Tara River Canyon: Europe's Deepest Gorge


It is hardly known, yet it is the deepest gorge in Europe. It is especially popular with adventurous travellers. Why is this so? When is a visit worthwhile, and from where have you the best view?


The small Mediterranean country of Montenegro delights visitors not only with its bathing beaches, but also with the spectacular nature in its interior. A special treasure is the Durmitor National Park, because at its heart is a natural wonder of absolute spectacular: the Tara River Canyon. It is part of the Unesco World Heritage and, at up to 1300 metres, one of the deepest gorges in the world. By comparison, the Grand Canyon in the USA is 1800 metres deep.

The Tara, the longest river in the country of about 140 kilometres, has carved itself into the rock in the gorge. The river impresses with rapids, waterfalls up to 60 metres high and, last but not least, the unearthly beautiful colour of the water. Enclosed in a wonderful mountain landscape, which shines in the most magnificent green of the forests in spring and summer, the gorge winds through the country for a total of 78 kilometres.

A unique view of this postcard panorama and down into the gorge can be had from the Durdevica-Tara Bridge. It was built in 1940 and spans the gorge at a height of about 150 metres.


So wild is the water that you can still hear its roar up here - and despite the truly Babylonian babble of excited tourists because the bridge is undoubtedly the most popular viewpoint of the gorge. If that's not enough, there are two options for an official adrenaline rush: on the one hand, various companies now offer rafting tours on the Tara River, where there are various rapids to master.

On the other hand, you can also fly over Europe's grandest canyon - well, not exactly. But it does feel like a flight when you zipline over the Tara Gorge - a mixture of excitement and fear. Because at this height you can't help but think what would happen if you crashed here. The thrill lasts no more than a minute, but it's one you won't forget for a long time.


The drive to the gorge is also quite exciting, which in turn is mainly due to the truly tremendous nature that delights along the way. Its serpentine route leads past, among other things, the wild Morača Gorge, along which a railway line winds at a dizzying height, connecting Podgorica in Montenegro with Belgrade in Serbia.

According to the website "Rafting Montenegro", the months of May and June are more suitable for adventurers because the water levels of the river are high, while from July to September you will find weathers for rafting that are also suitable for the inexperienced and families. By the way, the water of the Tara is safe to drink - but for most people it is probably too cold, with a maximum of 12 degrees in summer.