The Yugoslavian authorities established several memorial sites between 1945 and 1960, though widespread building started after the founding of the Non-Aligned Movement. Yugoslavian president Josip Broz Tito commissioned several memorial sites and monuments in the 1960s and 70s dedicated to World War II battle, and concentration camp sites. They were designed by notable sculptors, including Dušan Džamonja, Vojin Bakić, Miodrag Živković, Jordan and Iskra Grabul, and architects, including Bogdan Bogdanović, Gradimir Medaković. After Tito’s death, a small number was built, and the monuments were popular visitor attractions in the 1980s as patriotic sites, and since the Yugoslav Wars and the dissolution of Yugoslavia, the sites are abandoned and have lost their importance. (Source Wiki) I’ve traveled 4307km’s in 8 days through 7 countries and more then 30 cities to find these monuments (The Kosovo monuments were done separately which in total 2728km’s were traveled in 3 days). Most of them were built on hard to reach high mountains, most of them abandoned and deemed to be forgotten. A few were still maintained and well kept to preserve the history behind them. Some were blown up into pieces. The word ‘Spomenik’ in serbian can bring either good or bad vibes. Depending […] Read More
How to get there The Water Park is located at Buschkrugallee 64 12359 Berlin. The closest U-Bahn station would be Grenzallee with the U7. Here is the map. What you’ll see You’ll definitely not see clean water to swim in but you’ll see a lot empty pools. The water park is quite big, from the sauna to the indoor pools and even the roof! Unfortunately the slide has been taken down and torn apart, otherwise it could have been a fun ride down to the half empty pool. The best place in the water park in my opinion is the sauna area. You walk into a green house looking complex with trees and plants and find yourself in a pyramid looking sandstone painted Cleopatrabad sauna room within seconds. The tiles at the park are also impressive. Also try to get up on the roof and get a birds eye view of the water park. Any Dangers The only danger I noticed was trying to get on the roof. Someone put up wooden palette on top of the lying refrigerator to the top of the ceiling to access the roof. Not only you not shake the palette, you also have to watch […] Read More
I’ve been to many abandoned places in my life. Whether it was an abandoned brewery, bobsleigh track, military hospital or train yard, I haven’t seen anything like Buzludzha. It was like the communist needed to make a statement with the monument they built. In the end, in my opinion, they did an excellent job. The reason why Buzludzha was built is that the Bulgarian communist regime wanted to commemorate the events that happened on that mountain which the Bulgarian rebels defeated Ottoman Empire on that peak. So the monument was opened to the public in 1981, on the anniversary of the foundation of the Bulgarian State. More than 6000 people worked on this project that lasted 7 years to build. After the fall of the communist regime in 1989, Buzladzha has been left to its fate to rot away like the regime. Here is also a great website with information and pictures from the “Golden” days. (link) How to get there Getting to Buzludzha is quite the challenge. I was lucky enough to have a local friend who drove me there from Sofia, which was a great advantage. I dont think I could have made it without him. So great […] Read More
Lisbon is notorious for its graffitis. Why? If the City of Lisbon officials encourage artists from all over the world to come to their city and paint the buildings, the city is just a big canvas waiting to be painted. Its amazing to see buildings covered with great artwork rather being rotten and dull. Everywhere you go you’ll see a different genre graffiti from different artists around the world. Lisbon was even listed among the Top 10 best street art city in the world by British newspaper The Guardian. Here are some of the great graffiti artists that coloured this beautiful city; Os Gemeos, Blu, Sam3, Ericailcan, MaisMenos, Vhils and many more. Before I went to Lisbon, I did some research where to find all these graffitis. It took me awhile to find a great list of the graffitis scattered around Lisbon. There is a walking tour that takes you around the few famous ones although I always prefer to experience these things alone. I never needed someone to tell me the history or meaning of something, thats why there is something called Google. I found the following links below very helpful to locate some of these great artworks; http://www.lisbontrail.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/LiT_artistmap_index__660x468px1.jpg https://maps.google.co.uk/maps/ms?t=m&ie=UTF8&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=211893830080416733121.0004cd0e742b03b8351fb So if you are into […] Read More
How to get there The animal anatomy institute is located at Königin-Luise-Straße 14, Berlin. You can either walk from U-Bahn Station Dahlem or take a bus from U+S Bahn Station Rathaus Steglitz. You’ll immediately see the building that is fenced up. Here is the map if needed. How to get in The doors at the front of the building are shut so the easiest way to get in would be going around on the side street from Peter-Lenne Strasse. You’ll notice where the fence ends, there is a tiny gap that you can easily sneak in. After going through the fence you are home free and ready to explore the area. What you’ll see You wont see any dead animals or such but I think the main thing to see would be the auditorium. I know when I was back in university I’d always want to see my school be torn apart and be burnt to the ground. But other than the auditorium there are plenty other places to explore such as the laboratory and classrooms. Its not such a big building to explore and much things to see although you’ll definitely wont be disappointed from the experience. Any Dangers The […] Read More
How to get there The bowling alley is located within the city limits in the south of Berlin. The address is Selerweg 4. Its a 15 minute walk from Rathaus Steglitz U+S Bahn station. Its really hard not to notice the empty building surrounded by fences while you walk up to the cul du sac. But in case you need a map, here it is. How to get in The fence surrounding the building is not really bolted down properly and as you walk along the fence, you’ll see some openings to slip right in. Not to forget that its in a residential area and the neighbours will be likely watching you getting into the building. What you’ll see The bowling alley was very much run down whilst I was there. I guess going on a day just after heavy rainfall didnt make the experience better than expected. There are two floors to explore. The lower floor is just the parking lot and I’m assuming it was used always as a parkade even after the bowling alley was not in use anymore. The upper floor is where the actually alley was. You’ll still some bowling pins and bowling shoes scattered […] Read More
How to get there The Paper Mill is located in north Berlin at Eberswalde Strasse 29~30, Eberswalde. Its right behind the PapierMuseum on Wolfswinkel street and you’ll see the fences up and a door with the sign “End of Summer”. The easiest way to get to the paper mill would be taking the RE3 train from Berlin Hauptbahnhof or Gesundbrunnen in the direction of Eberswalde Hauptbahnhof. When you get off at the station you can either walk to the site or take the bus 861 and stop at Finow/Wolfswinkel. Here is a map How to get in You need to first jump over the door with the sign that says “End of Summer”. Afterwards its time to explore. The first building with the trailer parked in front has a small window where you can jump in but the more you go towards the back of the buildings (towards the other trailers), you’ll notice there are no closed doors and fences to prevent you to wonder around. What you’ll see Out of my previous explorations, I must say this has been one of the best so far in terms of graffitis and artwork. Not only the artist(s) did an excellent job but […] Read More
Jerusalem of Europe. That seems to be the catch phrase for Sarajevo at the moment. Does it deserve it? Absolutely. Sarajevo has been a cross-road city for centuries. Starting from the Ottoman era till the Yugoslav wars, its been a centre for trades and cultural exchange. Its hard not to notice the amount of churches, mosques and synagogues sharing the same walls. People from different religious backgrounds living together side by side. The spark started during the Ottoman Era with the Muslims, Catholics and Jews coming from all over from Europe and the Middle East until it ended with the Nazi regime at WWII and the Yugoslav wars. After Bosnia and Herzegovina’s independence in 1992 things are going back to how they were, yet to become Jerusalem of Europe again. The one thing that will catch your eye while in Sarajevo is the amount of buildings with bullet holes, completely crumbling or abandoned. Seems the scars from the war is still kept alive. Although there is a lot construction efforts taking place to remove these horrible memories. From an outsiders perspective its good to see what war can do to a city, a country and its people. The next thing you’ll […] Read More
There are not any other bobsleigh tracks that has seen so much then this one. Witnessing the Winter Olympics and war doesn’t happen on a regular occasion. If concrete walls could talk, they would have a lot to tell. The 1984 Winter Olympics was held in Sarajevo, Yugoslavia (today Bosnia Herzegovina). After the Winter Olympics, the track was used for other competitions until the start of the Yugoslav wars in 1991 that would include the Siege of Sarajevo the following year. The track was damaged as a result of the siege which occurred during the Bosnian War. During the siege, the track was used as an artillery position by Bosnian Serb forces.Today, the tracks are abandoned and still remain mostly intact with war wounds of defensive fighting holes, drilled into one of the last turns of the course. How to get there The bobsleigh and luge track resides on Trebevic mountian and goes up to 1300m. If your not a local its a bit of a hassle to get up there. My best suggestion would be going to the tourist office and getting a copy of the Hiking Guide in Bosnia book. This book is at the tourist office and you can use their photocopier to make a copies of the […] Read More
The West is the best. This is the famous lines from The Doors song “The End”. Whether Jim Morrison referred it for the west of the USA or the western part of the world, he might have changed his mind today after he took a trip to the Balkans. So many things have changed and are still changing in the Balkans, its sometimes hard to keep up. I’ve been to Belgrade before back in Feb 1992. A very sensitive  and tense time to be in the region. Yugoslavia was falling apart by one country announcing their independence to another. Not a very good time to be in Serbia. That said, I wanted to erase these bad memories and replace them with newer and much improved ones. The most memorable thing about Belgrade is people like to party. Regardless their age, rich or poor, taste in music, etc., Belgradians like to go out. And the plus side of things, its really cheap to do so. Getting into clubs can cost you 200 Serbian Dinars = 1,70 Euros! So you can imagine what your Euros can be worth in Belgrade. The most interesting and different places to go out was the docks. […] Read More