Vranje is the city of music and nostalgia, with great traditional gastronomy and with extraordinary people that have unique southern soul.
Vranje is a city located in southern Serbia. In 2011 the city administrative area has total population of 82,782, while the urban area has 54,456. It is the administrative center of the Pcinja District of Serbia.
In ancient times, various Thracian tribes inhabited present-day Vranje, as well as the Agrianes (a Paeonian tribe) inhabiting the whole of Pcinja District.
The Romans conquered the region in the 2nd and 1st centuries BC. The Roman fortresses in the Vranje region were abandoned during the Hun attacks in 539-544 AD, these include the localities of Kale at Vranjska Banja and Gradište in Korbevac and Gradište in Prvonek.
Its name stems from the old word for “black” (“vran”) in the Serbian language and first appears in the Alexiad (9, 4) by Byzantine princess and scholar Anna Comnena (1083–1153). In period of Austrian occupation from 1688 to 1692, Vranje was managed by Von Lahmm family.
Municipality of Vranje is located between municipalities of Bujanovac, Trgovište, Bosilegrad, Surdulica, VladiÄin Han, Leskovac, and Kosovska Kamenica (which is in Kosovo).
Vranje was an important Ottoman trading site.
The White bridge is a symbol of the city and is called “most ljubavi” (Lovers bridge) after the tale about the forbidden love between the Muslim girl Ajša and Christian Stojan that resulted in the father killing the couple. After that, he built the bridge where he had killed her and had the story in-scripted in Ottoman Arabic.
The 11th century Markova kula fortress is in the north of the city. The city has traditional Balkan architecture as well as Ottoman. The well-known theater play “Koštana” by Bora Stankovic is placed in Vranje.
Vranje is famous for its popular, old music, lively and melancholic at the same time.
The best known music is from the theater piece with music “Koštana”, by Bora Stankovic. This original music style has been renewed recently by taking quite different and quite specific, and more oriental form, with rich brass instruments contribution. It is played particularly by the Vranje Roma, who are often referred to as Gypsies (a derogatory term which wrongly implies their Egyptian origin).
Vranje is the seat of Pcinja District and as such a major center for cultural events in the district.
Most notable annual events are: Borina nedelja, Stari dani, Dani karanfila (in Vranjska Banja)…
Vranje lies close to Besna Kobila Mountain and Vranjska Banja, two locations with high potential which are currently underdeveloped.
Other locations in and around Vranje with some tourist potential include Prohor Pcinjski monastery, Kale-Krševica, Markovo kale, Przar, birth-house museum of Bora Stankovic…
The city has numerous traditional Serbian cuisine as well as international cuisine restaurants and many cafes and bars.