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Trip Planner Europe  /  Croatia  /  Lika-Senj County  /  Smiljan
Smiljan is a village in the mountainous region of Lika in Croatia. It is located 6km northwest of Gospić, and fifteen kilometers from the Zagreb-Split highway; its population is 418 (2011). Smiljan is famous for being the birthplace of Nikola Tesla.EtymologyFolk traditions interpret the origin of the name Smiljan poetic legends. According to one legend, the place is named after Smilja, flowers that once grew there, the second, named after the beautiful girl Smiljani who lived in it. The third legend is named after a famous national hero Ilija Smiljanić.GeographyIt consists of eighteen scattered hamlets .Smiljan resort is located in the central part of the Velebit Lika plain, on the western edge of the field at the foot of the hill Licko Krcmar. It consists of twelve villages which makes the spatial and functional unit. The oldest traces of settlement on the ground Smiljanska dating from the Middle and Late Bronze Age. The hillfort Miljac once were situated necropolis, were found numerous remains Iapodian culture, after all, 22 graves with grave goods witnesses.TeslaSmiljan is known best for being the birthplace of Nikola Tesla on 10 July 1856.Due to celebration of the 150th anniversary of the birth of the electricity pioneer and inventor Nikola Tesla, Croatian officials opened a Tesla memorial complex, including a museum inside his restored childhood home. Today, Tesla's birth house, together with the Serbian Orthodox church of St. Peter and Paul (built in 1765) and the surrounding area, represents a memorial complex with various exhibits of Tesla's inventions and a museum where the details of the inventor's life are shown. There is also a congress hall in a nearby building. The original memorial complex was built in 1956. During the Croatian War of Independence, several of the buildings were severely damaged by fire due to shelling from as yet unspecified perpetrators. The Croatian authorities restored it and reopened it in a 2006 ceremony with the highest dignitaries of Croatia as well as Serbia.
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