From Belgrade, Serbia
CRUISING DOWN THE DANUBE ON FOUR WHEELS, PART 5
Our Danube story continues in Serbia after a winding “detour” through Croatia
GREETINGS FROM SERBIA!
Our “Cruise down the Danube of Four Wheels” is continuing from Serbia. Today, we drove, what we thought was a short distance from Vukovar to Tovarnik, a village on the border between Croatia and Serbia.
In fact, as I just now found out looking at a detailed map, half of the village is in Serbia and the other half in Croatia. We could have WALKED across the border had we known that.
SO NEAR, YET SO FAR
Alas, it took us twice as long to drive on twisty country roads from Tovarnik to the actual freeway border crossing between the two countries that were once part of my native homeland of Yugoslavia than from Vukovar to Tovarnik.
That’s because on our large scale map did not show the actual freeway interchanges, only the proximity of Tovarnik to the border (see the map).
Anyway, all is well that ends well. We made it eventually to the border crossing where my nephew from Belgrade awaited us to drive us through Serbia for the next four days.
FINALLY IN SERBIA
We started our trip in Srem Mitrovica with visit to my sister and our joint visit to our parent’s gravesite. We also paid our respects at her husband’s grave and that of a close cousin of ours. I felt like a “designated survivor.” 🙂
We then continued driving through the beautiful Fruska Gora mountain which lies on the right bank of the Danube as Europe’s mightiest river winds its way through Serbia. That drive evoked many memories from my youth.
We ended the drive with a relaxing coffee break at the town of Sremski Karlovci, also on the right bank of the Danube. This town was the heart of the Serbian culture even if it geographically resided within the Austro-Hungarian empire until the end of WW I.
In fact, as far as I know Sremski Karlovci is the only town in Serbia, perhaps even the only one outside of Austria, where you can see a church with a double-steeple. Like this one. They are typical of the Austrian Christian architecture but are rare elsewhere around Europe. Yet, this is an Serbian Orthodox church. And a Saint Nicholas Cathedral, no less! 🙂
(St Nicholas is the Djurdjevic family saint-protector. And we have been encountering him all through this trip, even in Granada, Spain).
After a visit to a local private winery, which opened its doors just for us, we once again resumed our “sailing down the Danube on four wheels,” and followed Europe’s mightiest river into Belgrade, my birthplace. Elizabeth and I have not visited it since 2011.
After resting up at my nephew’s home, where I finally got to play piano for the first time in 3 weeks, we took a leisurely walk though downtown Belgrade and capped it with a late dinner at the old town’s favorite dining and entertainment district – Skadarlija.
Good night from Belgrade!