Situated on the Trebižat River amidst Europe’s last jungle lies a series of waterfalls that conjure images more in keeping with the Swiss Family Robinson than those traditionally Balkan.
Plunging from cliffs as high as 83 feet into a natural, watery amphitheater that is almost 500 feet across, the series of waterfalls at Kravice are nestled in a natural reserve southwest of the city of Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The collective impression created is one of a more approachable, kid sister to the thunderous Iguazu Falls spanning Brazil and Argentina’s border that remains less visited, and unspoiled in a way its big brother can no longer claim.
The rapids at the base of the falls aren’t particularly dangerous even in the springtime, and no lifeguards are charged with policing activities. This makes the natural swimming holes at Kravice local favorites despite the water’s year-round chilly temperature. As if bathing beneath cascading waters and leaping from rock to rock weren’t enough, a rope swing has even been added for bonus kicks. With a bar on its banks, a classic mill and old sailing ship moored in the lake at its base, Kravice Falls leaves nothing wanting.
Tour groups can be hired to bring you to Kravice, but part of the joy in experiencing Kravice Falls is its general lack of crowds, which means joining a large cluster of strangers bound for the falls may just defeat the purpose of the place. Knowledgable visitors instead recommend renting a car from Mostar or negotiating taxi service to and from the woods, the latter of which merely adds to the adventure by tossing in the fun of haggling over price.