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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I took a 2-day trip last week to the Šumadija region in Serbia - renowned for its beautiful forest landscapes. I visited the towns of Aranđelovac and Topola and the beautiful Oplenac memorial church.

We will begin in Aranđelovac, a town of around 25,000 residents. Aranđelovac lies at the foot of Bukulja Mountain and is known for its mineral water springs. Knjaz Miloš bottled water - a popular brand in Serbia - comes from here.

The town is also home to the Bukovička Spa whose grounds form one of the most beautiful, in my opinion, town parks in Serbia with marble sculptures and lush greenery. Miloš Obrenović, the leader of the Second Serbia Uprising against the Ottoman Empire in 1815 frequented this spa.



I hope you enjoy the photos and learn a little about under-appreciated Serbia :cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
First, on arrival, let's have a coffee in the Main Square. Coffee shops are a plenty in Arandjelovac and all of Serbia - Serbs love nothing more than to sit outside and drink coffee, tea, fresh juice or a beer/wine with friends and chat. No point in drinking up quickly, Serbs take their time - no rush, relax!


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr

The building at the back of the square is the Old Municipal building (council building for British people).


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr

The concrete building here is the old Robna Kuća, or Department Store. Now a Chinese Department Store with cheap goods. Serbia has a large Chinese immigrant population, even in the small towns.


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Now let's take a stroll down the main street and surrounding streets - full of shops, kiosks, bakeries, coffee shops and restaurants. Some parts are better looked after than others as you will see.


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Arandjelovac, like many towns in Serbia, is a mish-mash in terms of architecture and urban planning, and although perhaps rough around the edges, many people I hope can find beauty here and enjoy it for what it is.


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Now let's get away from all this urban grittiness and take a stroll through the grounds of the park of Bukovička Banja Spa, with its beautiful flowers, sculptures, buildings and fountains. A true oasis in the sweltering heat that Serbia is going through this spring - temperatures above 30C.


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Now let's go a little bit up that mountain you can see in the background of the last picture. This is Bukulja mountain (696m; 2,283 ft) which is the source of Knjaz Miloš mineral water.

We passed a seemingly abandoned villa


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr

And then continued up the paved mountain path. It was beautiful.


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
After about an hour of walking in the heat, we reached a traditional Serbian restaurant with shade, cold beer and fresh, tasty food. Grilled meats are extremely popular in Serbia, usually eaten with a fresh salad and potatoes or chips and washed down with a cold beer or glass of wine :)


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac grilled meat by tigot, on Flickr


Aranđelovac, Jelen beer by tigot, on Flickr
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
After a well earned rest, let's head back down into town, passing through the village-like suburbs of Aranđelovac


Aranđelovac by tigot, on Flickr

That's all for now. Soon we will head to the small town of Topola and the beautiful Oplenac Church - the Royal Mausoleum of the House of Karađorđević.
 

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good job tigot, thanks for sharing your wonderful photos. :cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Now we're off to Topola, a small town of 4,500 people some 15 km from Aranđelovac. The town was first established in 1781 but was destroyed twice in 1804 and 1814. Topola is a wine making region and is home to some important religious and royal buildings.

This is the pharmacy building:


Topola by tigot, on Flickr


Topola by tigot, on Flickr
 
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