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Following the proposal of one of the most famous Croatian scientists, the botanist PhD Ivo Horvat, on 15th September 1953 the government of the Republic of Croatia legislated a Law about the forest of Risnjak becoming the National park, with an overall surface area of 3014 hectares.

In 1997 the Park’s area was extended to the surface area of 6400 hectares and together with the central part of the Risnjak massif includes the Snježnik mountain massif as well as the hydrogeomorfological natural monument – the Kupa River spring and its upper flow by which the wishes of prof. PhD Ivo Horvat have been fulfilled with regard to this area’s need for protection and valorisation.

Gorski kotar-Risnjak