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Samstag, 8. Juli 2017

Shirok Sokak in Bitola, Macedonia

Shirok Sokak (Широк Сокак, Wide Street) is the main street in Bitola, a place where you go if you want to see someone in Bitola or to be seen.


Many travel writers and travelers passers, which passed Bitola through the ages, marveling at the beauty of the town and its main street noticed:

If you were in Bitola, and you have not walked through the Main Street, than you have seen nothing."


Fascinated by this street, many pronounced and unknown artists, especially poets and composers, made some of the most beautiful Macedonian songs.

Ако одам во Битола (If I go to Bitola)
Ќе прошетам по Широк Сокак (I will walk on Shirok Sokak)
А на Дембел чаршија (And on "Dembel" bazaar)
Кафе ќе се напијам (I will drink coffee)
....

The need, most of the public life to be in the center of the city, which always had an intense cultural and entertainment life, made this street a place where many representative buildings were built.
Bitola guests who usually come from the south side of the city (where the bus and train station are), from the city promenade up to the north, and can notice the beautiful buildings,

The architects from Bitola and Macedonia, with love and invention, made a perfect connection between the various European styles and domestic constructing tradition. Thus, they achieved remarkably harmonious relations, harmony lines, noble simplicity, functionality, feeling of elegance and taste.

In fact, Shirok Sokak is a recognizable everyday Bitola street space, where many of virtues and habits of Bitola can be seen, often loved and hated, welcoming and sending various common and prominent people: kings and emperors, sultans and Grand Viziers, bishops and missionaries.

Although the name of this street was changed many times, according to the various rulers: Abdul Hamid street (Hamidi, Hamidie – during Turkish rule), King Peter (During Serb rule), King Boris (during Bulgarian rule in WW2), Marshal Tito street (during the state Yugoslavia), the local name of the street stayed the same (which today is official) and Shirok Sokak today is the most representative feature of the city of Bitola. 

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