The Velebit Bear Orphanage

The village of Kuterevo is situated at the north-east slope of the Mount Velebit along the border of the Velebit Nature Park. Apart from forestry, the people of Kuterevo are still engaged in the old craft of woodworking. Kuterevo lies in the proximity of the Senj - Otočac – Plitvice road, with the Otočac - Krasno - Sv. Juraj road running along the west fringes of the Kuterevo valley.

Owing to its geographic location in North Velebit in the vicinity of an area densely populated by bear habitats, Kuterevo has become home to the first Bear Orphanage in Croatia, providing shelter to young, abandoned bear cubs.

The bear orphanage project (popularly known as: The Velebit Bear) has been initiated by the Croatian Centre "Knowledge for Environment" and is implemented on site by the Velebit association Kuterevo – VUK. The project was aimed to build and establish the first bear orphanage in Croatia, in order to help efficiently protect the brown bear species as well as to contribute, through education of the local population and visitors, to a better awareness of the valuable biodiversity growing within the Velebit Nature Park area and the need for its preservation.

The Kuterevo Orphanage is run by a team of nature lovers composed of biology and environmental protection experts and layman volunteers all of whom are motivated by their great love of bears. They all selflessly care for the bear inhabitants of Kuterevo and are anxious to provide the young animals with a safer future and the living conditions as similar as possible to their original habitat.

The Velebit Bear Orphanage in Kuterevo serves as a part of the Visitor's Centre as well as being an attractive site for the promotion of the Velebit Nature Park.

The first inhabitants of the Orphanage were: the bear couple known by the names of Mrnjo Brundo (male) and Janja Zora (female).

To visit the Orphanage, please make an appointment at:
Fax: +385 53 799 600
Phone. +385 53 799 222
Mobile: + 385 91 583 54 12
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Activities Coordinator: Ivan Crnković – Pavenka
Project Manager: Vladimir Lay, D.Sc.

Professional Guidance: Prof. Đuro Huber, D.Sc.