Nikola Tesla Memorial Center

Nikola Tesla (born in Smiljan in 1856, and died in New York in 1943) was one of the greatest inventors of the 20th century. He was born in Lika, attended elementary and grammar school in Smiljan, Gospić and Karlovac, and studied in Graz, AustriaLet’s start by saying that Nikola Tesla (Smiljan, 1856 – New York, 1943) is one of the greatest inventors of the twentieth century. He was born in Lika. He attended primary school and grammar school in Smiljan, Gospić, and Karlovac and studied in Graz, Austria.

His inventions in the field of electrical engineering and discoveries in physics not only left a strong mark on world science, but their application was reflected in improving the quality of life in general, for which he earned the title of “the man who invented the 20th century”. Among other things, he invented the AC motor, which is the foundation of today’s propulsion electrical engineering. While his colleague Thomas A. Edison advocated the direct current, Tesla discovered the multiphase current and a transformer, enabling cheap transmission of high-voltage current over long distances and its mass application.

He is considered to be the father of the radio, although during his lifetime, this honor had been awarded to Marconi. The US Supreme Court righted this wrong in 1943, ruling that Tesla was the true radio pioneer, but despite Tesla’s obtaining this satisfaction, Marconi is still often credited with inventing the He is considered the father of radio engineering, although, during his lifetime, Marconi was credited in this area. This injustice was corrected in 1943 by the Supreme Court of the USA, ruling that Tesla is the rightful owner of the primacy in the field of radio engineering, but, despite that satisfaction, the radio is still associated with Marconi. He considered the discovery of radio communication one of his greatest inventions. He was also involved in wireless energy transmission (his last major project was the construction of a giant tower on Long Island), discovered X-rays and electrons, his inventions were the forerunners of modern weapons, such as cruise missiles, but also the the Internet because he advocated the idea of ​​a “global system for connecting communications into one system” over a hundred years ago. He left us more than 700 patents and many of his inventions are still shrouded in secrecy. The man who paved the way for the technological development of the modern age died in New York without public recognition, somewhat forgotten and lonely. This injustice to this “wizard of electricity” is evidenced by the fact that three Nobel Prizes were awarded to inventions pioneered by Tesla – J. J. Thompson received it for the discovery of electrons, W. Röntgen for the discovery of X-rays, and G. Marconi for the discovery of radio. In recent decades, however, Tesla has become a kind of scientific icon. In his honor, the unit for magnetic induction was named Tesla and, in modern times, the electric car brand. Another interesting fact is that is he spoke eight languages ​​fluently.

In 1964, the Memorial Museum came under the management of the Lika Gospić Museum, which worked for years on the preservation of cultural heritage, and the entire Memorial Area was declared a cultural monument in 1976.

On the occasion of marking the 130th anniversary of Tesla’s birth, the birth home was reconstructed with the help of the Croatian Parliament and given for use in 1986 to the Lika Gospić Museum as a museum building.

In 2005, the Nikola Tesla Memorial Site was registered as a cultural asset and entered in the Register of Cultural Heritage of the Republic of Croatia. 

At the suggestion of the Government of the Republic of Croatia, the Presidency of the Croatian Parliament declared 2006 the Year of Tesla. The renovated birth home, the new museum exhibition in it, the surroundings, and the accompanying exterior monuments, as well as the newly built buildings make up the current Memorial Center “Nikola Tesla” Smiljan. It was opened on the 150th anniversary of Tesla’s birth on July 10, 2006.

The memorial center’s opening hours

Summer working hours (April 1 – October 31)
Tuesday – Saturday from 8 am to 7 pm
Sunday from 10 am to 3 pm

Winter working hours (November 1 – March 31)
Tuesday – Saturday: 8 am – 3 pm

Sunday: 10 am – 3 pm
VISITOR ENTRANCE: 10 am – 2 pm

Ticket price

  • Adults: 10,00€ (individual)
  • Groups of more than 15 people: 6,00€ (adults), 5,00€ (students, pupils, retirees)
  • Children above 7 years old, pupils, students, and retirees: 6,00€ (individual)
  • Family ticket: 15,00€*

*The family ticket includes a visit by parents with underage children, and includes two adult tickets at the most.

  • Expert guide in Croatian for a group (up to 50 people) – 20,00€
  • Expert guide in a foreign language for a group (up to 50 people) – 30,00€
  • Groups visiting the Center without an expert guide can stay in the birth-house for a maximum of 45 minutes.


Memorial Center “Nikola Tesla” Smiljan
Smiljan 87/1, 53211 Smiljan
Landline: +385 53 746 530
Phone: +385 95 2244 622

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