Mysteries of Orthodox Clergy
Sremski Karlovci View
Grgeteg Vojvodina
St Sava Temple
Studenica Monastery
Zlatibor view
Žiča Monastery
Ruzica church Kalemegdan
 
 

Mysteries of Orthodox Clergy Tour

All year round

Since the time when Christianity started to spread among the Balkan tribes, mysteries were spread along. Many legends were made upon old sanctuaries. Sometimes to outshine the natives, sometimes to engrave the testimonies. The fact is that this land was a land of miracles.

Some are long gone, some of them are still present, but neither of them have been forgotten. Let us take you to meet the mysteries which Balkan monasteries hide…

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Tour itinerary

 

DAY 1 Belgrade – Sremski Karlovci – Novi Sad

Welcome to Belgrade, capital of Serbia! After meeting at the airport, we shall depart towards city of Novi Sad. On our way to Novi Sad, we shall make a visit to town of Sremski Karlovci, old center of Serbian clergy. This picturesque city stayed unchanged for years and reflects the true spirit of gone times. Old Patriarch’s Court, First Serbian Gymnasium, University of Theology affirm the vast culture this beautiful town once offered. We shall stroll among its domestic streets and pay a visit to these splendid witnesses, before we make a little break in one of the most famous wine cellars in this region.

Refreshment is made, so we continue our journey towards city of Novi Sad. Just in front of the city stands a unique sanctuary in the World – sanctuary for Orthodox, Catholics and Protestants. This church is called „Tekija“
(a restplace) and and stands in memory to all the religions that have passed these lands. The Church of Snowy Virgin, as it is known, stands as a reminder of a miracle that happened in this place in 1716. The legend says that snow fell on the day of battle between Austrian and Ottoman armies. This wouldn’t be so strange if it didn’t happen on August 5th, in the middle of a warm summer! In the memory of the glorious victory, prince Eugene of Savoy ordered a church to be built.

We continue our journey to city of Novi Sad. After the check in and a short rest, we will depart to an evening sightseeing of „Serbian Athens“, as Novi Sad is called. We will have a dinner on the banks of Danube River, accompanied by a tambourine orchestra. After the dinner we shall return to hotel to settle the impressions.

DAY 2 Novi Sad – Mt. Fruška Gora – Belgrade

Our second day of the quest is dedicated to the core of serbian culture in 17th and 18th century. Mt. Fruška Gora hides three beautiful monasteries – Novo Hopovo, Grgeteg and Krušedol. These sanctuaries kept the
Serbian culture alive under the Ottoman supremacy. Due to its spiritual influence on Serbs, these monasteries were burnt and destroyed many times in their long history.

As we pass Mt. Fruška Gora, we arrive to the first monastery – Novo Hopovo. Built in the early 15th century, this monastery presents one of the most beautiful orthodox sacred buildings in Serbia. During the Ottoman reign in Serbia, monastery Novo Hopovo was one of the main centers for refugees.

On our further way, Grgeteg monastery awaits us, hidden among the scarps of Mt. Fruška Gora. This beautiful fraternity was founded in 1471. Grgeteg monastery keeps some of the holiest Serbian relics. During the Great Serb Migrations in 17th and 18th century, this monastery used to be a retreat for both Serbian citizens and clergy.

„Third Pearl of Mt. Fruska Gora“, monastery Krušedol, awaits our arrival to show us its magnificence. Founded in
early 16th century, this monastery kept the biggest relics in its treasury. Monastery Krusedol, among others is a burial place of the Holy Serbian Emperor Uroš IV.

We shall make a lunch break, just to refresh ourselves and to settle down the impressions before we depart towards the Serbian capital, Belgrade. After the check in at the hotel, we shall meet the capital at its best. The Old  City Core impounds with history. Residence of Princess Ljubica, built in Serbian – Balkan style, today stands as a unique museum. Just across the street stands the Patriarch’s Court and besides stands one of the most lavish churches in Balkan – the Assembly Church. It stands as one of the most significant religious, cultural and artistic monuments in Serbia. Our path leads us further to the Belgrade Fortress, where, among its ancient walls, two wonderous churches await us. As we stroll among the fortifications of the ancient citadel, we will meet the Chapel of Saint Petka with its spring of holy water and church of Holy Mother of God, popularily called „Ružica“ (Rose). These two churches form a  complex unique in the World. Settled between two infamous medieval towers, this complex with its surroundings and adornments stands as a witness on a martyrdom of Serbian people.

On our way back to hotel we shall make the visit to the greatest Orthodox sanctuary in Balkan – Saint Sava’s temple.  Although it was meant to be built in the early 20th century, this magnificent sanctuary started to raise in the late 20th century. Today, final adjustments are made and the most eminent painters work on the painting of the temple.

We shall return to hotel for a little rest. In the evening hours, we shall depart towards Skadarlija, bohemian quarter in Belgrade, for a traditional dinner, accompanied by a live band music. After the dinner we will return to hotel for overnight.

DAY 3 Belgrade – Ovčar Kablar gorge – Mt. Zlatibor

After the breakfast, we continue our journey towards Oplenac Hill, to visit a unique church, mausoleum of the Serbian Royal dinasty. Church of Saint George stands on a highest point, above the picturesque town of Topola. After the visit to the Royal compex, we shall call upon the Rebel Town, the oldest part of Topola. This town was a headquarters of rebels during the First Serbian Rising against Ottoman Empire.

Later on, we will travel to the Ovčar – Kablar Gorge, to pay a visit to some of the most significant monasteries in Serbian culture. Once counting over 300 monasteries, it is no wonder why this place is known as Serbian Mt. Athos. Due to Ottoman oppression, large number of these sanctuaries have been destroyed. Today only 10 monasteries  stand as rememberance to the medieval cultural abundance. We shall visit 3 most significant monasteries – Blagoveštenje, Nikolje and Sretenje.

Whence we have visited Ovčar – Kablar monasteries, we shall continue towards Mt. Zlatibor. This beautiful mountain holds the abundance of West Serbia. After the check in at hotel, we will have a free evening for enjoying the beauties of mountain.

DAY 4 Zlatibor – Mileševa monastery – Djurdjevi Stupovi – Mt. Kopaonik

We will depart from Mt. Zlatibor right after the breakfast. Our paths lead us to one of the most beautiful Medieval buildings in Europe – Mileševa monastery. Built in 13th century, this monastery was a burial place of Saint Sava, until 1594, whe the Ottomans transfered his holy body to Belgrade and burnt it. Its frescoes represent the masterpiece in Medieval painting. Surely, the most famous one is the fresco of the White Guardian Angel.

As we have entered on the land of Old Serbian Kingdom, next place will be the oldest monastery from the Nemanjić Royal dinasty, built by the founder of the dinasty – Stefan Nemanja in 1175. Monastery Djurdjevi Stupovi is today under the protection of UNESCO, as a World Heritage Site. Ruined by many wars, this old monastery is today under the renovation.

After the lunch, we shall continue towards Mt. Kopaonik, to call a day and have a little rest for settling down the impressions.

DAY 5 Kopaonik – Studenica – Žiča monastery – Kragujevac

Beneath the sloaps of Mt. Kopaonik stands the greatest monastery in Serbia – Studenica. This fraternity was founded by Stefan Nemanja in 1190. Surrounded by beautiful fortifications, two churches made from white marble stand inside. This monastery was the corner stone of Serbian medieval culture. Today, along Djurdjevi Stupovi monastery, Studenica is protected by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site.

After the visit to the great monastery, we shall proceed to another major sanctuary in Serbia. Monastery Žiča, or „The Church of Seven Kings“, as it is known, was a see of Serbian Orthodox Church. Seven Kings were crowned here. Holy relics were kept here – the belt of Holy Mother, piece of the crucifix, Saint John’s right arm, holy bodies of apostols and martyrs, icons, goblets…

Shortly after the lunch we will be heading towards „Capital of Sumadija“, city of Kragujevac. After the check in and a quick rest, we shall make a sightseeing of the City, followed by dinner in restaurant. After the dinner, we shall return to hotel for overnight.

DAY 6 Kragujevac – Manasija monastery – Belgrade

After the breakfast we shall depart towards Manasija monastery. After the fall of Serbia, Manasija monastery became center of Serbian culture and religion. With ramparts worthy of the best strongholds, Manasija monastery kept the very soul of Serbian christianity. Monastery has been devastated many times, but monks managed to keep its purpose till nowadays.

Not far from the monastery stands a marvel of nature, beatiful Cave of Resava. After the visit to this extraordinary cave, we shall proceed to lunch besides a nearby waterfall.

After the lunch, we shall return to Belgrade. Dinner after the check in and a short refreshment will conclude our journey through the Serbian sanctuaries.

DAY 7 Belgrade

After the breakfast and check out, we shall depart towards the Belgrade International airport, for a farewell.

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