The municipality of Kuršumlija is situated in the central part of southern Serbia, while the town of Kuršumlija is located at the confluence of the Kosanica and Banjska Rivers wifh the Toplica.
The most important traffic route is the E – 80 ( Niš – Priština ) motorway. Kuršumlija is 65 km away from Niš. It covers the area of 952 km2 and the population of 21 605 people.
In the ancient Roman times, Kuršumlija bore the name AD FINES. In Byzantine times it was called TOPLICE and was the seat of Toplice Bishoprics. It was first mentioned in written documents in 1019. In medieval limes, it was the first capital of the state of the ruler Stefan Nemanja. Between 1159 and 1168. he built his first two endowment monasteries here – St. Nicolas and the Mother of God, so the place got the name of BELE CRKVE ( White Churches ). During Turkish rule, the settlement was named KURSHUMLU – KILISE, later on KURŠUMLJE. and finally, after liberation from the Turks in 1878, it retained the name of Kuršumlija. During the World War I, the place became known for its ” Iron Regiment ” and by the Toplica Insurrection raised here in 1917.
Archeological Site of a Late – Classical Basilica: This is a major historical monument from the Byzantine times, built during the reign of Tsar Justinian ( 527 – 565 ). It is situated near the Niš – Priština motorway, about 300 m away from the crossroads – the turning towards Kuršumlija.
The remains of the Mother of God Monastery
The remains are situated at the confluence of the Kosanica and the Toplica, 800 m downstream of St. Nicholas Church. It was dedicated by the Ruler Nemanja to his wife Ann who used to govern the Monastery for a time. In Turkish times, there were quarters of Sultana Mara, the wife of Sultan Murat II, and daughter of Serbian Prince Đurđe Branković. She also took care of the Monastery for a time. This Monastery was ruined at the same tame as the St, Nicholas. The Church building, named ” Petkovača ” by the local population, is gradually being restored. Every year on Good Friday, several thousand people gather here, light candles, say prayers, lay tables with fasting dishes and dine there.
TOWN CENTRE AS AMBIANCE ENTITY
This is the oldest portion of the town with the Town Park and in its centre there is a monument dedicated to the freedom fighters in the 1876 / 78 liberation wars, the monument raised in honor of writer Milutin Uskoković, and the monument to the victims of 1990 – 2000 wars and of NATO aggression. In the vicinity, there is the Holy Trinity Church built in 1902, with a beautiful interior and iconostasis. The town’s Old Hotel, now ” Evropa ” Restaurant, was raised in 1892, and it is widely known by the fact that it was here that Branislav Nušić wrote his famous “Suspect Character ” comedy.
There are other places in the town of cultural and historical value, such as: Memorial Monument to partisans killed in the World War II, the monument dedicated to Drinka Pavlović – the national heroine, Memorial Plaque to Theodor William Malgard ( 1888 – 1920 ) a Danish doctor and volunteer in Serbian Army during WWII. Among numerous monuments at other places of the municipality, there are: the Church of St. Mina in the village of Štava, and St. George Church in Lukovska Spa, and St. Petka and Lazarica Churches in Prolom Spa, and the Monument dedicated to the 17th Serbian Brigade, also in Prolom Spa.
THE GIFTS OF NATURE
The area of Kuršumlija has a well preserved and attractive natural setting. This is a mountain – hilly area ( 300 – 1700 m of altitude ), with thick forests full of forest fruits and various game, clean rivers and streams full of various river fish, numerous springs of clean, potable and thermal – mineral water wells, and with many natural rarities out of which the following could be singled out: ” Devils’ Town ” , the interwoven plum trees in Prolom Spa, the protected oak tree in Danković village, an unusual oak tree in the Village of Barlov and several waterfalls in the vicinity of Lukovska Spa.