Go to Bosnia Herzegovina!
It’s just a short flight away from European capitals. It’s affordable (read: cheap for Europe). It’s has a lot to offer in a small country, meaning you can see a lot in a bit more than a weekend. Ice on the cake, it’s still uncrowded of tourists!
First time in Bosnia – what to do
I am sharing below a suggestion for a first visit to BiH. In 5 days the itinerary features various points of interest: trendy capital, scenic drive, UNESCO sites, postcard villages, rural landscapes in mountainous areas. The itinerary is concentrated in the south part of Herzegovina so you don’t have to spend hours on the roads.
Itinerary “Highlights of Bosnia Herzegovina” – 5 days
- Day 1 and 2 – Explore Sarajevo. Stroll along the river and on pedestrian streets of the old Turkish quarter
- Day 3 – Drive along the Neretva river, spend the evening and night in Mostar.
- Day 4 – Discover mighty mountains and rural Herzegovina, enjoy outdoor activities like hiking or mountain biking. Drive back to Sarajevo.
- Day 5 – Enjoy your last day in the capital, make sure you try local specialties.
2 tips to enjoy the ride:
- Rent a car for days 2 and 3, it will give you more flexibility in your explorations
- Pack a small Bosnian phrase book, it can come handy in the more rural areas (ex: Free WikiTravel resource)
Possible extension by the coast – one week Bosnia & Croatia
If you have a bit more time you could add 3 days in Dubrovnik, in Croatia. Count 2h30 of drive to reach the Adriatic coast + time to pass the border, which can vary a lot.
Starting your trip from Dubrovnik and driving up North (Dubrovnik – Mostar – Nerevta river – Sarajevo – Bjelasnica – Mostar – Dubrovnik) is a good alternative if there are no direct flights for you to Sarajevo.
Reader’s tip: extension/alternative to discover North Western Bosnia
Reader Zlatanap suggested in the comments an extension by north Western Bosnia if you like landscapes. He recommends for example Strbacki buk, Martin Brod, where you can do rafting as well as (scuba)diving in beautiful river Unac. You can catch a fly to/from Zagreb, as it’s located at the border with Croatia.
Another tip from Zlatanap was to see the stecke, which are mediaval tombstone scattered across Bosnia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ste%C4%87ak).”
Little big explorations’ comment: North Western Bosnia can easily be added at the end of your trip if you have a full week to discover Bosnia. You can then fly in Sarajevo and out from Zagreb. If you are short on time, choose between Neretva river and Una National Park, depending on what is ore practical for you with your global itinerary! Thanks Zlatanap for the tip!
Have a look also at Tasty exploration of Bosnia (with tips on where to eat)
This post is part of a serie about Bosnia Herzegovina.