If every great architectural landmark has a story, Bosnia-Herzegovina ‘s Stari Most has a comeback story.
“The Old Bridge, or Stari Most as it’s called by locals, was built of 456 blocks of local stone in 1566 by the Ottoman Turkish architect, Mimar Hajrudin,” said Quora user Haris Custo. “It was the heart of our city for 427 years.”
The hump-backed bridge is located in the city of Mostar, where it crosses the Neretva River. At 4m wide, 30m long and 24m high, it is one of the country’s most recognisable landmarks and is one of the finest examples of Islamic architecture in the Balkans.
But in the 1990s, the bridge was destroyed by Bosnian Serb and Croat forces during the Bosnian war. After the war, the city – and the bridge – began rebuilding. “It took almost 10 years to make that idea come to life, and in July of 2004 a new ‘old bridge’ was open again,” Custo said.
While the bridge has changed since its reconstruction, one long-time tradition remains: locals still dive off the bridge into the icy waters of the Neretva to show off their bravery and skill.