After breakfast we visit historical site Mačkov kamen, and then we tour Soko Grad fortress and the monastery at its foot. In the afternoon we go to Mileševa monastery, Mileševa fortress and arrive in the place of Brodarevo where we organize 2-hour rafting on the river Lim. In the evening we go to Sopotnica waterfalls and enjoy the sunset. Time for dinner and sleep at the ethno household Sopotnica.
MAČKOV KAMEN – Jagodnja mountain was the battlefield of the bloodiest and the most tragic battle of the Great war. At the plateau of Mačkov kamen in September of 1914, the second Austro-Hungarian offensive attack was broken in a two-month battle on the Drina river. In the battles taking place from 16th to 21st September about 1150 Serbian soldiers left the battlefield. That number was doubled on Austro-Hungarians part. Never before or after that period during the Great war were there so many soldiers killed. In batlles Serbian army lost 11,490 troops and army officers – killed, wounded or missing. Austro-Hungarians recorded even more dramatic numbers. It was estimated that over 30,000 troops were lost. This very place holds soldiers’ bones, and the photographs from the battlefield are exhibited in the church’s crypt as well as wreaths of flowers in the glory of the dead. There is also a monument in the crypt to major Svetislav Marković who led soldiers into a deadly attack on Austrian army.
SOKO GRAD developed in mediaeval Serbia, but is best known for its role during Ottoman occupation of Serbia when it became one of the most notorious places of Orthodox people torture. Some of the oldest records date back to the year of 1476, but given the shape of this fortification, it can be concluded that Soko grad is much older than this date, as the original and older fortification was built on the highest rock and corresponds to much older age than the age of despotism. Along the drive from the monastery to the fortification (that is the plateau with the cross) ten stone chapels have been built, which have been properly painted and each bearing one of the commandments.
MILEŠEVA MONASTERY was built in the period from 1218 to 1219 and it was painted from 1222 to 1228. It was founded by the king Vladisav, the son of Stefan the First-Crowned, Nemanja’s grandson. Vladisav built Mileševa as his tomb churh, where he was buried. Saint Sava’s relics were carried to Mileševa one year after his death, where he was ceremonially buried in a newly-built porch. The fact that Sava’s body was buried in Mileševa added to already high monastery popularity. After that Mileševa became the place of pilgrimage. Because of that, the Turks took St.Sava’s relics to Belgrade in 1594 and burnt them in order to destroy the cult image of the saint among Srbian people. Among Mileševa’s frescos the most famous is ’The angel at Christ’s tomb’, which reminds of ancient Greek art. With its size and whiteness of the angel’s gown it creates a very strong impression. Given that Mileševa is one of the first monuments of early Serbian art and that ’White Angel’ has almost been fully preserved in its originality, it is regarded as the symbol of youth and longevity. During 20th century Europeans got delighted by the image of “White Angel” – Archangel Gavrilo who, dressed in white garment, with spread wings sitting on a stone and pointing to an empty Christ’s Grave with his myrrhbearers thus drawing attention to his ressurection. Travel writers spreaded their astonishment with the fresco across Europe, regarding it even greater that Giotto’s works of art. In the first satellite video greeting sent from European to Americans fifty years ago, the fresco was used as a symbol of Europe and peace among continents. The same sygnal was afterwards sent to cosmos to potential extraterrestial forms of existence. Famous ’White Angel’ is a part of ’Myrrhbearers at Christ’s Grave’ composition, which is considered to be one of the most beautiful works of Serbian and European medieval art.
REKA LIM is one of the most beautiful rivers in Serbia. It flows out from the Lake of Plav with the length of 174km. Its deepest gorge is between Dobrakovo and Brodarevo. Other towns it flows through are Andrijevica, Berane, Bijelo Polje and Priboj, and it flows into the Drina near Višegrad with the river Rzav. The river Lim is characterized by crystal clean light green water, composite soil, richness in fish, artificial lake, chance for rafting and canoeing, cultural and historical monuments. Two hydroelectric power stations were bulit on the Lim, Potpeć (54 MW) and Bistrica (104 MW), with artificial-accumulation lake Potpeć between them. The river Lim forms composite valley with beautiful gorges and basins alternating one after another, and fertile land around it is called Polimije. Thanks to its rapid currents, the Lim is one of the most attractive rivers for rafting in Serbia. The name Lim originates from Latin word ’limes’ which means border, which it used be along its flow, the border between Eastern and Western Roman Empire, Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empire, but it also means drink, water, lake originating from Celtic llyn – llym.
SOPOTNICA WATERFALL is rich in water all year round and is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Serbia. Nearby are mills where grain was grounded and rollers where cloth was rolled. There are many cascades and waterfalls which make this river unique. The biggest waterfall is 25m high. The Sopotnica river, its cascades and waterfalls are protected by the Republic of Serbia as natural resources of the greatest importance.