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Stone Bridge in the village of Zovikj

Most s. Zovik

In the vicinity of the village of Zovikj the river Gradeshka flows, which springs in the mountain of Nidje and first empties in the river Satoka, then in Crna Reka.

The river Gradeshka flowing in its stony bed has shaped a canyon with unusual beauty. There is a magnificent stone construction on the river Gradeshka – the Bridge of Zovikj.


The stone bridge is in the immediate vicinity of the village. Its purpose was to bridge the river Gradeshka. The bridge was built for the purpose of communication with the population of the inhabited territories across the river, i.e. the Mariovo villages of Beshishte and Polchishte.
In the medieval period there was probably a wooden bridge instead of the stone one that, as the villagers narrate, had collapsed in one occasion of transport due to overloading.
Even in the 1955/6 year the master Gjuladin or Dzhuladin from the village of Labunishta, near Struga and Trajko Sekirkov, re-built it with the efforts of the local population and the collectives. Immediately next to the access of the bridge on a high cliff St. George has been depicted which is a kind of relic of that church that existed there in the past. This fresco-painting is dated from more recent times i.e. 1925 that was inscribed together with the donors’ names.
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The Bridge in the 80-s photo: Blagoja Stojanovski




Painting with a presentation of St. George

The fresco showing St. George is in a rectangular painted frame which in the upper part ends in a form of arch. The frame is three-lined painted strip: red, in the middle, the widest one with thinner white strip inside and black strip outside. The figure of St. George on a white horse and whirled red cloak killing the dragon is centrally placed. The background is light blue. Rocky landscape is depicted on the lower part of the background. On the upper part of the background abbreviated name of the Saint has been inscribed in white color in church Slavic – Great Martyr and the name George. The fresco on the rock was restored by the NI Institute for Protection of Cultural Monuments and Museum Bitola in 2006.
The bridge is one of the most beautiful architectural works in Mariovo. It is built of stone i.e. cut stones and roughly cut stone blocks. It is arch-shaped and conformed to the terrain configuration. In the lower part in the immediate vicinity of the riverbank closer to the village of Zovikj a mill had been built that the local population used for grinding grains. The mill has been built of stone and roofed with stone tiles. Due to the overall attractiveness and timeless impression that the village makes it has become and still is inspiration and subject of interest of many artists, biologists, ethnologists, geologists and many other professions.
The bridge was repaired and reconstructed by the Municipality of Novaci in 2014.


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