Vjetrenica cave

Vjetrenica cave is in Zavala (Ravno municipality) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and it is 15 km from Slano. From Slano, drive towards Ćepikuće, then towards Ravno to Zavala and then go towards the cave. About 6000 m of Vjetrenica has been explored, and 550 m may be visited. It is worth noting that one must wear warmer clothing to visit the cave (the temperature is about 11°C all year round), as well as put on suitable shoes, because the cave is wet and slippery and one must walk with caution. Why the cave is called Vjetrenica (named after the word “wind”), you will find out at the very entrance where you will be greeted by strong wind (“vjetar”) or, rather, strong air blast, the purpose of which is to try to balance the variable external and the permanent internal temperature. Depending on the external temperature, the wind changes direction. There are legends about fairies connected with Vjetrenica. The fairies allegedly kept young men imprisoned inside, and they were forbidden to talk about it.

There are also Leopard’s channel and Leopard’s creek in the cave. They were so named after a leopard skeleton found by Welsh speleologists in the 1960’s. That part is not accessible to tourists. However, the part that can be toured has different forms od stalactites and stalagmites, such as Pjati (dialect for plates, which can be either empty or full, depending whether it is rainy or dry), Tursko groblje (Turkish cemetery), Orgulje (Organs), Žuti saljev (“saljev” is a type of icicle, “žuti” is yellow), Zavjese (Curtains), Kip majke s djetetom (Statue of mother and child), etc. It is said that the speleologists explored the reaches of the cave and they spilt a certain amount of paint in the cave – one part was noticed near the island of Šipan, and the other in Slano!