Cold walls of the Old Town Srebrenik have been attracting foreign armies for centuries and their warlords often broke spears on this symbol of the medieval Bosnian state. Centuries later, this town, whose remains are connected with the Gradina Fortress, represents a must-see tourist destination which attracts many visitors.
One of the oldest medieval Bosnian towns is situated on a cliff higher than the surrounding terrain by 70 meters, and the upper plateau is uneven and cleft. It is comprised of three parts which are connected to each other, with four towers, a small-size castle and an access bridge.
Old Town Srebrenik was mentioned for the first time on February 15, 1933 during the rule of the Bosnian ruler, Ban Stjepan II Kotromanić. On that day, he signed a charter with the Republic of Ragusa on the lease of Ston, Pelješac and several other parts of the Republic of Ragusa.
Gradina in Srebrenik is one of the best preserved fortresses from the medieval period in BiH and it was the home of Ban Stjepan II Kotromanić until his death in 1353.
This town was mentioned again in 1362, during the rule of the Ban Tvrtko I Kotromanić.
“This mention is related to the Hungarian king Louis II who, despite of the fact that he had family relations with the Kotromanić family, launched a great military expedition on the firmer medieval Bosnian state. He headed towards Pliva River first, but he was absolutely defeated. In the second offensive, he turns towards Srebrenik,” said the historian Muhamed Husejnović.
In September 1362, king Louis II encircled Srebrenik and experienced a defeat, which he made official in his charter.
Old Town Srebrenik played an important strategic role in the medieval times. it was not a trade town, but an exceptional military stronghold for anyone who conquers it.
In 1463, the Ottoman army conquers the Old Town Srebrenik and leaves its crew there. At the same time, the Hungarian king at the time Matthias Corvinus launches an offensive, takes over the town one year later, and establishes the Srebrenica Banate.
“Srebrenica Banate existed until 1512, when the Ottoman army takes it over with the Sultan Bayezid II. After the Battle of Mohács in 1526, Srebrenik loses its importance. With the moving of borders of the Ottoman Empire across the Sava River, the Old Town Srebrenik regained its significance and some of the towers were reconstructed,” Husejnović added.
Eventually, the Old Town Srebrenik loses its strategic role in the mid-19th century. Today, it is one of the best preserved medieval towns in BiH and the best preserved sample of the architecture of its time, which is why it became a must-see tourist destination.