Novi Sad is the second largest city in Serbia, capital of the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina, and the administrative centre of the South Bačka District.
According to preliminary results of the latest census in Serbia conducted in October 2011, the city has a population of 221,854, while its municipal area has a population of 335,701. It is located in the southern part of Pannonian Plain, on the border of the Bačka and Srem regions, on the banks of the Danube river and Danube-Tisa-Danube Canal, facing the northern slopes of Fruška Gora mountain.
The city was founded in 1694, when Serb merchants formed a colony across the Danube from the Petrovaradin fortress, a Habsburg strategic military post. In the 18th and 19th centuries, it became an important trading and manufacturing centre, as well as a centre of Serbian culture of that period, earning the nickname Serbian Athens. The city was heavily devastated in the 1848 Revolution, but it was subsequently restored. During the city's long history, it has maintained its multi-cultural identity, with Serbs, Hungarians and Germans being the main ethnic groups. Today, Novi Sad is an industrial and financial centre of the Serbian economy, as well as a major cultural hub.