All monuments that are visited in this tour, due to their beauty and history, belong to the world cultural heritage under the auspices of UNESCO. People from all over the world come to visit these unique monuments of Serbian culture.
During this tour, you will experience the monuments of the Christian medieval Serbian state (Peter’s Church, Đurđevi Stupovi Monastery and Sopoćani Monastery), which represent the pearls of the fusion of East and West in architecture and fresco painting. Due to this unique synthesis, these monuments are visited not only by believers but also by lovers of history, culture and art.
Following the valley of the Raška River, after which Ras got its name, we come across the remains of the town of Trgoviste and the fortress of Gradina above it. That settlement has a rich history because the data shows that it was inhabited by the Romans, and later it was an important military-strategic fortification.
The Sopoćani Monastery was built by King Uroš in the 13th century. It will immediately captivate you with its elegance, which adorns the unique Raška school of architecture to which it belongs. The people of Sopot got their name from the word sopot, which means source. The Raška spring is located nearby. Sopočani are a synthesis of East and West. If you look closely, you will see that it looks like western cathedrals from the outside. The interior is Byzantine. Uroš employed the best painters who, with their painting skills, hinted at the arrival of the Renaissance in Europe. A fresco that captivates with nuances and the artistic skill of depicting emotions is the Succession of the Holy Virgin. There is also the Serbian Mona Lisa, i.e. the fresco of St. of the Apostle Philip, which, like the aforementioned work by Da Vinci, follows the beholder’s gaze.
After visiting Sopoćan, we recommend a rest or lunch at the idyllic restaurant Pazarište, where you will enjoy traditional Pazar meals with the soothing sounds of the Raška river and the intoxicating song of birds from the nearby forest.
First of all, there is St. Peter’s church. A seemingly modest temple, but with a huge historical and cultural heritage. This church is the place where Stefan Nemanja was baptized, married, and where he handed over power to his son, the first Serbian king. Rastko Nemanjić – Sveti Sava also lived near Novi Pazar. The Church of Saints Peter and Paul is one of the oldest churches in the Balkans. According to official data, it dates back to the 13th century. According to unofficial data, Peter’s church was built much earlier. One story says that the church was founded by Titus, a disciple of St. Paul, and that he named it after him in honor of his teacher.
Peter’s Church is one of the oldest religious buildings in the Balkans. Below this church was a Roman temple. You can still find parts of that temple in the church today, ask the guide.
There used to be a mound or tomb under the temple. Jewelry from the 5th century BC was found in it, which is kept in Belegrade History Museum. This makes this modest monument more than two and a half thousand years old.
We continue with the Đurđevi stupovi monastery, which is more than 800 years old. It was founded by Stefan Nemanja, the progenitor of the Nemanjić dynasty and also the state of Serbia. With its unique architecture and geographical position at the top of the hill, it towers over the entire valley and captures the attention of observers. In addition to the Church of St. George, we will also visit the Dragutin Chapel. It depicts the state parliament in Ras. It also contains a painted lineage of Nemanjić.
If you want, we can also go to the Studenica monastery. It is located one hour’s drive from Novi Pazar. The monastery is known as one of the most beautiful, and perhaps the most beautiful monastery in Nemanjića, known for its frescoes and beautiful blue color.