Novohrad Geopark

Location: Banskobystrický kraj, okres Lučenec, Fiľakovo

GPS: N48°16'19'' E19°49'27''

The area of the Novograd-Nógrád UNESCO Global Geopark is landlocked and dominated by hills, divided by valleys and basins. The area's varied history is reflected in a unique landscape. Several of its geological and geomorphological attractions also provide remarkable image of the country.

On March 27th, 2010 in Luberone, France, Novograd-Nógrád UNESCO Global Geopark was admitted by the UNESCO Steering Committee as the world's first international geopark, as the 38th member of the European Geoparks Network, and in April 2010 it was admitted at the World Geopark Network conference in Malaysia as its 67th member. Since 2016, the geopark is also the national geopark of the Slovak Republic, included in the Network of Geoparks of the Slovak Republic.

The name of the geopark comes from the Slovak and Hungarian names of the former County and nowadays cultural-historical region, where the respective Geopark is located. The emblem of the Geopark represents the Šomoška Castle on the Slovak-Hungarian border standing on a basalt outcrop which represents beautifully the human interaction with the geological past.

It spreads over an area of 1,619 km2, of which 336 km2 are in the territory of the Slovak Republic, and it represents a territory rich in unique geological and natural values, cultural-historical heritage, folk traditions, modern culture and gastronomy. It comprises the administrative area of 63 settlements in Hungary (including urban county Salgótarján) and 28 settlements in Slovakia. Lučenec is the biggest Slovak town close to the Geopark.

In Slovakia, the geopark is spread over the territory of the district of Lučenec (the town of Fiľakovo and municipalities: Belina, Biskupice, Čakanovce, Čamovce, Fiľakovské Kováče, Lipovany, Kalonda, Mučín, Pleš, Prša, Radzovce, Rapovce, Ratka, Šiatorská Bukovinka, Šurice, Šíd, Trebeľovce) and Rimavská Sobota (municipalities: Blhovce, Dubno,  Gemerský Jablonec, Hajnáčka, Nová Bašta, Petrovce, Stará Bašta, Studená, Tajchy, Večelkov), where 53 sites are located in total. It also includes Protected Landscape Area of Cerová vrchovina. In the territory of Hungary, Novohrad-Nógrád geopark includes 64 municipalities with a total of 167 locations. Due to the relatively young geological age as well as the great variability, local volcanic structures are suitably usable not only for a scientific research but also for educational purposes for a wider range of people.

Landscape of the geopark comprises of rolling hills, volcanic plateaus and lowlands overshadowed by volcanic peaks. The peaks provided ideal sites for fortresses during the middle ages and in the hidden valleys isolated communities maintained their special folklore, consequently the human landscape is interwoven on several levels with the geological past.

Among the most important Slovak geopark locations are Fiľakovský hrad (Fiľakovo Castle, National Cultural Monument), Šomoška (National Nature Reserve) with Šomoška Castle, stone waterfall and stone seas, Pohanský hrad (Pagan Castle, National Nature Reserve), Ragáč (National Nature Reserve), Hajnáčsky hradný vrch (Nature Reserve), Steblová skala (Nature Reserve), Soví hrad (Natural Monument) and many other geological, natural and cultural-historical locations.

Geopark construction is sponsored by the Geopark Novohrad-Nógrád Association of Legal Entities, established in 2008. The association covers strategic, planning, development-educational and presentation activities within the UNESCO geopark. It is a part of cross-border management and participates in activities within international structures.

In the interest of sustainable development, the association actively cooperates with local self-government, primary, secondary and higher education institutions, professional and development organizations, civic associations and local entrepreneurs.

Altitude (metres above sea level), road section, watercourse, built-up area, water area, municipality border, geopark border, state border, territory of public-private partnership for rural development.

Web: Novograd-Nógrád UNESCO Global Geopark