Sprawling on the banks of the Moravica River, Sokobanja is a spa town in eastern Serbia that has existed since Roman times. It’s home to a beautifully restored Turkish bathhouse and the spectacular ruins of a medieval fortress, as well as one of Serbia’s highest waterfalls.
Things to do in Soko Banja
On the edge of Gradski Park is the Turkish Bath, which was constructed by the Ottomans in the 16th century on the remains of a Roman-built thermae. It’s the only Turkish bath still functioning in Serbia and provides a setting for the 2002 film “Zona Zamfirova”. Relax in one of the beautifully renovated baths or book a massage, facial or body treatment.
Perched atop a rocky outcrop south-east of Sokobanja are the remains of Soko Grad, a medieval city and fortress declared a Monument of Culture of Great Importance. Founded in the 6th century AD under the reign of Emperor Justinian I, it was designed to defend the region against attacks from Pannonian Avars and Slavs. Wander between the ruins of its walls, towers and gate, then venture further afield on one of the hiking trails that wind through the forested surroundings.
South of Sokobanja is the photogenic Ripaljka Waterfall, which comprises a series of cascades along the Gradašnica River. It’s at its most impressive following the spring snowmelt, with several picnic tables at its top where you can enjoy the natural scenery. Alfresco dining is also available at the nearby Ripaljka Ozren restaurant.
Getting around Soko Banja
Sokobanja is an hour’s drive from Niš and Niš Constantine the Great Airport, which has flights to destinations across Europe. Buses travel to Sokobanja from towns and cities across Serbia and its central area can easily be explored on foot.