This is a website of the Osijek region, travel organization in fact, where you can find all the possible info about what is there to be seen in the region, Osijek included. Here is a page in English about Osijek:
On this web site you can have a virtual tour in Tvrđa, with a map of the old town, and when you click on each building you get series of photos rolling, with explanation what it is. Very lovely!
The link I provided is in English, but there are various languages offerred: Italian, Hungarian, German, Croatian...
Favorite thing: I don't know why, but I was enchanted with this snail! Poor thing, it was in the middle of the central square in Osijek downtown, on some wooden pieces that were part of the renovation building site, and as it was raining that day, he crawled out from wherever he was hiding to enjoy Osijek nightlife in the center! It was so cute! I got quite attached and it was sad to leave!!!
Favorite thing: The area around Osijek is very flat, it's in the midst of the Panonian plain. Thus you'll find lots of fertile fields, plants, colourful fields and blue skies above. I enjoy those landscapes so much although I've heard from many people it's boring. It is NOT!!!
Fifteen years after the war in Croatia, war scars are still visible everywhere: on street pavements, on old facades, on plots of land where grass now rules.
Osijek was the largest city that was directly on the front line. For months in autumn and winter 1991/92 there was only one or two roads leading to/from the city. It was encircled by Serbian and Yugoslav army forces that occupied most of the northern, eastern and southern suburbs. The city was heavily bombed for months, and it is amazing that despite the large number of civil causalties remained functioning "normally" throughout the siege: trams were running, hospitals working, bakeries making bread, local shops being open....
War scars on facades are being repaired in a rate that is both amazing (when one is aware of the scale of destruction) and too slow. The hardest scars - those on people of Osijek, take the longest time to heal.
A small group of us had lunch at a B&B in the small village of Bilje, not far from Osijek. We had a lovely lunch on an outdoor patio, with our host holding forth on Balkan politics while his niece served the meal. It included plum brandy made by a friend of his and served in a Valvoline bottle . (When the friend gave it to him, he said, “This is not for your car.” I tried it—Whoof!!)
He drove an ambulance during the war and saw too much, he said. He got 15 minutes warning when the war started. A friend called and told him, “Run! They are here and killing everyone.”
He had a nice house that he built himself over 4 years. It was completely destroyed in the war, but he has rebuilt it. He showed us photos, which were about the only things he saved when his house was bombed. He had pictures of the house before and after it was bombed. It was an interesting afternoon!
Favorite thing: A lot of things are under construction in Osijek, they are renovating and rebuilding the city. However, some renovated facades would often stand next to those which need renovation, so you'll find a lot of these contrasts...
Favorite thing: Due to its strategic and military importance, the Austrian authorities have built Tvrdja (huge fortified complex) between 1712 and 1721. The fortress was designed by architect Maximilian de Gosseau. It was built, in a first place, in order to controll and defend the southern border of the K und K monarchy.
Favorite thing: This is one of the defending towers of the fortress of Tvrdja. Actually, it is the only one left and well preserved. The tower is overlooking river Drava and was built in order to controll free navigation over the river.
The Main Guard building, built in Baroque style, closes the the west side of the Holy Trinity Square.
In the ground floor there are arched porticoes, while on the rooftop stands the clock tower.
Tvrdja is a unique urban and military complex that lies in the heart of the town.
Most of the buildings on the central the Holy Trinity Sqare and around it, were designed in Baroque style.
In the middle of the Holy Trinity Square stands the monument of the Plague, erected in 1729 by general Petras' widow.
The former building of the Military Command, from Austrian times, stands rifgr behind the Plague pillar.
Trg Ante Starcevica, the A. Starcevic Square, is located in the Upper Town. It is the main square of the town, and administartive and business center of Osijek and whole region of Slavonija.
Most buildings on the sqare date from the late 19th and early 20th century. The city centre preserved intrigate Austro-Hungarian Baroque in its older quarters.
This passage way leads from the defending city walls into the central part of the fortress.
See the bricks structure of the walls build in several rows in order to protect against the bombing.
The region of Slavonija is a plain country with no stones at all, therefore all the buildings and city walls were built of bricks.
This Baroque stalyed building represents the former military barraks from the time of Austrian authorities of Osijek. It used to be inside the city walls on its eastern side which was demolished during the centuries.
The barraks were heavily damaged in Serbian attacks in 1991, but now it is completely rebuild.