Local Tourism vol. 2 – Visiting Jajce

In this period since passing an important exam in college, I continued treating myself with some travel. Local tourism. Yesterday’s visit to Jajce proved once more to me that local tourism is a great thing. Low expenses. No need for planning. Everything done in just one day. And great experience. So, wherever you live, I suggest you visit some interesting place in your surroundings, where you’ve never been before. Most probably, there are many such places.

Now some background info. I live in Banja Luka. It’s around 50 kilometers north from Jajce. I decided to visit Jajce because it’s so near to where I live AND very famous for a number of things:

  • It has one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world, at the confluence of Pliva and Vrbas river.
  • It was a very important city in medieval Bosnian Kingdom. It was the residence of Bosnian kings in 14th and 15th century. A large fortress atop of the hill in the center of Jajce is from this period.
  • It is the place where former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was born, on the Second Session of AVNOJ, on November 29th, 1943.

My trip started, again, at the main bus station in Banja Luka. The road to Jajce passes through the canyon of Vrbas river. It is beautiful, but full of dangerous curves and tunnels. It passes through Krupa na Vrbasu, a popular resort among people of Banja Luka for picnics in the summer and a site of a famous Orthodox Christian Monastery from the late 13th century.

I arrived in Jajce at 14:15 pm. The first thing you see in Jajce when you go from the bus station, is one of its most famous attractions: a huge waterfall of the Pliva river at it’s confluence to Vrbas. First I just observed it for some good 10 minutes from the street above it, and took some photos.

Waterfall 1

Then I descended down to the waterfall itself. This is where you need to buy an entrance ticket, which costed just 1 KM ( 0,5) for me, with the student discount. Regular price is 2KM (1). Approaching the waterfall I felt numerous water droplets in the air, flying in the wind in all directions. It was still not too hot, so I tried not to be exposed to the water for a long time. (In the summer though, that would be fantastic). I asked someone to shot a pic of me (which was also a bit difficult because the phone was getting wet) But, the guy I asked did a great job:

me at waterfall

The next station on my way was the bridge on Pliva river that leads to the center of Jajce. It’s nicknamed Eiffel Bridge, because it has a similar iron construction to that of Eiffel Tower. Like in many other cities in the world, the bridge is full of padlocks that young couples put there hoping for eternal love:

ajfelov most

On the other bank of Pliva, you need to pass through an old city gate to enter the city. As soon as you enter, there is a signpost and a large city map, indicating the most important touristic places. I decided to visit the old town first. The old town is on a hill, with a fortress on the top. To get there you pass through numerous narrow pedestrian streets paved with cobble, with houses in Ottoman Turkish style.

streets

streets1

On the entrance to the fortress, you need to pay the same amount as at the waterfall. This was not an issue, and I couldn’t wait to get there and see an entire city.

jajce1

And the fortress itself:

Fortress

While on fortress, I asked some local girls if they could take a photo of me. They were very kind, and we had a nice talk. I also asked them to give me a recommendation for some place to eat, as I was already getting hungry. They recommended the restaurant “Kod Asima” (At  Asim’s place). So as soon as I climbed down from the fortress I went there. I ordered, as you can guess, chevapi. Chevapi in Jajce are different from those in Banja Luka. They were very good, and Asim, the owner of the restaurant was also very kind and I told him that the girls at the fortress recommended his place, and he was very glad to hear it. Chevapi made me quite thirsty, so after the meal, and a short walk afterwards, I was looking for some cafe-bar, to drink a beer or coffee.

Before going there, I made a quick walk around the lower parts of the city, near Vrbas river. I’ve seen some buildings damaged from the Bosnian war, but I’ve also seen some really interesting architecture, including the Catholic Church:

crkva

After a walk, I went to some cafe near the entrance to the city, and then back to the bus station. I was tired, but very satisfied and pleasantly surprised with all that Jajce has to offer. This town should definitely be more visited and more well known.

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