Sunday, August 30, 2015

"Amazing Race" around Banja Luka

Every team that comes to Banja Luka gets to know the city through doing a "scavenger hunt" of the various sites around Banja Luka. It is MUCH more fun for them than having me take them around, and as they usually do it in teams and there is a prize for the best team - they try to do it as fast as possible... and that makes it even more fun!

This week I was joined by a lovely couple from Switzerland, Jonas and Marie-Laure. I asked them if they wanted to do the scavenger hunt and they were totally into it (even if they were the only team!). They also got into the photos - making appropriate faces and it looks like they had a really fun day...

I have decided to share their experience with you - so you can also do the Amazing Race around Banja Luka: (thanks to Jonas for the photos!)

They are given a list of places to go to and take a picture, and have to answer some questions as they go along...

Stop 1: at the Fortress Kastel with the river Vrbas in the background:
Stop 2: At Safikada's grave (looking appropriately sad for the fact that it is a grave). They have to tell me who Safikada is, you can find out more here
Stop 3: They tried to take a shaky photo at the clock which is a memorial to the 1969 earthquake, but the iphone corrected each time and so it wouldn't be blurry... so a scared face was taken instead (as I said, they really got into the photos! So cute!)
Stop 4: Gospodska Ulica (the Lord's street), the main walking street:
Stop 5: Hram Hrista Spasitelja (The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour), which is Serb Orthodox.
Stop 6: Statue of Ban Milosavljević. He was the mayor who built a lot of the lovely buildings in Banja Luka, including the original "Hram", which was then destroyed in 1945, the above one was rebuilt starting during the 1992-1995 war and opening officially again in 2009.
Stop 7: The World War II Memorial (maybe you shouldn't have smiled here guys...haha)
Stop 8: Appropriately sad for the statue to the 12 premature babies who died from lack of oxygen during the war because they couldn't get the oxygen through by land, and the UN wouldn't let it be flown in...more about this can be found here
Last stop: Petar Kočić park with his statue:
I hope you enjoyed this look at the "amazing race" around Banja Luka (this is the short version, some other teams get a longer version... depending on how hot it is and other factors!) I think that Jonas and Marie-Laure enjoyed it, and I had a fun week with them as well! 


Victor said...

Cute couple. Interesting love story. Super sad tragedy of the 12 babies and 13th baby who died eventually and the 14th baby who grew up blind. Horrible, horrible. Who wrote or created the scavenger hunt?

Belinda Chaplin said...

I guess I should have said "my" scavenger hunt, as I was the one who made it up... As I said, I have a few variations depending on the situation and the team. It is really fun - and it means I can usually go out for coffee with the team leader(s) and work on the planning while the team is running around getting to know the town!!

And, yes, it is so sad about the 12 babies (well 14 in the end)...

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