On the mighty Drina River, there stands tall a lonely house.
The tiny house that stubbornly beats the wild Drina has been a fascination of many travel enthusiasts and skeptics around the world, after its photograph shined in the pages of National Geographic and the Daily Mail, couple of years ago. People had a lot of questions about who built the house and how long has the house been there. But the most common inquiry is how it defies strong currents and heavy flow of the unstoppable Drina River? The house faces the wild forest and it is not surrounded by a village or any other house, but yet it survives, and has become a symbol of the river and the nearby town of Bajina Basta.
It all started in 1968 when a couple of young boys decided to build a house on a big rock with wooden planks, during a day of scorching heat. All these boys wanted was a place to comfortably enjoy the sun and the beautiful waves of the river. The idea was born and, as unstoppable as kids’ imagination is, they’d soon have a quirky house on the rock to protect them from the afternoon heat.
Not long after, the house was washed away by the uncontrollable flow of the river. Despite that, the idea of building such a defiant house was too precious to lose. A house was built again and again, whenever the previous one got washed down. The last house that survived has become one of the most visited places by the tourists. People from all over the world come to take a good look and to make sure with their own eyes that it still exists. The last version of this house has refused to bow down before the moody and untamable Drina River.
Since the construction of the first house on the Drina, the river washed down six of them. Each time people from this area tried their best to construct a stronger house. In order to build it in the middle of a river, people transported materials with kayaks and boats. The tiny house has been successful in bringing people together to embrace the beauty of nature. Since the beginning, it has become a symbol of friendship and love for nature, as the original idea behind it also revolved around these values.
The Drina house gives a sneak peek into the beauty of the Tara National Park. This national park is in the race of the highly sought-after protection for which UNESCO has shortlisted it. The Tara National Park spreads with thick penetrating forests and curved limestone mountains. The upper stretches of the river have made canyons adding much to a tourist’s adventure needs, like hiking, swimming or kayaking in these stunning remote spots of Western Serbia.
The best part about the tiny Drina house fighting the wild river, is that it’s not the building materials or some secret building technique that keep it in place all these years. It’s the determination of the people brought together around a single idea. And there is a power in that - enough power to keep a tiny wooden house atop the rock in the middle of one of the strongest rivers in Europe. And all that for more than 50 years.
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