Serbia Destinations Travel Guide


Flag of Serbia 

Language: Serbian

Currency: Serbian dinar (RSD)

Calling Code: 381

Serbia, officially the Republic of Serbia , the sovereign is a country located at the crossroads of middle and southeast Europe in the southern part of the Pannonian Plain and the center of the Balkan Peninsula. It mainly covers the Balkan Peninsula and , to a lesser extent , the Pannonian Plain . Serbia borders the Hungarian border in the north, Romania in the northeast , Bulgaria in the east , Northern Macedonia in the south, Albania with the southwestand Montenegro , and in the west with Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina (entity Republika Srpska ). Serbia excluding Kosovo and Metohija has a population of about 7 million, while with Kosmet it has an estimated 8.8 million inhabitants. The capital is Belgrade , which is one of the oldest and largest cities in Southeast Europe . With a population of 1,659,440 in the wider area, according to the 2011 census , it is the administrative and economic center of the country. The official language is Serbian and the official currency is Serbian Dinar .

After Slovenian migration to the Balkans ( 6th century ), Serbs established several states in the early Middle Ages . The Serbian Kingdom was recognized by Rome and the Byzantine Empire in 1217, culminating in 1346 as a relatively short-lived Serbian Empire .

Until the mid- 16th century , all of modern Serbia was part of the Ottoman Empire , until it was interrupted by the Habsburg Monarchy , which began to spread to Central Serbia from the end of the 17th century and maintained a foothold in modern Vojvodina . In the early 19th century, the Serbian Revolution established the nation-state as the first constitutional monarchy in the region, which later expanded its territory.

Serbia, after the catastrophic losses in World War I and unification with the former Habsburg Crown of Vojvodina (and other territories), became a co-founder and integral part of a common state with most of the Southern Slavs originally in the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (later renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia ), then in the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia , the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro . In 2006, after a referendum was held in the Republic of Montenegro, the peoples dispersed peacefully and the State Union ceased to exist, and the Republic of Serbia, on the basis of the Constitutional Charter , continued state-legal continuity with Serbia and Montenegro.


Travel Destinations in Serbia

Bač Castle

Golubac Castle

Kalemegdan Castle

Maglič Castle

Petrovaradin Castle

Smederevo Castle


Introduction of Serbia

Republic of Serbia is located in Southeastern Europe in central part of Balkan Peninsula. About 20 % of the country is occupied by Pannonian lowland. North part of the country is dominated by predominantly plains. Farther in the south the terrain becomes more mountainous and rugged. Serbia contains 4 mountain ranges. Dinaric Alps in the west that extend to the northwest and southeast, Stara Planina (Old Mountains) and Eastern Serbian Mountains are located in the East extending into neighboring Bulgaria. And Rila- Rhodope mountain range take much of the country's south. Serbia's highest mountain is Mount Dzheravitsa at a height of 2656 meter.

Emergency numbers while traveling to Serbia

Police 92

Fire Department 93

Ambulance 94



The name of the country "Sr̀biјa" comes from the ancient Slavic ethnonym "Serbs" (self-name - Srbi). The origin and etymology of the ethnonym remain a matter of debate. Theoretically, the root -sъrbъ was associated with the Russian "paserb", the Ukrainian "priserbitisya" ("join"), the Indo-Aryan "-sarbh" ("fight, murder"), the Latin "sero" ("compose") and the Greek "siro" ( ειρω, "to repeat"). However, the Polish linguist Stanisław Rospond (1906–1982) derived the word "Srb" from "srbati" (cf. "Sorbo, absorbbo"). The Sorbian scientist H. Schuster-Shevts suggested a connection between the Proto-Slavic verb “-sьrb” and such “relatives” as “Serbat” (Russian), “Sorbati” (Ukrainian), “Serbats” (Belarusian), “Srbati” (Slovak), "sarbam" (Bulgarian) and "serebati" (Old Russian).

From 1945 to 1963, the official name of Serbia was "People's Republic of Serbia", from 1963 to 1990 - "Socialist Republic of Serbia". Since 1990, the official name of the country is "Republic of Serbia", from 1992 to 2006 the official names of the country were "Federal Republic of Yugoslavia" and "State Union of Serbia and Montenegro".



Location and boundaries
80% of the territory of Serbia is located on the Balkan Peninsula, 20% is occupied by the Pannonian lowland. The length of the borders is 2,364.4 km: with Romania - 546.5 km, with Bulgaria - 367.1 km, with North Macedonia - 282.9 km, with Montenegro - 249.5 km, with Albania - 111 km, with Bosnia and Herzegovina - 370.9 km, with Croatia - 261.7 km, with Hungary - 174.4 km. The total length of the borders is 2,364 kilometers, of which 751 kilometers lie along rivers, and 43 kilometers along lakes.

extreme points
Northern: 46°11'N sh., 19°40' E d.
South: 41°53'N latitude, 20°36' E d.
Eastern: 43°11'N sh., 23°00’E d.
Western: 45°55'N sh., 18°51’E d.

Mountains occupy two thirds of the country's territory. In its southwestern part, there are medium-altitude folded ridges of the eastern part of the Dinaric Highlands (Tara, Zlatibor, Chemerno, Golia) with hilly foothills. In the south, there are folded-block massifs of the Serbian Highlands (Kopaonik, Yastrebac, Radan, Kukavitsa), as well as the Kosovo-Pole and Metohija basins, the southern border of which is the Shar-Planina ridge. The Yunichka-Planina ridge stretches along the border with Albania. In the east of the country, the East Serbian Mountains (Kuchay, Suva Planina, Kraishte) are located, which are part of the Carpatho-Balkan mountain arc.

The north of Serbia is located within the southern periphery of the Middle Danube Plain, which is composed of horizontally occurring sandy-argillaceous Pliocene-Quaternary deposits overlain by a layer of alluvium in river valleys and loess on watersheds. Here the relief is complicated by island blocky hills (Fruška Gora, Vršacke Mountains).

The highest point in Serbia is Mount Jeravica (2656 m) in the Prokletije mountain range. 31 mountain peaks of the country have a height of more than 2000 m above sea level.

Serbia has significant mineral reserves. Among them are the ores of copper, lead, zinc. Also known are deposits of molybdenum, gold, silver, iron ores, chromium, platinoids, nickel, cobalt, tungsten, antimony, selenium, lithium, boron, bauxite. In the northern part of the country there are oil and gas fields. There are several large brown coal and lignite basins. There are also deposits of dolomites, magnesite, asbestos, graphite, rock salt, cement raw materials.

The rivers of Serbia belong to the basins of three seas - the Black, Adriatic and Aegean. Most of Serbia belongs to the basin of the Danube River, which flows into the Black Sea, the length of which in Serbia is 588 kilometers. On the plain, the Danube has a meandering channel with a width of 300 to 1200 m, a depth of 2 to 19 m and a calm current. Where the river crosses the Carpatho-Balkan mountain system, its channel narrows to 150 m, the depth increases to 82 m, and the flow speed reaches 5 m/s. On the plain above this area, during a flood, the water level rises significantly, and large spills occur.

In addition to the Danube, the navigable rivers are the Sava (206 km), the Tisza (168 km), the Begei (75 km), and the partially navigable ones are the Bolshaya Morava (3 km out of 185 km) and the Tamish (3 km out of 101 km). Other major rivers in Serbia are the Western Morava (308 km), South Morava (295 km), Ibar (272 km), Drina (220 km) and Timok (202 km). Part of the south of Serbia belongs to the basin of the rivers White Drin and Radika, which flow into the Adriatic Sea. Also located in the south of Serbia, the rivers Pchinja, Lepenac and Dragovishtitsa belong to the Aegean Sea basin.

A number of artificial canals have also been built in Serbia, which are used for flood protection, irrigation, etc. Their total length is 939.2 km, of which 385.9 km are used for navigation of ships with a tonnage of up to 1000 tons. The largest canal system is the Danube-Tisa-Danube, which includes the Great Bach Canal and the Small Bach Canal.

The largest natural lake in Serbia is Paliski Lake with an area of ​​5.6 km². The largest reservoir is the Đerdap reservoir with a total area of ​​253 km², of which 163 km² is in Serbia. The largest island in Serbia is located on the Danube near Kostolac. There are also waterfalls in Serbia, the largest is Elovarnik, its height is 71 meters, it is located in the Kopaonik National Park.

Serbia has a diverse soil cover. In Vojvodina there are large areas of fertile chernozem soils, low in humus and leached, in combination with meadow chernozem solonetsous and often saline soils. Brown forest, mountain-forest brown and mountain-forest humus-calcareous soils are developed in mountainous regions. In the intermountain basins of the Serbian Highlands and the East Serbian Mountains, dark-colored slitozems with significant natural fertility are characteristic.



On the territory of Serbia there are two zonal vegetation or two biomes. The first is the biome of temperate broad-leaved and mixed forests, which includes most of the country's territory. The second is the tundra biome (areas above the upper forest line). There are four ecoregions in the forest biome: Balkan mixed forests (occupying most of the territory south of the Sava and Danube), Pannonian mixed forests (occupying the Middle Danubian lowland with surrounding areas), Dinaric mixed forests (a small area in southwestern Serbia), and Rhodopean mountainous mixed forests (a small area in southeastern Serbia). The lower belt of the mountains is occupied by oak forests, and the upper belt by beech forests. Alpine herbaceous vegetation of alpine meadows and rocks, as well as subalpine thickets of mountain pine, are represented within the tundra biome. In addition to zonal vegetation, there are also fescue and forb-grass meadow steppes and peat bogs.

According to the inventory of the forest fund conducted in 2009, 29.1% of the territory of Serbia was occupied by forests. Their total area is 2,252,400 hectares. Of these, 53% are managed by the state, 47% are owned by private owners. There are 0.3 hectares of forest per inhabitant.

Deciduous species predominate in the forest fund of the country, their share is 81%. Among them, oak and beech are the most common. The share of conifers is 19%. Of the conifers, spruce, fir, Scots pine and black pine are most common.



Serbia is home to 51% of the European fish fauna, 40% of the European reptile and amphibian species, 74% of the European bird fauna, and 67% of the European mammal fauna. Mammals include deer, roe deer, wild boars, hares, wolves, otters, badgers, wild goats, and others. Birds include storks, eagles, sea eagles, wild ducks, geese, quail, pheasants, black grouse, partridges, turtle doves, woodcocks, and others. Trout, perch, carp, catfish, carp, pike, etc. are found in the country's water bodies. Also, 17 species of snakes live in Serbia, of which eight are poisonous.

In Serbia, 50 species of mammals, 307 species of birds, 36 species of reptiles and amphibians, 30 species of fish have been taken under protection.


Protected natural areas

Environmental protection in Serbia has a long tradition. As early as the 14th century, King Dushan banned excessive deforestation. Serbia has five national parks. The largest of them is Djerdap itself, covering an area of ​​63,000 hectares. All of them are members of the European Federation of National Parks - EUROPARC. According to Serbian law, a national park is an area with a variety of natural ecosystems of national importance, outstanding landscape features and cultural heritage, where people live in harmony with nature. The purpose of creating a national park is to preserve existing natural values ​​and resources, the general landscape, geological and biological diversity, meet scientific, educational, spiritual and aesthetic, cultural, tourism, health and recreational needs, as well as conduct other activities in accordance with the principles of nature protection and sustainable development.

In total, there are five national parks in the country:
Djerdap (Serb. Ђrdap). Founded in 1974, its area is 63,000 hectares
Kopaonik (Serb. Kopaonik). Founded in 1981, its area is 19,985 hectares
Tara (Serb. Tara). Founded in 1981, its area is 19,200 hectares
Frushka Gora (Serb. Frushka Gora). Founded in 1960, its area is 25,393 hectares
Shar Planina (Serb. Shar Planina). Founded in 1993. Its area is 39,000 hectares



Serbia has a temperate continental climate with more or less distinct characteristics depending on location, topography, presence or absence of rivers, vegetation, or degree of urbanization. The north of the country is characterized by a continental climate with cold winters and hot, humid summers, influenced by air masses from northern and western Europe. At the same time, in the southern regions of the country, closer to the Adriatic Sea, summers are hot and dry, and autumns and winters are relatively cold, accompanied by heavy snowfalls, since these areas are under the influence of the Mediterranean Sea. This influence is somewhat limited to the Dinaric Alps and other mountain ranges, which help to cool the masses of hot air.

Between 1961 and 1990, the mean annual temperature was 10.9°C up to 300 m. In areas between 300 and 500 m, the average temperature was 10.0°C, and above 1000 m, 6.0°C. July is the warmest month of the year with an average temperature of 11 to 22 °C; in particular, in regions below 300 m above sea level, the average temperature is between 20.0 and 22 °C, as in some areas of southern Serbia at an altitude of 400 to 500 m. Above 1000 m, the average temperature in July is between 11.0 to 16°C. The lowest temperatures in 1961-1990 Were recorded in January; they ranged from −35.6 °C (in Senica) to −21.0 °C (in Belgrade). Since the beginning of measurements, the highest temperature recorded in Serbia was 44.3 °C on July 22, 1939 in Kralev, and the lowest temperature was −39.5 °C on January 13, 1985 in Karajukicha-Bunari on the Peshter Plateau in Raska.



Ecology and environmental protection in Serbia is handled by the Ministry of Environmental Protection and the Environmental Protection Agency. The NATO war against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia caused enormous damage to the Serbian ecology. Alliance aircraft not only used depleted uranium ammunition, but also bombed industrial facilities and warehouses, resulting in toxic emissions. The soil, atmosphere and water bodies were contaminated. The Serbian authorities continue to deal with the aftermath of the bombing. The situation in the field of waste processing remains difficult. Of these, only 15% are being reused, but measures are being taken to improve the situation.



Prehistoric and Antique Serbia
Starchevo-Krish culture dates back to the 7th – 5th millennia BC. The tribes of this culture were engaged in cattle breeding, hunting and fishing. They settled in clay-coated wicker houses near rivers. Artifacts are represented by polished stone axes and rough kitchen ceramics. The bearers of the culture belonged to the Mediterranean race, which sharply distinguished them from the local Mesolithic Cro-Magnons, descendants of the Lepenski-Vira culture. Starchevo-Krish culture was supplanted by a wave of Anatolian farmers belonging to the Vinca culture.

The lifetime of Vinca culture is not precisely defined. The earliest moment of occurrence is considered the VI millennium BC. e., its extinction dates from the middle of the V millennium BC. or the beginning of the IV millennium BC. Settlements are represented by dugouts with clay stoves, later huts with gable roofs began to be built. They totaled up to five rooms, the floors were wooden. The bull’s head was reinforced above the entrance to the house. The culture is also characterized by a large number of clay figurines of men and women found.

During the existence of the Roman Empire, all of modern Serbia was part of the Roman state (most of the territory of modern Serbia, then inhabited mainly by Illyrian tribes, was part of the province of Upper Moesia). After the empire was divided into 2 parts around 395, these lands were assigned to the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) empire. The Romanization of Upper Moesia remained insignificant and, in contrast to the coastal regions, there were no large urban settlements, with the exception of Singidunum (Belgrade), Vimination (Kostolac) and Naissus (Niš).

Medieval Serbian State
The resettlement of the Slavs and the creation of statehood
From the middle of the VI century, the gradual expansion of Slavic tribes began on these lands, accompanied by the devastation of the Balkans. The ancestors of the Serbs settled the lands south of the Sava to the Adriatic. They assimilated or ousted the former inhabitants of this territory - Illyrians, Celts, Greeks and Romans - to cities, mainly on the coast, as well as to the mountains of the Dinaric Highlands and Albania. In some places, Illyrian and Wallachian enclaves arose in the lands inhabited by the Slavs.

The process of state formation among the Serbs was slowed by the isolation of various Serbian communities and the lack of economic ties between them. The early history of the Serbs is characterized by the formation of several centers of statehood, which in turn became centers of unification of the Serbian lands. Proto-state formations formed on the coast - Sklavinia Pagania, Zahumye, Travuniya and Duklja, in the interior (the eastern part of modern Bosnia and Sandzak) - the Serbian principality. Nominally, all Serbian territories were part of Byzantium, but their dependence was weak. From the 7th century, the Christianization of Serbian tribes began, which ended in the second half of the 9th century with the direct participation of the disciples of Saints Cyril and Methodius.

In the middle of the 9th century, under the influence of an attack on the Serb regions of the Proto-Bulgarians, princely power and a state were formed in the Serbian principality, headed by Prince (zupan) Vlastimir, who managed to drive back the Bulgarians and subordinate part of the coastal territories. The hereditary principle of the transfer of power, however, did not work out, which led at the end of the 9th century to civil strife, weakening of Raska and its transition under the rule of the First Bulgarian Kingdom, and then, after its fall, Byzantium. Some strengthening of Serbia in the middle of the 10th century during the reign of Prince Caslav, which significantly expanded the territory of the state, was replaced after its death in 950 by the collapse of the country. At the same time, the active penetration of bogomilism from Bulgaria began, which also contributed to the weakening of central authority in Raska. In 1040-1041, Belgrade and the Morava Valley became the center of a mass Slavic uprising led by Peter Delyan against Byzantium.

In the middle of the XI century, the center for the unification of Serbian lands moved to Dukla, where an independent principality was formed, headed by Stefan Vojislav. Unlike Byzantine-oriented Raska, Zeta sought support in the West, primarily in Catholic Rome and among the Normans of southern Italy. In 1077, the ruler of the Zeta was crowned king of the Serbs. Under Konstantin Bodin, at the end of the 11th century, Duklja established control over the internal Serbian regions, including Raska and Bosnia, and the Bar became the center of a separate Serbian church metropolis subordinate to the pope. However, after the death of Konstantin Bodin in 1101, the Duklian kingdom fell apart.


In the mid-12th century, the strengthening of one of the Serbian state formations, Raska, began, which gradually freed itself from the power of Byzantium. In 1168, Stefan Nemanja, the founder of the Nemanichi dynasty, became the supreme zupan of Raska. If at the beginning of his reign he remained a faithful vassal of the empire, then after the death of Emperor Manuel I, Stefan launched a struggle for independence and the unification of Serbian lands. As a result of several military campaigns, by the end of the XII century, most of the lands inhabited by Serbs, including the coastal regions, Zeta, Kosovo and, temporarily, Northern Macedonia, became part of a single state. Stefan Nemani’s war with Dubrovnik was unsuccessful, but the Dubrovnik merchants received from him the right to free trade in Serbia, which subsequently contributed to the recovery of the country's economy. In 1190, the Byzantine Empire recognized the independence of Serbia, and in 1217, the son of Stefan Nemani, Stefan the First-Crowned, was crowned king of the Serbs. In 1219, thanks to the activities of St. Sava, an autocephalous Serbian church was created with a center in the Zhichansky monastery.

The heyday of Serbia
Under the immediate successors of Stephen the First Crown, the Serbian state experienced a short period of stagnation and increased influence of neighboring powers, primarily Hungary. At the turn of the XIII and XIV centuries, Serbia was divided into two states: in the north, in Machva, Belgrade, the Branichev region, as well as in Usor and Salt, Stefan Dragutin ruled based on Hungary, the rest of the Serbian lands were ruled by his younger brother Stefan Milutin focusing mainly on Byzantium.

Despite the temporary division of the state, the strengthening of Serbia continued: a centralized system of local governance was formed, law was reformed, an internal communications system was created, and the transition to conditional holding and a pronary system in land relations began. At the same time, the influence of the higher clergy and the church intensified. Monasticism was actively developing, many Orthodox monasteries arose (including Studenica, Жić, Mileshevo, Gracanitsa, as well as the Hilandar Monastery on Mount Athos), and their churches were built in accordance with the already established original Serbian architectural tradition (“Rash school”). The belonging of Serbia to the Byzantine-Orthodox world was finally fixed, the Catholic influence was practically eliminated, and the Bogomils were expelled from the country. At the same time, the process of byzantization of the public administration system began, a pompous royal court was created on the model of Constantinople. There was an upsurge in mining (largely due to the influx of Saxon settlers), agriculture and trade, in which Dubrovnik merchants had a decisive role. The population of the country increased rapidly, cities grew.

Milutin and his son Stefan Dechansky also managed to significantly expand the territory of the state. Although Belgrade, Usora, and Soli were lost after Dragutin’s death, Serbia included Nis, northern Macedonia and Dirrahiy, and Skopje became the new capital. In 1330, at the Battle of Velbuda, Serbian forces defeated Bulgaria and put an end to Bulgarian hegemony in the Balkans.

The heyday of the medieval Serbian state occurred during the reign of Stephen Dusan (1331–1355). During a series of military campaigns, Stefan Dusan subjugated all of Macedonia, Albania, Epirus, Thessaly and the western part of Central Greece. As a result, Serbia has become the largest state in Southeast Europe. In 1346, Stefan Dusan was crowned king of the Serbs and Greeks, and the Archbishop of Pecs was proclaimed patriarch. The Serbo-Greek kingdom of Stefan Dusan combined Serbian and Byzantine traditions, the Greeks retained the highest positions in the cities and their land holdings, culture had a strong Greek influence. In architecture, a Vardarian style developed, the vivid examples of which were the temples in Gracanitsa, Pec and Lesnov. In 1349, the “Lawyer of Stefan Dusan” was published, which formalized and codified the norms of Serbian law. The central authority sharply strengthened, a ramified administrative system was formed along the Byzantine model, while maintaining the essential role of the assemblies (sabors) of the Serbian aristocracy. The tsar’s domestic policy, based on a large land nobility and leading to the expansion of its prerogatives, however, did not contribute to the strengthening and consolidation of the state, especially given the ethnic diversity of the Dushan state.


Fall and Turkish conquest
Shortly after the death of Stephen Dushan, his state collapsed. Part of the Greek lands again came under the rule of Byzantium, and the rest formed semi-independent principalities. In Serbia proper, large landowners (rulers) left the central government, began to pursue their own policies, mint coins and collect taxes: the reign of Balsic was established in Zeta, the Mrnyavchevich in Macedonia, Prince Lazar, Nicola Altomanovic and Vuk Brankovich in Old Serbia and Kosovo . The unity of the Serbian lands after the death of the last representative of the Nemanich dynasty, Stefan Uros V in 1371, was supported almost exclusively by the unity of the Orthodox Church in the person of the Pecsk Patriarchate, which in 1375 achieved canonical recognition by the Patriarchate of Constantinople. In 1377, the Bosnia’s Serbian crown was taken by the ban of Bosnia, Stefan Tvrtko I, however, although Prince Lazar and Vuk Brankovich recognized his royal title, the power of Tvrtko I was purely nominal. The internecine wars between the princes greatly weakened the defense of the Serbian lands in the face of the growing Turkish threat. Already in 1371, in the Battle of Maritsa, the Turks defeated the troops of the South Serb rulers, led by King Vukashin, after which the territory of modern Macedonia came under the rule of the Ottoman Empire.

An attempt to unite the Serbian lands to organize a rebuff to the Turks, made by Prince Lazar with the support of the Serbian Orthodox Church, was unsuccessful: on June 15, 1389 (on the day of St. Vitus - Vidovdan) in the battle on Kosovo, despite the heroic efforts of the Serbs, they were defeated . Prince Lazarus is dead. Although his son Stefan Lazarevich retained his power, he was forced to recognize the suzerainty of the Ottoman Empire and participate in Turkish campaigns. The battle of Kosovo and the deed of Milos Obilic, who killed the Ottoman Sultan Murad I at the beginning of the battle, later became one of the most important subjects of Serbian national folklore, a symbol of self-sacrifice and unity of the Serbian people in the struggle for independence.

In the first half of the XV century, when the onslaught of the Turks temporarily weakened due to a threat from Tamerlane, Stefan Lazarevich attempted to restore the Serbian state. He took the Byzantine title of despot and, relying on an alliance with Hungary, which transferred Belgrade and Machva to him, again subjugated Zeta (except Primorye), Srebrenica and a number of South Serbian regions. The central administration was revived, the prince's power was strengthened, mining and urban crafts were actively encouraged, the ideas of humanism and the Renaissance began to penetrate into Serbia. Architecture (the “Moravian school”, represented, in particular, by the monasteries of Resava and Ravanica) and literature (works by Patriarch Danil III and Stephen Lazarevich himself) experienced a new upsurge. The capital of Serbian despotism was Belgrade, in which a well-fortified fortress was built, partially preserved to this day. Although Nis and Krusevac were lost as a result of the Turks' new invasion in 1425, and then Belgrade came under Hungarian rule, the new capital of Serbia, Smederevo, founded by despot George Brankovich, experienced its heyday and won the glory of the second Constantinople. But already in 1438 the next Ottoman offensive began. In 1439, Smederevo fell. The long campaign of the Hungarian troops Janos Hunyadi in 1443-1444 allowed the Turks to be expelled from the territory of Serbia and to restore its independence for a short time. However, the defeat of the crusaders near Varna in 1444, the defeat of the Hungarian army in the Second Battle of Kosovo in 1448 and the fall of Constantinople in 1453 determined the fate of the country. In 1454, Novo Brdo and Pristina were captured, and in 1456 Belgrade was besieged. Finally, in 1459 Smederevo fell. Bosnia was conquered by 1463, Herzegovina by 1482, and finally Mountain Zeta in 1499. The Serbian state ceased to exist.


Social and economic development
The basis of the economy of the medieval Serbian state was agriculture, primarily agriculture, as well as cattle breeding, especially in mountainous areas. Significantly longer than in Bulgaria and Croatia, Serbia retained the importance of large patriarchal families - friends and the communal system. In peasant farming, collective ownership of land continued to dominate. Gradually, however, the processes of feudalization of land relations and enslavement of peasants intensified. Already in the "Lawyer of Stephen Dushan" the dependent position of the peasantry was legally enshrined and the right to transfer was canceled. Among the dependent categories of peasants, the merokhs [35], who have hereditary rights to their allotment and are obliged to the feudal lord for working duties (100 days a year), Vlachs — cattle breeders paying natural rents to the feudal lord (mainly to monasteries), and lads who were the personal property of the master . No significant peasant uprisings have been noted in medieval Serbia. The feudal ownership of the land was of two types: hereditary unconditional ownership - the tower, and conditional holding for service under the king or other large aristocrat - pronity, and the role of the latter steadily increased. The largest landowner was the Orthodox Church. The immune rights of the feudal lords were limited to the preservation of the royal court, the fiscal and military duties of landowners to the crown. The monasteries possessed the broadest immunity, the possessions of which actually turned into feudal lords and which subjugated the small feudal lords - warriors.

From the end of the 12th century, the importance of mining began to grow for the country's economy. The centers of extraction of copper, iron, gold, silver and lead were Novo-Brdo, the Kopaonik plateau and the Rudnitskaya planina. Field development was mainly carried out by German colonists. Legally, the supreme ownership of the mines belonged to the king, but in fact they were in the possession of Saxon, Dubrovnik and Kotor merchants. The mining tax and metal export duties were an essential part of the state budget. The role of mining for the Serbian economy particularly increased during the Turkish invasions, when cultivated land was devastated and the population declined sharply.

Serbian cities were initially extremely underdeveloped and did not play a significant role in the country's economy. The only exceptions were the coastal cities - Kotor, Ulcinj, Budva, Bar, which at an early stage turned into large centers of maritime intermediary trade. With the development of mining and crafts in the XIII century, the revitalization of the cities of the internal regions of Serbia began: Novo Brdo, Pristina, Nis, Branichevo and others. The main export items were metals, honey and leather. Trade gravitated to the Adriatic and was concentrated in the hands of the Dubrovnik, Kotor and Italian merchants. The level of development of city self-government remained low (except for Kotor and some cities of Primorye), they did not play any noticeable role in the political system of Serbia and were governed by the knights appointed by the king.


Serbia ruled by the Ottoman Empire
As a result of the Turkish conquest, Serbian lands were devastated, agriculture fell into decay, mining production almost ceased. A massive outflow of population began over the Danube and the Sava, as a result of which the ethnic territory of the Serbs significantly expanded northward. Serbs were massively resettled on the lands of modern Hungary and Croatia, which were then part of the Habsburg possessions, forming a military estate there. In exchange for military service, guarding the border and participating in battles with the Turks, the border guards received land and were exempted from paying a number of taxes. At the same time, Turks, Vlach cattle breeders and Albanians began to move to the depopulated lowland areas, and especially to the southern regions of the country (Kosovo). The Christian population was limited in civil rights. However, unlike Albania, Bosnia and Macedonia, only a small part of the population converted to Islam in Serbia. The main merit in this belonged to the Pecsk Patriarchate, restored in 1557, which during the Ottoman rule played the role of a center of national and cultural unity of the Serbian people. The Orthodox Church as a whole retained its privileges and possessions and, as a special confessional community (millet), used self-government in cultural and religious matters, including the ability to create primary schools.

After the conquest, a military-prison system was extended to Serbia, in which most of the land was owned by the state and was divided into flax, whose holders are Spahia, were obliged to perform military service. The rest of the land was transferred to church and public organizations (waqfs) or secured on the right of ownership to individual representatives of the Turkish aristocracy (mulk) or the family of the Sultan (Sultan Khas). Administratively, the territory of Serbia became part of the Rumeliya Eylet, and after the Turks conquered Hungary in the middle of the 16th century, the areas north of Niš were transferred to the Buda Eylet. Eylets were divided into sanjaks. The former territory of the Serbian despot formed Smederevsky (after the conquest of Belgrade in 1521 - Belgrade) sandzhak. Like the Greeks, Serbs, having converted to Islam, could rise to public service in public service.

The feudal class of the period of Ottoman domination was represented almost exclusively by Muslims, both Turks and Slavs who converted to Islam (Turchens). The basis of the population was the dependent peasantry - paradise, which had the right of hereditary use of allotments and paying land (haraj) and capitation (jizya) taxes to the Sultan, as well as various payments to the feudal lord. In southern Serbia and the Danube regions, a significant stratum of Vlach pastoralists has been preserved, which enjoys certain privileges and is used for border service. The bulk of the peasants was attached to the land and could not leave it without the permission of the local feudal lord or official.

Since the 16th century, revival of handicraft production and urban life began in Serbia. New urban centers located at the intersection of the trade routes of the Ottoman Empire, primarily Belgrade, captured by the Turks in 1521, which soon became the largest trade and craft center of the Serbian lands, came to the fore. Nevertheless, the cities remained divorced from the district, their growth had practically no effect on the progress of neighboring lands. Handicraft production was organized in an oriental fashion into closed corporations, separate for Muslims and Christians. At first, dominance of foreign capital remained in trade - Dubrovnik, Venetian and Genoese merchants, and orientation towards the Adriatic coast. However, starting from the 17th century, with the weakening Italian city-states, local merchants began to play an increasingly important role in trade. Nevertheless, the economic development of the Serbian lands was still significantly behind the European level.


In the XVII century, the process of the decline of the Ottoman Empire began. The military system began to decompose, the Spahis departed from military service and switched to the active exploitation of their lands and dependent population. Land ownership gradually began to pass into the hands of trade and craft circles and the Janissaries and gain a foothold on the right of ownership (Chiftliks). The central government weakened, the state experienced a chronic financial crisis. Local feudal lords actually came out of submission to the Sultan, anarchy reigned in the country, there were constant internecine clashes between Spakhia, Janissaries and Pasha, trying to expand their possessions and commit extortionate raids on the lands of their neighbors. This was accompanied by an increase in tax and feudal oppression and a significant deterioration in the position of the Christian majority. The remnants of the autonomy of the Vlachs were eliminated, and religious antagonism intensified.

In the eighteenth century, the economic growth of northern Serbia and especially Belgrade continued, while the economy of the central and southern regions of the country was in stagnation, which was greatly facilitated by the new ruins during the Austro-Turkish wars of the late XVII - early XVIII centuries. From 1716 to 1739, Northern Serbia was under the control of Austria, which gave a significant impetus to its economic development and the growth of trade, especially the Danube, with Central Europe. After the return of Northern Serbia to the power of the Ottoman Empire in 1739, it retained a special position. The border Belgrade pashalyk was created here, the Turkish population has declined significantly, local authorities began to pass into the hands of the local aristocracy. This was accompanied by the weakening of feudal oppression, the collapse of the spahic system and the acceleration of the development of the economy, especially cattle breeding, oriented to Austria.

Liberation struggle
Immediately after the Turkish conquest of Serbian lands, migration of part of the Serbs to unoccupied lands by the Turks beyond the Danube and Sava began: in Srem, Bachka, Banat, Slavonia, as well as in northern Bosnia. In southern Hungary (present-day Vojvodina), a Serbian military administration was created with a center in Kupnik (Srem), headed by princes who considered themselves heirs to the rulers of the Serbian despot. Serbs actively participated in the Hungarian-Turkish wars of the late XV - early XVI centuries, however, after the defeat of the Hungarian kingdom under Mojac in 1526, these lands also fell under the control of the Ottoman Empire.

The liberation movement of the Serbian people against Turkish domination developed in two directions: the guiduism, often indistinguishable from ordinary banditry, and the uprisings confined to the wars of the European powers with the Ottoman Empire. At the head of the movement was the Pechersky Patriarchate, which managed to establish political relations with Hungary, Austria and Spain. Already during the Austro-Turkish war of 1593-1606, an uprising against the Turks broke out in Banat, supported by Patriarch Jovan II.


The liberation movement reached its highest rise during the Holy League war at the end of the 17th century. Serbian rebels, working in collaboration with the Austrian army, liberated most of the country. In 1688, Belgrade was taken, the Austrian troops of General Eneo Piccolomini penetrated into Macedonia. However, in 1690, the Turks retaliated. The Austrians were driven out of Serbia, the power of the Ottoman Empire was restored. The country was devastated, mass repressions against participants in the uprisings began. In response, Patriarch Arseny III called on the Serbs to emigrate beyond the Danube. The “Great Relocation of Serbs” began: tens of thousands of Serbian families left their homes and moved to Austrian territory: to Banat, Bachka, Srem, Baranya. The second big wave of migration of Serbs passed after the unsuccessful war for Austria of 1737-1739 for Austria.

The great resettlement of Serbs has become one of the key events of Serbian history. It caused significant changes in the political and social life of the Serbs, and also seriously changed the ethnic borders of the Serbian people. Southern Serbia (Raska, Kosovo and Metohija) lost the dominant Serbian component. In place of the Serbs who left these regions, Albanians and Turks moved in large numbers. Since that time, Raska also received the Turkish name Sanjak. The ethnic map of Central Serbia has changed less, however, from there the Serbian population also went north. The great resettlement led to a sharp increase in the number of Serbs in the territories of Slavonia, Bachka, Baranya and Southern Hungary.

Relocating the Albanians to the regions of southern Serbia, the Ottoman Empire did its best to incite antagonism between them. Muslim Albanians were in a much more privileged position than the Orthodox Serbs, who had a minimum of rights under the Turks. By betting on the Albanians, Istanbul sought to stop the development of political activity of the Serbs and to prevent among them the growth of the liberation struggle.

Istanbul also sought to limit the political activities of the Orthodox clergy in Serbia. From the first half of the 18th century, the Turks began to appoint patriarchs themselves, who were previously elected at church councils and only approved by the Sultan Berats. Monasteries and churches were plundered by Muslims, and economic oppression of the clergy began. Since the late 1730s, they began to appoint the Greeks loyal to the Empire as patriarchs, who, in turn, sought to pursue a Hellenization policy and simply plundered the property of the patriarchy. In 1766, the Pecsk Patriarchate was abolished, and a year later the Ohrid Archbishopric, subordinate to the Patriarch of Constantinople. This deprived the Orthodox population of the Western Balkans of the institution, which was previously one of the factors of its consolidation.

The role of the Pecsk patriarch in the liberation movement forced the Ottoman Empire to reconsider its attitude towards the Serbian Orthodox Church: the patriarch began to be appointed from Istanbul, accelerated Hellenization of the church began, in 1767 the Pecsk patriarchy was abolished, and the Serbian church was subordinated to Constantinople. Soon the Orthodox Church lost its importance as a unifying force in the liberation struggle. After the defeat of Austria in the Austro-Turkish war of 1737-1739, a temporary decline in the liberation movement took place. A new stage in the struggle began after the Russo-Turkish war of 1768-1774 and the signing of the Kuchuk-Kainardzhi peace, which granted Russia the right to protect the Orthodox population in the Ottoman Empire. During the years of the war of Austria and Russia with Turkey in 1787-1792 in Serbia, primarily in the Belgrade Pashalyk, a major uprising broke out against the Ottoman authorities. Serbian volunteer units were formed, fighting in the Austrian army, which, however, was defeated.


After the war, the Turkish authorities began to significantly expand the powers of local authorities in Belgrade Pashalyk and took measures to limit the autocracy of the Janissaries. But already in 1801, in the conditions of the weakening of central power, the Janissaries made a coup and seized power in Belgrade. This was followed by the division of lands, an increase in feudal payments, the removal of the local aristocracy from participation in the administration and bloody repressions against the Serbs. In response, in 1804, the First Serbian Uprising broke out in Belgrade Pashalyk. At the head of the rebels stood the Grand Duke Karageorgii. Soon, almost the entire territory of the pashalyk was liberated from the Turkish authorities. If initially the rebels opposed only the dominance of the Janissaries, then after the failure of negotiations with the central government and the start of the Russian-Turkish war, they began to focus on achieving independence. The Turks were expelled, their possessions and property redistributed between the Serbs. Central authorities, the local administration, and the judiciary were formed. At the same time, disagreements began between the leaders of the uprising: Karageorgii, who declared himself in 1808 the hereditary supreme leader of the Serbian people, and other Serbian princes. After the conclusion of the Bucharest peace of 1812 and the withdrawal of Russia from the war, a massive offensive by the Turks began. Despite the heroic defense, in 1813 the Turks captured Belgrade. The uprising was crushed, followed by massive repression.


As a result of the First Serbian Uprising (1804-1813), the Serbian Principality was formed. In 1813 the uprising was crushed. The second Serbian uprising, which began in 1815, was more successful, and fifteen years later the Sultan officially recognized Miloš Obrenović as the ruler of Serbia. In 1878, on July 13, under the terms of the Berlin Peace, Serbia gained independence, in 1882 it was proclaimed a kingdom. By the beginning of the 20th century, a parliamentary monarchy had developed in Serbia, and a rapid rise in the economy and culture began.

As a result of the Balkan Wars (1912-1913), the territories of Kosovo, part of Macedonia and a significant part of the Sandzak were included in Serbia. In World War I, Serbia sided with the Entente countries. During the war, Serbia lost, according to some estimates, up to a third of the population. After the end of the war, Serbia became the core of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes (since 1929 - the Kingdom of Yugoslavia). During the Second World War, the territory of Serbia was occupied by German troops from April 1941, part of the territory of the state was transferred to the satellites of Germany - Hungary and Bulgaria, as well as Albania. By 1945, Serbia was liberated by the Red Army, partisan and regular detachments of the People's Liberation Army of Yugoslavia.

In 1945, the Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia (since 1963 - SFRY) was proclaimed, which included the People's Republic of Serbia (since 1963 - the Socialist Republic of Serbia).

The growth of interethnic confrontation, separatist actions led in the early 1990s to a series of civil wars and the collapse of Yugoslavia. The long period in power of the Socialist Party of Serbia ended in 2000 after the bombing of Serbian cities by NATO aircraft (1999) and the entry of UN peacekeeping forces into Kosovo. In June 2006, after a referendum held in Montenegro, the state union of Serbia and Montenegro ceased to exist.


State structure and internal politics

executive branch
The President of Serbia (Serb. Chairman) is elected for a five-year term in general direct elections, and can hold this position for no more than two terms. According to the Constitution, he is the commander-in-chief of the Serbian Armed Forces, represents Serbia in the world, appoints ambassadors and diplomatic representatives, proposes candidates for the post of prime minister to the National Assembly, can dissolve the National Assembly and veto laws. Also among the duties of the president is the declaration of a state of emergency, as well as the presentation of state awards.

The President has the same immunity as the deputies of the National Assembly.

According to the results of the presidential elections on April 2, 2017, Serbia was headed by the leader of the Serbian Progressive Party Aleksandar Vučić, who received more than 55% of the vote.

The government (Serb. Vlad) is the bearer of executive power and consists of 20 members, including the prime minister, one or more deputy prime ministers and several ministers. Its composition is approved by the National Assembly of Serbia by a majority vote, as well as the head of the Cabinet of Ministers, whose candidacy is proposed by the President of Serbia.

According to the Serbian Constitution, the Cabinet of Ministers is responsible for defining and implementing policies, implementing and drafting laws, organizing and controlling public authorities, and so on.

The Prime Minister and members of the Government enjoy the same immunity as the deputies of the National Assembly. They are not responsible for opinions expressed at a meeting of the Government or Parliament.

The current composition of the Government was approved by the National Assembly on October 28, 2020. Ana Brnabic became prime minister.

In September 1990, during the democratic transformations in Yugoslavia, a new Serbian constitution was adopted, which established a unicameral parliament - the National Assembly (Serb. People's Assembly of the Republika Srbije), 250 deputies of which are elected for a four-year term.

The next parliamentary elections in Serbia were held on June 21, 2020. In the period leading up to the elections, an inter-party dialogue took place through the mediation of the European Parliament and certain changes were made to the electoral legislation. Numerous parliamentary and non-parliamentary political parties boycotted the elections, including the largest opposition coalition, the Alliance for Serbia, which said conditions for free and fair elections had not been created. This resulted in the lowest voter turnout since the creation of the multi-party system in 1990.

As a result of the election, a coalition led by the Serbian Progressive Party of President Aleksandar Vučić won 188 seats in the National Assembly. The second largest was the coalition led by the Socialist Party of Serbia, led by Ivica Dacic. Also, four parties representing the interests of national minorities entered the National Assembly.

Judicial branch
The Serbian Constitution provides for the autonomy and independence of state bodies that protect the freedoms and rights of citizens, the legally approved rights and interests of legal entities, and ensures constitutionality and legality. Judicial power belongs to the courts and operates independently of the legislative and executive branches. Judicial decisions are taken on behalf of the people and on the basis of the Constitution and the law, ratified international treaties and regulations adopted on the basis of the law. Court decisions are binding on everyone and cannot be subject to extrajudicial control. The decision of the court may be reviewed only by decision of the competent court in the manner prescribed by law. Everyone is obliged to respect the decisions of the court.

Courts of the republican level: the Constitutional Court, the Supreme Court of Cassation, the Arbitration Court of Appeal, etc.

Courts of general jurisdiction:
Principal courts - for a city or one or more municipalities
Superior Courts - in the territory of one or more main courts
Courts of Appeal - for several higher courts
Supreme Court of Cassation

The Constitutional Court is an independent state body that protects constitutionality and legality, as well as human and minority rights and freedoms. Decisions of the Constitutional Court are final and subject to mandatory execution. The Supreme Court of Cassation is the highest court in the Republic of Serbia and the highest court for arbitration and administrative courts, etc.


State symbols

The anthem of Serbia is a slightly modified anthem of the Kingdom of Serbia "God Truth", which for several years was also the anthem of the Republika Srpska. The coat of arms of Serbia, adopted on August 17, 2004, is the Serbian coat of arms during the reign of the Obrenović dynasty. The country has two flags: national and official. The first is a red-blue-white cloth, and the second is the same with the state emblem.


Foreign policy

Serbia is represented abroad by 64 embassies and 22 consulates general. On the territory of Serbia itself there are 70 embassies and 5 consulates general. After the collapse of Yugoslavia, Serbia inherited about a third of the property of the Foreign Ministry of the SFRY.

Serbia is a member of such international organizations as: UN, Council of Europe, OSCE, Interpol, World Bank, Partnership for Peace, Stability Pact for Southeast Europe, UNESCO, World Tourism Organization, Universal Postal Union, World Confederation of Labor, World Customs Organization, World Meteorological Organization, World Health Organization and so on.

During the collapse of Yugoslavia, Serbia was in international isolation, numerous sanctions were applied against it: military, economic, cultural and others. Public opinion in many countries of the world was opposed to it, the country was considered guilty of unleashing bloody conflicts in Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina. After the end of the wars in the former Yugoslavia, the sanctions regime was eased, but in 1998-1999, Serbia was again isolated and became the target of NATO air strikes. The United States and EU countries resumed cooperation with Serbia only after the overthrow of President Slobodan Milosevic and the coming to power of Vojislav Kostunica, Serbia's relations with most Western countries normalized. Currently, the country's foreign policy is characterized by the desire to join the EU, the diplomatic struggle against the recognition of the independence of the autonomous province of Kosovo and the development of comprehensive relations with many countries of the world.

Prior to the arrest of General Ratko Mladic and former President of the Serbian Krajina Goran Hadzic, the International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia had a significant influence on Serbian politics. In particular, EU functionaries have repeatedly stated that Serbia's further European integration depends on its cooperation with the tribunal. After the arrest of the above persons, President Boris Tadic said that he considers the obligations to The Hague to be fully fulfilled.

Later, a number of EU functionaries stated that the issue of Serbia's accession to this organization directly depends on whether Belgrade can normalize relations with Kosovo and recognize it as an independent state. These statements caused a heated debate in Serbian society and a decrease in the number of supporters of Serbia's European integration.

On March 1, 2012, Serbia received the official status of a candidate for EU membership.

Since June 10, 2009, a visa-free regime has been established between Serbia and Russia for 30 days for citizens of both states. Prior to that, for Russian citizens, the visa-free period in Serbia was 90 days (the rule has been in effect since March 2008), but Serbs needed a visa to enter Russia. Citizens of Serbia, with the exception of those residing within Kosovo and Metohija (the "Republic of Kosovo"), since December 2009 have the right to visa-free entry to the countries of the European Union. Thus, Serbia has a visa-free regime with both Russia and the European Union.

Back in 2006, Serbia and NATO signed an agreement on military cooperation.

Serbia cooperates with NATO in the framework of the Partnership for Peace program. In 2014, the parties agreed on an individual partnership plan for a program designed to build trust between participants.

In 2015, the Serbian Parliament, the Assembly, ratified with NATO a secret agreement known as SOFA (Status of Forces Agreement), which was signed in 2014. Under the agreement, Serbia, not being a member of NATO, assumed obligations equal to those of full NATO members. As a result, Serbia became de facto a NATO member with obligations but no rights.

On February 19, 2016, Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic signed an agreement with NATO, according to which the representatives of the Alliance receive special diplomatic immunity and freedom of movement throughout the country, as well as access to Serbian military facilities. The agreement led to right-wing protests across the country. Opponents of the agreement argue that it is contrary to the Constitution.

On January 12, 2022, Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić said in an interview on national television that the republic intends to strengthen its own army in order to protect itself, and not join NATO.


Armed forces and security services

The Serbian Armed Forces have come a long way of reform and restructuring. In 1992, after the collapse of the SFRY, the Armed Forces of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (Serb. Yugoslav Army) were created. In 2000, the share of military spending was 9.1% of GDP (one of the highest rates in Europe), and the number of military personnel was 114.2 thousand people. In 2003, the Armed Forces of Serbia and Montenegro (Serbian Armed Forces of Serbia and Crne Gora) were created. In 2006, their units stationed on the territory of Serbia were registered in the Armed Forces of Serbia (Serbian Vojska Srbije). At the same time, another large-scale military reform was launched.

The Serbian Armed Forces number 36,000 soldiers and officers, of which 11,000 are professional soldiers and 22,000 are volunteer soldiers. After the military reform, instead of about a hundred brigades, 12 brigades were formed: 4 infantry, mixed artillery, a special brigade, two aviation, one rocket and one artillery, a communications and logistics brigade. Also in the Serbian Army are separate battalions of military police and communications. The corps and armies were replaced by brigades and battalions, which became the backbone of the new structure of the Serbian Army.

The Serbian army consists of ground forces, air force and air defense. Most of the weapons were inherited from the SFRY and FRY. Periodically, new samples are acquired in small quantities. Since 2011, military service has become voluntary. Prior to this, the term of urgent military service was 6 months, alternative service - 9 months. Military spending in 2011 amounted to 2.8% of the country's GDP.

Serbia is the largest arms exporter in the region. In 2009, the value of Serbian military exports was $500 million.

The Serbian Police is under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Interior, which consists of several departments. The police force includes 161 municipal stations, 62 border control stations and 49 traffic control stations. The Serbian Police is a professional organization with 42,740 officers and 26,527 civilians as of 2006. Until January 3, 1997, the police were called militia. The renaming was carried out in accordance with the Law on Internal Affairs.

The structure of the police includes several special forces. The oldest of them is the Gendarmerie (Serb. Gendarmerie), which performs both civilian and military functions. Other well-known special forces are the Special Anti-Terrorist Unit (Serb. Spetsialna Anti-Terrorist Unit) and the Anti-Terrorist Group of Serbia (Serb. Anti-Terrorist Unit), designed to combat terrorism and organized crime. The first was founded back in the SFRY and participated in the hostilities in Kosovo and Metohija, while the second was created in 2003, during large-scale anti-mafia actions. Another well-known special unit is the Helicopter Detachment (Serb. Helicopter Unit), created in 1965 and currently numbering 22 helicopters.

special services
The main security service in Serbia is the Security and Information Agency (Serb. Bezbedno-informative agency). It is responsible for intelligence and counterintelligence issues, the fight against organized crime and terrorism. The Information Security Agency is controlled by the Assembly and the Government of Serbia, to which it must provide reports twice a year on its activities and the security situation in the country.

The agency was formed on 11 July 2002 and is headquartered in Belgrade. Its predecessor was the State Security Service (Serb. Dzhavne Security Service). Since July 17, 2008, the Information Security Agency has been headed by Sasha Vukadinovic.

During the existence of the BIA since 2002, the Agency was headed by:
Andria Savich;
Misha Milicevic;
Rade Bulatovich;
Sasha Vukadinovic.


Administrative division

The territory of Serbia is divided into districts, districts into cities and communities. The counties do not have local self-government (except for the county of Belgrade).

The representative body of the city is the city assembly (city council), elected by the population, the executive bodies of the city are the city council (city council), headed by the mayor (city governor), and consisting of politicians, elected by the city assembly, and the city council (city council), consisting of professional officials elected by the city assembly.

The representative body of the community is the community assembly (Skupshtina opshtine), elected by the population, the executive bodies of the community are the community council (opshtynsko veћe), headed by the chairman of the community (chairman opshtine), and consisting of politicians, elected by the community meeting, and the community council, consisting of professional officials elected by the community assembly.

Statistical regions
According to the Regulation on the nomenclature of statistical territorial units, introduced in 2009 and slightly amended in 2010 (Serb. Uredba on the nomenclature of statistical territorial units), three levels of statistical territorial units are distinguished within Serbia: the NSTJ level 1 - Serbia-North and Serbia -South level HCTJ 2 - within Serbia-North: Belgrade region and Vojvodina region, within Serbia-South - regions of Šumadija and Western Serbia, Eastern and Southern Serbia, Kosovo and Metohija. level NSTJ 3 - administrative regions (total within Serbia - 29 with Kosovo and Metohija, 24 without them).

These regions are formed as statistical units in order to collect information for the Republican Bureau of Statistics and for local governments.

Counties and local government units
Along with this, the territory of Serbia is divided into the territory of the city of Belgrade (Serb. Grad Beograd) and 29 districts (Serb. Upravn okrug), which, in turn, are divided into units of local government (Serb. unit of local self-government): communities (Serb. opshtine) and urban settlements (Serbian gradovi). Belgrade is a single unit of local government. Each district is headed by a district head who is directly responsible to the Serbian government.

On the territory of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina there are 7 districts - Sremsky, North Banatsky, South Banatsky, Sredne-Banatsky, North Bachsky, West Bachsky, South Bachsky, which include 45 units of local self-government.

On the territory of Kosovo and Metohija there are 5 districts - Kosovo, Pech, Prizren, Kosovo-Mitrovitsky, Kosovo-Pomoravsky, which include 29 local government units.

There are 17 districts on the territory of central Serbia: Bor, Branichevo, Zaecarsky, Zlatiborsky, Kolubarsky, Machvansky, Moravichsky, Nishavsky, Pirotsky, Podunaisky, Pomoravsky, Pchinsky, Rasinsky, Rashsky, Toplichsky, Šumadija, Yablanichsky districts, which include 99 units of local self-government .

The representative bodies of the communities are community meetings (Serb. Skupshtina opshtine), the executive bodies are community councils (Serb. Opshtinsko veje).

Serbia has 29 cities, 195 urban-type settlements and 6158 villages and hamlets. According to the 17th article of the Law on the Territorial Organization of the Republic of Serbia, the status of a city has a settlement, which is the economic, administrative, geographical and cultural center of a certain area and other settlements located in it. All other large settlements are considered urban-type settlements (Serb. gradsko nasee).

Prior to the adoption of this law, when determining the status of a city, an administrative-legal criterion based on population census data was used. This criterion, introduced by the famous demographer Milos Matsura, divided the country's settlements into three types - rural, mixed and urban. The urban-type settlement was supposed to consist of 2000 inhabitants, 90% of whom were not employed in agriculture.

The following settlements have the official city status: Belgrade, Bor, Valjevo, Vranje, Vrsac, Zajecar, Zrenjanin, Kikinda, Kragujevac, Kraljevo, Krushevac, Leskovac, Loznica, Nis, Novi Pazar, Novi Sad, Pancevo, Pirot, Pozarevac, Pristina, Prokuplje, Smederevo, Sombor, Sremska Mitrovica, Subotica, Uzhice, Cacak, Šabac, Yagodina. Of these, Belgrade, Kragujevac and Nis are divided into several municipalities, while the rest of the cities are organized as a single area of ​​local self-government. According to the Law on the Territorial Organization of the Republic of Serbia, the status of a city belongs to a locality, which is the economic, administrative, geographical and cultural center of a certain region and other localities located in it. The representative body of the city is the city assembly (city council), elected by the population, the executive bodies of the city are the city council (city council), headed by the mayor (city governor), and consisting of politicians, elected by the city assembly, and the city council (city council), made up of professional officials elected by the city assembly



The population of Serbia according to the results of the census held in October 2011 is 7,186,862 people, in 2002 this figure was 7,498,001 people. By regions of Serbia, the population is distributed as follows: Serbia-North - 3556 thousand people, including the Belgrade region 1639 thousand people, the Vojvodina region - 1917 thousand people. Serbia-South - 3565 thousand people, including Šumadija and Western Serbia - 2013 thousand people, Southern and Eastern Serbia - 1551 thousand people. The Serbian population figures do not include the population of Kosovo and Metohija and the Albanians of southern Serbia, who boycotted the census. Serbia has been in an acute demographic crisis since the early 1990s, when the death rate continuously exceeded the birth rate (the death rate for 2011 exceeds the birth rate - 14.2 and 9.3, respectively). Serbia has one of the most negative population growth rates in the world, ranking 225 out of 233 countries. The total fertility rate of 1.44 children per mother is one of the lowest in the world.

In the self-proclaimed "Republic of Kosovo", the census was conducted in the summer of 2011, the population was determined at 1,733,872 people. The majority of the population of the self-proclaimed Kosovo are Albanians, the second largest ethnic group is the Serbs. The north of Kosovo did not correspond with some estimates of about 68,000 people living there, most of them Serbs.

According to some estimates, about 300,000 people left Serbia in the 1990s, about 20% of them with higher education. Due to the low birth rate and the emigration of young people, the country is among the ten countries in the world with the highest average age of the population.


Ethnic composition

Serbs are the largest ethnic group in Serbia, accounting for 83% of the total population, excluding Kosovo and Metohija. The second largest ethnic group are Hungarians - 3.9% in all of Serbia and 14.3% of the population in Vojvodina. Other minorities include Bosniaks, Gypsies, Albanians, Bulgarians, Montenegrins, Macedonians, Slovaks, Rusyns, Vlachs, Romanians. Serbia also has a significant Chinese diaspora.

Serbia has the largest number of refugees in Europe. Their share in the country's population ranges from 7% to 7.5%. Hundreds of thousands of refugees during the breakup of Yugoslavia arrived in Serbia from Croatia and the former Serbian Krajina, from Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo and Metohija. All these migrations significantly changed the ethnic composition of the country.

According to the 2011 census, there were 1,135,393 representatives of national minorities living in Serbia (excluding Kosovo and Metohija).



The official language of the country is Serbian in Cyrillic. It has national status. Along with it, 12 more languages ​​are also officially used at the regional and local levels. In the Assembly of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina since 2002, five languages ​​can be officially used along with Serbian: Hungarian, Slovak, Croatian, Romanian and Ruthenian. In Kosovo and Metohija, the Albanian one also has the status of a regional one. As for the local level (community), a non-Serbian language receives official status there if the proportion of its speakers reaches a certain indicator. For example, in Vojvodina, a minority language receives official status throughout the community if representatives of this minority make up at least 15% of its population. As a result, Hungarian has official status in 30 municipalities of Vojvodina, Slovak in 13, Romanian in 9, Ruthenian in 8, Croatian in 3, Czech in 1. In Central Serbia, almost all communities use only Serbian. Only in certain communities of Central Serbia do other languages ​​also have official status: Bulgarian in Bosilegrad and Dimitrovgrad, Albanian in three communities bordering Kosovo, Bosnian in several communities of the historical region of Sandjak. In addition, according to the European Charter for Regional Languages ​​ratified by Serbia, the Ukrainian language received official status.



Serbia is a secular state. The Constitution and laws of Serbia guarantee freedom of religion. The 2006 law divides all religious organizations into two categories: "traditional churches and religious associations" (Serbian Orthodox Church, Roman Catholic Church, Slovak Evangelical Church of the Augsburg Confession, Reformed Christian Church, Evangelical Christian Church, Jewish and Islamic religious communities) and "confessional associations" (16 organizations).

The difference is that traditional churches and religious associations, unlike confessional associations, have the right to organize religious education in schools. In addition, the 2006 law prohibited the registration of a religious organization if its name is identical to the name of a religious organization already registered in the register or the name of an organization that is being registered. In addition, there are other problems. For example, the existence of two Muslim communities in Serbia and their tense relations with each other, the issue of church property nationalized during the years of the SFRY, and sporadic attacks on representatives and objects of small religious communities. In 1945-1946, the Yugoslav authorities nationalized most of the property of churches and monasteries and constitutionally separated church from state. At the same time, the Macedonian Church achieved independence from the Serbian Orthodox Church.

According to the 2011 census, the religious composition of the population of Serbia, excluding Kosovo, is as follows:
Orthodox - 6,079,396 (84.59% of the population),
Catholics - 356,957 people. (4.97% of the population),
Muslims - 222,828 people. (3.1%),
Protestants - 71,284 people. (0.99% of the population).

Also among the population of Serbia there are adherents of Judaism, other religions and agnostics. During the 2011 census, 220,735 people did not wish to indicate their religion, and another 80,053 people reported that they were atheists. The religious affiliation of 99,714 people could not be established during the census.



The wars in Croatia and in Bosnia and Herzegovina caused massive waves of Serbian refugees from these countries. In 1994, there were more than 180,000 refugees and displaced persons from Croatia in the territory of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. In 1995, after the destruction of the Serbian Krajina, between 230,000 and 250,000 Serbs became refugees. The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia received them on its territory. 12,000 people were sent to Kosovo, 60,000 settled in Vojvodina, 180,000 settled in Central Serbia. At the same time, 25,000 of them were in collective refugee camps. The influx of refugees created an extremely tense humanitarian situation in Yugoslavia. A difficult question arose about their status. The war in Bosnia and Herzegovina also caused a significant influx of Serbian refugees into Yugoslavia.

The actions of the Kosovo Liberation Army and the bombing of NATO aircraft during the Kosovo War forced the majority of the non-Albanian population to leave Kosovo and Metohija. Up to 790,000 Albanians also fled the region to escape the bombardments. Most of them went to Albania or Macedonia, but some found refuge in Serbia and Montenegro. In 2000, more than 200,000 people left the region in Yugoslavia. In 2001, a census of refugees was carried out. In total, there were 451,980 of them in the country, of which 63% were from Croatia, the rest from Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the same year, there were 408 collective centers in Serbia, housing 20,949 refugees from Croatia and BiH and 9,107 IDPs from Kosovo and Metohija. About 10,000 more were in unregistered collective centers. The rest of the refugees and IDPs rented accommodation or stayed with relatives or friends.

From the moment they arrived in Serbian territory, many refugees received citizenship or, after some time, returned to Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, in 2012 there were 97,000 refugees from Croatia and Bosnia and 236,000 internally displaced persons from Kosovo. In 2011, there were 60 collective centers in the country, where 4,700 refugees and IDPs were accommodated. Thus, Serbia remains the first country in Europe and is among the top five countries in the world with the greatest refugee problems.


Economics and finance

Advantages: in 2000-2001. foreign financial aid and investment resumed. The economic potential of the Danube.

Weaknesses: severe consequences of UN sanctions and NATO bombings in 1999. Small hard currency reserve. Outflow of qualified specialists. Corruption.

The Serbian economy is in transition. Despite the dominance of the market sector, the public sector still has a large share in the economy. The economy relies on manufacturing and exports and relies heavily on large foreign investment. A significant share of the economy is agriculture, industry and services. At the turn of the 80-90s of the XX century, the state was favorable. The collapse of Yugoslavia, the loss of trade ties with the Comecon and within the former Yugoslavia, a long period of international economic sanctions, NATO bombing in 1999 pushed the economy back to the level of 1945.

Serbia has carried out some trade liberalization, enterprise restructuring and privatization, however, many large enterprises, including those in the electric power industry, telecommunications companies, gas company, national air carrier and others remain state-owned. The structural economic reforms needed to ensure the country's long-term prosperity have largely stalled since the onset of the global financial crisis. Serbia, however, is gradually recovering from its effects. Economic growth in 2011 was 2.0%, after a modest 1.0% growth in 2010 and a contraction of 3.5% in 2009. In 2010, the Cvetkovic government adopted an economic development plan that calls for a quadrupling of exports within ten years and heavy investment in basic infrastructure.

The serious problems of the Serbian economy are the inefficiency of the judiciary, the high level of corruption and the aging of the population. At the same time, there are favorable conditions for economic growth - a strategic location, a relatively inexpensive and skilled labor force, free trade agreements with the European Union, Russia and Turkey, as well as favorable investment conditions. From January 1, 2021, the minimum wage (gross) is from 39,370.61 din. (€335.03) up to 45,667.79 din. (€388.61) depending on the month. From January 1, 2021, the minimum wage (net) is from 29,428.80 din. (€250.43) up to 33,843.12 din. (€287.99). From January 1, 2022, the minimum wage (gross) is from 43,174.32 din. (€367.13) up to 50,063.45 din. (€425.71) depending on the month. From January 1, 2022, the minimum wage (net) is from 32,195.20 din. (€273.77) up to 37,024.48 din. (€314.83). As of December 2021, the average wage in Serbia is 102,196 din. (€868.78 gross) and 74629 din. (€634.27 net) per month.

The currency of Serbia is the Serbian dinar. 1 Serbian dinar is equal to 100 par. In Kosovo and Metohija, in the territory controlled by the Albanian authorities of the Republic of Kosovo, the euro is used.



Despite international sanctions and hostilities in the territory of the former Yugoslavia, tourism in Serbia has developed dynamically. Between 1990 and 2000 it grew by 50%, and total revenues by 80%. This stimulated the further expansion of the tourism industry and the search for investments abroad.

The modern strategy for the development of tourism in Serbia provides for a selective approach. First of all, as the most promising, she highlights rural tourism, within which there are tourist villages in the mountains. They, in turn, offer healthy and environmentally friendly food, outdoor activities, ethnic villages, etc.

Since 2000, a new stage has begun in the tourism sector in Serbia, characterized by an increase in the flow of tourists, both domestic and from abroad. A feature of Serbia is a relatively small number of citizens traveling abroad for tourism purposes. For example, in 2012, the outbound tourist flow in Serbia amounted to 631 thousand people. By European standards, this is very small. For example, in Slovakia, a country with a smaller population, in 2012 the outbound tourist flow amounted to 3017 thousand people.



Serbian transport suffered significant damage from international sanctions against Yugoslavia and the NATO bombing of the country in 1999. However, it quickly recovered after a few years, the needs of the economy affected.

The transport infrastructure is represented by developed road, rail, air and river transport.

Direct rail links to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Hungary, Romania, Bulgaria, North Macedonia and Montenegro. Indirect with Italy, Greece, Turkey, Germany, Switzerland, Slovenia, Russia, Austria, Albania and Ukraine. The modernization of the railways has become one of the priorities of the Serbian government. For these purposes, the country has taken several loans. Part of the funds was spent on updating the train fleet.

The most significant highways are: E65 (Bielo Polje - Skopje), E70 (Slavonski Brod - Timisoara), E75 (Subotica - Kumanovo), E662 (Subotica - Osijek), E761 (Sarajevo - Zajecar), E763 (Belgrade - Bijelo Polje ), E771, E885 (from Albania to Pristina). There are also other major roads in the country: A1 (Batrovci - Sremska Mitrovica - Belgrade - Nis - Leskovac), A2 (Belgrade - Nis), A3 (Nis - Pirot - border with Bulgaria). Several modern highways are currently under construction. It is also planned to expand and update existing ones. The Serbian government has repeatedly stated that the developed infrastructure was one of the priorities of the Cabinet of Ministers of Mirko Cvetkovic.

There is also water transport in the country, carrying out transportation mainly along the Danube and Sava rivers. Ports on the Danube: Belgrade, Novi Sad, Pancevo, Smederevo. Ports on the Sava: Šabac.

The capital region has a developed air service. The main and largest airport in the country is Nikola Tesla Belgrade International Airport. The largest national airline is Air Serbia.

As of 2010, 1,567,113 cars, 38,229 motorcycles, 8,034 buses, 162,799 trucks, 23,552 special vehicles (2009 data), 239,295 tractors and 99,025 trailers are registered in Serbia.



The country has enterprises in the automotive, chemical, electronic, textile, food, woodworking, and mechanical engineering industries.



Most of the energy in Serbia is produced by thermal power plants and hydroelectric power plants (about 25.4%). CHP plants in Serbia run on coal. The largest of these is the Nikola Tesla CHPP with 14 units, most of which are located near the town of Obrenovac, southwest of Belgrade. This CHPP makes up one third of the total potential of the "Electricity of Serbia" and is the largest in South-Eastern Europe.

The main producer of oil and gas is the Oil Industry of Serbia, most of whose shares are owned by the Russian OJSC Gazprom Neft. NIS and Gazprom Neft, together with the Serbian government, planned the construction of the Serbian section of the South Stream gas pipeline. However, the pipeline project was later closed. Joint efforts of Russian and Serbian companies created the Banatski Dvor gas storage facility, located 60 kilometers northeast of Novi Sad. It has become one of the largest gas storage facilities in Southeast Europe.

According to paragraph 267 of the Serbian Criminal Code, the construction of nuclear power plants is prohibited on its territory. Serbia became the sixth country in the world to remove enriched uranium from its territory.



Agriculture is an important part of the Serbian economy with an annual export potential of 12 billion euros. The total area of ​​agricultural land exceeds 6.12 million hectares. Agricultural production is most established in northern Serbia on the fertile Middle Danube lowland and in the southern valleys adjacent to the Sava, Danube and Morava rivers. A sharp decline in the scale of agricultural activity has been observed since 1948, when almost three-quarters of the country's population was employed in agriculture, while at present it is only one-quarter.

Serbia produces various agricultural products: mainly cereals, fruits and vegetables. All this makes up a significant part of GDP and exports. The country is the world's second largest producer of raspberries (84,299 metric tons, topped by Russia) and plums (146,776 metric tons, topped by China). The country is also a major producer of corn (6,158,120 metric tons, 32nd in the world) and wheat (2,095,400 metric tons, 35th in the world). The cultivation of sugar beets (2,299,770 metric tons) and sunflower seeds (454,282 metric tons) satisfies domestic demand for sugar and vegetable oil, with the surplus being exported: about 180,000 tons of sugar are supplied to the European Union.



The national currency of Serbia is the Serbian dinar. 1 Serbian dinar is formally equal to 100 pairs, coins or banknotes denominated in pairs are not currently issued. There are coins in denominations of 1, 2, 5, 10 and 20 dinars; banknotes - 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, 1000, 2000 and 5000 dinars.

The design of the Serbian dinars is identical to the design of the Yugoslav dinars of the 2000-2002 model. Serbia currently has a floating exchange rate regime. The criterion for the effectiveness of the exchange rate policy (the exchange rate anchor) is inflation indicators.


International trade

As of 2014, the main foreign trade partners of Serbia were the European Union and Russia. The volume of foreign trade for 2014 is 35452 million dollars. Geographic distribution of Serbia's foreign trade (as of 2014):
EU countries - 64% (22592 million dollars);
Russia - 9.5% (3369 million dollars);
China - 4.4% ($1,575 million);
Turkey - 2.3% ($821 million);
Americas - 2.5% ($872 million);
African countries - 0.9% ($309 million).



Fixed telephony throughout the country (including Kosovo at least north of Ibra) is provided by Telekom Srbija. Its division mt: s (Mobilna telefonija Srbije, which has nothing to do with Russian Mobile TeleSystems) is responsible for mobile communications along with the Norwegian operator Telenor and the Slovak Vip. Anyone can anonymously and absolutely legally buy a SIM card at a newsstand.

Public postage was introduced in Serbia in 1840. The first postage stamp was printed in 1866. In 1874, together with 21 other countries, the Universal Postal Union was founded. Currently, postal functions are performed by the Serbian Post. It was founded in 1990 as the Srbija State Communications Enterprise and is currently the largest infrastructure and logistics network in the country.

Dial-up was the only way to access the Internet until the early 2000s, when several ISPs began providing wireless access through unlicensed equipment. The necessary equipment for access was too expensive for most people (about 200 euros), so this connection method became popular only in some urban areas. The situation changed only in 2002, when Serbia Broadband offered subscribers access to cable Internet at a speed of 128 kbps. Not earlier than in 2005 Telekom Srbija offered ADSL access services.

In Serbia, Internet access services are provided by several companies. The national TLD of Serbia is .rs. In 2010, the number of Internet users per 100 inhabitants was 40 people. According to studies conducted in 2011, two million people in the country, 99.5% of students and 99% of businesses have regular access to the Internet.


Science and education

Education in Serbia is regulated by the Ministry of Science and Education. The education process begins either in pre-schools or in primary schools. Children enter primary school at the age of seven and study there for eight years. After that, it is possible to either attend school for another four years, or study at a special school for 2 to 4 years, or enter a vocational school for studies for a period of 2 to 3 years. After graduating from high school or a special school, students can enter universities.

The largest universities in Serbia:
Belgrade University
Kragujevac University
Nis University
Novi Sad University
University of Pristina
Novi Pazar University

The University of Belgrade is the oldest and currently the largest university in Serbia. Founded in 1808, it has 31 faculties and has produced about 330,000 graduates since its inception. The universities of Novisad (founded in 1960), Kragujevac (founded in 1976) and Nis (founded in 1965) also have a significant number of teachers and graduates.

According to the law, education is publicly available on equal terms. Representatives of national minorities have the right to education in their native language.

Conditions for the development of science and education in Serbia did not exist during the Ottoman rule. The first attempt at national education was the Great School in 1808, which supported the Serbs in Austria. Only in the period 1835-1878 leads to the institutionalization of education. A large school was opened in 1863 and was converted into a university. The establishment of the National Museum in 1844 and the Society of Serbian Letters in 1841, which developed into the Serbian Academy of Sciences and Arts, provided the conditions for an organized teaching practice.

Many young and talented Serbs during this period were educated abroad at the expense of the state in order to get experts for further development. In Austria, the Serbs organized the Serbian Matica in 1826, as well as their own cultural institution. He later moved his headquarters from Budapest to Novi Sad. The situation in Austria was much more favorable for the development of Serbian education and science.

Famous scientists from Serbia: naturalist Josif Pancic, geographer Jovan Cvijch, mathematician Mihailo Petrovich, astronomer Milyutin Milankovic, chemist Pavle Savic. In addition, some Serbian scientists worked while immigrating and gained worldwide recognition in other countries: physicist Mihailo Pupin (USA) and inventor Nikola Tesla (USA).




The emergence of Serbian writing is associated with the activities of Cyril and Methodius. The first monuments of Serbian literature date back to the 11th century, they are written in the Glagolitic alphabet. Already in the XII century, texts written in Cyrillic appeared. In the same period, the oldest known book in the Serbian Cyrillic alphabet was written - the "Gospel" of the Zakhum prince Miroslav. It is the most ancient and beautifully illustrated Serbian book during the Middle Ages.

During the Turkish rule, lyrical and epic literature spread among the Serbs.

In the 17th century, baroque trends appeared in Serbian literature. Under his influence, Andrija Zmaevich, Gavril Stefanovich Venclovic, Jovan Rajic, Zacharie Orfelin and others worked. Dositej Obradovic was the most prominent figure of the Enlightenment, and Jovan Steria Popovich became the most famous representative of classicism, although there were elements of romanticism in his work.

A significant role in the formation of Serbian literature and in the development of early romanticism was played by the Montenegrin Prince-Metropolitan Peter II Petrovich. The main theme of his poems was the struggle of Montenegrins and Serbs against the Ottoman Turks, and his dramatic poem "Mountain Crown" preached the idea of ​​uniting the southern Slavs.

During the national revival in the first half of the 19th century, Vuk Stefanovic Karadzic translated the New Testament into the Serbian vernacular and reformed the Serbian language and orthography. This laid the foundations for the Serbian literature of the New Age. Famous Serbian authors of the 19th century: Branko Radicevic, Petar Petrovich Negosh, Laza Kostic, Djura Jaksic and Jovan Zmaj. The 20th century in Serbian literature was marked by such names as Ivo Andric, Isidora Sekulich, Milos Crnyansky, Mesha Selimovic, Dobrica Chosic, Danilo Kish, Alexander Tishma. Among the famous poets were: Milan Rakic, Jovan Ducic, Desanka Maksimovic, Miodrag Pavlovic, Miroslav Antic, Branko Milkovic and Vasko Popa.

At the end of the 20th and at the beginning of the 21st century, the most famous authors were David Albahari, Milorad Pavic, Momo Kapor, Nebojsa Evrich, Goran Petrovich, Svetlana Velmar-Jankovic, Svetislav Basara.



The earliest composer whose compositions were intended for performance at Orthodox services and have survived to this day is Cyrus Stefan Serb (1350 (?)-1430 (?)). His works are written in the late calophonic style.

Serbia has a long tradition of folklore and folk music. Dances under the name of Kolo are the most popular form of folklore in Serbia and differ from region to region. The most popular folk cola are užičko and moravac. The most important Serbian composer of musical art was Stevan Stojanovic Mokranjac (1856–1914). He was a musicologist and collector of folk music and director of the first music school in Serbia. His most famous piece of music is the choral songs of the Rukovet.

Other well-known Serbian composers are Kornely Stankovic, Stevan Hristich, Stanislav Binichki.

In the 19th century and earlier, gusle and pipe were typical folk instruments, while dombra and bagpipes are used in Vojvodina. Later, the accordion and violin became the main instruments in the newly composed folk music, which remain so to this day.


Theater and cinema

In 1910, the first feature film about the Serbian national hero Karageorgi was shot. After the end of the Second World War, several film studios were created in Yugoslavia, which began to shoot feature films. Initially, this was done in cooperation with Soviet film studios, but then films began to be made independently. After the animation studio was established in Zagreb in 1956, Yugoslavia soon became a recognized leader in the field of animated films.

Joakim Vujic is the founder of modern Serbian theatre. He founded the Princely Serbian Theater in Kragujevac in 1835. Notable Serbian playwriters were Jovan Sterija Popović and Branislav Nušić. Since 1967 Belgrade has hosted the BITEF International Contemporary Theater Festival. Traditionally, the best theater scenes in Serbia are the National Theater in Belgrade, Atelier 212, the Yugoslav Drama Theater and the National Theater of Serbia in the city of Novi Sad.


Mass media

Freedom of the press and freedom of speech are guaranteed by the Constitution of Serbia. The country ranks 54th in a list of 180 countries published in 2014 by Reporters Without Borders. According to him, the Serbian media and journalists themselves still face some government pressure on editorial policy. Serbian media are also characterized by high dependence on state support and advertising contracts.

According to research conducted in 2009 by AGB Nielsen Media Research, Serbians spend an average of 5 hours a day watching TV, which is the highest among European countries.

In 2022, the most popular websites among the Serbian Internet audience were Google, Youtube, Facebook, Instagram, Wikipedia, the websites of the Blitz newspaper, the B92 radio and the Kurir newspaper, as well as the KupujemProdajem classifieds website.


UNESCO World Cultural Heritage in Serbia

There are 5 names on the UNESCO World Heritage List in Serbia, which is 0.3% of the total (1154 in 2021). All objects are included in the list according to cultural criteria, and 2 of them are recognized as masterpieces of human genius (criterion i). In addition, as of 2014, 11 sites in Serbia are among the candidates for inclusion in the World Heritage List.

The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia ratified the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage on 11 September 2001. However, the first object located on the territory of Serbia was included in the list back in 1979 at the 3rd session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, when the country was part of the SFRY. The cultural site Orthodox Monasteries in Kosovo, as of 2010, is included in the list of World Heritage in Danger due to possible attacks by Kosovo Albanians. All four monasteries and temples within this heritage site are protected by KFOR.
1979 - the town of Stari Ras, the monastery of Sopochany and the Church of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul (Stari Ras)
1986 - Studenica Monastery
2004-2006 – Vysoki Dečany Monastery, Gracanitsa Monastery, Patriarchate of Peć and the Church of Our Lady Levishka
2007 - Galerius Palace "Gamzigrad-Romuliana"
2016 - Medieval graves ("stechki")


Festivals and events

The largest and most famous festivals and cultural events taking place in Serbia are:
Belgrade Book Fair
"Vukov Sabor"
Belgrade International Theater Festival
Gucha Trumpet Festival
EXIT is an annual music festival held in Novi Sad on the territory of the Petrovaradin Fortress.



The most popular sports in Serbia are football, basketball, volleyball, handball, water polo and tennis. In 2009, Belgrade hosted the Summer Universiade, and the Belgrade Marathon is the largest sporting event in the country. For the first time, the Serbian national team appeared at the Olympic Games in 1912. After that, Serbian athletes were part of the national team of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, the SFRY, the FRY. The results of the national teams of "small Yugoslavia" are now attributed to the achievements of the Serbian sports unions. In 2006, Serbian athletes became representatives of the now independent country. For the first time in this status, they performed at the 2008 Summer Olympics.

Basketball is one of the most popular sports in Serbia. Serbia has hosted the finals of the European Basketball Championship three times. Basketball players "Partizan" in 1992 became the winners of the Euroleague. Serbian basketball clubs take an active part in the Adriatic League. Several Serbian basketball players have been recognized as the best in Europe: Drazen Dalipagic, Dragan Kichanovic, Vlade Divac, Aleksandar Djordjevic, Predrag Danilovic, Predrag Stojakovic and Milos Teodosic.

Tennis in Serbia has become popular and widespread thanks to such people as Novak Djokovic, Ana Ivanovic, Jelena Jankovic and others. Djokovic won 20 Grand Slam singles tournaments, including nine times the Australian Open.

Volleyball is also popular in Serbia, the modern Serbian team is the direct heir to the SFRY team. In 2005, Serbia, together with Italy, hosted the European Championship, and in 2007 and 2013 at the European Championship, the Serbian team won a bronze medal. In 2011 she won the European Championship.

The men's water polo team is traditionally strong. This sport was brought to the country at the beginning of the 20th century by students studying at the universities of Germany and Austria-Hungary. The Yugoslav national team repeatedly achieved brilliant results, and after the collapse of the country, the Serbian national team continued its traditions. In 2009, she won the World Championship, in 2006, 2012, and 2014 she won the European Championship, in 2008 she took second place, and won a bronze medal at the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing. Famous water polo players: Igor Milanovich, Aleksandar Shoshtar, Vladimir Vuyasinovich, Aleksandar Shapic and Vanya Udovichich.

Other popular Serbian athletes: Milorad Cavic and Najja Higl (swimming), who won gold medals at the 2009 World Aquatics Championships, Olivera Jevtic and Dragutin Topić (athletics), Aleksandar Karakashevich (table tennis), Jasna Sekarić (shooting).



January 1 and 2 New Year
January 5 Tutsindan
January 7 Christmas
January 14 Orthodox New Year Working Day
January 27 St. Sava's Day Schoolchildren do not study on this day
February 15 Statehood Day Serbian Army Day
Passing date Maundy Monday
Rolling date Good Friday
Passover date
May 1 and 2 Labor Day
May 9 Victory Day (World War II VE day)
June 28 Vidovdan
October 21 Day of Remembrance for the Victims of World War II
November 11 World War I Armistice Day