The area encompassed by Učka Nature Park has been a site of continuous human dwelling and activity for the last 13,000 years. During this period, people have not only left a rich cultural heritage, but have also significantly influenced the area’s natural environment. Inhabitants of today’s park area had for centuries engaged in cattle-breeding, agriculture, and forestry. Human activity and the skilful management of natural resources resulted in pastures and agricultural land, distinguished by numerous dry-stone walls, traditional shepherd’s huts and field shelters, which are still visible today and make up the area’s authentic cultural and historical heritage.
These landscapes that were cleared by human hand have become important biological habitats. Over the millennia, a new ecosystem stabilised around these habitats, which is different in nature from the forest ecosystem that prevailed before. The neglect of traditional activities resulted in imbalance and unfavourable changes to the natural landscape. Therefore, preserving local traditional culture is an indispensable part of protecting the area’s natural environment and valuable landscape.
Here you can learn more about the long and turbulent history of human dwelling and activity on the mountains of Učka and Ćićarija, and get more detailed information about important individual sites of cultural heritage within Učka Nature Park.