MOSTAR THE GEM OF HERZEGOVINA
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MOSTAR


Mostar is an extraordinary townin every sense of the word. Its beauty goes far beyond its ancient "Old Town" and the Old bridge that uniting the city over the emerald Neretva River. The Mediterranean climate makes it the warmest city in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Its days are mostly sunny with clear blue skies and the Neretva River turns the dry arid surroundings green with figs, kiwis, grapes, pomegranates,rosehips and even mandarin and lemons. 

THE TOWNS HERITAGE

Situated two hours south of Sarajevo, Mostar is built on both banks of an emerald-green river called Neretva. The town s heritage was symbolized by its greatest architectrual treasure, the Stari Most (Old Brige) acros the Neretva, a wondrously graceful arched structure constructed on the orders of the Ottoman emperor suleiman the Magnificentin 1566. Until a decade ago, Mostar was a mini - Yugoslavia, its 80 000 people a model of coexistence between Bosnia s three communities. Thirty-four percent of the population was Muslim, 29 percent Croat and 19 percent Serb. in the lasts census (1991), the remaning 18 percent (moustly Muslim s) chose to describe themselves as "Yugoslav" rather than adopt one of the "national" identity categories.


FACTFILE

OLD BRIGE
Statistics
Height: 20m
Length: 29m
Date of construction: 1566

Man with the plan
Suleyman the Magnificent ruled the Ottoman empire from 1520-1566. His empire stretched from Hungary to Rhodes and from Egypt to the Sudan. His greatest architectural legacy is probably the Suleymaniye Mosque in Istanbul.

History
Popular myth states that Sultan Suleyman threatened to execute the architect Hajruddin if the bridge collapsed after its wooden supports were removed. According to the story books, Hajruddin was so apprehensive he started to dig his own grave on the day the beams were taken down.

Take a dive
Despite its height, or perhaps because of it, the bridge was a popular venue for diving competitions. The events took great training and dedication, not to mention nerves of steel.

OLD TOWN

T
trucco!
HE OLD TOWN AND SHRINES
The Old Bazar Kujundziluk is placed beside the left river bank, northerly from the Old Bridge. It is named after (kujundzije) craftsmen who struck the gold and whose workshops were numerous in this area. Together with the Old Bridge Kujundziluk creates wonderful unique architectural whole.

Built in the second half of the 16 th century, Turkish bath is one of the rare structures of that kind which is preserved till nowdays in Herzegovina. The Bath is placed on the right bank of Neretva, in Prijecka bazar. In 1914. during the period of Austro-Hungarian rule, on Musala was built the city bath a merit of famous Mayor from Mostar Mujaga Komadina. City bath (popularly called Banja) was in use till 1992. It is considerably damaged during the war.

Turkish house or Biscevicaa corner, is one of the most beautiful preserved residential structures from the Turkish period. It was built in 1635. Kajtaz house was built by the end of 18 th century. House is surrounded by the high walls which protected girls and women from curious men sights. In the interior is a special space which separates men from women.

Shrines are specially denoted graves of meritorious people, and they are dating from Turkish period. There are three preserved shrines in Mostar Shrine of sheih Dervish Ishak is placed in front of Koski Mehmed-pasha mosque in Mala tep a. Sheih Dervish Ishak died in 1737. Shrine was built some time later.

The Shrine of sheih Mahmud Baba is placed fifty meters to the east from city market-place, Mala tepa. Exact date of its building is unknown. In 1876. shrine got new look which has not been changed till nowdays. It is assumed that sheih Mahmud, whose grave is in shrine, was brother of Koski Mehmed-pasha builder of Koski mosque.

Shrine of sheih Mustafa Ejubovic was built in 1831 in Luka (left Neretva bank, opposite to the mosque of Ibrahim - aga Sarica), 124 years after his death. Mustafa Ejubovic was mufti of Mostar for a long time, and author of many various Islamic books. He was educated in Mostar and in Istambul. According to his influence and erudition, sheih Mustafa Ejubovic was the most remarkable person from the end of the 17th and the beginning of the 18th century

MOSTAR TODAY

The fertile grounds along the entire Neretva valley have made Mostar a setlement dating back over 10,000 years. But let s talk about today...

Today Mostar is a city in transition. its cobble stone streets in the old town are once again filled with visitors from all over the world, the cafes are teeming with young and old enjoying the fresh air and bretahaking viwes of the Neretva and the sourrounding mountains. Mosques and churches alike have been rebuilt and museum have ben reopened. It s a place you ve got to see. You can visit the Austor-Hungarian public baths and have a swim or sit in the jacuzzis . Stroll along her lovely streets and admire the centuries-old Ottoman architecture. Sit and enjoy a fine bottle of Herzegovina red or white wine and smell the freh array of wild flowers that stem from every patsch of grass and every balcony along your way. handicraff shops take you deep into Herzegovina s past by upholding the tradition of quality, handmade goods. You ll love their beauty and appreciate the time and effort that has been put into each item. walking through Mostar is a walk through the past. Its ancient walls tell timelles tales of the way it used to be. Its present struggle to keep its identity as a multi-ethnic community is an inspiring model for the future. Mostar is far more than beautiful architecture and suuny weather...You will affect Mostar as much as it will affect you...just go and see. The hardest part about going to Mostar may be leaving it!!!