History of Sarajevo

History of Sarajevo



Sarajevo is located in the middle part of Southeast Europe and the Balkans. The river Miljacka flows through the city, and in the immediate vicinity of the city, in the municipality of Ilidža, there is the spring of the river Bosna. Around Sarajevo there are numerous mountains: Jahorina, Bjelasnica, Igman, Treskavica and Trebevic.
According to the latest census, the city has a population of 429,672.

Sarajevo has a long and rich history ever since the Stone Age: where the remains of an old species of cave bear were found. The area was inhabited 4000 years ago – the remainings of the Butmir culture were found here. Butmir settlement is the oldest Neolithic prehistoric site in the Balkans which was conquered by the Illyrians in 2400 BC. The Illyrian tribe of Desiaties inhabited the areas around the Miljacka River. The remains of Illyrian settlements can be found at Soukbunar, Zlatište, Debeli brdo and Kotorac. The defeat of Desiate by the Roman emperor Tiberius marked the beginning of Roman rule in this area. Traces of the Roman antique culture can be found in Ilidza, where numerous villas, spas and a bridge over the river Bosna were built.
In the Middle Ages, the area of ​​Sarajevo was known as Vrhbosna, near the traditional kingdoms in Visoko. The central fortification of Vrhbosna was the city of Hodidjed, in the area of ​​Vratnik. From the Middle Ages, we have „stećake“ (tombstones) written in „bosančica“.

With the arrival of the Ottomans, the foundations of nowdays Sarajevo were set. In 1462, Isabeg Isakovic built „cupriju“ (the bridge) and made „čaršiju“ (the city center at the time), he also built a mosque, a hammam, numerous shops, a closed market and a hostel. On the left shore of Miljacka river there was a castel „Saray ovasi“ after which this city was named. The Ottomans built and developed Sarajevo so quickly  that in the 16th century it was one of the largest, richest and most beautiful cities in the whole Ottoman Empire. As Sarajevo was built by conquerors from the east, it was made accoridng to the culture of an Oriental city, although at that time, churches, two Orthodox and one Catholic, and two synagogues were also built in Sarajevo.

In 1699, Prince Eugen of Savoy plundered and burned the city to the ground, only a few mosques and the Orthodox Church were spared.
In 1878, the Austro-Hungarian monarchy occupied Sarajevo and made a modern metropolis out of it. The presence of Central European culture and architecture is still visible in the city center today: buildings built in several Western European architectural styles, residential buildings, villas and palaces, churches and monasteries, administrative and commercial buildings. It was a period of industrialization, development, social change and education; The period of light bulbs and the first electric tram in Europe. Sarajevo is also known as the city where the Crown Prince of Austrian-Hungarian Monarchy, Franjo Ferdinand, was assassinated, which was the reason for the begining of the World War I.
After World War I, Sarajevo became a part of the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, later called the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. It remained a part of this state until World War II, when it joined the Independent State of Croatia.
Sarajevo was liberated on April 6, 1945, and a memorial known as the "Eternal Fire" was built in the city center as a symbol of anti-fascism. In years to come, Sarajevo became one of the most important industrial centers of the Balkans.

In 1984, the XIV Winter Olympic Games were organized in Sarajevo. Even Juan Antonio Samaran himself stated that these were the best organized Olympic Games at that time.

In recent history, Sarajevo has been known as a city that has been under siege for 1425 days. The rebuilding of the city began in 1995 and in 2003 new office buildings and skyscrapers were visible. The Bosal City Center is the tallest building in the Balkans.

Tourist destinations in Bosnia and Herzegovina:


Sarajevo or Sheher, as it used to be called is located in the heart of the Balkan, so it is an ideal starting point for those who want to visit this region. Due to the strategic and geografical position of the city, Sarajevo was occupied by many rulers: the Ottomans, the Austro-Hungarian empire and the Germans during the World War II. Sarajevo is popularly called the European Jerusalem. Today, in its new-old attire, it welcomes every well-meaning traveler and is a real treat for both the eyes and the soul of all who wish to visit Sarajevo.

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Mostar is a beautiful city on the river Neretva. It is one of the most beautiful cities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, located 80 km southwest of the capital Sarajevo. It has 105,797 inhabitants. The largest city in Herzegovina, with a total area of 1,175 km2, was named after the guardians of bridges. Mostar can be described as a junction of northern, western and eastern Herzegovina. Mostar was once an important center of textile industry, tobacco and mining (bauxite). Mostar stretches in three valleys: in the north (Bijelo Polje), in the center Mostarska kotlina (where the city itself is located) and in the south Bišće Polje. Velež and Prenj are mountains located near Mostar and Bunica, Jasenica, Buna and Neretva (whose beauties we will get to know in detail), are the rivers that flow through Mostar. The Old Bridge is the most important sight of Mostar known for the jumps that have been organized here every year.

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The name “Jajce“ is first mentioned in 1396 in the title of Hrvoje Vukčić Hrvatinića, who called himself “Conte de Jajce“ (Count of Jajce). There are numerous legends about the origin of the town’s name. Some say that it was sitauted on an egg-shaped stone, which gave the town its name (Jajce literally translates as “little egg“). There is another traditional legend that say that the masons who constructed the city used eggs to make the mortar in the walls stronger. Every legend has its own charm, and it is our right to chose the one we ourselves think is the most true. The most popular origin story among the natives of the town is that Hrvoje Vukčić Hrvatinić ordered the town to be based on the Naples Castello del Uovo (literally translates as “Egg Castle“).

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Some would call this town Tjentište, but many more would call the area The Valley of Heroes. The heroism of the area’s inhabitants has been talked of by many, and so, an old saying goes: Where a man falls, a hero arises. Tjentište is a historican and archeological locality in Bosnia and Herzegovina located in the east, not far from the city of Foča. It is a valley-like area on the Sutjeska river that measures around three kilometers in length and about a kilometer in width. The valley is situated around 540 meters above sea level. It is located between the Prosječnica and Ćurevska Chines and is part of the Sutjeska National Park. Tjentište isn’t rich in historical sources that tell of its genesis, but is nevertheless rich in historical content, as well as in the many natural wonders that surround it or that are located not too far away.

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Trebinje is a city of 35,000 inhabitants located in the very south of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The city is located in the valley of the river Trebisnjica, on the border between Bosnia, Montenegro and Croatia. Trebinje has a rich cultural and historical heritage, which is why the development of tourism in this area was inevitable. The temperate climate and extremely mild winters due to the proximity to the Adriatic coast also contribute to this. Special attention should be dedicated to the Old Town, the park of the famous poet Jovan Dučić as well as the sixteen hundred-year-old plane trees that adorn the main square.

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