One of the most exciting things to photograph in Bosnia-Herzegovina are wild horses. The horses are actually of domestic breeds but were released into the wild generations ago. Nowadays the roam the expanse highlands of Planina Krug above Livno town. Read the full story with photos in winter in my previous post. This was my third visit to photograph these wonderful creatures, read on and check the photos.
This time I planned my visit in Spring. Winter photo shoot was very successful in terms of photos but I wanted to spend more time with the horses and photograph them in a different environment. I was accompanied by Amadeja, a young talented photographer from Slovenia and Mario, a local forester who takes deep care about the horses. We visited horses multiple times with his rusty but reliable Lada Niva.
Livno is a small town in South-Western part of Bosnia-Herzegovina. It is closer to Split than Sarajevo. The historical centre is compact with a few traditional houses, mosques and a source of Bistrica river. In former Yugoslavia, this was a prosperous town with jobs and agriculture. Nowadays it seems that most people just want to leave for a better life. Still, there is hustle and bustle in the city and everyone we met was super friendly and welcoming. There are many accommodation options, from hotels to private apartments. And if there is one place to recommend, this is Ašćinica Happiness – a small Bosnian eatery with a super friendly host Azra.
Planina Krug (also Kruzi) is a large mountain plateau where the wild horses roam. It is located just north of Livno, south of Cincar mountain (2006m). Its average altitude is between 1150-1350m. A harsh, inhospitable environment. Karstic sinkholes and rough rocky terrain make it hard to move around. Most of the water quickly disappears underground and in summer the horses are forced to move lower into the valleys. Yet it is extremely beautiful in its wilderness.
In Austro-Hungarian and Yugoslavian times, Planina Krug was sustaining large flocks of sheep and cows. Nowadays only the ruins of once prosperous enterprises remain. There are only a few stubborn shepherds and the wild horses who remain here.
Finding Wild Horses
The best person to approach about the horses in Livno is definitely Mario. Or Maca, as he is known in town. And everyone seems to know him. And his beat up Lada Niva. When I first sat in this car I wasn’t sure we will make it to the top of the mountain. But Niva just kept going.
You never know where the horses will be, Mario said when we started. But the best chance to find them is with me. Horses know me.
It turned out he was telling the truth. When we arrived at Planina Krug we soon noticed the first groups of horses. And they noticed us too. As soon as we stopped the car, they started to approach us from all directions. They knew Mario and his bucket of sea salt which they like so much. Soon we were surrounded by more than 50 horses.
Photos of Wild Horses
In the next couple of days with Mario, we had multiple opportunities to photograph horses. And to get to know them. I decided that making a vlog was a bit too much and focused on photography only. Here are some of my favourite shots of the wild horses of Planina Krug.
Three days in Livno and Planina Krug was more than enough to photograph wild horses. We were lucky to have Mario as our guide. Without him we could be searching for horses without luck. The weather was not perfect, neither sunrises nor sunsets were great. Despite this, we managed to get some decent photos of wild horses, portraits, their interaction, environmental shots. A nice selection of diverse photos. I will definitely be back, in a different season perhaps.
If wild horses are your thing, I recommend visiting Livno and the horses of Planina Krug. In my previous post you will find some travel advice.. Thank you for reading and I look forward to hear some feedback in the comments below.