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Skyline of Bihać
Coat of arms of Bihać
Coat of arms
Location of Bihać within Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Location of Bihać within Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Bihać is located in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Location in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Country Bosnia and Herzegovina
Entity The Federation
Canton Una-Sana Canton
 • Municipality president Emdžad Galijašević (SDA)
 • City 163 km2 (63 sq mi)
 • Urban 900 km2 (300 sq mi)
Elevation 230 m (750 ft)
Population (2013 census)[1]
 • City 43,007
 • Density 68/km2 (180/sq mi)
 • Urban 61,186
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
 • Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ZIP code 77000
Area code(s) +387 37
Website .org.bihacwww
Kapetanova kula ("Captain's Tower" - left), Crkva (Church - right), Pivnica (Pub - bottom)
The Seal and Armorial Bearings of Bihać town from the 14th century.
The New square and the fountain.

Bihać (Cyrillic: Бихаћ; pronounced ) is a city on the River Una in northwestern Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the Bosanska Krajina region. It has 61,186 inhabitants.[2] Bihać is located in the Una-Sana Canton (Canton I) of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.


  • History 1
  • Bosnian war for independence 2
  • Features 3
  • Regional location 4
  • Education 5
  • Sport 6
  • Economy 7
  • Notable people 8
  • Demographics 9
  • Settlements 10
  • Notes 11
  • References 12
  • External links 13


The area of Bihać was populated by the tribe of Iapydes (Japodes) as early as the 8th century B.C. The Iapydes left many remains that testify about their presence in this area.

During the 2nd century B.C. this area was populated by Romans. It's in this period that the river Una was given its name by a Roman soldier (Latin: una- one, unique). The only important remains left behind the Romans are roads. In the 6th century this area is populated by Slavs, an Indo-European group of people.

The name of Bihać was first mentioned as early as 1260 as property of a church in Topusko, Croatia in a document by the Hungarian-Croatian king Béla IV, and became a free city in 1262. Bihać was the temporary capital of the Croatian Kingdom. It lost its civic status in the 14th century following dynastic struggles in the kingdom, and became a property of the Frankopan nobles. In the 16th century it passed under direct royal rule, when battles with the Ottoman Empire had begun. The town of Bihać, in the region of the same name, withstood the Ottoman attacks until it fell with the Bosnia sanjak (in 1592).

The Bihać fort would become the westernmost fort taken by the Ottoman army over a hundred years later, in 1592 under the Bosnian vizier Hasan-pasha Predojević. The city was initially made the center of the Bihać sanjak, part of the Bosnian pashaluk. It was demoted in 1699 to become part of the sanjak of Bosnia, during the period of intense border wars between the Habsburg monarchy and the Ottoman Empire. In 1865 it became the center of its own sanjak, but this lasted only until 1878, when all of Bosnia was occupied by Austria-Hungary.

A period of peace followed, marked by the 1888 bringing down of the fortress walls that separated the inner city from the outskirts. The new government had several schools and civic facilities built, which boosted the city's growth. It remained prosperous after the establishment of Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes in 1918, the center of the western Bosnian region, though its growth was impaired by the Great Depression in the 1930s. From 1929 to 1941, Bihać was part of the Vrbas Banovina of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia.

During World War II, Bihać, along with the rest of Bosnia, was a part of the Independent State of Croatia. During July 1941, the Croatian Ustaša regime murdered more than 12,000 Serbian, Jewish and Roma children, women and men from Bihać at Garavice. In 1942, partisans liberated Bihać. The city served as headquarters for the partisan army of Josip Broz Tito, the seat of the first AVNOJ session in 1942 and the center of the anti-fascist resistance. As such, it became a target of the occupying powers and the Germans retook it in 1943 and held it until 1945 and their final defeat.

On 24 July 2014, Bihać officially became a city, together with Zenica, Široki Brijeg and Tuzla.

Bosnian war for independence

Bihać inner city panorama

Bihać suffered the destruction of many buildings during the Bosnian War for Independence, when the area around the city was under siege by joint forces composing of Bosnian Serb, Croatian Serb, and Serbian-backed Bosniaks for over three years, until the summer of 1995 when the siege was broken in the beginning of the Operation Storm conjoined with Croatian foces under Zvonimir Červenko and Bosniak forces under General Atif Dudaković.


Una river in Bihać

The city and the region are now becoming a viable tourist destination for its natural beauty.[3] The Una river valley where Bihać is situated provides the best route from Zagreb to Dalmatia so the traffic position is also favorable.

There's also a yearly regatta held on the Una, as well as the Bihać Summer theatrical event.

Regional location

Border crossings with Croatia are located nearby at Izačić to the west of the city (with the Croatian border post at Ličko Petrovo Selo), and Ripac to the south of Bihać (with the Croatian border post at Užljebić). Bihać is located on the shortest route between Zagreb and the southern part of Croatia's Dalmatian coast.


The University of Bihać was opened in 1997 and it has seven faculties: technical, economics, law school, biotechnical, pedagogical, medical college, Islamic pedagogical academy.


The local football club is NK Jedinstvo, and it competes in the Bosnian First League.


In the former Yugoslavia, Bihać was developed industrial city. Factories such as Kombiteks, Krajinametal and Polietilenka were carriers of economic development. Today it is the headquarters of one of the largest breweries in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which produces two beer brands, Preminger and Unski biser. Bihaćka mljekara (creamery), which is owned by German company Meggle is one of the leaders in Bosnia and Herzegovina. BIRA (Bihać industry of refrigeration equipment) is one of the most successful export-oriented factory in BiH. Nowadays, significant results were achieved in the tourism industry. Bihać rafting on the Una River is considered one of the best in the region. It is also significant, and the agricultural sector due to the large and fertile soil.

Notable people


Population of Bihać municipality
Year of census Bosniaks Serbs Croats Yugoslavs Others or unknown Total
1971 37,325 (64.14%) 12,096 (20.78%) 6,824 (11.72%) 1,133 (1.94%) 807 (1.38%) 58,185
1981 40,041 (61.09%) 11,093 (16.92%) 5,855 (8.93%) 7,364 (11.23%) 1,191 (1.81%) 65,544
1991 46,737 (66.07%) 12,689 (17.93%) 5,580 (7.88%) 4,356 (6.15%) 1,370 (1.93%) 70,732

Total: 45,553


Total: 2,574

  • 2,498 - 97.04% Bosniaks
  • 49 - 1.90% Serbs
  • 1 - 0.03% Croats
  • 11 - 0.42% Yugoslavs
  • 15 - 0,58% others and unknown


Total: 1,833

  • 1,779 - 97.05% Bosniaks
  • 1 - 0.05% Croats
  • 1 - 0.05% Serbs
  • 4 - 0.21% Yugoslavs
  • 48 - 2.61% others and unknown


Total: 1,724

  • 1,297 - 75.23% Bosniaks
  • 339 - 19.66% Serbs
  • 12 - 0.69% Croats
  • 70 - 4.06% Yugoslavs
  • 6 - 0.34% others and unknown


BajrićiBaljevac • Bihać • BrekovicaBugarĆukoviDoljaniDonja GataDubovskoGolubićGorjevacGrabežGrmušaHrgarIzačićJankovacJezeroKalatiKlisaKlokotKulaKulen VakufLipaLohovoLohovska BrdaMala PećaMali SkočajMeđudražjeMuslićiOrašacOrljaniOstrovicaPapariPraščijakPritokaPrnjavorRačićRajinovciRipačSpahićiSrbljaniTeočakTurijaVelika GataVeliki SkočajVeliki StjenjaniVikićiVrstaZavalje i Zlopoljac


  1. ^ World Gazetteer
  2. ^ "Saopstenje : Dirst Release" (PDF). Retrieved 2013-11-23. 
  3. ^ Arnautovic, Marija (21 September 2012), Bosnian Town Preserves Coexistence Legacy: Bihać is one of the few places where conflict failed to drive a wedge between communities, TRI Issue 757, Institute for War and Peace Reporting 


  • Official results from the book: Ethnic composition of Bosnia-Herzegovina population, by municipalities and settlements, 1991. census, Zavod za statistiku Bosne i Hercegovine - Bilten no.234, Sarajevo 1991.

External links

  • Official city presentation
  • Preminger Brewery

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