Osijek Sights and Landmarks Guide, Croatia
Osijek Sights-Religious Overview
Churches were once the most important cultural centers and they still stand today as beautiful sights, reminders of history, art and faith. A pearl among Osijek sights is Parish Church of St. Michael, a transformation of a mosque into one of the most beautiful Christian houses of Lord. This occurred when the Habsburgs recaptured Osijek from the Turks, but some architectonic elements, like the onion shaped domes are still there today.
The Baroque and Rococo Church of the Elevation of the Holy Cross was also built to revive the Catholic life in the city. As the church had an important role in the community, for the blooming population of the Lower Town or Donji Grad the existing prayer houses were not enough, so a pretty church named St. Mary was constructed in 1733. Another institution bearing a metamorphosis is Donji Grad’s former synagogue, which became Evangelical Church of Good News. In 1740, as thanksgiving for getting rid of the plague, Chapel of Saint Rock was built.
Last, but not least is the largest religious institution, Church of Saint Peter and Paul, raised at the order of Bishop Josip Juraj Strossmayer. It was built in the 1890s, in neo-gothic style.
Osijek Sights - Oasis in the City
When feeling you’ve had enough of the crowd and the noise, whether you are an inhabitants or tourist, you may stay and admire nature in one of the many parks of Osijek. King Drzislav Park is opposite the main entrance in Tvrda District and it shelters many loved monuments, including the one of the Dying Soldier. The Gardens of King Tomislav were arranged for the Habsburg officers and their ladies and are now very popular for dogs and children. Children (and grown-ups) may also enjoy a trip to the zoo, where you may find cheetahs-seen on the emblem of the zoo as well, zebras, raccoons, an aquarium with scary reptiles and many other animals. A way of getting to the zoo is the Kompa, a sort of ferry to cross the Drava, consisting of a wooden platform with a cabin.
Osijek Sights – Landmarks
Osijek sights might not be as breathtaking as Zagreb Sights or the ones in Split, but they offer buildings and monuments for every taste, some much appreciated, but some, such as the Monument of Defenders (built for those dead in the 1991 war), The Pejacevic Fountain built in 1903 or Europa and Urania cinemas are a subject of controversy. For those enjoying classic objects, the places to see are certainly the Archeological Museum with one of the most loved artifacts, a Celtic helmet, or the Museum of Slavonia, also comprising archaeological pieces, but clocks, muskets and other old objects as well.
Osijek also has a permanent Art Gallery and a few temporary ones: Kazamat, Waldinger, Barutana and that of the Franciscan Monastery. For Art Nouveau lovers, a stroll on European Avenue is the best way to see houses built in this style, very well preserved.
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