Image source: Petar Milošević
Serbia is a country in Southern Europe, once part of Yugoslavia, and as with most European countries, Serbia has plenty to offer its visitors. The county has had its difficulties in the past and these have helped to create a wealth of historic places and cultural sites. Here are three of my favourite historic places to visit in Serbia. Perfect if you are a history buff, a lover of great architecture, or just looking to.
Image credit: (WT-shared) Kulmalukko at wts wikivoyage
If you want to visit something truly unique, why not visit the famous Skull Tower, located not too far from Niš. Its Serbian name is Cele Kula and means the Castle of Cegar. 952 skulls were used to create the 15ft high and 13ft wide tower after the battle on Cegar Hill. The skulls of the Serbian soldiers who were killed during the conflict were built into the tower by order of the Turkish pasha Hurshid, the Turkish commander of Niš during the time.
The skull of Stevan Sin?eli?, a commander of the first Serbian uprising was placed at the top and intended to frighten the Serb population. The Turks desecrated the bodies of the Serbian soldiers by decapitating them. The heads were skinned, filled with cotton by well-paid furies and sent to Istanbul as a war trophy. The Turkish sultan thought it was not enough, however: he ordered that the skulls be brought back to Niš and built into a tower by a busy road for everybody to see and consider. This monument is still intact today and the slightly chilling image of just under a thousand skulls eyeballing you as you walk past is a scary concept for most.
Image credit: Wolfgang Hunscher
One of the largest and best preserved fortresses still around today is the Petrovaradin Fortress, located above the Danube River, about 80 km north-west of the capital, Belgrade. After Verdun, the famous fortress of Petrovaradin is the second largest structure of its kind preserved in Europe. Work on the site began in 1692 and was created to prevent the Ottoman Turks form attacking the South-eastern border of the Austrian Empire.
Despite deterioration of the fortress, both natural and intentional, she still remains a grand sight to behold. During the year 2000, growing dissatisfaction with the Milosevic regime led a group of musicians to create the EXIT Festival within the grounds of the fortress. What began as a relatively small, 60 day event, featuring only domestic musicians has since become one of the most popular international festivals around. It’s now widely regarded as one of the best international music festivals gathering popular acts from all over the world and few (if any) can claim a setting so dramatic as the grounds of a massive fortress far above the Danube river.
Image credit: Pudelek (Marcin Szala)
If you know your Roman Emperors, you will probably know about the infamous Constantine the Great, best known for being the first Christian Roman emperor back in 300AD. Constantine’s legalization and belief of Christianity, and his visions of a ‘New Rome’ at Byzantium rank among the most momentous decisions ever made by a European ruler. And his birth place can be found in the historic Mediana, the imperial palace of the Naissus era. This Archaeological Sites of Exceptional Importance is known for its wealth of Roman artefacts and the Mediana itself represents the best-preserved part of Roman Naissus. This area should be on your “must see” list, even if the amazing mosaics are not easily visible. They are protected, and covered with, sand!
So if you are planning on visiting this amazing destination, make sure you pay a visit to at least one of the extraordinary spots mentioned above. There are still plenty of other amazing places I have yet to explore in wonderful Serbia and of course the rest of the world so I’ll make sure to keep you posted on my new adventures.
Roxanne is a travel blogger for the travel site, Simonseeks.com, a community of travel enthusiasts, celebrities and experts sharing their tips on the best places to eat stay and drink around the world, Ranging from the cheapest places to stay in London to the best nightlife in Madrid.