Vranduk in Bosnia and Herzegovina is a picturesque town best known for its medieval castle. Located approximately 10km north of Zenica, numerous preserved travelogues and manuscripts describe Vranduk as one of the most interesting, intriguing, and resilient parts of Bosnia.
History of Vranduk
Vranduk is located on a sheer rock above the river Bosnia. An extensive history of Vranduk spans over two millennia. However, the history of modern Vranduk can be tracked to the beginning of the 15th century, at least according to numerous archives and views expressed in historical literature.
Vranduk represents one of many medieval Bosnian towns with intensive political, economic, and cultural life. It is made up of a citadel with a main tower and protective wall which surrounds the interior of the town.
Three kilometres downstream was a crafting and trading settlement connected to Vranduk where the village Varošište is now located.
The medieval Vranduk Castle, or Vranduk Fortress as it is sometimes known, once served as the residence of King Stjepan Tomas, who ruled Bosnia in the mid-fifteenth century AD.
It was left damaged and forgotten until it was rediscovered in 1999, at which time local communities and the government implemented a conservation and restoration project with the aim of opening it to the public as a place of education. It was declared a national monument of Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2005.
Today, the site is a popular visitor attraction. There is a museum inside a tower where you can try traditional Bosnian meals and learn about the site’s history and culture. There are several other interesting attractions in the town including the Ottoman-period Fatih Sultan Mosque.
During the summer, there are a range of events, such as the ‘Vrandučka ašlama’ festival, ‘Bosnian Kingdom Trails’, theatre performances, concerts, creative workshops (traditional weaving, lace, and souvenir handcrafts), painting, photography, and scientific symposiums and conferences. It is also possible to spend time with local fishermen near the river or enjoy the numerous hiking trails amongst Vranduk’s picturesque setting.
Getting to Vranduk
From the centre of Zenica, Vranduk is a 15-20 minute drive via the R445 road or the E73/M17 roads.