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View of Sarajevo between the two world wars

Today’s appearance of Sarajevo has changed considerably compared to the one before the Second World War. Many buildings still exist, ravages of time are obvious on others, some were restored, and some completely gone.

The Ottomans and Austro-Ugrians have left a great influence on the architecture of the capital city of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and these buildings are today the most attractive for tourists coming from all parts of the world.

Below, through the photographs of the master of photography Nusret Halacevic, we will come across two world wars, recall how Sarajevo once looked, but also see the customs and photographs of Sarajevo’s everyday life.

Sebilj is a wooden fountain made in a pseudo-Ottoman style in the center of Bascarsija. It was built by the Bosnian Vizier Mehmed-pasha Kukavica in 1753, and it was located a bit lower than today. It burned in a fire in 1852, and then moved according to the design of the Czech architect Alexander Vitek in 1891. This part is also often referred to as the “pigeon market”.
A view of the Town Hall and the Seher-Cehaja Bridge from At Mejdan. Sarajevo City Hall is one of the most beautiful and most representative objects from the Austro-Hungarian period built in a pseudo-Moorish style. Karlo Parzik did the first project, but as Minister Benjamin Kalaj did not like him, the creation of the new one was entrusted to Alexander Witteku. As a model for the development of this project, the Mosque of of Kemal II served as a model, and for this, he went to Cairo twice.
The building of the Central Bank of Bosnia and Herzegovina was built in 1929 and is the largest investment of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in Sarajevo. The author of the project is Milan Zlokovic from Belgrade. The period of its construction was marked by the penetration of a style known as modern, specific to denying the decorative nature of the previous styles, or the effort to reduce the decoration to a minimum. It was created as a unique building mass, and the strong influence of cubism was expressed.
View from Alifakovac to Vratnik and Sedam suma. Alifakovac is a settlement above the Sarajevo City Hall and has a significant history, and today has a tourist value. Following the folk etymology, the name was given because of Ali Ufak, the legendary sheikh from the older history of Sarajevo, which is traditionally buried at the Alifakovac cemetery.
Market day in Bascarsija
Photograph is made from the Sarajevo City Hall and offers a view of the river Miljacka
Sarajevans are swimming in the Miljacka River at the popular bathing place Dariva
The Mosque at Bistrik and the bridge over which the Ciro train crossed
Hotel Austria in Ilidza. Velika aleja (Great Lane) leads from the hotel to Vrelo Bosne (spring of the Bosna River). Lane is planted with trees of plane and chestnut in a length of 3.5 kilometers and represents the most beautiful alley in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Aleja is made up of 726 plane trees planted in two orders in 1892.
The Old Orthodox Church is one of the oldest and most valuable cultural and historical monuments of Sarajevo and it is one of the oldest sacral buildings in this region. It is located not far from Bascarsija. It is mentioned for the first time in 1539, but it is presumed to have been built on the foundations of an even older church.
View from Strossmayer Street to the Cathedral of the Heart of Jesus. Josip Vancas did the project for construction combining Romanesque and Gothic elements. Construction of the building started in 1884, and in 1889, the building was completed and handed over to the Sarajevo City Municipality for use.
The interior of the Gazi-Husrev Bey’s Mosque
Interior of Sarajevo City Hall

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