Thursday, May 21, 2015

Araca: A Cultural Treasure of Vojvodina

Araca church ruins,Vojvodina Serbia (photo:Rana Jones)

Last weekend, there was a festival here celebrating a medieval church ruin, Araca. This old church was built in the year 1230. It is located about 8 miles from the village of Novi Becej,Serbia.
I have never personally seen any structure this old in my life so I couldn't help but  to be in awe of this place. I took a lot of photos but somehow, none of them really capture the feeling or it's true presence. In fact, I haven't see any photos posted anywhere that captures it.
(photo:Rana Jones)

(photo:Rana Jones)

 It sits in the middle of a large span of land, no other structures within miles with only a narrow, bumpy lane leading out to it. It's so odd to be driving through farmland and to see it sitting majestically where it has stood for almost 800 years. It is protected by the government as a historical site, as it should be. Sadly, I believe over the years it was vandalized until they installed security cameras.
(photo:Rana Jones)

During the festival, they have period actors dressed as medieval knights and maidens who mingle among the guests and perform battle reenactments and pose for photos.
They sell food and other items you might find during those times: woven baskets, clothing, rugs, and pottery items. It reminded me much of the Renaissance Festivals we have back in America. What made this one above and beyond any of those festivals is the main attraction of a genuine artifact as a backdrop.
(photo:Rana Jones)
Surprisingly, this festival was free to the public. In fact, on any given day (or night), you are free to just drive out to the site with no security to stop you and is open for you to enjoy. I have been here before when no festival is taking place and the place was deserted of humans. Nothing but the sound of birds, a breeze and maybe a distance tractor working the fields. It is an ideal place to have a nice picnic and to sit and take in the serenity of time and nature.
Araca (photo:Rana Jones)


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