Moja Čarda (MOY-a CHAR-da) is an oasis of refreshment and relaxation situated within the beautiful state-protected Jegrička (JE-greech-ka) marshlands in Temerin, Serbia, just 20km north of Novi Sad. The grounds, lodging and restaurant strike an elegant balance between a quaint, soothing atmosphere and the convenience and luxury of modern amenities. Moja Čarda caters to a diverse range of clientele: from weddings and business meetings, to birthday parties and families looking for a weekend respite from the busyness of life. There is something here for every traveler looking for accommodations off the beaten path.The word čarda comes from the Persian language, meaning an awning on four pillars. In the Middle Ages, it referred to roadside and riverside taverns throughout the Balkan region. They were popular gathering spots for rest and refreshment. These taverns may have lost some of their former cultural importance due to the speed and ease of modern travel, but Moja Čarda (My Tavern) will transport you to a time and place where the journey was just as important as the destination.
I arrived at Moja Čarda late one evening on last minute notice as a weary traveler. The staff greeted me warmly and made me feel at home instantly. Although it was dark outside, the first thing I noticed as we walked in was the spacious, lush green yard with a playground. There was also a quiet calmness and the faint noises of wildlife in the area. I was no longer in the city. I had escaped. I made a mental note that I definitely needed to take my family here on a vacation!There was a birthday party already in full swing in the restaurant. We decided to stay for dinner and enjoy the live Serbian music. The joy was infectious! Serbs are known for their indomitable spirit and passion for life. Our waiter was pleasant company, enthusiastically and energetically filled us in on local history and culture. He loves his home and treats every customer as a welcome guest.
The smothered steak, šnitzel (SCHNIT-zel), and šopska (SHOP-ska) salad we ordered hit the spot! My belly was full and my eyelids grew heavy. I had an early train to catch the next morning. My single room with a double bed was cozy. The bed was inviting and comfortable with crisp, clean sheets. The bathroom was clean, well lit, and convenient. It was everything that I would expect from a modern hotel room without crowds of other people traipsing up and down the hallways and noise form the street. I settled in for a quiet night’s sleep. It was just then that I noticed that the birthday party in the restaurant was still in full swing! The walls were a bit thin. Thankfully, I brought my earplugs! I made another mental note to ask for a room at the far end of the hall, away from the restaurant, next time. Nothing could dampen my mood. I ended up getting the sleep that I needed and made it to my train on time, refreshed and renewed. I had experienced legendary Serbian hospitality, and I was thankful for it!
Moja Čarda can be found on the web at http://www.mojacarda.rs/. It is presently only in the Serbian language, but an English version appears to be under construction. Remember, Google Translate can be your best friend at times!