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Published: November 1st 2018
7-19-18 Thursday. Novi Sad, Serbia. The name means “new garden,” a fitting name for a lovely city. Across the river from the city is a fortress on a hill. The group tour took us on foot through a lovely park then down a pedestrian street lined with outdoor cafes and pleasant shops to the large city square which featured a grand town hall with a bell tower, an impressive Catholic cathedral, some beautiful 19th century buildings, and an out-of-place austere modern structure. On our own, Simon and I walked a few blocks to see a large old brick domed synagogue ($1 entrance fee) with many stained glass windows and a very high stained glass ceiling. We popped into an old Orthodox church with a beautiful gilded alter and wonderful chandelier where we sneaked a couple of photos despite the ban. The huge Neo-gothic cathedral on the main square is constructed of yellow brick with a multi-colored patterned tile roof. Inside are tall stained-glass windows and beautiful relief carvings of Biblical scenes. A couple of blocks away is another Orthodox church this one with a baroque interior and curved walls. In the early afternoon Simon rested while I took a long walk
across the bridge over the Danube to the fortress. The area at the foot of the hill has many 18th century buildings that were built for the families who worked above in the fortress. It has lately been undergoing restoration. Unlike a medieval fortress where the population housed within the structure, this is a fortress from a later period that housed the military who protected the nearby town. It now has restaurants, shops and galleries in the former military structures and recently hosted the huge Exit music festival. It affords great views of the city, river and bridges. A modern art museum near the river had a powerful exhibition which had disturbing female nudes with statements written on their bodies, sculptures and paintings involving skulls, evoking war and oppression. For dinner we were bussed to a local farm which has been converted into a tourist attraction. The old farmhouse is furnished in a charming country style is now a restaurant called “Salas 137”, the barn now has glass walls and is a banquet hall where we ate. Above the windows are hung collections of clocks, plates, pictures and other memorabilia. A stable had 17 horses and a swallow’s nest full
of chicks with gaping mouths being filled by a parent. The meal featured breads, cheeses, a delicious focaccia, sausages, meat loaf, chicken, wine, vegetables etc., all locally grown and produced.
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