Zlotske Pećine

Zlotske Caves - Lazareva Pecina - Лазарева пећина - Verknjica Pecina - Lazareva Cave - Verknjica Cave

Useful Information

Location: In eastern Serbia close to the town of Zlot.
22 km from Bors and 240 km from Belgrade.
(44.029339, 21.962424)
Open: MAY to OCT daily 9-16.
Fee: Adults RSD 300, Children (4-7) free.
Groups (20+): Students RSD 250.
Classification: SpeleologyKarst cave
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: Lazareva Cave: L=1,592 m, T=9-12 °C, H=100%, A=291 m asl.
Verknjica Cave: L=9,818 m, VR=99 m, T=3-9 °C, H=100%, A=454 m asl.
Guided tours: Lazareva Cave: D=40 min, L=694 m.
Verknjica Cave: D=3 h, L=620 m.
Bibliography: Dr Radenko Lazaravic (1978): Zlotske pecina, 122 pp 50 photos / surveys. (Serbian)
Address: Reservation, Tel: +381-30-459-020, Tel: +381-30-459-021, Cell: +381-69-459-02-06. E-mail:
Information: Tourist Office Bors, Tel: +381-30-24166, Fax: +381-30-25961.
Motel "Zlotske pecine", 19215 Zlot, Phone: +381-30-71042.
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.


1882 first exploration of Lazar's Cave by Felix Hoffman (*1830–✝1914), a mining engineer from Romania who opened many mines in Serbia.
1889 speleological research of Lazar's Cave published by Jovan Cvijić, the Serbian geographer and ethnologist.
1949 cave declared a Natural Monument.
1953 Lazar's Cave opened to the public.
1959 explored by D Dvetkovic, T Sava and B Markovic.
1960-62 explored by D Petrovitsch.
1965 explored by D Gavrilovic.
1976 explored by Radenko Lazaravic and the Speleological Group from Valjeva.
1976 Vernjikica opened to the public.
2000 Lazarev Canyon declared a Natural Monument.
2005 declared a geoheritage object of Serbia by the Institute for Nature Protection of Serbia.


In the case of Zlotske Caves the plural is earned by the fact that there are numerous caves in the canyon, and even more names. Originally the show cave was known as Zlotske, after nearby town Zlot, now it is generally known as Lazareva pećina, which is the actual name of the cave. The same with the gorge, which is both Zlotske kanjon (Zlot Canyon) and Lazareva kanjon (Lazarus Canyon), and its river which is either Zlotske reka or Lazareva reka. The cave, river and canyon were named after Prince Lazar, the last Serbian King who was killed in the Battle of Kosovo in 1389. They lost the battle and the country was under Ottoman rule for centuries. But there is another legend which says it was named after a Hajduk of the same name, who used the cave as a hideout.

The eastern foothills of the Kučaj mountain are full of caves, around the village of Zlot 222 caves are registered in the cave registry. 70 of them are located in Lazarus Canyon. Two of the caves are show caves. Lazareva pećina (Lazar's Cave, Lazarus Cave) is located at the end of the road, just at the mouth of the canyon. Vernjikica cave is located on the left side of the Lazareva reka canyon, about 1.5 km upstream from Lazareva. Lazarev kanjon (Lazarus Canyon) is a sight of its own, with steep limestone cliffs, it was formed by the cave river from the lower level of Vernjikica cave.

Лазарева пећина/Lazareva pećina (Lazar Cave) has two different levels, the show cave is in the upper level. The lower level is water-filled, the underground river is called Lazar River. The resurgence of the cave river is 7 m lower and in front of the cave entrance, and it flows directly into the Zlotska Reka. The cave has a huge entrance portal with is gated with iron bars. If you are there outside open hours, you can actually have a look into the entrance chamber, the shelter where the archaeological remains were excavated. Remains from Copper Age through Late Bronze Age to Iron Age were found. Also, the cave was frequented by animals during the Pleistocene, numerous bones were found. The bones of a lion and a bear are on display in the cave.

Hajduks hid in Lazareva Pećina during the rule of the Turks. When the Turks found out, they blocked the entrance to the cave. But their blockade was easily destroyed by the cave river. The Girl's Room was the place where the hajduks hid their daughters so that the Turks would not take them to the harem. The access to the chamber is a gradually narrowing passage, and at the end only one person at a time can pass through. The Turk who first protruded his head was greeted by a machete.

The cave is also famous for numerous bats, more than 10,000 were counted. Most of them stay in Bat Hall, which is not part of the cave tour to protect the bats. 17 different species were counted in Lazareva Pećina, 24 in all caves of the gorge.

Intensive research of the underwater part of the cave by cave divers during the last years has extended the size of the cave greatly. Currently, it is the longest cave of Serbia and 9,818 m long [2022]. It is not fully surveyed due to the difficulties, the estimated length with the not surveyed but explored parts is more than 10 km.

The tour through Верњикица/Vernjikica (Fiancee Cave) shows eleven chambers: Prijmna, Kaskadna, Vilingrad, Koloseum, Mramorje, Gotska Katedrala, Dvorana Oruzja, Venerin Ham and Siparska Dvorana. Vilingrad is the largest chamber by surface, 2,950 m², and got its name from the fantastic stalagmite shapes. The guides point out men, animals, flowers and a complete cave family from grandmother to a dog. Koloseum is the largest chamber in Serbia, 60 m long, 55 m wide, with a surface of 2,575 m². The ceiling is up to 51 m high and the volume is aid to be 90,000 m³. It was named colosseum because of its circular shape and ruined columns. The biggest stalagmites in this chamber are Godzila (10 m high), Toranj (9.5 m high), Vecin Sesir (9.5 m high), Minare (10.5 m high), Kriva Crvena Kula (18 m high, 8 m in diameter), and Vavilonska Kula (22 m high, 11 m in diameter).

The Gotska Katedral (Gothic Cathedral) contains a lace of flowstone. Venerin Ham (Temple of Venus) has formations of pure white calcite. The centrepiece is Pecinska Verna (Cave Venus), a 3 m high stalagmite, in the shape of a woman with raised hair. It resembles the famous Venus painting by Sandro Botticelli.

Vernjikica is toured on easy cave trekking tours. But with the long walk to the cave entrance and a duration of three hours it requires a little fitness. The trail starts at the show cave and leads up the canyon wall in serpentines. First an outlook is reached, which offers a great view of the canyon. The Тунел "Код лепе Влајне"/Tunel "Kod lepe Vlajne" (Tunnel "Near beautiful Vlajna") is reached, which is a tunnel built through a protruding limestone cliff for the trail. Finally, the entrance to Vernjikica is reached, which is 160 m higher than the show cave.