The main feature of the Eastern part of Croatia – Slavonia - are flat lowlands with large cultivated tracts. Driving through fields stretching away toward the horizon there are mountains rise to almost a thousand meters above sea level from a the plain which was once the bottom of the Pannonian Sea. One of these mountains is Papuk – the most beautiful mountain in Slavonia.
Since 23rd April 1999 Papuk was designated as a protected Nature Park on the basis of its extraordinary geological and biological diversity and valuable cultural heritage. In 2007 Papuk became the first area in Croatia to be awarded Geopark status.
The impressions of the geological characteristics of the landscapes were described in the most beautiful manner by the famous traveller and essayistic writer Matko Peić, who said:
“Some would not believe if they were told that one of Papuk's peaks is called High Peak, and that is reaches close to 900 m! It would be hard to understand that here from the plain climbing up are mountains, like crags, like peaks, from the dead Miocene sea, and that when climbing one comes across fossilized sea shells, sea-stars, snails, and sea-weeds. They do not realize that during moonlight, the volcanic rocks are glowing in the dark and Archean gneisses, mica schist, Silurian layers, shine quartz siltite. They don’t realize when you tell them and point on the geological map of Croatia, that the area of Požega is red, meaning that the soil is not made of soft mollusc , but from the eruptive granite rocks, basalt!”
- Matko Peić, "Skitnje"