Vitez – Small City With a Big Possibilities
Things to do in Vitez
Vitez has a very unusual name for a city, literally means knight, and is linked to many legends about its origin. The first written trace of the city dates from 1590, when the mosque was built on the ruins of knight’s house, which was built by Knight Rados. His palace could be seen from all sides, so the children were looking at the field and saying “there live a knight,” and with the time it reduce and remained is saying “there is a Vitez (Knight)”. According to another legend, the passengers impressed by the beauty of this area, when they entered into Vitez valley shouted the word “Vita Est”, that eventually turned into the current name of the city.
This city is located in the central part of the valley of the river Lasva.
As city appears after World War II, when this settlement experienced full blooming. But the encounter with the history of Vitez area began a long time ago, already in the early Stone Age. The first settlements of this period belonged to the known Butmir cultural group, while archaeological studies found the settlement from the Bronze Age. According to preserved remains can be seen that this region in ancient times was well populated. Roman Bridge and numerous remains, indicating that in this area was a large and important Roman settlement Bistua Nova and Mali Mosunj. Besides the remains of an early Christian basilica in Mali Mosunj, there are significant remains of the necropolis. Among the cultural and historical treasures, found in this area, is important to be mentioned a bronze sword from the tenth century BCE, which is kept in a museum in Sarajevo and tombstone “Old Stone”.
The development of Vitez in the period of socialist Yugoslavia was linked with chemical industry. However, in July 3rd, 1950 was founded the company “202”, which was later named Company of the Chemical Industry “Slobodan Princip Seljo”. In facilities of this company were produced military products, rocket propellants, phlegmatiser, antifreeze, industrial explosives and a shock tube and so on. In this factory has produced the most famous explosive in this part of Europe. It was named after the name of the city, “Vitezit”.
What makes this city the most recognizable today are certainly numerous shopping and business centres, that placed Vitez in one of the most developed municipalities in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
What to see in Vitez
The Church of St George
Photo Credit: Foto Studio Brzoka
The present parish church was built in 1896 – 1900. The Church of St George was renovated in the thirties of the last century. In the mid-sixties was built a new main altar. In the second half of the eighties was the restoration of its interior, built a new altar Mensa, baptistery and ambo. The church was painted and it is set Way of the Cross (reliefs in bronze, 1987) by sculptor Kruno Bosnjak. The drafts for two vitrail Birth and Resurrection was made by Frane Paro 1990.
Ahmed Bey Mosque
Photo Credit: Alojz Mlakic
Ahmed Bey Mosque was built in 1589-1590. It was built by a certain Ahmed Aga known as Sinan Celebi. There is a legend that Ahmed Aga destroyed ancient Roman bridge at Divjak (place near Vitez), and the stone used to build the mosque. When the Sultan learned about it punished the Ahmed-aga by subtracting a previously awarded possession.
From the mosque, which was built 417 years ago, in the original form of were remaining walls, the mihrab and portal front door.
Holy Mountain Kalvarija in Mosunj
Photo Credit: Alojz Mlakic
In the area of Mosunj, not far from Vitez were found traces of a Roman settlement and the remains of an early Christian basilica. There is also, Church of Our Lady at the hill called Kalvarija, built by the Jesuits in 1912. On the winding road, which leads to the top to the church, were set up Stations of the Cross. On Lent’s Fridays there with the devotion people go the Way of the Cross. In this parish is located 11 smaller chapels.
With a shrine like this at “Kalvarija” next to Mosunj usually go and different beliefs. So with Kalvarija are related stories of various cures.
What to do in Vitez
Go Hiking or Cycling
Zabrdje with renovated mountain lodge and mountain Kruscica are popular destinations for excursion and hunting areas. Mountain Lodge Zabrdje above of Vitez is located on the northern slopes of Vranica in the ambient of evergreen forests. It is located at an altitude of 1,030 meters, and it’s tempting for all nature lovers. With the forest path of it is possible to reach several peaks including Krstac (1590), Trilj (1298) and Poljana (1290). Locals of Vitez often go up to the mountain lodge in the village Zaselje, too.
Photo Credit: Alojz Mlakic
In these areas one can enjoy in pure air, good water, picking wild fruits, herbs and the like.
The most appropriate approach for Zabrdje from Vitez is through Kruscica where is marked the macadam road of 11 km in length or three-hour walk. However, the city has set up sign post so that visitors from Travnik, Zenica and Sarajevo can without difficulty reach the mountain lodge.
Visit Ethno Village
Visit ethno village Cardaci, you will be surprised by the pleasant exterior of ethno village, ponds and bridges, walk along the river Lasva, see (if you have not already) the nursery of fish, mini-hydroelectric power plant, enjoy in the excellent atmosphere of pub Crni Macak (Black Cat), eat something in the restaurant and then walk over at a massage in the spa centre of ethno village.
Relax at The Spa
An unforgettable experience in the spa oasis will offer you a Finnish sauna, Turkish bath and irresistible relax-room, as well as all kinds of beauty treatments at the Hotel Central, and in the Ethno Village Cardaci waiting for you primarily a pleasant environment of ethno village, and then all kinds of modern relaxation.
If you have by any chance in Vitez found during the fall, winter or early spring, let not be surprised with a dense fog.
In Vitez, quickly and easily, can find all that is necessary to modern man, we have a saying for it, “from a needle to a locomotive”.