Special Nature Reserve Rtanj

The Crnorecki (Black river) basin, particularly its mountainous flow offers one of the most beautiful landscapes in the Balkans. Contributing greatly to such a claim is the majestic Rtanj Mountain, which quietly rises from its broad base, naked and noble, to its peak at Siljka. The almost regular pyramidal shape of Mount Rtanj makes it unique. Towards the summit, Rtanj is arid, while on its lower climbs water breaks out in strong springs. Its Siljka peak is 1,570metres high and in the book Record from our Mountains Ratimir Stefanovic writes: “...When there are beautiful summer days the clouds dance around it; feathery white clouds, driven to the heights by the wind, attaching themselves to Siljka, rolling like waves, visiting him for a time, then detaching themselves and climbing to the heights ... When the thick clouds start to withdraw from the side of Rtanj and climb alongside Siljka, this is a reliable sign that there will be rain. Before the rain falls, a strong wind will blow; fog will roll in and cover the valleys, descending from the lower peaks. It is not uncommon for the heights of Rtanj to be under cloud cover and rain, while the sun bakes the peak and above the sky is clear. This is one of the features of this beautiful mountain in eastern Serbia.” This feature, and many others, such as the meaning of the name of the mountain, which is believed to originate from the ancient Artanian warrior civilisation that inhabited the area around Rtanj, planted a belief in the people that Rtanj is a healing mountain. The special healing powers of Rtanj are in its herbs, which aid the healing of wounds and cuts, while rejuvenating the soul. The most famous of these is Rtanj tea and Rtanj mint, which only grows in the Rtanj region.