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Mostar is a city of bridges


I didn't know much about Bosnia and Herzegovina at the time of our trip, but I hadn't even heard of the city of Mostar, to be honest.

The name of the city means "old bridge" and is associated with the "Old Bridge" over the Neretva River, built by the Ottoman Turks in 1566 and included in the UNESCO World Heritage List.

We decided to stop in Mostar on the way to Sarajevo.

This is the exit from our apartment to the recreation area. Minimalistic.

In the Old Town near the Old Bridge.

Cafe near the Old Bridge.

The famous "Old Bridge" in Mostar.

This bridge is a copy of the previous one.

In 1993, during the Croatian-Bosnian War, units of Bosnian Croats shelled the bridge. As a result of two days of shelling, the bridge took more than 60 hits and collapsed.

There is a plaque about those events.

The bridge was restored using Ottoman technology. Blocks from local quarries served as the material. Collapsed blocks raised from the day were also used. In 2004, the new bridge was inaugurated.

In addition to the traditional use of the attraction, this bridge is used for jumping into the river.

Jumping from the Old Bridge is a centuries–old tradition of Mostar youth, which has turned into a sport in our time.

Since 1968, the competitions have become official. They are held annually on the last Sunday of July or the first Sunday of August. The competition is attended by local athletes as well as guests from other countries: Serbia, Montenegro, Slovenia

Looking at the bottom of the river from the height of the bridge, the instinct of self-preservation flashes red quite actively. The tradition of jumping into the river from this bridge gently hints at the level of extremity of the participants.

The Neretva River has unreal emerald-colored water, a strong current and giant sharp boulders at the bottom. Regarding these jumps, it is necessary to understand the degree of courage…

View from the Old Bridge


Mosques of Mostar

A walk along Mostar. I won't comment, you can see for yourself. The city was severely damaged during the Bosnian War of 1992-1995. Almost 20 years have passed since then.

There are a lot of "Developed" robots. The ruins of the former Razvitie department store. The building is not being restored.

The building of the former Razvitiak department store. The walls are decorated with some of the cultural symbols of Bosnia and Herzegovina – stacks, tombstones from the Middle Ages with characteristic carvings.

On each side of the building there are twelve concrete panels covered with petroglyphs: people, animals, birds and other symbols.

"The building was built on a site that has a slope towards the river. Architect Ante Pelaga solved the problem of visual alignment by lifting the main block on pillars. At the same time, the first floor was completely glazed, which gave the impression that the building's array was suspended in the air. The construction was completed in 1970, and very quickly the new department store became one of the symbols of the city." Source:

Unfortunately, the building was significantly damaged during the war, but the decorative elements – plates with petroglyphs – remained almost intact, especially from Tito Street, where only a corner of one of the plates was damaged.

The city of Mostar. A hunting shop.

A beautiful abandoned building. I tried to figure it out from the maps, but I still couldn't find what kind of building it was. If anyone knows, tell me. Interesting.

There are many destroyed and not restored buildings in Mostar. I will omit a long philosophical explanation, I concluded for myself that it is important for someone to trigger and make it the meaning of life for themselves.

Whoever wants to forget, forgets. Whoever wants to remember, he leaves "as a souvenir".

Houses are destroyed all the time. You can stick a sticker "Post-war tourism", but emotionally I will tell you the idea is so-so.

In addition to the ethnic, architectural and religious differences in Mostar, we were accompanied by a cloud of emotional tension, sometimes so concentrated that we did not want to leave the boundaries of the car.

There was also widespread and universal cigarette smoking everywhere, in cafes, shopping malls, and on the streets. Tobacco smoke permeates the entire space. We've just forgotten how it is. After all, it used to be possible to smoke almost everywhere in our country. There is something socially sound about banning widespread smoking.

The attitude of the Bosnians towards us, tourists, was strikingly different from the relaxed Montenegrin and Serbian communication. Under the influence of numerous ethnic conflicts and as a result of countless clashes on the basis of national discord, a specific attitude towards foreigners has apparently been formed.

In one of the cafes where we went for a snack, but later we limited ourselves to coffee - they began to ask us who we were, from where and where. Having found out this, the owner of the establishment became active: "The Russians have come to us! Look at them!" The people began to slowly pull themselves up, the locals ran away from neighboring establishments. These feelings were new to us, because there was no such thing anywhere else in the Balkans. What were the reasons for such extreme attention is still a mystery.

A similar precedent happened a little later, when we decided to skimp on dinner at a store near the apartment. At the checkout, at the time of payment, a hubbub arose: "The Russians are here!", we were somehow asked to pull everything out of the bags. Not to say that we are timid, but we left the packages without making purchases and left the store.

Forced Googling has revealed that our compatriots should not expect the same friendly attitude from Bosnians as from Serbs. However, it was not possible to find out the objective reasons.

In this regard, my stay in Mostar became somewhat emotionally stressful and I wanted to get out of here as soon as possible. And never come back.

Instead of concluding about visiting this place and the country as a whole, our entire team got the impression that yes, you need to visit such places at least once in order to once and for all feel and see with your own eyes the long-term consequences of any global human dramatic events.

Without exaggeration and metaphors. The scars on the faces of nations as a result of military actions remain forever…


March 19, 2024 04:48 pm



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