave system discovered in Bosnia and Herzegovina is the Vjetrenica Cave, situated near the small town of Ravno and the orthodox monastery ofÂ Zavala.
The cave is adorned with a number of lakes, several waterfalls, creeks, and one of its main attractions is the Great lake about 180 meters long.
Vjetrenica which means â€œwind caveâ€ or â€œblowholeâ€ is the largest and most important cave in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and one of the most interesting caves in the Dinaric Alps mountain range, which is famous worldwide for its karstic and speleological riches. In the warmer parts of the year a strong blast of cold air blows from its entrance, which is very attractive in the middle of the rocky, hot and water less terrain.
This is the richest cave in the world in terms of subterranean biodiversity.
There are more than two hundred different species registered in it, almost hundred are troglophiles, a great number of them are narrow endemic; 15 are stenoendemic, and about 37 were discovered and described in Vjetrenica for the first time.
Vjetrenica runs from the edge of Popovo Polje to the south, and on the basis of analysis of the terrain, geologists have predicted that Vjetrenica could stretch right to the Adriatic Sea in the Republic of Croatia, 15â€“20 km away from its entrance.
Here are some fun facts. The cave has 7,014m total channel length; there are 1,800m of total tour paths; average annual temperature is 11.6Â°C.
Along with the hydrological arguments, this assumption is also supported by the â€œunnaturalâ€ end of Vjetrenica in the form of a huge heap of stone blocks that have caved in. The Vjetrenica Cave has all the ingredients to enjoy, learn and experiencing surprises. You will feel a pleasant fresh wind at the entrance, decorated with beautiful petrogliphs.
The visiting sector of the cave has large size galleries with a path from which you will be able to admire gorgeous speleothems (stalactites, stalagmites, columns, cascade-like flowstone formations, calcite gours) and lakes with the olm (proteus anguinus), the only cave-dwelling chordate species found in Europe. The remains of eight fossilised animals have been found in it, the largest being the cave bear (Carnivoria, Ursus spelacus) and one complete skeleton of leopard (Carnivoria, Panthera pardus).
In 2004 Vjetrenica Cave has been nominated for the UNESCO World Natural Heritage site.