The Ljubljana Marshes (Slovene: Ljubljansko barje), located south of Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, is the largest marsh in the country. It covers 163 square kilometres (63 sq mi) or 0.8% of the Slovene territory. It is administered by the municipalities of Borovnica, Brezovica, Ljubljana, Ig, Log–Dragomer, Škofljica, and Vrhnika.
The Ljubljana Marshes is a place of great biodiversity. Since 2008, the major part of the Ljubljana Marshes, covering an area of 135 km2 (52 sq mi), has been protected as a landscape park. The most preserved parts had been already before protected as nature reserves and as natural monuments.
The marshland includes a number of hamlets that belong to the city of Ljubljana: Ilovica, Volar, Pri Strahu, Pri Maranzu, Kožuh, and Havptmance (from north to south). Ilovica was settled relatively late, starting in 1838, and had only six farms by 1860. Volar lies between the Iščica and Ljubljanica rivers and was settled after 1830, when it was also officially designated Karolinska zemlja (German: Karolinengrund), literally 'Caroline's land', in honor of Caroline Augusta of Bavaria. Kožuh lies further south, and Havptmance east of Kožuh. Havptmance was already mentioned as a place in the 18th century and was settled in the 1870s, when peat extraction was a major economic activity. The name Havptmance probably refers to the fact that the provincial governor (German: Landeshauptmann) had his hunting grounds in the area.
The prehistoric pile dwellings and the oldest wooden wheel in the world are among the most notable archeological findings from the Ljubljana Marches. Since 2011, the area of pile dwellings near Ig has been protected as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Recreational and tourist site
The Ljubljana Marshes is very popular among balloonists.
On 23 August 2012, a pilot without a valid pilot certificate caused the 2012 balloon crash which occurred on the Ljubljana Marshes, with several people dead and a number of passengers severely burned and injured. New, stricter protocol for pilots was introduced by the authorities to make balloon trips safe.
- Ljubljansko barje je območje Natura 2000
- Savnik, Roman, ed. 1971. Krajevni leksikon Slovenije, vol. 2. Ljubljana: Državna založba Slovenije, p. 317.
- Najstarejše kolo z osjo na svetu - 5150 let
- Prehistoric Pile dwellings around the Alps - UNESCO World Heritage Centre
- Uprava Republike Slovenije za za¹èito in re¹evanje
- Media related to Ljubljana Marshes at Wikimedia Commons
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