Monday, June 30, 2008

Mostar, Bosnia and Hercegovina (June 21, 2008)

Mostar is a 14th century city in the south of Bosnia and Hercegovina, a few hours outside of Sarajevo. Mostar came under Ottoman rule in the 15th century and served as a chief administrative center for the Ottoman Empire in the region. The city was later absorbed by the Austro-Hungarian Empire during the 19th century and became part of Yugoslavia following World War I.

During the Bosnian War, Mostar was subject to an 18-month seige in which thousands of Bosniaks were injured and killed, and most of the town's buildings and its landmark 16th century Old Bridge were destroyed. The bridge and the historic Old Town were rebuilt in the late 1990s/early 2000s and together were named a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2005.
Mostar's famous landmark: the reconstructed Stari Most (Old Bridge) over the Neretva River. The Old Bridge was first built in 1556 to replace a wooden bridge; the 21st century reconstruction was done using the original 16th century techniques. Stari Most, with the historic Old Town behind. Note the man at the top of the bridge; at one time, young men would jump off the bridge just to impress the ladies, but today they'll jump off for 50 Euros!
The view of Kujundziluk (Old Town) from the top of Stari Most A closer view of the Old Town, with its cobblestones and Turkish-style shops
Inside the Koski Mehmed Pasha mosque, built in 1617 on the banks of the Neretva River
The view of Mostar from the minaret of Koski Mehmed Pasha mosque

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