The Kopa Forest Reserve is a primeval forest remnant that has a strict protection regime, so it is not intended for tourist visits.

The Kopa old-growth forest measures more than 13ha and represents the most strictly protected part of the forest reserve. It’s located on the eastern slope of the highest Bela krajina peak of Kopa on the Kočevski Rog plateau and today represents only a small remnant of a once quite large old-growth forest. The old-growth forest remnant on Kopa is the first protected old-growth forest remnant in Slovenia and one of the first in Europe. The credit goes to Leopold Hufnagel, who served under Archduke Auersperg, the owner of the forests between the Kolpa and Krka rivers. In 1892, he protected the Kopa old-growth forest and put it out of use on the basis of its uniqueness.

The old-growth forest overgrows a wavy and steep terrain with no pronounced karst phenomena, and the surface is rocky in some places. The main tree species are beech (Fagus sylvatica, 92% of the wood stock), mixed with fir (Abies alba) in the lower part of the old-growth forest and sycamore maple (Acer pseudoplatanus) in the upper part. A rare species of white-backed woodpecker (Dendrocopos leucotos) is constantly present in the Kopa old-growth forest.

Foto: Andrej Hudoklin