The Avala Mt., 18 kilometers away from the center, having a height of 511 meters above sea level, rising above Belgrade – is the most popular natural beauty spot of Vozdovac Municipality.

Way back in the 19th century, it attracted attention of not only local nature lovers, but also of foreign travel writers. Felix Kanitz, describing it as an attractive excursion place, stated that its name originates from the Arab word, which means high, great.

This natural sight covers an area of somewhat below 490 hectares, and four fives of it are under woods, mainly deciduous, and partly under coniferous trees as well. It is the habitat of 597 plant species, 15 mammal species, and 67 bird species, out of which 21 species belong to natural rarities of Serbia. A mineral found there got the name of avalite.

The Avala Mt. complex was initially protected way back in 1859, when it was ordered to have it fenced in order to preserve its beauty spots. It was unofficially declared the national park in 1928 and, by a government act it was officially done in 1947. Six decades later, the Avala Mt. was declared the natural sight.

There are important archeological sites, cultural and historical monuments, tourist facilities, and hunting grounds in this area. At several places there are prehistoric mining pits. In the Roman times, there probably used to be a small settlement in the Avala Mt. and, in the Middle Ages, at its peak, the city-fortress of Zrnov.

By the end of the 19th century, in 1898, a road was constructed up to the peak of the Avala Mt. 3.3 kilometers long, and two pedestrian paths were also cut through. In the thirties of the 20th century, Avala Hotel was constructed, and the mountain lodge Carapicev brest (i.e. Carapic’s elm tree) was the first facility of that type in the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.

One of the landmarks of Belgrade and Vozdovac is also the Avala TV Tower, 202.87 meters tall. It was constructed in 1965, according to the design of the architects Uros Bogunovic and Slobodan Janjic. It was leveled to the ground in the NATO bombardment on 29 April 1999, and it was completely reconstructed and formally reopened on 21 April 2010. With a restaurant and an observation deck underneath the antenna section, which are reached by an elevator, it is the structural and a tourist attraction and an extraordinary gazebo with the view of Belgrade and a good part of Serbia.

In the territory of Vozdovac, the Banjivka Forest has also been declared the natural sight which is, on over 40 hectares, situated within the actual present-day urban tissue. It is inhabited by 40 bird species and, as pointed out by the renowned TV-director and connoisseur of the world of birds, Timothy John Byford, Belgrade is the only metropolis in Europe in which one can hear nightingales within reach from its center.

Apart from the Avala Mt., the Banjicka Forest, and Stepin gaj, Vozdovac Municipality is also embellished by a number of other afforested areas and parks among them being the park-forest at the Central Cemetery, the Memorial Park Jajinci, Vozdovac Park, Sumice, Padine, and others.


Same as in the wider territory of Belgrade, in the territory of Vozdovac Municipality as well there are numerous testimonies of the presence and creativity of people in distant past.

Over seven thousand years ago, as asserted by renowned archeologists, the Vinca culture, named after a rich tell in the environs of Belgrade, was the most widespread culture on the soil of the then Europe. Its vestiges have been preserved across Vo`dovac as well – in Ripanj, Kumodraz, in the Avala Mt., and particularly in the Banjica site Usek, where there are vestiges of a large Neolithic settlement which existed for around two and a half millenniums. Research workers have established five horizons of dwelling of prehistoric people, whereby the fourth and the fifth ones originate from the time of transition from the early into the late Neolithic. Most of the discovered pottery and plastics originate from the time when the Neolithic was approaching the Bronze Age.

Vestiges of the Middle Ages are also numerous – at Autokomanda Square, in Jajinci, the village of Rakovica, by the TV Tower, the Monument to the Unknown Hero, and [uplja stena in the Avala Mt. The sites Usek in Banjica and ^ar{ija in Ripanj are specially protected as particularly important for research by local and international scientists.


In the territory of Vozdovac Municipality, both world wars have left painful memories and the obligation for the younger ones to appreciate the great sacrifices of the previous generations.

Atop the Avala Mt., there is the Monument to the Unknown Hero constructed according to the design of the great sculptor Ivan Mestrovic. At that place, at the time of the First World War, German officers found and buried a fallen Serbian soldier and wrote on a wooden cross in German: „Here lies an unknown Serbian soldier“. Later, it was established that it was a Serbian boy-combatant, probably a volunteer, who had defended the retreat of the Serbian Army.

In order to construct a new monument – a mausoleum, in April 1934, at the peak of the Avala Mt., the medieval Zrnov fortified town had been blasted. The present monument was formally unveiled on St. Vitus Day in 1938. The caryatids at the entrance into the mausoleum are the symbols of the Yugoslav state. On the eastern side are the women in folk costumes – from Herzegovina, Macedonia, Bosnia, and Dalmatia, and on the western side – from Croatia, Slovenia, Montenegro, and Serbia. Before the construction of the today’s monument, the inhabitants of the settlements at the foot of the Avala Mt. had erected a modest stone monument to the unknown soldier in the shape of a cross, which was later transferred to the churchyard of the church in Beli Potok.

The Monument to the Unknown Hero is the venue of the official commemorations of the important historic dates. In its close environs there is also the monument to Marshal Biryuzov, General Zhdanov, and other Soviet veterans who were killed there, on 19 October 1964, in an aircraft crash when they were coming to the celebration of the 20th anniversary of the liberation of Belgrade in the Second World War. The monument was unveiled in 1965 – two broken aircraft wings rising on a granite postament – it is the work of the renowned Belgrade sculptor Jovan Kratohvil.

Out of three concentration camps, which existed in Belgrade during the Second World War, two – Topovske supe (i.e. gun sheds) and Banjica – were in the territory of Vozdovac Municipality where, unfortunately, there is also the biggest mass Jajinci execution site. Today, those are memorial sites.

The Memorial Park in Jajinci, which covers 43 hectares, was formed in 1951, on the space of a former execution site where, during the fascist occupation, from 6 July 1941 to 6 November 1943, around 80 thousand people were executed and buried. By the end of the war, in order to eliminate the traces of the committed crimes, graves were opened and the remains of those executed in Jajinci and those killed in the gas van that had arrived from the camp at Staro sajmi{te (i.e. the Old Fair Ground) were burnt.

At the entrance to the Memorial Park in Jajinci, in 1951, a relief of the Belgrade sculptor Stevan Bodnarov was put up and, in 1988, at the center of the Park, an impressive monument in the shape of a styled bird with spread wings was unveiled, the work of the sculptor Vojin Stojic.

The memorial museum exhibition is located in the authentic space of the former infamous fascist concentration camp in Banjica. The biggest one in the territory of Serbia occupied in the Second World War, this camp was formed in June 1941, in the former barracks of the 18th Regiment of the Yugoslav Army. Although it was formally within the powers of the Administration of the City of Belgrade, the Banjica camp was in parallel managed by the German commander Lieutenant Willy Friedrich and the Serbian police commissioner, the notorious Svetozar Vujkovic.

In view of the fact that, by the end of the war, when traces of crimes had been eliminated, the predominant part of the documentation had been destroyed, the assessment is that, by 3 October 1944, when it was closed down, around 250 thousand people had passed through the camp out of whom around 30 thousand had been shot, mainly in Jajinci, and some at the Central and Jewish Cemeteries and in the actual camp.

At the entrance into this former house of death, in 1969, a monument was put up – the work of the sculptor Kolja Milunovic.

In Tabanovacka Street at Autokomanda Square, a memorial plaque marks the place where, from August to December 1941, there had been the concentration camp from which the Nazi invaders had taken to death almost the entire male population of the Belgrade Jews and a large number of the Roma.

Across Vozdovac, many monuments, memorial fountains, and plaques remind of the personalities and events from the National Liberation War in the Second World War as well as from the previous wars for freedom. The best known one among them is the monument erected in the center of Kumodra` as the token of gratitude to Field Marshal Stepa Stepanovic.


In addition to the already mentioned archeological sites and memorial sites, which due to their universal meanings, historical and artistic values, have become a part of the identity and cultural heritage of this community, in the territory of Vozdovac, there are also numerous other achievements of creativity of numerous generations, which are
protected/listed as outstanding values. Among them are:

– The icon screen of the Church of Saint John the Baptist at the Central Cemetery, which UNESCO has put under its protection. At the time of the Second World War, for a chapel of the Serbian prisoners of war, it was constructed by a prisoner of war, the architect, painter, and university professor Grigory Samoilov. The icon screen reflects the status of the then enslaved Serbian people. The tool by which the woodcarving was made had been made of steel waste and horse shoes, and the wooden base for icons of oak railroad sleepers found by the railroad line;

– The birth home of Stepa Stepanovic in Kumodraz, reconstructed and formally opened for visits on 15 July 2014;

– The old inn in Kumodraz dated 1836, the house of the Protic family in Ripanj – a more recent dated Morava style house from the first half of the 19th century, the old house of the Zivkovic family in Beli Potok;

– Facilities of sacral culture – the Church of Saint Mary of Magdala, dated 1883, in Beli Potok, the Vozdovac Church of Saint Emperors Constantine and Empress Helena, constructed in 1911, and thoroughly reconstructed in 1970/71, the namesake Churches of the Holy Trinity in Kumodraz, constructed in 1924, and in Ripanj (in 1882), as well as the Central Cemetery and the already mentioned church within it;

– Avala Hotel, underneath the peak of the namesake mountain, constructed by the end of the third decade of the 20th century according to the design of the architect Viktor Lukomski. Two big figures of sphinxes of artificial stone on the fence of the staircase leading to the terrace are the work of the Russian sculptor Vladimir Zagorodniuk from 1928. Stylewise, the Hotel building is a mixture of the elements of modernism and traditional Serbian motives.


The Church of the Holy Trinity in Ripanj, which has been there since 1820, is the oldest one among the existing churches in Vozdovac Municipality. The terrain on which it is located, in 1806, was the assembly point of Karadjordje’s rebels on the eve of the battle for the liberation of Belgrade in the First Serbian Uprising. Joakim Vujic wrote about it in his „Travel across Serbia“: „The village of Ripanj. In this village, there a small wooden, new, church constructed. The church is dedicated to the Ascension of Christ, and the founder of this church is His Princehood, Mr. Milos, who had it built at his own expense.“

The original appearance of the log church is known based on a preserved photograph from 1882. The new church was constructed from 1892 to 1894. Its facades are marked by a mixture of the Raska and the Morava Schools with elements of romanticism. Icons from the old icon screen from 1824 are put up on a wooden partition next to those some what younger from 1830 and 1831. The holy doors are of gold-plated woodcarving, and the lateral ones are not decorated by woodcarvings, but with painted decorations. On the icon screen, works of different icon painters are noticed. Based on the painting technique, the holy doors can be attributed to Janja Moler, and the lateral ones were painted by Anastas Konstantinovic, who, at that time, with a few Aromanian icon painters, painted a number of icon screens in Serbia.

The Church of Saint Mary of Magdala in Beli Potok was constructed in 1883, on the old church ruins. The narthex, according to its area almost as a half of the Church, was added in 1939, according to the design of the architects Korunovic and Androsov. The wall paintings from 1908 are the work of the Italian painter Gastaldi. Among the icons there are three which were, in 1939, painted by the well-known Serbian painter Jovan Bijelic. In the churchyard, there are the monuments to the combatants of 1912-1918 and to the hero from the First Serbian Uprising Vasa Carapic.

Originally constructed in 1911, the Vo`dovac Church of Saint Emperors Constantine and Helena, looted and damaged during the First World War, was later restored, but it was small for the parish to which, in addition to the former Vo`d’s suburb, Dusanovac, Banjica, Kumodraz, and Milosevac also belonged. Finally, according to the design of the architect Dragoljub Tadic, it was structurally completed by the end of 1970. The mosaic of Emperors Constantine and Helena above the western door is the work of Professor Antonio Orsoni from Venice, and it was made according to a copy of a fresco from Arilje. The mosaic of Emperors Constantine and Helena on the eastern side, according to a fresco from Gracanica Monastery, was made by the artist Dagoslav Petrovic. The woodcarved icon screen is the work of the Ohrid master Cvetan Nikoloski. The new icon screen was made in the Byzantine style, and 11 icons are the work of the academic painter Milosav Mladenovic. The fresco „Communion of Apostles“ was painted by the academic painter Milovan Arsic. The Church, without adhering to the tradition, was fresco painted by the renowned painter Milic Stankovic, known as Milic of Macva and, therefore, as a rare example of deviation from the Byzantine style in the Serbian sacral painting, this temple is particularly interesting.

The Church of Saint John the Baptist at the Central Cemetery has developed on the cemetery chapel. As the church, it has been there since 7 July 1971. It is famous for the already mentioned icon screen, which was, during the Second World War, made by the architect and painter Grigory Samoilov as a prisoner of war in the camp of Bad Sulza nearby Buchenwald. It was first located in the chapel of the Serbian prisoners of war in that camp and, after the war, before it was put up in the church at the Central Cemetery, it had been in the chapel of the Teachers’ School „Kraljica (Queen) Natalija“ in Belgrade.

There are two churches on Pa{ino brdo-Hill. The prototype of the church at the intersection of three streets – Trebinjska, Krusevacka, and Kolasinska – had been a chapel in Gospodara Vucica Street consecrated on 8 December 1935. The Church of the Holy Trinity was constructed after the Second World War. In it, there is the woodcarved icon screen from the Ohrid Woodcarving School and, recently, the icon of the Most Holy Lady the Theotokos was brought to the Church from Inviron Monastery. The Church of Transfiguration on Pacino brdo-Hill is of a more recent date; it was consecrated by Patriarch Pavle on 12 June 2005.

The Church of Saint Basil of Ostrog in the Banjicka Forest, next to the Avala road, has been constructed as of September 2002. The Church of Saint John Vladimir in the settlements of Medakovic – Brace Jerkovic was constructed in the Byzantine style according to the design of the architect Ljubica Bosnjak, and it was consecrated on 31 May 1998. The icon screen, modeled after the icon screen from the temple in the Greek city of Patra, was made in the woodcarving workshop of Dragan Petrovic from Belgrade. The Church was fresco painted by the painters Aleksandar Zivanovic, Darko Milojevic, Milos Roncevic, and Petar Vujovic in cooperation with PhD Dragan Vojvodic. On the compositions: „Lineage of Holy Serbs“ and „Heavenly Serbia“ there are prominent personalities from the Serbian history as well as the image of the little girl Milica Rakic from Batajnica, who was killed during the NATO bombardment in 1999.

The Church of the Holy Trinity in Torlak was built in 1924, as the first endowment of the great Serbian philanthropist Persida Milenkovic. Its prototype had been an old log church in Kumodraz, which was recorded in the 1734 census of the Belgrade Meropolitanate. It was constructed of brick marked by the Serbian medieval architecture, and the facade and decorative elements are in the Morava School style. In the churchyard, there is the monument to the fallen soldiers and victims of Kumodraz in the First World War and, in the vicinity there is also the cemetery of those fallen at the Srem Front at the end of the Second World War.

The cornerstone of the Church of Saint Cyril and Methodius in the Memorial Park Jajinci was laid on 28 May 2002. It was designed by the academician Boris Podreka and Professor Branislav Mitrovic. This Church is a commemorative facility at the place which reminds of those 80 thousand perished in the Second World War.

The foundations of the Church of Evangelist Mark the Apostle in Pinosava were laid in 2003, and the construction was entrusted to the architect Predrag Ristic. The icon screen was painted by the painter Miroslav Lazovic. The first liturgy was officiated in 2005. Construction of the Church of the Image Not-Made-By-Hands of our Lord Jesus Christ in Zuce started on 16 June 1991, according to the design of the architect Malisa Zivkovic. The Church was consecrated on 11 August 2002 by Patriarch Pavle. The icon screen and a part of the icons are the presents of the clergy of the Belgrade Church of Saint Mark.