Mysterious Kulas – traces of the heritage of Montenegro
Stone houses and towers (Kula=tower) are unique to this area around Plav-Gusinje.
The unique stone houses were built from 16th to the beginning of the 20th Century and differ in structure and form from the wooden houses of the area. They were constructed with hardly any openings and purpose built as defense.
They were built not only for one house but for a communal defense.The majority of the the towers were built by masters from Debar, a town in Macedonia of today, who were famous for as specialists in wood – and stone construction.
The attic was a watch tower which is why there is a window on all sides and is traditionally made of wood. The rocks for the rest of the house were transported by ox and cart from the surrounding mountains and were pulled across the frozen Lake Plav.
The oldest and most beautiful tower is the Redzepagica which can be seen in Plav.It is presumed that this impressive building was built by Hasan bey Redzepagic in 1671.
Originally there were two ﬂoors that were covered by ﬂagstone ceilings. Later the tower was extended with a third storey made of wood ,a so called blockhouse, that was then topped with a stone shingle roof.
The ground ﬂoor was originally for the horses and as a grain store, and the ﬁrst ﬂoor was for defence purposes. This had arrow slits to the north, south and east.
The walls were in some places more that one meter thick. The second and third ﬂoors would be mainly used as a living area and traditionally furnished. Besides seating there were also decorative sleeping accommodation and dining furniture, carved shelves, a water wheel and precious carpets.
After being fully renovated in the 1980s the Redzepagica is now a part of national heritage.
Visit the traditional Kula and meet Shuco,the man who looks after the tower today.
He will show you around the building with care and patience and show you the more than 2000 exhibits which reach back as far as the middle ages to the present day.
This is history. (Experience pure history – in the oldest stone house in the region)
More Pictures from Redzepagica Kula