Last Saturday I visited Stolac city in Bosnia and Herzegovina for the second time. What was the reason for my visit? A medieval fair called Tarča. This was my second visit to this lovely historical city located in Herzegovina. If you remember, I visited it and blogged about it last year ( feel free to check these two posts to find out more: MEDIEVAL FAIR IN STOLAC, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA & STOLAC MEDIEVAL FAIR PART TWO). We were fortunate as far as the weather was concerned. Unexpectedly, the weather improved this Saturday (but not for long). Still, it made our visit nicer. The day of our visit was just as lovely and sunny as last year.
This year, however, we were too early for the medieval fair itself. We arrived to the city in the morning, and it was only then that we found out that the fair starts at five p.m. We strolled around the city for a bit, so we still enjoyed our stay. In addition, we did visit the fortress where the fair takes place, but since the program was scheduled for the afternoon, there was hardly anyone there. I have no doubt that the fair itself was just as interesting this year as it was last year. As far as I know, Stolac is the only city in Bosnia and Herzegovina that hosts a medieval fair of this magnitude. Last year I wrote that even if there was no medieval fair, a visit to this medieval fortress would be more than worth the trip. I stand by my words, the visit to the fortress itself is worth the trip, not to say anything of the beautiful city and the surroundings. I enjoyed strolling around this gorgeous historical fortress. As I noted last year, the views from the fortress are absolutely breath-taking!
HOW TO GET TO STOLAC FORTRESS?
First you'll need to get to Stolac city. A car or a bus would be a typical option. Once you're there, you'll need to walk uphill to get to this medieval fortress. If you choose to go on foot, you will need to hike a bit to get to the fortress. It's about 15 minutes of walk uphill. If you have a good eye, you can estimate the height of the fortress and the hike it took from these photographs. As you see, it is not terribly high and the climb isn't difficult at all, but even if it was higher the view would be more than worth it. I heard that you can also drive to the top with a car, but not during the duration of the fair. So, if you visit Stolac keep that in mind in case you don't care for hiking.
If you visit Stolac fortress during the historical fair, you'll need to pay a symbolic entrance fee. Last year the fee was 2.5 euros for adults (no fee for children). I don't remember what was the fee this year, because the program hasn't started when we visited the fortress so there was nobody to charge us the entrance fee. Once again, if you want to everything the medieval fair Tarča has to offer, be sure to check my last year posts: MEDIEVAL FAIR IN STOLAC, BOSNIA AND HERZEGOVINA & STOLAC MEDIEVAL FAIR PART TWO.
VISIT STOLAC FORTRESS WITH ME
Stolac fortress has a very rich and interesting history. Its complex system of walls and towers is fascinating to behold. According to the UNESCO site, it is hard to precisely determine the exact stages of its construction. It was actually build in stages. The original design of the fortress dates to prehistorical times, but the fortress grew with time. Isn't there something poetic in that? Who knows what this fortress has lived to see? How many human destinies?
Many people have worked on this fortress through the long centuries, as different Western and Eastern kingdoms fought over the right to colonize and exploit this rich land. Ancient civilizations ( Illyrians and Romans), noble Slavic families, Ottoman and Austrian Hungarian Empire, all of them left a mark on this area, turning it into a unique historical site. Besides the rich history, this place can also boast of natural beauty. Stolac fortress is surely worth a visit. If you are planning to visit Bosnia and Herzegovina in May next year, be sure to make space for visiting this medieval fair. As you can see, this fortress is beautiful. In fact, the whole area is gorgeous and worth of visit.
BOHEMIAN STYLING- GYPSY CHIC OUTFIT
Like last year, I opted for a comfortable but fun outfit. This year, I wore a vintage plaid skirt paired with a white off shoulder dress and moccasin shoes. I accessorized with a blue necklace (a gift), birch earrings (a gift) and a scarf. I felt great in this bohemian spring styling. I would recommend you to opt for something comfy too. Sneakers or other comfortable shoes are a must. Clothes that make it easy for you to get around will make your life easier. Naturally, everyone has their own definition of comfortable. For me, this gypsy chic styling was extremely comfortable but for someone there is no substitute for jeans or yoga pants. Either way, one thing is certain- being dressed comfortably will allow you to get around more easily. Not that being comfortable means you shouldn't have fun with clothes. Dressing up for these kind of events could be very enjoyable. Do you have any travel style tips to share? Do you like visiting fortresses and historical cities? Do you like history?
MEDIEVAL FAIR STOLAC- USING HISTORICAL PROPS FOR PHOTOGRAPHY
As I already explained, we were too early to take part in the official opening and the following performances of Tarča fair, but since we were already there, we decided to take some photographs with medieval props. Why not? The views here are stunning and it seemed shame not to make most of them. I grabbed a medieval helmet and a flag of some kind and posed for some medieval inspired photographs. The first photographs I took is with the flag of a Croatian knight association Vranski Vitezovi. If you look closely, you'll see that it's written with two scrips. The first script is the Latin one, and the second one is the glagolic script. The glagolic script is the oldest know Slavic script and it's still very popular in Croatia (although not widely used anymore). It's a shame we missed seeing Vranski knights this year. Last year we saw a lot of performances by international medieval guest associations, but since I haven't seen the program this year, you'll have to visit my old posts to learn more about it.
Have you ever been to a similar medieval or historical fair? Do you like the sound of this one? Would you visit a medieval fair? Are you interested in history? How do you like this area? Let me know what you think in the comments. There will be another post about Stolac city soon enough, so stop by to read that one as well. Like I said last year, for a history lover like myself, events like this one are always enjoyable. Bonus points for the beauty of the nature and the surroundings. This time we haven't attended the fair, but we got to play with the historical props. We also strolled around a lot, and enjoyed exploring both the city and the fortress. It was a lovely day, and I'm certainly glad we decided to stop by. We might visit it next year as well.