Decembar 2021

88 | Srbija » Serbia PIROT CITY OF PLEASURES AND TRADITIONS PIROTANDTHESURROUNDINGAREABELONGTOTHE region of Southeast Serbia, and folk dances are among the most important characteristics of the inhabitants of this region, marking the specificity of this area in a special way. The city of Pirot has found itself among the 15 Serbian cities included infilming for the documentary filmand series Srpsko Kolo [Serbian Circle], which will present the Pirot Cultural Centre’s folklore ensemble to the Serbianand international public through three Pirot kolo dances that are authentic to the area. And Pirot is a city that’s also proud of its cultural heritage and the widely renowned Pirot rug. The tradition of weaving these rugs has been passed down from generation to generation in this city over five centuries. And, to this day, the diligent fingers of weavers still use vertical looms tomake rugs fromfinely spunBalkanMountainwool according to strictly established rules. The Pirot rug is also unique in that it has no front and reverse sides, can last for a hundred years and is said to possess miraculous powers: to clear negativeenergy, preserve familyunity and protect its owner. ButPirot ismuchmorethanthat. It is a cityof pleasures andtraditions, culture, customsandhospitality, surroundedby themost beautiful natural landscapes of the BalkanMountain. The local cuisine of Pirot and the nearby mountain, which form part of the tourist offer, represent one of the special experiences and the reason you shouldn’t miss out onsampling the famousPirot cheese and ironed sausage. Whileyou’re inthe city itself, enjoy a stroll along the famous Pirot quayside, a favourite spot for relaxation and recreation among all Pirot natives. There is also the Museum of Ponišavlje, an important monument of traditional Serbianarchitecture, and the vantage point of Sarlah, which offers an incredible view of the city. Don't miss the Pirot Fortress, Momčilo’s Town, which dates back to the 14th century and was recentlyreconstructedanddeclaredone of Serbia’s sevenmost beautiful fortresses. The city fortification, locatedbeside the riverNišava,marks the entrance to the city. Built by Duke Momčilo during the reign of Prince Lazar, it remained inmilitary use all the way up to the first half of the 20th century. ThebeautyofPirot’ssurrounding area is known far and wide, thanks mostlytothebeautifulBalkanMountain, which represents Serbia’s largestprotectednatural assetandboasts more than 300 km of marked trails for hiking, walking, cross-country running, cycling and horseback riding...KnownlocallyastheOldMountain (Stara Planina), the entire peninsula is actually named after the Balkan Mountain, which is Eastern Serbia’s largest mountain. It is under snow cover for five months of theyear, offeringgoodconditions for skiers and lovers of snow throughout that period. Here you will find large, sprawling mountain slopes and pastures that resemble something out of a fairy tale, and wherever you turn you’ll spot mountain streams andmagnificentwaterfalls. That’s because almost a third of all waterfalls inSerbia are locatedon thismountain,oneof themostaccessible and commonly photographed of which is the Tupavica Waterfall near the village of Dojkinci. Located at an elevation of 1,050 metres above sea-level, it is exceptionally beautiful and falls from a height of upto25metres,making itoneofSerbia’s most beautiful waterfalls. And when you head from Pirot towards Knjaževac, you will also encounter the Bigar Waterfall to the left of the road,whichwasnamedafter thehollow rock over which it flows, from a height as high as 35 metres. You also shouldn’t miss out on a trip to the Jerma River Canyon, representing an imposing gorge with steep cliffs that are 600-700 metres high. Located 30 kilometers from Pirot, it is home to as much as 27 per cent of all flora in Serbia and features a large number of endemic andrare species.Homealso to the golden eagle, it is the narrowest canyon inSerbia and across Europe. The fact that it is just a metre and a half wide has led to it earning another nickname: Cediljka (Strainer), in the section where it is at its narrowest. Also located in the vicinity of Pirot is the beautiful Zavoj Lake, and all of these represent just tiny parts of theoverall beauty, tradition, culture and history of the unforgettable Pirot district. Lepota okoline Pirota je nadaleko poznata, najviše zahvaljujući prelepoj Staroj planini The beauty of Pirot’s surrounding area is known far and wide, thanks mostly to the beautiful Balkan Mountain From the wild and beautiful Balkan Mountain, via a rich folklore heritage, to the wonderful people and exceptional cuisine, the Pirot district has everything! FOTO: Depositphotos /Wirestock