Destinations / Northern region
Đurđevića Tara Bridge, MontenegroTuesday, October 4, 2011 · Region Northern region · Comments
Going east of National Park Durmitor the river Tara creates a splendid canyon. Spanning the canyon at the point where the roads from Mojkovac, Pljevlja and Žabljak converge is the Đurđevića Tara Bridge, one of the single most impressive feats of engineering to be found anywhere in Europe. The bridge was designed by Mijat Trojanović and built right before the second world war between 1937 and 1940 by Chief engineer Isaac Russo under the Serbian monarchy. The bridge has the aspect of a Roman bridge and a curved line, that allows those who walk or drive over it to admire the beautiful turquoise waters of the river Tara and the green surroundings of the valley.
When it was completed, it was easily the largest vehicular arch bridge in Europe. It's not the most beautiful piece of engineering, but the dimensions are certainly impressive – 365m long, with the largest of the five arches spanning 116m, and some 160m high. The roadway stands 172 metres (564 ft) above the Tara River.
Rafting is very popular on Tara River. It is also one of the most popular things to do in Montenegro. The one day rafting route, from Brstnovica to Šćepan Polje is 18 km long and it takes 2 to 3 hours. Among the attractions of the area is Đurđevića Tara Bridge, on the crossroads between Mojkovac, Žabljak and Pljevlja.
Rafting starts at Splavista from where you start the adventure 100 km long in the most beautiful and exciting part of canyon. Already at the beginning the Tara, the waterfalls of Ljutica are shown and then, you will pass under monumental bridge of the Tara, 165 metres high and then, you come up to the old Roman road and then pass through the. Lever Tara. "Funjički bukovi" and "Bijele ploče" will make you realise how calm and up to this moment nice Tara becomes wild beauty. "Nisovo vrelo" is the deepest part of canyon of 1100 metres high. Further is the bottom of the mountain top, "Curevac" (1650 m), that rises above Tara as its "eternal guardian" and one of the nicest bellevue of Durmitor. Then you end up at the waterfalls of Draga and then pass through the Radovan luka. Then you pass through the "Canyon of Susica", "Tepački bukovi", "Brstanovički bukovi" and "Bailovica sige." Rafting will end at Sćepan Polje.
World War II
Much of Montenegro, including the Tara Canyon, came under Italian occupation following the German-led invasion of Yugoslavia in April 1941. As the mountainous terrain made it suitable for guerrilla warfare, a partisan uprising occurred in the area. Italian forces aided by Serb-nationalist Chetniks took control of the Tara Bridge during an Italian-Chetnik offensive in 1942. A Yugoslav Partisan raiding party blew up the central arch with the aid of one of the bridge engineers, Lazar Jauković. The attack cut the only feasible crossing over the Tara Canyon halting the Italian/Chetnik advance. Jauković was eventually captured and executed by the Italians. At the southern end of the bridge, which was rebuilt in 1946, there are two stone memorials, one of which is dedicated to Jauković, and another to a young Partisan soldier killed in battle in 1941.
Save Tara Gorge
The Bosnian and the Montenegrin government had plans to flood the Tara Gorge, with the construction of a hydroelectric dam in the Drina River. However, it abandoned this plan in April, 2005 after several successful protests of advocates for the preservation of the canyon. The current status is not clear. In September 2006, a protocol for cooperation between Slovenian company "Petrol" and Montenegrin company "Montenegro-bonus" was signed for building an electric plant with initial power of 40 or 60 megawatts.
Movies about Tara Brigde Montenegro
One of the best Yugoslav War movies ever made in 1969, was dedicated to these World War II events and called "Most" or Savage Bridge.
The Bridge and Piva Hydroelectric plant were later used in the 1978 American action film "Force 10 from Navarone" which was ment to be a sequel of the 1961 "Guns of Navarone".