The City of Novi Sad

Gibraltar on Danube 

Novi Sad, and the XVIII century Petrovaradin Fortress, which is sometimes called the Gibraltar on Danube, has been one of the key European geostrategic points for centuries. It was the location of a military stronghold crucial for defending Europe against Ottoman invaders. Different cultures met and permeated each other in it. Thus, the city came into being and grew as a multiethnic and multiconfessional community. The people of Novi Sad purchased their city the status of a Free Royal City from Empress Maria Theresa in 1748. The Free City with a good reputation attracted members of different nations and confessions from various social strata. Massive migratory movements have contributed to the manifold increase of the city’s population.


Novi Sad, Petrovaradin Fortress, Lithograph, Print made by Jakob Alt, printed by Adolph Kunike, 1821.


Novi Sad is the second largest city in Serbia and the administrative seat of the Autonomous Province of Vojvodina, located in the southern part of the Pannonian Plain of the Central Europe.

Founding of Novi Sad

Novi Sad was founded in 1694, when Serb merchants formed a colony on the banks Danube across the Petrovaradin fortress. In the 18th and 19th centuries, it became an important trading and manufacturing centre, as well as a centre of Serbian culture of that period, earning the nickname of the Serbian Athens.


The city lies on the S-shaped meander of the river Danube, which is only 350 meters wide beneath the Petrovaradin rock. A section of the Danube-Tisa-Danube Canal marks the northern edge of wider city centre, and merges with the Danube. The main part of the city lies on the left bank of the Danube, in the Bačka region, while smaller parts Petrovaradin and Sremska Kamenica lie on the right bank, in the Srem (Syrmia) region. Bačka side of the city lies on one of the southern lowest parts of Pannonian Plain, while Fruška Gora side is a horst mountain. Alluvial plains along the Danube are well-formed, especially on the left bank, in some parts 10 kilometres (6 miles) from the river. A large part of Novi Sad lies on a fluvial terrace with an elevation of 80 to 83 metres (262 to 272 feet). The total land area of the city is 699 square kilometres (270 sq mi), while the urban area is 129.7 km2 (50 sq mi).

Novi Sad is a typical Central European town. Around the centre, old small houses used to dominate the cityscape, but they are being replaced by modern multi-storey buildings.

During the socialist period, new blocks with wide streets and multi-story buildings were built around the city core. However, not many communist-style high-rise buildings were built, and the total number of 10+ floor buildings remained at 40-50, most of the rest being 3-6 floor apartment buildings. City's new boulevard (today's Bulevar oslobođenja) was cut through the old housings in 1962-1964, establishing major communication lines. Several more boulevards were subsequently built in a similar manner, creating an orthogonal network over what used to be mostly radial structure of the old town. Those interventions paved the way for a relatively unhampered growth of the city, which almost tripled its population since the 1950s. According to the 2011 census, the population of the administrative area of the city stands at 341,625 people.

Novi Sad has a temperate continental climate, with four seasons.

European Capital

In 2016 Novi Sad was proclaimed as the European Youth Capital 2019 and the European Capital of Culture 2021.


45.2500° N, 19.8500° E