South Morava or in the past Bulgarian Morava (Macedonian and
Serbian Cyrillic: Јужна Морава, Serbian Latin: Južna
Morava, pronounced [jûːʒnaː mɔ̝̌rav̞a]; Albanian: Lumi
Morava; Bulgarian: Българска Морава, Balgarska
Morava) is a river in eastern Kosovo[a] and in southern
Serbia, which represents the shorter headwater of Great Morava. Today,
it is 295 km long. It flows generally in the south to north
direction, from Macedonian border to
Kosovo and onwards to Central
Serbia, where it meets
West Morava at Stalać, to create Great Morava.
5 See also
6 Notes and references
7 External links
The river rises in the
Skopska Crna Gora mountain in Macedonia, north
Skopje. Streams of Ključevska reka and Slatinska reka join together
to form the river Golema, which is, after passing the
Macedonian-Serbian border, known as Binačka Morava. After 49 km
it meets Preševska Moravica at Bujanovac, and for the remaining of
246 km flows as South Morava.
South Morava belongs to the
Black Sea drainage basin, and its own
drainage area is 15,469 km², out of which 1,237 is in Bulgaria
(through its right tributary Nišava). Its average discharge at the
mouth is 100 m³/s and it is not navigable.
South Morava has a composite valley, which means it consists of series
of gorges and valleys in this order:
Gnjilane valley – Končulj
Vranje valley – Grdelica gorge –
Leskovac valley –
Niš valley –
Aleksinac valley –
Stalać gorge. After breaking
through the last,
Stalać gorge, it meets West Morava.
South Morava in Moravac
In macro-geological point of view,
South Morava connects Aegean basin
with Pannonian basin. This creates a phenomenon named apparent flow
inversion, because it seems that river from one lowland climbs up the
mountains and then flows into another lowland. The point connecting
these two large geological basins is Grdelica gorge (Serbian:
Grdelička klisura/Грделичка клисура), but the bottom
of the gorge, where the river flows, is much lower than the mountains
surrounding it, so the river flows normally.
South Morava used to be 318 km long and represented longer and
natural (flowing in the same direction) headwater of Great Morava.
Causing severe floods in history, meandering river has been shortened
by almost 30 km until today, so it became shorter than West
West Morava has always had bigger discharge.
Areas in southern
South Morava flows have been almost
completely deforested, which causes one of the most severe cases of
erosion in the Balkans. As a result of this, the river brings large
amount of materials to the Great Morava, filling and elevating its
river bed, which helps the huge floods of its daughter river.
South Morava has 157 tributaries. The most important left ones are:
Jablanica, Veternica, Pusta reka and Toplica. Right tributaries are:
Vrla, Vlasina, Nišava (the longest) and Sokobanjska Moravica.
South Morava has a significant potential for electricity production,
but this has not been used at all. Huge hydroelectrical system has
been constructed in its drainage basin, though (Vlasina- Vrla I-IV
To a certain extent, its waters are used for irrigation.
The most important role river valley has in transportation. It is the
natural route for both railway and highway
Belgrade–Skopje–Thessaloniki. It is part of the Pan-European
corridor X, and the route of E75 Highway.
Notes and references
Wikimedia Commons has media related to South Morava.
^ a b
Kosovo is the subject of a territorial dispute between the
Kosovo and the Republic of Serbia. The Republic of Kosovo
unilaterally declared independence on 17 February 2008, but Serbia
continues to claim it as part of its own sovereign territory. The two
governments began to normalise relations in 2013, as part of the
Kosovo has received formal recognition as an
independent state from 113 out of 193
United Nations member states.
^ Serbien und die Serben,
Spiridon Gopčević Publisher Elischer,
1891, pp.5 - 6.
^ The Russo-Turkish War, R. Grant Barnwell, 1878, p.402
^ A handbook of Serbia, Montenegro, Albania and adjacent parts of
Greece, Great Britain. Naval Intelligence Division, 1920, p.11
^ Български хроники: история на нашия
народ от 2137 пр. Хр. до 1453 сл. Хр. Стефан
Цанев, TRUD Publishers, 2008, ISBN 9545288612, str. 346.
^ Bŭlgaria 20-ti vek: almanakh, Filip Panaĭotov, TRUD Publishers,
1999, ISBN 9545281464, p. 1013.
^ Сербске Народне Новине, године VII, Чис
41. Четвертак 25 мая. 1844, Пешта 
Mala Prosvetina Enciklopedija, Third edition (1985); Prosveta;
Jovan Đ. Marković (1990): "Enciklopedijski geografski leksikon
Jugoslavije"; Svjetlost-Sarajevo; ISBN 86-01-02651-6
PIM "Ivan Milutinović", Belgrade, Serbia
Morava - Vardar (Axios) Navigation Route (About 1,200 km shorter
route (three days shorter time of navigation) from
Belgrade to Port of
Thessaloniki than across Danube,
Black Sea and Aegean Sea. Electric
power production, improvement of water quality and regulation of
Morava - Vardar (Axios) Navigation Route map
Hydropower and navigation system "Morava" at the Wayback Machine
(archive index) (Concepts of regulation of rivers
Great Morava and
South Morava for navigation and hydropower production.)
Macedonia's way to the Danube
Coordinates: 43°41′57″N 21°24′18″E / 43.69917°N
21.40500°E / 43.69917; 21.40500