Novi Sad

Petrovaradin Fortress

more than a year ago
One of the largest fortresses in Europe. It was built and rebuilt between 1692 and 1780, its design based on the system of fortification developed by French Marquis de Vauban. The fortress covers an area of 112 hectares, and has 13 gates and 16km of underground passages spread over 4 levels. Owing to its size, thick walls and 400 cannons, it was considered unconquerable and earned the name of the ‘Gibraltar on the Danube’.

The erstwhile barracks and underground passages are nowadays converted into the premises of the Museum of the City and numerous art ateliers, galleries, and artisan workshops. The terrace of the fortress, by the Clock Tower, boasts splendid views of the town. The clock on the Tower is unique in that the big hand tells hours and the small one minutes. This was allegedly done so that the boatmen travelling on the Danube could see the time from a long distance. The clock is slow when it is cold and fast when it is hot, so people have dubbed it a ‘drunken clock’. The fortress features several restaurants and night clubs and it is famous for EXIT - the best music festival in Europe in 2007. Were it not for the scarcity of garbage bins and rather random park cleaning service, it would have been perfect.

You may get to the top plateau of the fortress by car, just follow the signs for Leopold Hotel. If on your way up you should see a lonely vehicle and some commotion inside, don’t worry, with the crime rate so small as in Novi Sad, that must be an amorous couple, but give it a wide berth anyway. The long arched passage is too narrow for two-way traffic, so do follow the instructions by the officers placed at its ends, who communicate the arrival of vehicles to one another over the radio set. You can get to the fortress by bus Nº3, taxi, or take a leisurely walk, because it is not too far.


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