When we talk about Croatia, we think about the sea, but Croatia offers mountains, rivers, fields, landscape….I present the Baranja which stretches to the north of Osijek. It is between the Sava River, the Danube and the Hungarian border. In Baranja, you will see unspoiled villages, you will feel the natural charm of rural tourism. The villages are long consisting largely of one-storey houses with colonnaded porches garlanded with drying red peppers.
Many of the villages of the Baranja have a Protestant as well as a Catholic church. It is a reminder of the time when Calvinism was strong.
Baranja is a major heartland of the paprika-laden cuisine that is common to Eastern Croatia and neighboring Hungary. The dishes like paprikaš, čobanac and perkelt (hot red stews) appear on the menus of restaurants. Dishes like fiš paprikaš and perkelt are usually served with pasta noodles.
A typical Baranja village is Suza in which local people sit on benches, watching the world and gossiping in Hungarian. It is funny to hear and see it. The Banska kosa is covered with some of the most productive vineyards in Eastern Croatia. The Baranja`s biggest wine producer is Belje . Their wine cellars are in Kneževi Vinogradi and there you can taste a wine.
The Josić winery is the new generation of Baranja wine producers. It is in Zmajevac and the winery also makes their own aromatizirano vino or vermouth, a blend of red wine and herbs. In Branja, a hit destination is Karanac, a typical one-street village with traditional one-storey houses.
Baranja is nice, it is the beauty of the landscape. All towns and villages have their own story. Don`t miss to visit Đakovo and explore the history of Lipizzaners horses. Lipizzaner is an important part of Croatia`s cultural heritage. Lipizzaner horse can be seen at cultural events in the Eastern Croatia, including Đakovački vezovi, a folklore festival of the regions of Slavonia and Baranja.
The nature is amazing. Kopački rit is one of the largest areas of wetland in Europe. It is a paradise for wading birds.
You can explore palaces and museums. Pejačević Palace in Našice. It is the best preserved aristocratic seat in Slavonia and the palace gets its name from the Pejačević family who was important in the 18. century.
Prandau-Normann Palace in Valpovo is the medieval castle. Mailath Palace in Donji Miholjac is from the 19. century.
Baranja region`s name itself is a hint as to its wine growing abilities. In Hungarian, boranya means “wine mother”.
Explore Baranja, taste delicious food, enjoy nature and Croatia is a country of diversity.