Jul 25

SOME OF THE MOST IMPORTANT SIGHTS IN BELGRADE (BEOGRAD)

Serbia’s past, as a nation that has been severely tested by conflicts throughout history, is well known: from the Austro-Hungarian invasion that triggered the First World War and ending with the collapse of the former Yugoslavia after 10 years of civil war. The image of the capital, Belgrade, as a tourist destination has suffered greatly in the postwar period, but now the city begins to recover, reaching out to tourism agencies and tourists alike. Here’s what you can do and see here, for starters:

A visit to the museum Nikola Tesla

Nikola Tesla, one of the greatest scientists, inventors and engineers of all time, came from a family of Serbian origin, and asked in his will that all assets have been transferred after death in Belgrade. The museum, located in a beautiful villa built in 1929, is the only place where you can see Tesla’s personal legacy, one containing the original plans and drawings of his inventions that have revolutionized the production and distribution of electricity. The urn containing his ashes – subject of dispute between the museum and the Orthodox Church – is kept in a golden globe in the museum. Tesla’s archive is included in the “Memory of the World” Heritage by UNESCO as a sign of recognition of the value of this collection, until today.

Take a trip along the Danube and Sava rivers, aboard a cruise

Some shipping companies have exploited Belgrade’s waterways, turning them into tourist attractions, and the competition is fierce in the summer months. Kej Yacht Club is by far the most sought after hosting aboard four vessels of its more than 150 000 tourists each year. Apart from free afternoon cruises, which carries tourists a panoramic tour of the most notable attractions of the city, the company also organizes private parties or various events and live music evenings. Tourists can choose to serve dinner in the restaurant on the ship, or the can stay in the floating hostel throughout the entire time, where the owners guarantees a quiet night away from the bustle of the city center.

Explore the underground city hidden beneath the surface as we all know it

Over 700 years of history of Belgrade, locals have come and gone; they have been invaded and chased away by enemies. As a result, there are countless ruins buried here, many of them remain undiscovered for centuries. Since the foundation of the main gate of a Roman fort dating from the early millennium, until the secret passages dug during the conflict between Tito and Stalin in the mid-20th century, Belgrade’s past is unique regarding the availability offered to the public that knows about it. For those eager to learn more, there are several surcharge guided tours, which are organized during the week, and help participants to better fit the city’s underground attractions in the historical context.

Enjoy a sunny afternoon in Ada Ciganlija

Better known as Beograda (Belgrade Sea), Ada Ciganlija is the tourist resort town on the banks of Sava River. Here numerous investments have been made and have transformed an area little explored in an extremely crowded place for recreation during summer. Apart from a 7 km long beach, here you can find basketball courts, soccer fields, a bungee jumping platform and a dry slope skiing, to name just some of the facilities offered to those willing to have fun. Late at night, in the summer months, you can admire the spectacle offered by the luminous fountain in the middle of the lake, with the design inspired the famous Jet d’Eau in Geneva.

Photo source:

Picture 1: traveltoserbia.net; Picture 2: timetravelturtle.com; Picture 3: commons.wikimedia.org; Picture 4: traveloutthere.com; Picture 5: flickr.com; Picture 6: skyapartmani.com; Picture 7: pinterest.com
Jun 05

Nikola Tesla Museum (Muzeul Nikola Tesla)

Belgrade is home to one of the most exquisite museums on the Serbian territory: the Nikola Tesla Museum. This museum is dedicated to the engineer and physicist Nikola Tesla (1856-1943) who had made more than 300 revolutionary discoveries, the majority of them related to electricity and magnetism.

His discoveries led to technological progress. He was the one to use alternate currents to produce and distribute electricity, and the one to invent the rotating magnetic field. Because of this, the unit for the magnetic induction (in the International System of Units) is named after him: ‘tesla.’ You might be familiar with the fact that Tesla was the inventor of the high-voltage coreless transformer which at present bears the name of ‘Tesla Coil.’

http://atlasobscura.com

 

The museum is situated in Belgrade, right in the center of city. The edifice which holds the exhibitions is a 1929 residential villa which was erected after the architectural plan developed by Dragiša Brašovan, a renowned Serbian architect. The Nikola Tesla Museum came into being due to a governmental decision made in 1952.

All the items found inside the museum were transferred to Belgrade from America due to Tesla’s wish. Tesla was actually an American with Serbian origin so he lived in the US. After his death, all his belongings became the property of his nephew, Sava Kosanovic, whom the American court had declared the rightful heir of Nikola Tesla. Kosanovic respected his uncle’s wish and he donated the items to the Serbian state.  Thus, the museum is the singular one of its kind, where the legacy of Nikola Tesla can be witnessed first-handedly.

http://tesla-assen.blogspot.ro

 

This includes original documents (more than 160.000), books and journals (more than 2.000), plans and drawings (more than 1.000), photographs illustrating different types of machines, tools, and technical objects, as well as technical exhibits. All these collections are meant to recreate step by step the professional evolution of Nikola Tesla and to pinpoint the ground-breaking findings of the great engineer and inventor.

It is also noteworthy that the museum provides valuable information regarding the history of science, this being a place where researchers and scientists can find answers to questions they might have in the field. The documents encountered at the museum can serve as the foundation for future discoveries. But more so, one can grasp the meaning of Tesla’s contribution to the world of engineering and science.

http://www.teslasociety.com

 

The museum has become a part of the Memory of the Word Program – a program initiated by UNESCO in order to preserve the documentary heritage, to protect it against all the damages that it might be subjected to, either conducted by humans or by the unforgiving hands of time.

It is a rather uncommon situation that the documents of Tesla have traveled so far from their actual ‘home.’ Tesla, as it has been mentioned previously, was an American citizen and his connection to Serbia consisted only of the fact that he lived there for no more than 31 hours. And yet, it is the Serbians who are the safeguards of Tesla’s heritage.

http://www.flickr.com

 

Throughout time, several of the original documents found inside the archives have been deteriorated due to the fact that they were not adequately preserved inside the museum. Because of this, historians have reached the conclusion that it was probably not such a great idea to transport the works of Tesla to Serbia, as here these were not properly looked after. Whether or not this is a valid argument, is debatable.

The fact remains that Nikola Tesla Museum contains valuable papers and items belonging to the great inventor and engineer and that tourists have the chance to have a closer look at these upon their visit to Belgrade.

http://www.teslasociety.com

 

Visiting hours:

Tuesday to Friday: 10:00 – 18:00;

Saturday and Sunday: 10:00 – 13:00;

Monday: closed.