Vrsac (Orasul Vrsac)

Vrsac is a town situated in Serbia – which is perceived by the Romanian population as the capital city of the Banat region “from the other side” (from across the Romanian borders).

The city, although not large in itself, as it has a population of almost 36 thousand people, has a couple of attractions to offer to its visitors. The town is situated on the site of an ancient medieval fortress and while most of the fortified construction had disappeared, there is one tower which had survived the passage of time.

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The Vrsac Tower is reigning above the town from its place, on top of the hill. Archeologists consider that the tower had been constructed somewhere between the later decades of the 14th century and the beginning of the 15th century, but there is not enough evidence to unveil the origin of the fortress.

There is a possibility for the fortification to have been erected by the Serbs, and legend has it that it was in fact the “Despotic King”, meaning the Serbian King Durad Brancovic, the founder of the fortress as he was the one ruling over the land in those times. But it cannot be said with exactness where we can find traces that will lead us towards the founder of the fortification.

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Another tourist attraction is the Banat Diocese, a cathedral erected back in 1760 by a German architect. The building underwent several renovations. The first was conducted in 1787 and was meant to repair the edifice and restore its original appearance, but in 1902, the cathedral was changed completely as the façade was “endowed” with a new architectural design.

What attracts visitors to this particular place are the works of art and important documents which are found inside the cathedral, such as rare books and manuscripts, church objects, portraits of the Vrsac bishops, as well as valuable objects of décor.

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There are also two churches found in Vrsac: St. Nicholas and St. Gerhard Churches. The first is built on the structure of an older house of worship. The construction work for this church was initiated in 1785, but the edifice did not see its completion until 1805, when the decorative work was finished.

St Gerhard Church, just as St Nicholas Church, has been constructed on the site of a former construction. But in this case, the previous church was dedicated to the same saint. The new one which took the place of the former is actually considered a symbol of the town. The name of the architect who designed it is left unknown, but the historical records inform us that this person was of Viennese descend.

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The church consists of a basilica and three naves, elements which make the structure resemble a Latin cross. The exterior of the edifice is not adorned in its entirety, with decorative elements abounding solely around the windows, rosettes and bell towers. But the interior of St Gerhard Church is wonderfully decorated.

Tourists can admire the artistically carved furniture, the alter paintings, the exquisite sculptures and stained-glass windows. So if you are ever passing through Vrsac, you should take your time and visit these places as they are definitely worth your time. You will be acquainted with true works of art.