Wildlife watching is a unique experience, allowing you a chance to witness some of nature's most elusive creatures. With specially designed features, the wildlife hides are ideal for photographers and nature enthusiasts.
Locally crafted and designed to match the forested region, each hide was placed in a specific location according to animal behavior and movement.
The hides are well insulated and rather spacious inside, with comfortable director chairs, viewing windows and special camera ports. Each hide has two comfortable beds for the overnight experience, and a small toilet is also available if needed.
Great viewings of bear, red deer, wild boar and wolf have been recorded but with wild animals you never know. The area of Velebit has a rich wildlife population and these hides are helping in establishing a supporting structure to continue to protect them.
You will be picked up by our guide Nino around 15.00u at a pre-chosen location in the Gospic area. He will drive you to the Lagosta Reserve area and with a 4x4, you will continue to the location of the bear hide, deep in the forest.
Upon arrival, Nino will explain everything you need to know about the surroundings and the animals that live in this part of the Velebit Mountains. Then you wait for dusk, and hope bears and other wildlife will come to visit the area so you can observe it from the hide. You will be back at your accommodation or car in the Gospic area around 21.00u.
€295 total for 1-4 people. Maximum 4 people
The price includes: Pick up and drop off at Gospic area. Transfer to the bear hide and a guided experience in and around the bear hide. Nino Salkic (link) as your guide from 15.00u till 21.00u. 5% rewilding levy. Fee for the bear hide
The price does not include: Flights. Transfer from airport/train station to Gospic. Food (you can bring snacks to the hide ). Insurance and personal extras
What to bring: We recommend you to dress in layers. Hiking shoes, sun hat, water bottle, daypack, long pants, hat and wool gloves, jacket, raincoat or poncho, sun protection cream, non smelling mosquito/tick repellent and camp shoes (sandals). Binoculars, personal toiletries/medicines and a sense of adventure!
Rewilding Europe Levy: 5% of your booking sum goes to the local Rewilding Europe organization.
Due to the huge growth in coastal tourism in Croatia over the last 10-15 years, many local inhabitants have moved out of the Velebit area towards the coast. As a result, many areas of this beautiful region are now characterised by land abandonment, rural exodus and fading cultural tradition. Rewilding Europe is working with local partners to transform these challenges into opportunities. This has seen the establishment of the 17,000-hectare Velebit Nature Reserve.
A new wildlife watching venture saw the construction and opening of two wildlife hides in this reserve in 2016. These will benefit the local community through job opportunities and boosted tourism income. They represent the first step in developing the area’s vast potential as a sustainable nature tourism destination.
Two unique forests in the Rewilding Velebit area were recently added to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Rewilding Europe is working to promote this model across Europe.
Local Croatian wildlife photographer and guide Nino Salkic recently commented “…being in the hides waiting for wildlife is like meditating, its a patience game and I always feel energized regardless of what we see.”
As a third generation photographer, Salkic’s love for nature was quickly matched with his growing interest in photography, and as he was born and raised in Velebit, the mountains are where he feels most at home.
Over the past years, Nino has been involved in all aspects of the wildlife hide development and with the assistance of research cameras is keeping up to date information on the wildlife movements in the area.
Adventurer, mountaineer and photographer aren't enough, Nino is studying Nature Conservation in his spare time...and documenting the storms that grace the Adriatic and coastal mountain regions.
Through all of this, his focus is on the promotion of natural beauty, wildlife and culture of Croatia.
"When there is already a mountain it should be climbed, patiently and all the way to the top. When there is already a mountain it needs to be met, with heart and ear like a mother's word. When there is already a mountain it should be conquered, slowly and wisely as the only love." Ljerka Car-Matutinovic
Nino is equally comfortable and confident behind the camera lens, a mountain top or ranging against the local storms along the Adriatic coast.
Wildlife Guide And Photographer, Velebit Mountains