It is the only fortress that has was never conquered, so it is not a surprise that the gold and silver of the Habsburg monarchy was kept there, in Petrovaradin fortress
The downtown of Novi Sad, Petrovaradin proudly testifies of history, culture, military strength, but also a way of life and work of the inhabitants of this area, which is also called Gibraltar on/of the Danube.
Petrovaradin is not only Exit
What is it that attracts the attention of visitors to this fortified town on the Danube, built between 1692 and 1780? I know, I know, everybody will first think of Exit, ultra-popular festival held in Novi Sad. You are right. Every summer young people (and all that feel that way) come from this region, from Europe and the world. But Petrovaradin is not only Exit. The fortress is inevitable destination for all those who come to Novi Sad. The story of Petrovaradin starts and finishes in the Museum of Novi Sad, most popular in Voivodina, where there are more than 50 thousand historical, cultural, religious and military exhibits. Ok, most women are not interested in weapons and wars, they would prefer the story of civil Novi Sad, which is on the upper floor of the museum. But it is hard to resist the Underground military gallery with 16 kilometres long hall complex. It is a life testimony of one of the greatest mine systems in the world, just after Antwerpen, so it becomes clearer why this place resisted to all “storms” throughout centuries.
The story of the drunken clock
The first thing that “catches your eye” in Petrovaradin is the clock tower. A clock as any other, the ones who were not there would say. But this clock is really unique. Everything is vice versa on it – the big hand shows hours and the small one minutes, and the reason is quite simple. This clock was meant to show time to the captains, sailors and fishermen sailing on the Danube. You have to admit, from the distance it will be easier to see the big hand than vice versa. As the clock tower was erected in the middle of the 18th century it was also a great help to the soldiers in the wars, and it is interesting that the original mechanism from the 18th century still works today. The drunken clock, as it has been called through time, is one of the most recognisable views of Petrovaradin fortress.
Last great battle with the Ottomans
The famous battle near Petrovaradin in 1716 marked the turning point for warfare with the Ottomans. That was the last great attack to this area. Around 150 thousand Ottoman soldiers under leadership of Daman Ali-Pasha were expected and fought off by 90 thousand soldiers under leadership of Eugene of Savoy. Savoy closed the Ottoman (who suffered huge loss) of all possibilities of future conquering of Hungarian and Croatian Danube region, which determined all future events. The battle was in a large area around the sanctuary of Lady of Tekija on August 5, the festive day of Snow Lady. The religious prince Eugene, who worshiped the Mother of God, was sure that he had won the battle with her intercession, and as a sign of gratitude donated the painting of Mother of God with a child in her arms to the chapel of Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Since then the church at the exit from Petrovaradin is dedicated to the Snow Lady.
Atelier 61 – must visit place
It would be a shame not to see Atelier 61, workshop for creation of art tapestry, which was started in the 60s in last century by the painter Boško Petrović. This unique centre of tapestry art is in fact a real autochthonous visual media which tells the story of an enviable path from pioneer experiments to authentic and original tapestry creations. In the collection of Atelier 61, which counts more than 260 exhibits in a small place, there are some works of the most important artists, and in 1980 by the decision of the Town authorities, Atelier 61 became an institution of significant social importance, with great influence for the then Yugoslavia and countries around it, but also for the Northern and Southern America, Europe and Asian continent.
For the beginning and end – ice cream
The visit to Petrovaradin, the place where (if you did not know) the governor Josip Jelačić was born, would not be complete without “lunch break”. It would be shame not to try indigenous delicacies from numerous restaurants. Fish soup, car pin a form of a horseshoe, perch prepared in many ways… are a warm recommendation. But, you cannot leave Novi Sad without trying ice cream from one ice cream parlours. It will capture you both with its favour and sight.