At 1047m, Mirna gora mountain is one of the eight mountains over 1000m high on the south-east edge of the Kočevski Rog plateau. Its fragmented eastern slopes fall steeply into the valley of Divji potok brook and Vrčice settlement. Several wells have their springs near Mirna gora.
Its peaks are overgrown with many tree species, with beech and fir predominating. These forests are part of the expanses of Kočevski Rog, forming one of the largest forest areas in Europe together with the neighbouring Dinaric plateaus.
Folk tradition testifies that the cave on the mountain was once home to an evil dragon. As the grain and grapes ripened in the valley, it was spewing torrential clouds a thick hail was falling from. Once, hail destroyed the entire crop for seven years in a row causing famine. People in distress turned for help to St Francis Xavier, the patron saint against bad weather. A church dedicated to him was built above the dragon’s cave, and the bad times finally went away. As peace came to the mountain, it was named Mirna gora – peaceful or calm mountain.
One of the educational trails to the top is the Planina-Mirna gora trail, which brings hikers closer to forest plants, animals, trees, natural phenomena and traditional crafts. But all this richness is noticed only by those who are not in too much of a rush to get to Mirna gora! The mountain is also a popular destination for cycling enthusiasts.
After going up, you can find refreshment in the popular mountain lodge, built in 1929 on the initiative of Ivan Zagožen, the first president of the Bela krajina Mountaineering Association. The lodge has 39 beds and is the only permanently maintained mountain lodge in Kočevski Rog.
In front of the lodge stands a mighty beech tree, about 200 years old. Despite its age, it still successfully defies the capricious nature on the mountain.
In 1966, the church bell tower on Mirna gora was transformed into a lookout tower, offering a beautiful view of Bela krajina all the way to the River Kolpa, the Croatian city of Karlovac and Gorski Kotar mountain range.
Conquer this most famous hiking spot in Bela krajina—it will definitely encourage you to further explore the beauties of Kočevski Rog!