Where is Donja Lokosnica village and why do I write a blog post about it?
Most probably you never heard about the small village of Donja Lokošnica located in the municipality of Leskovac, Serbia. It’s about 45-minute drive from Niš, the third largest city in Serbia. What makes this small village with the population of less than 1000 people so special you may wonder?
Well, in the peppers harvest season the whole village turns red and you can see people in their yards preparing peppers for drying. Peppers are being put out to dry on almost every available wall and surface in the village. It really is a wonderful experience and an interesting thing to see!
The best part, as always, is talking with local people, They are somewhat already used to visitors that time of the year, September and October, when their village is coloured in red. I’ve been there in mid September and the harvest season was still not in full swing. So, I guess if you come by in early October there is even more ‘paprika’ everywhere! 😀
Local people are very friendly and you can expect to be invited more than once to their home for a glass of ‘rakija’, a local brandy. We were even so lucky that one kind family invited us to share lunch with them. Let me tell you everything was so delicious! All the ingredients from their garden and of course the star of almost every dish was ‘paprika’! After shooting and walking from early morning at that point I was so hungry that I enjoyed the food and company and actually didn’t take any photos of the lunch, uups! 😀
But the experience is what matters. And actually when you travel as a photographer I believe that there are times when you need to put down the camera and simply be present to enjoy and appreciate the moment.
Talking about food one thing you will find in every household is ‘Ajvar’, peppers spread that can be mild of spicy. ‘Ajvar’ is very popular in all Balkan countries and in Croatia as well. If you haven’t tried it, try to find one as I’m sure you’ll instantly become a fan od Ajvar! 😀
Seeing these people doing all the hard work really makes you think and appreciate the food you buy and eat even more. There is a lot of hard work, sweat, aches and pains and challenging days in the process…
After the harvest finishes in October, the village hosts the “Days of Peppers” festival. It’s the time for the villagers and visitors gather to celebrate the tradition and enjoy the various competitions. Of course also to taste ‘paprika’ and its different products.
I hope that the new generations will continue this tradition. And that this little village in Serbia will keep turning all shades of red every September/October!
For more photos and interesting details from this trip check Luka Esenko blog post. He is a talented photographer and a wonderful tour guide, I would recommend his tours to anyone who loves photography, travelling and spending fun time with people who share the same interests!
*Thank you so much for being here, that makes me so happy! You can also follow my Travelling oven on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest, as well as sign up to receive new blog posts via email and subscribe to my newsletter.