Melding

Croatia

Week 2: 10 - 17 April 2015  (some spots left)
Difficulty: Level 2
How to get there: return flight to Belgrade. Take the bus from Belgrade airport to Novi Sad. From there on transportation can be arranged by the Sultan´s Trail.

Topolje is the first town on the Sultan´s Trail in Croatia. We will walk through the Croatian region of Baranja, with a large Hungarian minority. This is a beautiful hilly area with many interesting birds. Great for bird spotting!

Our journey will take us through Draz, Podolje, Popovac, Beli Manastir, Karanac, Kneževi Vinogradi , Grabovac and Darda. Hiking through this hilly region we will pass beautiful old towns, experience the authentic Hungarian-Croatian cuisine, and get to know local wine traditions. There is even a winery in former Ottoman barracks where we will do some wine tasting.

A highlight in Darda is the beginning of a 8 kilometre long wooden bridge that was built by Suleiman the Magnificent. This 8 kilometre long wooden bridge of boats was built in 8 days in 1529! At the time it was considered to be one of the wonders of the world. Later it was destroyed by the Habsburgs. The beginning pillars can be seen in Darda and later in Osijek a symbolic beginning of the bridge was made. Nowadays there are several initiatives to rebuild this unique bridge.

From Darda we will continue through a swampy area to Osijek. In this part of the Sultan’s Trail it’s not allowed to get off the walking trail. Osijek was during a period of 150 years a lively Ottoman town. We will walk through the old city center to the street that is still called the ‘Turk Street’. This beautiful town is worth to spend an extra day.

Đakovo is a bishops’ town with a beautiful mosque that is nowadays a church. With the recent restoration the old mosque motifs were brought to the surface . It’s a very sympathetic town.From Đakovo  we will head to Vinkovci and Vukovar one of the most severely destroyed cities in the Yugoslavian war. The traces of the war are still visible throughout the city.  

From Šarengrad, the Roman-Ottoman fortified village, the Sultan’s trail will take us through Opatovac to Ilok where we will pass the border to Serbia. Ilok  was home to the Ottoman Danube-fleet. This is a wine region with many very good wines. Apart from wine, this town is worth the visit for its Sufi sanctuary.