Petrovaradin Fortress Underground

Katakombe i podzemlje tvrđave Petrovaradin


Useful Information

Location: Hornwerk, Petrovaradin, Petrovaradin 21131.
(45.25186894237325, 19.864499770681128)
Open: Petrovaradin catacombs: After appointment.
City Museum of Novi Sad: All year Tue-Sun 9-17.
Club Tunnel: All year Fri-Sun 23-5.
[2024]
Fee: Petrovaradin catacombs: After appointment.
City Museum of Novi Sad: Adults RSD 400, Children RSD 200, Students RSD 200, Seniors RSD 200.
Underground Military Galleries: Adults RSD 300, Students RSD 200, Seniors RSD 200.
Club Tunnel: Before midnight RSD 700, After midnight RSD 1000.
[2024]
Classification: ExplainKasematten
Light: LightIncandescent Electric Light System
Dimension: L=16 km.
Guided tours: Petrovaradin catacombs:
Underground Military Galleries: Min=10.
Club Tunnel: self guided.
Photography: allowed
Accessibility: no
Bibliography:
Address: Petrovaradin catacombs, 3D Svet, Hornwerk, Petrovaradin 21131, Tel: +381-62-345600. E-mail:
Музеј Града Новог Сада, 4, Тврђава, Petrovaradin 21131, Tel: +381216433145. Museum of the City of Novi Sad, Petrovaradin, Fortress 4. E-mail:
Club Tunnel, Petrovaradin fortress, Novi Sad, TeL: +381-69-106-10-00. E-mail:
As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.

History

DEC-2014 Club Tunnel opened to the public.
1991 declared a Spatial Cultural-Historical Unit of Great Importance of the Republic of Serbia.

Description

The Петроварадинске катакомбе or Petrovaradinske katakombe (Petrovaradin catacombs), or in full name Подземне галерије Петроварадинске тврђаве or Podzemne galerije Petrovaradinske tvrđave (Underground galleries of the Petrovaradin fortress). We also read the name Katakombe i podzemlje tvrđave Petrovaradin (catacombs and underground of Petrovaradin Fortress). It seems those catacombs actually have no proper name, all those names are descriptive. There are numerous underground tunnels, cellars, storage rooms and catacombs under the Petrovaradin Fortress, which is located on the southern shore of the Danube, right opposite the city Novi Sad. This is about 70 km upstream from Belgrade.

The Petrovaradin Fortress is actually a triple fortress, there are three fortifications along the Danube. Each of them has the typical star-like form which was favoured by Vauban, the famous French fortress architect. This geometry optimized defense, which was able to shoot at the intruders from various angles, while at the same time minimizing the vulnerability of the fortification for siege engines. However, it was before the use of cannons, which made most fortresses obsolete. The Danube makes meanders, and so the southern shore becomes the eastern shore, with the three fortifications aligned from the north to the south. The most important was obviously the central fortification, called Hornburg, which was protected by the other two, which were called Wasserstadt. Built on a rocky outcrop, above the river, the whole fort has a series of underground tunnels in the bedrock, which includes casemates, passages, and even secret tunnels to the other two fortifications. The fortification is entered through several tunnels through the ramparts. As those bulwarks are quite massive, those tunnels are between 20 m and 30 m long.

The main building in the central fortress is the Музеј града Новог Сада (City Museum of Novi Sad). A part of the exhibition are the Подземне војне галерије (Underground military galleries). They are actually not underground, they are mostly tunnels in the massive bulwarks. As we already mentioned, there are star-like protruding triangles, those had a trench in front, and as such a trench needs two walls, there was also a low bulwark on the outer side of the trench. Both walls along the trench, on the inner side and the outer side, were hollow with narrow slits. So when the intruders tried to climb the fortress bulwarks, they had to cross the trench. At this time they were shot at from both walls of the trench through the embrasures. There is an additional fee for the underground tour, also a minimum of 10 visitors, smaller groups have to pay 10 tickets.

Another part of the tunnels which is open to the public is the Клуб Тунел (Club Tunnel) The Tunnel is the main entrance to the Hornburg, and in this tunnel is the entrance to the nightclub, which uses a large part of the tunnels. It is said to be the best nightclub in Novi Sad. However, as the club is underground, there is no cell service. This is probably the part which is easiest to visit. But only after 10 in the evening, and with really loud music.

But there is a third kind of underground tours, which are simply called Петроварадинске катакомбе or Petrovaradinske katakombe (Petrovaradin catacombs). It seems those tours visit different kinds of tunnels and are quite interesting. Unfortunately, they do not have a website, only a facebook page which does not give any information on the whereabouts. We guess you should contact them by email or SMS, see the address section, they are called 3D Svet.

The Petrovaradin fortress was built from 1692 to 1780, at this time this area was part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, as a defense against the Ottoman raids. This side of the Danube was under Ottoman occupation several times during the Middle Ages. This was a massive threat, and after the Austrian Army captured Petrovaradin after 150 years of Turkish control during the Great Turkish War in 1687, the Austrians began to build new fortifications according to contemporary standards. The modernization of the fortress was planned from 1751, and major works began in 1753 and lasted until 1776. The tunnels were an addition developed by engineer Major Albrecht Heinrich Schroeder and were built between 1764 and 1776. They have a total length of 16 km and four levels.