The Wonderful house on the rock in the river

Lonely Drina House

Dreaming of a house surrounded by nothing but intact nature? A house whose doorstep ends with a wild, emerald river and whose windows look at a dense, green, virgin forest? Well – we’ve got good news for you! Such a house really does exist! It’s located on a small rock in the middle of the Drina River where it defies nature and amazes people. We would like to present to you the famous Drina House!

Since the moment its photograph found itself in the Daily Mail and theNational Geographicthe Drina House hasn’t ceased to intrigue the world and attract curious travelers from across the globe. Some may wonder who lives in it, others how it’s been built, while the rest simply enjoy the sight of it (which is all but ordinary).

We will answer all of these questions. All that remains for you to do is to enjoy these amazing photographs and, if you still haven’t, plan a tour of the Drina River, Tara, Bajina Bašta and other gems of this part of western Serbia.

From a simple fix to a most unusual home…

For the creation of this memorable house, all credit goes to Drinaa blazing summer sun and a group of young boys. It all began on a hot summer’s day in 1968 when a group of friends sought refuge from the relentless waves of the swollen Drina on a nearby rock. Exhausted from swimming and “fighting” the mighty river, they lay down on the lonely rock and enjoyed the sun.

Lonely Drina House

After a while they realized that the rough surface and jagged edges of the rock weren’t exactly the comfiest place, so they decided to swim back to the shore and bring a few wooden boards on which they would continue to rest. When there had been enough boards for lying on, they started to arrange some of them vertically to shelter themselves from the sun. And thus an idea was born.

But how do a few wooden boards make a house?

They don’t, actually. The boards brought by Milija Mandić, the young boy who came up with the idea for the Drina House, and his friends in the summer of ’68 were soon after washed away by the untameable Drina River.

Drinska kucica kajak

However, nobody gave up on the idea for this out of the ordinary house. The following summer, the (at the time) seventeen-year-old Milija assembled his little group of friends with the intent to finally finish what they’ve started and build a place they would be able to spend their summer break at.

At the time, of course, he didn’t even imagine his house would becomeworld famous. And that’s how it all came to be. Plank by plank.

Screw by screw. To transport the materials they used boats and kayaks, and the larger pieces they simply lowered into the water and then caught and pulled out at the rock.

A proper house was built, and Drina got a new friend and one of its biggest tourist attractions.

Fifty years, six houses and a bunch of memories…

Nobody managed to tame the moody and restless Drina River. This is why there is a saying in Serbia that goes “Krivu Drinu niko ne može ispraviti“ or “Ko će ispraviti krivu Drinu”. You would use this saying, which roughly translated means “Nobody can set the crooked Drina straight”, when you want to tell somebody that they simply can’t fix everything.


Its unpredictable flow washed away six of these houses. Nevertheless, the desire for this river symbol, and both man and nature’s masterpiece, to survive prevailed. This is why a new and sturdier house was built each time the river decided to take it its predecessor.

Each of them had its unforgettable moments and lovely memories which even the wild Drina didn’t succeed in taking away. Friendships have been made, love has been professed and unforgettable sunrises have been watched. There has been bathing and sunbathing, love and laughter. This is how the small and solitary Drina House, every one of them, was and will be a symbol which brought people and nature together in a most magical way.

The photograph of this extraordinary and out of the ordinary little house in the middle of the Drina River traveled across the globe. The Daily Mail marvelled at its architecture and the way it defies nature. In August 2012 it was even the National Geographic photo of the month.

drina, irene becker (2)

Since you’ve already decided to visit this unusual spot on the Drina River, don’t miss…

… a one of a kind adventure that is the Drina Regatta. During the summer Drina becomes a host of a number of regatta events. However, we have to mention that the Drina regatta is no ordinary downhill. This Serbian regatta is an awesome party which involves hundreds of vessels, trubači (trumpeters), barbecue, various contests and concerts.

… the opportunity to revel in the fascinating nature of the surrounding mountains. TaraZlatiborMokra Gora – what more could you ask for? This part of Serbia is rich in magnificent mountain centres, so you better make an itinerary. Trust us – once you start this trip you’ll have a hard time deciding where to go first.

… to get your mind blown by her majesty – the komplet lepinja as well as by homemade kajmak, pršut and other specialties of traditional Serbian cuisine. Your stomach will be grateful to you and, even better, you’ll get more strength to visit some of the other tourist attractions such as the tour of Drvengrad and a ride on the Šargan Eight. On no occasion pass up on these!


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