oc.mojan@gmail.com

182

The Outdoor Centre Mojan is situated in the building that once served as a border military base, called Dujo Puharic. This base housed up to 30 soldiers whose duty was to guard the border between the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and Albania. Within the quarters, you can still see some of the markings set back then – a guard house and border pyramid. Besides these, the solders from the entire former Yugoslavia who used to serve army here were responsible for the maintenance of the patrolling trail that went along the mountain reef and summer watchtowers whose remains can still be seen along the entire trail.

The Outdoor Centre Mojan is situated in a village of an unusual name Japan and when approaching the village you will see a signpost where the name of the village is written in Montenegrin and Japanese language! There are several versions of the story how this village was named, we are going to tell two, supported most by the locals. One of them is that the village was named thus because it’s situated right at the foothill of Komovi and the first rays of sunshine light up this village and that is why it resembles the Land of the Rising Sun. When the spring comes, an abundance of cherry blossoms, later on cherry fruit can be seen all around, same as in Japan. The second version says that the toponym Japan was derived from “iapanus” which means mayor, frontiersman – the keeper of the frontier. This version dates back from the 13th centery.

A friendship park is set right in the area of the Outdoor Centre Mojan. This part is named friendship park for several reasons. First of all, once soldiers themselves took care of the embellishment of the quarters’ area, they planted trees and flowers and made the yard a real park. They would bring the seedlings or get them as gifts and there are several trees of thuja here, the species that can often be seen in coastal parts but it adjusted quite well here. Recently 50 trees of Japanese cherry have been planted here and the seedlings were a gift of the honorable consul of Montenegro in Japan given on the tenth anniversary of Montenegrin independence.

The name of the Outdoor Centre Mojan comes from a less known part of Komovi massif, its southern branch where the mountain Mojan is dominant in height with its 2,157m. This mountain complex is unaccredited in a tourist sense and it is spread along the border between Montenegro and Albania. It is interesting for the facts that it has 15 peaks with altitude higher than 2,000 m high and that the reef of these mountains was used as a pass of the border patrol. And Mojan itself is a fairytale place, a place where the river Mojan, which flows through the village Japan, emerges from. Mojan has its rocky reefs but also some tame valleys where locals leave their horses to graze and they stay there till the fall, when owners come for them.

μέλος από Ιανουαρίου 2018