Over the years, Zlatibor has become the most popular resort in Serbia. This set of old mountains and large green meadows forms an environment of very special beauty.
The many streams and springs and the majestic pine forests have helped to forge the name Zlatibor : zlato meaning " doré " and bor meaning " pin ". The resort's mild climate, with sunny summers and average temperatures, and long but mild winters, has long attracted tourists. Situated on the axis connecting Belgrade and Montenegro, the tourist complex of Zlatibor is easily reachable by a very wide and comfortable national road coming from Užice, or by a shuttle bus from the same city.
Geography. Situated at a height of 1 000 m, Zlatibor is surrounded by four mountains at 1 500 m altitude on average. Zlatibor is therefore a very extensive mountain range, with landscapes of pastures, pine forests and rounded hills that can only be found here. Emir Kusturica wanted to honour this landscape by shooting his last film, Life is a miracle.
You can easily recognize the heavily forested mountains covered with pastoral houses and the many rivers. Around Zlatibor flows the Veliki Rzav, which is the purest river in Serbia. But Zlatibor also has mineral water springs, such as the one in the village of Rožanstvo, in the Spa area, or the medicinal Bela Voda spring.
Finally, two mountain lakes, although artificial, reinforce the soothing character of paysage : the one located in the centre of the tourist complex and the one in Ribnica, near the Crni Rzav river.
Up to 600 m of altitude grow more than 100 different species of grasses and flowers from montagne ; above, the landscape is dominated by conifères : white and black pines, firs, larches. On your walks through the mountains and valleys, you may be lucky enough to come across bears and wolves hiding in the high forêts ; further down, you will certainly see foxes, rabbits and wild boars.
History. First known as Rujno, this site was already the preferred destination of the Turkish aristocracy and wealthy merchants in the XVIIIe century. Attracted by the fresh air and the unique landscape of green pastures and hills, the elite of Serbia made it their summer residence and Rujno gradually became a popular holiday resort.
But tourism really started to develop when Alexander Obrenović, King of Serbia, came to spend a few days of rest on the hills of Kulaševac at 1893 : all it took was a few improvised picnics and their princely aura in Belgrade for the " gens bien " to rush there to build villas and summer residences.
Around 1900, the habit was born of building or staying in Kraljeve Vode, where King Alexander used to hold his lunches on the grass. In 1908, another king, Petar Karadjordjević, came for health reasons.
From that moment on, Zlatibor also became a rest and cure centre for chest and nervous diseases, thanks to its clean air and Olympic peace and quiet. Hotels for spa guests are beginning to be built, such as the Srbija and Čigota, the first establishments built in Zlatibor and which still carry on the tradition today.
In the 1930s, large tourist agencies such as Putnik began to build their own hotels and launched winter tourism.
Since then, you can go sledding or downhill skiing - two small blue runs - to have fun.
The last phase of Zlatibor's development took place in the 1960s, when the communist government decided to popularise the spa.
Sports fields and swimming pools in some hotels make it a sports resort by excellence : schools, clubs and companies are developing mass tourism there.
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