Tag Archives: Spomenik

Spomeniks Of Former Yugoslavia

When I first came across the so-called Spomeniks of former Yugoslavia early 2017, I started to plan my travels to Croatia and Bosnia the coming fall to visit as many as possible of those impressive monuments. To dig deeper into this topic head over to: http://www.spomenikdatabase.org  , with tons of information and illustrations. Enjoy!

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Podgaric, Croatia…

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Petrova Gora, Croatia…

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Garavice, Bosnia…

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Medono Polje, Bosnia…

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Grmec, Bosnia…

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Tjentiste, Bosnia…

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Petrovac, Croatia…

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Vukovar, Croatia…

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Tour de Balcans

Back home since three weeks, but still stoked about our 14-day journey around the Balkans. Joined by my two older sons, we started our tour the last week of September, crossing Austria, Slovenia, Croatia/Bosnia-Herzigovina/Croatia, Montenegro, Albania, Macedonia, Serbia, and again Croatia, Slovenia and Austria. By doing this loop, we traveled more than 4300 km in two weeks time, just camping in the car and enjoying life at its fullest. It is pretty though squeezing all the experiences and adventures into one single post and would go beyond the scope of it so I might come up with some more posts about this topic in the near future. Especially about Albania, the main reason we did this tour and of course a post about something like: “From dusk till dawn in Albania”. Enjoy!

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Stopover @ Mali Alan Road, Croatia…

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The fertile plains of the Neretva delta, Croatia…

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Dusk at Kotor Bay, Montenegro…

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Lovcen Memorial Lookout, Montenegro…

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View from Mt. Lovcen towards Shkoder Lake, Albania…

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After three days of straight driving, we hit the border of Albania…

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The Albanian Alps, notice the road down at the valley…

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Shepherds everywhere along the road, Albania…

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Albania’s downside: great landscapes but also lots of trash everywhere…but I can´t blame the Albanian people…looks like some Germans got nothing better to do than leaving their tags…

Theth National park, Albania…click on the image to go full screen…

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The Pyramid of Tirana, Albania, the main reason I initiated the Tour de Balcans…more info: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyramid_of_Tirana

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Camp at the Ionian Mediterranean Coast, south of Vlore, Albania, with the setting Moon…

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View towards Llogara pass, Albania…

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South of Himare, Albania…click on the image to go full screen…

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Ionian Mediterranean Coast, Albania…

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View from the town of Nivice, Albania…

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The island of Corfu, Greece, out in the Mediterranean Sea, Albania…

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Syri i Kalter, the Blue Hole, Albania…

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Albania´s East, an untamed beauty…

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The Vjosa River, East Albania…

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Overlooking the plains at Korce towards Ohrid Lake, Albania…

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Along the way at Macedonia…

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Treskavac Monastery, a hidden gem in Macedonia…the paintings in the church looked like a full body tattoo…

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On the way through Serbia…

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Heaps of field burns along the way through Serbia…

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Leaving Serbia and entering Croatia, the party started while one of the Croatian customs officers stated my Sprinter not as a camper van but as a truck…?!

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Vukovar spomenik (monument), Croatia…more info: http://www.spomenikdatabase.org/vukovar

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The wounds of the Croatian-Serbian War from 1991-1995 are still there…

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Back home sound and save after a long drive on the last day…

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Petrova Gora, Croatia

While planning my trip to Croatia and Bosnia last September, I came across a place on Google Maps called Petrova Gora. Never heard of it, nor knowing a place like this would exist, I got instantly hooked what I had found out searching the internet. Thinking about Croatia, nice beaches, crystal clear waters and waterfalls came to my mind. But nothing like Petrova Gora, a so-called “spomenik”, a monument, a lost place, from a time when Yugoslavia still existed. The location, the architecture, the design, the abandonment of this place is extraordinary, out of this world to say the least. Arriving on a rainy and foggy afternoon driving uphill a gravel road through the woods, spending the night up there and exploring the basement the next morning have been an amazing experience. I hope this place stays like this in the future time for others to explore and to enjoy. If you want to learn more about this place and the spomeniks of former Yugoslavia in general, visit this site: http://www.spomenikdatabase.org . Enjoy!

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Grmec: Bosnia´s Lost Spomenik (Monument)

The reason we traveled to Bosnia in Sept. 2017 (while visiting Croatia in the first place) got one name: Grmec! After crossing the border at Prnjavor, we went further on via Bihac, Vrtoce and Medeno Polje, visiting some other spomenik sites along that way. At Bosanski Petrovac, we turned on a minor road towards Krnja Jela, following from there on a gravel road up into the Grmec Mountains. Henceforth we were blind flying…the road map we got was to imprecise, no GPS assistance, no internet connection. On our uncertain way through the woods we came across some forest workers, who were hauling logs with their horses and asked them for the way. While none of us was speaking a single word of their language, the first woodsman drew us a sketch. Some kilometres further, an old man showed us the direction towards a very muddy dirt road. We didn´t want the risk of getting stuck out in the middle of nowhere, so we turned around and thought that´s it. But shortly after that, on the way back, we came across two fellows with an old Mercedes pick-up truck and asked them for advice. You won´t believe it, but one of them was speaking perfectly german, while working in Germany for a long time. He explained us the way and after some 25 km and three hours of driving through Bosnian woods we arrived at Grmec…what a relief. We spent the night over there and got in contact with local log truckers the next morning. What a ride! Thank you Bosnia for having us and having a hell of a time!

If you want to learn more about this monument and  the spomeniks of former Yugoslavia in general: http://www.spomenikdatabase.org/grmec . Enjoy!

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The road to Krnja Jela and the Grmec Mountains in the distance…

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Forest worker on duty @ some very muddy dirt road, Grmec Mountains

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Finally got there…

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Someone must have been here before us…

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The next four images: traces of a beautiful park before it got lost…

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Eerie and beautiful…

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…lit with a video light…

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…and additional car head lights…and the Milky Way above.

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The next morning…

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…log truckers ready for take-off…

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The destroyed Grmec Hotel or Korkanica Hotel…while talking to the truck drivers that morning, one asked me in between, what we are doing here, I replied: holidays, and he pointed towards the shattered building and stated in unbelief something like: Here!?!

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