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Sarajevo: The most beautiful sights & our tips

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Sarajevo – what a city! East meets West, tradition meets modernity. Sarajevo is a city of contrasts, an exciting mix of cultures, and in general: an absolute surprise!

We would never have expected such oriental flair. – and that just nine hours by car or flight from Vienna. In our eyes, Sarajevo is one of the most underrated travel destinations in Europe.

No matter whether you are planning a short city trip to Sarajevo or exploring the city on your Balkan road trip – in this blog article you will find everything you need to know for your trip. We will show you the most beautiful sights in Sarajevo and share our personal tips.

1. Sarajevo: First travel tips & FAQs at a glance Exciting facts about Sarajevo at a glance Sarajevo is the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina.Sarajevo is home to about 300. People. The historic center with the most important sights is still very manageable and easy to explore on foot.1200 the Olympic Winter Games took place in Sarajevo (and surroundings) instead of. You can still discover relics of this major event today – more on that later. Sarajevo is considered to be “Jerusalem of Europe”. Muslim, Christian and Jewish places of worship are right next to each other. In the Bosnian War Sarajevo was besieged for three and a half years. Thousands lost their lives. The history of the country is shocking and still shapes Sarajevo. What can I expect in Sarajevo? Oriental flair: The call of the muezzin, the smell of charcoal (burek & Ćevapi are being prepared here), the coffee served in the copper pot – no, we are not in Istanbul. Even if you might think so at first glance. Sarajevo’s old town, the Baščaršija, exudes a surprisingly authentic, oriental flair.Living city: The energy of the city is hard to describe, Sarajevo literally pulsates. The streets of the old town fill up not only during the day, but especially in the evening after dark. Story: Like it or not, the tragic history of Sarajevo (and that of Bosnia and Herzegovina in general) is omnipresent. Bullet holes in the facades of houses are still part of the cityscape. The so-called “roses” of Sarajevo at the sites of the grenade bullet holes commemorate the victims of that time. Anyone traveling to Sarajevo should not leave the city without visiting at least one of the memorial museums. You can’t understand what happened, but you learn from it. How many days should I plan for Sarajevo? The abundance of sights in Sarajevo is fairly limited. By that we mean: In our eyes, it is the unique flair and the exciting mix of cultures that characterize Sarajevo.

In addition, Sarajevo’s old town is quite manageable in terms of area. In one day (depending on the arrival/departure time 1 to 2 nights) you can explore many highlights in Sarajevo without having to stress yourself too much.

We would personally recommend 3 nights in Sarajevo. So you can explore the most important sights, but there is also some time for a relaxed stroll and drinking coffee (very important in Bosnia and Herzegovina).

2. Sights in Sarajevo: Our tips Baščaršija & Sebilj Fountain The oriental heart of Sarajevo is the Baščaršija. It is the former bazaar and includes the old town of Sarajevo, so to speak. With its very special flair, it is one of the absolute highlights in Sarajevo.

When you stroll through the streets of Baščaršija for the first time, you will immediately think of a bazaar think: The low houses, the cobbled streets, the smell of charcoal – you feel like you are in another world!

On the central square in Baščaršija is located one of the most important sights of Sarajevo: the Sebilj fountain. You will immediately recognize this historic wooden fountain by the flocks of pigeons that gather here (thanks to feeding).

Our tip: It is definitely worth visiting Baščaršija and Sebilj Fountain different times of the day to explore. During the day it is quite cozy here, it only gets really full and lively in the evening hours.

Gazi Husrev Beg Mosque One of the most important sights Sarajevo, which is also located in the middle of Baščaršija (the historic old town), is the Gazi Husrev Beg Mosque. It is one of the most important, largest and oldest mosques in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The mosque is already worth seeing from the outside , but we recommend you definitely take a look inside too. For visitors, the mosque is accessible at certain times for a small entrance fee.

You should come dressed appropriately (shoulders and knees covered). Women must wear a headscarf inside. However, you can also hire cloths to put on on site.

Vijećnica: The former Town Hall One of the most striking buildings Sarajevo is the former town hall, called Vijećnica. It occupies a prominent position on the river and now houses the National Library of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

You may be wondering why the structure shines as if it were recently built? The (sad) explanation: The building was badly damaged during the Bosnian war. First 2014 the reconstructed and rebuilt Vijećnica was opened.

Our tip: Be sure to visit the inside as well – very few people do that, but it’s definitely worth it! The special architecture in the so-called pseudo-Moorish style only really shows up inside. In addition to the imposing entrance hall, the staircase is also worth seeing. Exhibitions are housed on the upper floors.

Photography is only allowed with smartphone. If you also want to take photos with your camera, a permit for this costs 82 KM (approx. 40 Euro!). Then admission for up to five people is already included.

Entry: 11 KM (about 5 euros)

Latin Bridge Not overly spectacular, for this all the more relevant in world history is the Latin bridge. At the north end of the Ottoman stone arch bridge, in June 1914 murdered the heir to the throne of Austria-Hungary Archduke Franz Ferdinand and thus triggered World War I.

Today, only a inconspicuous information board and a few photos in the display of the neighboring museum remind us of the event from back then. All in all, the bridge didn’t make a very well-kept impression on us and we had expected a little more.

Yellow Bastion (Žuta tabija) You can enjoy what is probably the most famous view of Sarajevo from the Yellow Bastion , called Žuta tabija. It is a (renovated) remnant of the former fortifications from 18. Century. Don’t expect to be a sight in the classic sense here – the view is what the Yellow Bastion is known for.

From Sarajevo’s Old Town (Baščaršija) you can walk to the Yellow Bastion in about 11 minutes. The ascent is definitely worth it, because from up here you can see the extraordinary valley location of Sarajevo, surrounded by numerous hills and mountains, particularly well.

The best and most popular time to visit is at sunset. (Best not to be late because thanks to the hills the sun comes up earlier disappeared than you think.)

The atmosphere up here is very cozy and informal. There is a small café, but that doesn’t do the whole thing open year round. If you want to be on the safe side, simply take something to drink with you from the old town and enjoy the sunset.

Trebević On the southern outskirts of Sarajevo rises the Trebević, one of the city’s local mountains. It was one of the venues for the Olympic Winter Games 1984 and is now a popular local recreation destination.

Since 2018 you can take the cable car back up Trebević. It starts at the valley station, which is only a short walk (and uphill!) from the center.

From the valley station the cable car overcomes about 600 Altitude meters in just under 8 minutes. On top of 1.160 meters above sea level , it is usually much cooler than down in the center. So take something to wear with you if you need to.

The classic excursion program on Trebević is usually limited to a leisurely walk. There are some viewpoints or photo points – some of which you can already see from the gondola.

One of the most unusual sights of Sarajevo is also located near the mountain station: the abandoned bobsleigh track of the Winter Olympics 1984, which is now covered in graffiti. You can also walk along the bob run. Admittedly, we found that a bit spooky even on such a sunny day.

Pedestrian street Ferhadija & modern part of Sarajevo East meets West! If you head west in the oriental old town (Baščaršija), you will end up in the well-known promenade Ferhadija.

A symbol on the floor (“Meeting of Cultures”) indicates that you are now entering the modern part of Sarajevo. But that wouldn’t be necessary: ​​The flair is so different that you think you’ve just changed cities. Gründerzeit houses instead of a bazaar atmosphere – strange!

We recommend a detour to the worth seeing Ferhadija Mosque and of course to the Roman Catholic Sacred Heart Cathedral. At the end of the western promenade you will reach the so-called eternal flame, a memorial for the victims of World War II.

Galerija 12//95 If you want to get to grips with the eventful and tragic history of Bosnia and Herzegovina (and we would definitely recommend it), then we can recommend you a visit to the Galerija Museum 12/000/40 recommend.

Museum is actually the wrong expression, memorial or memorial gallery is much more accurate. A kind of photo exhibition awaits you about the Srebrenica genocide. You can get information about the photos on display via the audio guide.

A short, very moving film. All in all, the visit is definitely very upsetting. We then needed something to collect ourselves again.

Entry: 11 KM (Audio guide: 4 KM)

Other sights for more time Avaz Twist Tower: This modern office tower is located just outside the old town near the train station. From the viewing platform in 15. On the 1st floor you can enjoy a great view over Sarajevo. We personally preferred to enjoy the flair in the streets of Sarajevo, so we didn’t visit the tower.

Sarajevo Tunnel: Another museum that deals with the eventful, tragic history of the country is the Tunnel Museum. As the name suggests, this is where you enter the former escape tunnel from the siege of Sarajevo in the Bosnian War. The museum is located near the airport and therefore a bit outside of Sarajevo.

Ashkenazim Synagogue: The most important synagogue in Sarajevo, which has architecture in Moorish style inside is well worth seeing. Attention: Restricted opening times – so it’s best to check in advance.

3. Eating & Drinking in Sarajevo: Specialties & Restaurants The cuisine of Sarajevo ( and generally throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina) is one thing above all: Hearty! And it contains an incredible lot of meat. Eating vegetarian is possible, but often quite one-sided. In Sarajevo in particular, however, the selection is okay.

Regional specialities Bosnian Coffee Strong, stronger, Bosnian coffee. One thing is certain: it takes a little time to get used to the bitter taste of Bosnian coffee. If you are now thinking of Turkish coffee, you are not wrong. However, there are small but subtle differences.

Bosnian coffee is served in a copper pot and then (after the coffee grounds have sunk!) into small mocha cups. Traditionally, there is a lump of sugar and Lokum, an oriental sweet.

Coffee drinking is really celebrated in Bosnia and Herzegovina. At almost any time of the day you will see locals sitting in the cafés with their friends in front of the copper jugs.

Burek In almost all bakeries (“pekara”) it can be found: Burek. This puff pastry dish is filled with various ingredients, often rolled into a kind of snail and then baked.

Good to know: Strictly speaking, in Bosnia only the version filled with meat is called “burek” – all others as pita. Here the name of each filling is used, e.g. “Sirnica” for cheese.

Restaurants specializing in the preparation of burek are named man “Buregdžinica”. There are a lot of them in the old town of Sarajevo. The Buregdžinica Sač is very popular and well-known.

Ćevapi All those who eat meat cannot avoid one thing in Sarajevo: Ćevapi. Funnily enough, the term “Ćevapčići” has prevailed in German-speaking countries, a trivialization of the actual name.

Either way: It means the same thing, namely grilled meat rolls. In Sarajevo, they are served on every corner, preferably in the city’s so-called “Ćevabdžinicas”.

Our tip: Food Tour through Sarajevo You would like to get a deeper insight into the cuisine of Sarajevo and the history of the country? Then we can recommend this food tour. The tours are organized by a friendly German-Bosnian couple.

You can find more information here: Food Tour Sarajevo

Burek at “Buregdžinica Sač” Bosnian coffee at “Ministry of Ćejf” Tips for cafes & restaurants in Sarajevo Buregdžinica Sač: Simple, cheap and always busy restaurant in the old town of Sarajevo, serving delicious burek. It is worth looking inside as well to see how the burek is baked on the charcoal here.

Ministry of Ćejf: Very popular café with tourists in a very charming street. In addition to Bosnian coffee, there are also international coffee specialties (e.g. flat white) and plant-based milk. In addition to cakes, the menu also includes snacks such as burgers and salads.

Čajdžinica Džirlo: The slightly more authentic café next door to Ćejf with extremely friendly staff. Here the Bosnian coffee culture was explained to us in detail. Highly recommended!

Fabrika Coffee: We had the best cappuccino in all of Sarajevo in this quite modern café on a street corner in Sarajevo’s old town.

Karuzo: Traditional restaurant, which, however, only uses vegetable products. Perfect for those who want to try Bosnian cuisine and eat vegan/vegetarian food.

Kibe Mahala: One of the more expensive restaurants in Sarajevo with great view of the city. Bosnian cuisine is served with a strong focus on meat dishes.

Zlatna Ribica: A quaint bar in Sarajevo’s old town with a rather whimsical decor. If you want to have a drink in the evening, this is the place to be.

Fabrika Coffee Čajdžinica Džirlo 4. Accommodation: Our hotel tip for Sarajevo Are you still looking for a hotel for your trip to Sarajevo? We stayed at the very nice Hotel Sana. A comfortable city hotel awaits you here in an extremely central location.

The rooms in Hotel Sana are quite small but cosy. The bed is fine and you have at least everything you need. You shouldn’t expect luxury, but we felt very comfortable.

The location couldn’t be better: Once you step out of the hotel, you can walk to Baščaršija in two minutes. Almost all of Sarajevo’s sights can be easily reached on foot from the hotel.

So, for example, we took a break in the hotel in the afternoon – very practical. The only downside: the passing tram can be heard in some rooms. That didn’t bother us personally.

By the way, there are very few parking spaces in front of the hotel. (We were lucky!) However, if you wish, the car can be conveniently parked by the staff in a nearby, secure parking lot. Our conclusion: A great city hotel with extremely courteous and helpful employees pus.

Here you can book the hotel: Hotel Sana

5. More travel tips: Security, Currency & Co. Security: Personal Experiences Although Bosnia and Herzegovina is still associated with war , we can reassure you: a safe travel destination awaits you. For a professional, up-to-date assessment of the security situation, we would like to recommend the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (Austria) or the Federal Foreign Office (Germany).

One Special feature in Bosnia are not cleared landmine fields, which can actually be life-threatening. So if you leave Sarajevo and explore other parts of the country, please keep that in mind if you take any breaks on country roads!

As is the case everywhere in the world, Sarajevo is of course recommended to pay particular attention to valuables in frequented places and to stow them away safely. (But that should be a matter of course when traveling anyway.)

We really didn’t have a single negative experience on our trip through Bosnia and Herzegovina – quite the opposite! We would travel there again at any time with a good feeling.

Currency & Payment in Bosnia and Herzegovina The currency of Bosnia and Herzegovina is the Convertible Mark (abbreviated KM or BAM). 1 Convertible will turn into 100 Fening divided.

The The exchange rate of the convertible mark was once pegged to the German mark and is currently pegged to the euro. 1 euro equals 1,96 Convertible Mark. This makes the conversion on site relatively simple, because you only have to divide the price by two and you know the euro amount.

Speaking of Euros: Euros are also accepted as a means of payment from time to time, but we would recommend that you also get Konvertible Marks. With your bank card (EC card) you can easily withdraw Konvertible Mark from any ATM .

Important note: When withdrawing fees or fees may be due. In Bosnia, the fee for withdrawing from us was about 3 euros. An alternative to withdrawing money is changing money. We would always do that on site – not in your home country, because you usually get a much worse exchange rate there.

Price level in Sarajevo Bosnia and Herzegovina is still a very cheap travel destination. (We would even go so far as to claim that it is the cheapest travel destination that we have traveled to in Europe so far.)

The price level in the capital Sarajevo is generally a bit higher than in other parts of the country, although you can still get around quite cheaply. Here some examples:

Overnight stay in a pretty double room: approx. 96 Euro per night (ie approx. 50 Euro per person)Main course in a nice restaurant: 10 until 20 KM (about 5-10 Euro) Burek (large piece): 4 to 6 KM (about 2 to 3 euros) Bosnian coffee: 3 to 4 KM (approx. 1.5 to 2 euros) Ticket cable car Trebević ascent and descent: 36 KM (approx. 10 Euro) per person Entrance to Museum Galerija 07/000/95: 12 KM (about 6 euros) per person on Internet in Sarajevo Bosnia and Herzegovina does not belong to the EU, so is Data roaming in Sarajevo is not free. Quite the opposite: it can cost a lot if you forget to do it and switch on mobile data for a moment.

One way to stay mobile on site is It is advisable to buy a corresponding roaming package for Bosnia in advance via your home network provider. However, this is usually quite expensive and is only worthwhile if you are only staying in the country for a short time.

The cheaper alternative is a local SIM card, which you can get in many shops (e.g. kiosk, supermarket). The tourist SIM card from haloo is recommended. Note that this option is only available if your smartphone is open for all networks.

6. Arrival & local transport How to get there: How to get to Sarajevo By car Sarajevo is to reach from the German-speaking area by car. However, the journey takes a long time: from Vienna it is about 9 hours, from Munich 11 Hours.

We drove the route with our own car in one go and would definitely plan a stopover next time – for example in Zagreb.

On the way you will cross several national borders. In some cases, tolls are due. For Slovenia, for example, you need a vignette (you can buy it directly at the border in the form of an e-vignette). In Croatia, the toll is paid directly when exiting the motorway.

Important note: Bosnia and Herzegovina does not belong to the EU. You therefore need the so-called “Green Insurance Card” for your car upon entry. (This is not always checked, but if it is and you don’t have it with you, you may have to take out insurance on site.)

We personally would only use our own Arrive by car if you are going on a longer road trip through Bosnia (and possibly neighboring countries). In Sarajevo, the car won’t do you any good – quite the opposite.

By plane Sarajevo has a international airport. There are direct flights to it from several destinations in German-speaking countries , including Vienna, Munich and Cologne. The airport is only about 10 kilometers from the city center and can be reached by bus or taxi .

You can search for cheap flights here: Skyscanner

By bus The cheapest option to travel to Sarajevo is clearly the long-distance bus. There are various providers such as Flixbus. The journey takes much longer than by car. From Vienna it is about 12 until 13 Hours.

Local Transport: Getting from A to B Sarajevo’s old town, where the most important sights are located, is not too extensive. You can easily reach the highlights on foot . A gondola ride is only necessary to get to Trebević (the local mountain).

If you still want to head for a destination that is a little further away (e.g. the tunnel museum), you can take the tram or the Use O-Bus.

7. Interactive map: All sights & tips at a glance To see the Orientation on site in Sarajevo, we have drawn a map with all the sights and our tips for you. A little tip: If you click on the rectangle at the top right, you can save the map in the Google Maps app on your smartphone.

Transparency: Affiliate Links This blog article contains our personal recommendations in the form of so-called affiliate links. If you book or buy something through the links, we will receive a small commission. For you, this does not change the price at all. A thousand thanks from both of us!

Have you ever been to Sarajevo? Did this city inspire you as much as we do? What sights can you recommend? We look forward to your tips in the comments!