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Njegos Mausoleum

NJEGOS`S MAUSOLEUM – the most impressive and very mystic destination, of the indescribable natural beauty, not only of Cetinje but also of Montenegro in general, is by all means the mausoleum of Petar II Petrovic Njegos on the mountain Lovcen. Up to the mausoleum you can come by car from Cetinje, which is 13 kilometers away, passing through a certain climate spa or more and more famous rest home Ivan’s riverbeds.

Apart from the beauty and the natural surrounding in which you will enjoy driving through the beech, oak and linden tree forests, you will equally be occupied with the freshness, that is, with the translucent air, which will welcome you and immediately disperse the felling of sultriness and summer heat, which is characteristic on the Coast. The mausoleum is situated in the Jezerski vrh (Jezerski peak), in the height of 1 660 meters, and it officially represents the highest mausoleum in the world. To the foot of the mausoleum leads the asphalt and pretty narrow road, which curves in the height, and when you reach the destination – to the mausoleum you can see the plateau and a pleasant restaurant in which you can find a billet shop and a mini souvenir shop, in which you can buy the tickets for visiting the mausoleum and also you can find various Montenegrin souvenirs. In the same place you will be awaited by the custodian or a guide who will unselfishly provide you with abundance of information about the bishop and the ruler of Montenegro Petar II Petrovic Njegos, about Montenegrin history and freethinking Cetinje. The road from the beginning plateau for climbing on to the Njegos`s mausoleum is made of numerous stony stairway (from the foot up to the entrance into the mausoleum there are 461 staircases), and one part of the path leads through a well done and lighted marble tunnel.

During the construction of Njegos`s mausoleum, for 5 years as it took for the building of that marble giant, as the architects usually call it, several tones of stone was spent. The creator of the idea for the construction of the Njegos`s mausoleum was the world famous sculptor, originally from Croatia Ivan Mestrovic. The mausoleum is situates on the place of what used to be Njegos`s chapel, in which Petar II Petrovic Njegos was buried earlier. The most beautiful meeting of land and sea, as in his time and English poet Lord Byron wrote, you will experience when from the peak of Lovcen you look down onto the foothill that is towards the Montenegrin coast or Bokokotorski bay. If the weather is nice and suitable for recording and photographing, from Lovcen you can se parts of Italy, Albania as well as parts of some mountains in Serbia.

The visits to Njegos`s mausoleum are more frequent during the summer period, especially for May to October. During that time Lovcen is visited by thousands of domestic and foreign tourists, who become dumb in front of the unordinary view which can be seen from Lovcen and that goes over Kotor bay, open sea, Skadar Lake, on the distant Prokletije or on to the capital Cetinje. Beside the beautiful view in which tourists enjoy observing the Bokokotorski bay and the Montenegrin coast, from Lovcen you can make interesting photographs which will be the best reminder of your visit to the highest mausoleum in the world. In the lobby of the Njegos`s mausoleum there are two stone caryatides: a mother and a daughter (or Njegos`s mother and sister – as some historians think), that weigh 7, 5 tones. In the façade of the mausoleum Njegos`s grandiose figure made out of the best and finest stone, weighting 28 tones is situated and above it a grey eagle with spread wings. Down in the crypt is Njegos`s grave. The eternal resting place, that is, a marble sarcophagus with the remains of the greatest philosopher and poet of Montenegro of the XIX century is built from the fine white marble. From the vaulted crypt golden kernels shimmer. For the decoration of the vault 18 kg of gold was spent, which was dispersed, into 27.000 kernels, all over the walls of the crypt. On the tombstone it is written “Njegos 1813. – 1851.”

From the entrance into the mausoleum, turning right, it is nice to walk down the stone path which only has several meters to the stone Montenegrin threshing floor, that is, the place which is built in a circle, with a stone rim for sitting, on which folk parliament, gatherings were organized, on which important decisions were brought, and where folk dances were performed. Climbing up to the peak of Lovcen, because of the numerous steps, to many is a great effort, so for a while you can rest, making mini pauses and do the sightseeing. On return, going down the stairs, you can choose to visit a nice restaurant “Vidikovac” (Observation deck), from which you have a great view on the slopes of Lovcen. For the visit of the Mausoleum in Cetinje you need a firm determination, a little bit of good will and several important information about the destination that you intend to visit, all the rest you will experience when you get on Lovcen.

From the direction of Budva or towns on the Coast, the easiest was to get to Lovcen is by your own car, rent – a car, taxi or bus – in organized tourist tours, that as excursions are sold by almost every tourist agency from the Montenegrin coast. Also, driving from the way of Ivan’s riverbeds towards Lovcen, you can come by car over the saddle Krstac, on the way Kotor – Njegusi – Cetinje. However, the funs of the recreation in nature and those for whom “time is not money” on Lovcen or for a visit of Njegos`s mausoleum they can go on foot. Especially if you are a mountain climber or you are engaged in fast walking, that for you going on foot from Budva, Tivat or Cetinje and Njegusi to Lovcen will not be an obstacle for you. On the mentioned section of the road there are marked mountain tracks and various village roads.

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