History , mystery and quirkiness- with these three words we would describe this tour on the south-east of Serbia. The reason for it? Come with us and we will show you…
Highlights: stone formations, springs, Prolom spa, The Fortress of Nis town, Constantine the Great, Chele kula (The Skull Tower), Manasija monastery
In the south of Serbia, 27 km south-east of Kursumlija, there lies a spectacular landmark carved in rocks–Djavolja Varos (”Devil’s Town”). Two rare natural phenomena in the same place: 202 stone formations shaped and formed over the centuries by erosion, between two and 15 meters in height and the middle diameter of under 1 m, topped by stone blocks weighing as much as 100 kg, appearing almost unreal and yet lasting for centuries, and two springs of water with high degree of acidity (pH 1,5) with high mineral contents (15 g/l; contents of some elements even 1000 times as high as in ordinary drinking waters) make Djavolja Varos a genuine natural wonder.
The natural surroundings add to the attraction of these two wonders, featuring a rather harsh, almost mystical atmosphere, but at the same time picturesque and timid, just like the remains of the town, an old church, a cemetery, and several interesting mines.
Djavolja Varos has been placed under government protection in 1959, while in 1995, by the Resolution of the Serbian Government, it was declared the natural amenity of an outstanding importance, giving it the first-category level of protection – NATURAL MONUMENT. Thus, the whole 67 hectares of its territory are protected by the government.
Niš – The third Serbian city by size, after Belgrade and Novi Sad, Nis is cultural, economic, commercial and university centre of southeast Serbia with 13 university faculties. One of the oldest European cities, as testified by numerous prehistoric finds on the territory of the city (Bubanj and Velika humska cuka) long known as “the east/west gateway” since it is situated at the crossroads connecting Europe with the Middle East. Surrounded by magnificent mountain ranges of Mt. Suva Planina, Svrljiške Planine and Mt. Selicevica and place where you can taste the best burek in Serbia. The birthplace of the famous Roman emperor Constantine the Great who issued the Edict of Milan in the year 313 A D embracing Christianity as the official religion of the Roman Empire.
Mediana, a lush suburbia of Ancient Naissus was built between the third and the beginning of the fourth century. During the reign of Constantine the Great (306-337.) Mediana underwent the most impressive architectural progress…
The Skull Tower (Serbian: Cele kula) is a tower composed largely of human skulls located in the city of Niš. During the 1809 Battle of Cegar, fought during the First Serbian Uprising, Serbian revolutionaries under Stevan Sinđelić were attacked by Ottoman forces on Cegar Hill, near Niš. Rather than be seized by the Turks and for the soldiers to be murdered, Sindjelic fired his pistol into a powder warehouse, killing himself and all Serbian rebels and Ottoman soldiers in the vicinity. Afterwards, Hurshid Pasha, the Ottoman vizier of Niš, ordered that a tower be made from the skulls of the fallen Serbian revolutionaries. The tower is 10 feet (3.0 m) high, and originally contained 952 skulls embedded on four sides in fourteen rows.
DAY ONE: Departure from Belgrade in the morning 9 AM, drive to “Devil’s town” with refreshment breaks, visit attractions there. Lunch break. Arrival in Prolom Spa, getting to one’s accommodation, a short walk. Optional going to the spa. Dinner. Overnight stay.
DAY TWO: After breakfast , leaving for the city of Nis. Visiting tourist attractions (Mediana, Nis fortress, the Skull Tower CELE KULA, city center). Lunch break in historical atmosphere of the Roman Empire. Return to Belgrade.
Price per person:
250 e (1 pax), 190 e (2 pax), 150 e (3 pax), 140 e (4-7 pax), 130 e (8 pax and more)
Length of stay: 2 days (total transfer time 10 hours)
Departure: 9:00 am
Arrival: 10 pm next day
Pick up: Anywhere in Belgrade
– Means of transport (car or van)
– Accommodation – one night in 3* apartments in Prolom spa
– Admission fee and/or a guide to the”Devil’s town”
– Nis city tour
– Visit to the Skull Tower and Mediana
– 2 x lunch, 1 x dinner, 1 x breakfast)
– an English-speaking guide
*let us know if you have any special food requirements
Operating months: April – November
Our partners: Talas Travel Agency
Dragana Kostica is the Belgrade-based editor in chief and founder of Still in Belgrade art, culture and club scene magazine. She holds a Master of Arts in Cultural Policy and Management in Arts (MA of Arts) and a Bachelor degree in Archaeology.