Summer in the Balkans

Bosnia and Herzegovina: friendly people, ever so tasty but waist enhancing Burek, preserved alpine villages, incredible mountain peaks…. it really has it all! This summer consider a trip down to captivating Bosnia & Herzegovina for a memorable trip that will no doubt rate high in the adventure and fun cateogory.

The capital city of Bosnia & Herzegovina is Sarajevo, one of the most historically interesting cities in Europe. A multi-religious melting pot where the eastern and western Roman Empire split; where the people of the Eastern Orthodox east, the Ottoman south and the Roman Catholic west met, co-existed and warred. A real city of contradictions, on one hand Sarajevo stands as a stark example of historical turbulence and the clash of European and Arabic civilizations, while on the other it offers a beacon of hope for peace and tolerance through multi-religious, multi-cultural integration.

Ancient Tombstones in Bosnia & Herzegovina

Ancient Tombstones in Bosnia & Herzegovina

 

Selecting Budget Accommodation in Sarajevo

Over the past 10 years significant improvements have been made to the budget accommodation available to travellers in Sarajevo. With both modern hotels standing alongside traditional Bosnian home stays and pensions, travellers will have no trouble finding somewhere comfortable to rest and at a decent price too!

If you’re researching budget accommodation in Sarajevo you first need to determine the amount you’re willing to spend. It may be that what you’re willing to spend on hostel in neighboring Croatia, will get you a fairly decent mid-range hotel in Sarajevo. As a benchmark, you can be looking at EUR 15 for the very basic up to around EUR 45 for something very nice and comfortable. You want to also consider that food and transport in Sarajevo is fairly cheap and so spending a bit more on accommodation might not be such a bad thing.

Pigeon Square in Sarajevo

Pigeon Square in Sarajevo

Lonely Planet hasn’t reviewed too many hotels in Sarajevo. It’s a shame because Sarajevo is such an incredible place to visit and should really be on every travellers ‘must see’ list. Fortunately, the guys and girls at Greenvisions have partnered with whl.travel to create the travel site, Sarajevo-Travel.ba.

We founded our company on the principles of balance and harmony between man and nature,” says Thierry Joubert of Greenvisions,”We’ve pioneered a movement in creating alternative means of sustainable development while maintaining an eco-friendly approach to all that we do.”

As the local connection in Sarajevo, Thierry and his team have been able to bring together many interesting and unique budget accommodations in Sarajevo that you would not otherwise find online or would have difficulties booking online. whl.travel operates with this model in over 100 destinations around the world, giving you a local connection as you travel the globe.

If you would like a few suggestions as to budget accommodations in Sarajevo, try Hostel City Centre. A fairly standard hostel with cheap rooms and basic amenities. Another idea would be Ljubicica, another fairly basic hostel with a great bar/cafe/internet social area. Whilst the main hostel is located quite close to the pigeon square (you’ll know this square like your own backyard after your visit!), most of the accommodation is provided through private apartments operated by local families allowing you to experience true Bosnian life and some friendly conversations.

If you are prepared to spend a bit more, try Guest house Halvat, operated by the friendly Valida and Mumo in Sarajevo’s Old Town. As hotel operators during the war they have plenty of tales to tell as well as serving up a delicious home-made raspberry jam with breakfast!

Your hosts at Pansion Kandilj in Sarajevo

Your hosts at Pansion Kandilj in Sarajevo

One of the best accommodations in Sarajevo though has to be Pansion Kandilj, a small family run establishment committed to responsible tourism in their country. Pansion Kandilj provides their guests with a genuine experience with the facilities all designed in traditional Bosnian-style. They also promote the local culture offering guests with handicrafts and traditional clothing. If you decide to stay at Pansion Kandilj be sure to indulge in the delicious breakfast they will cook you on request (all included of course – try the bacon and tomato omelets!).

If you would like any other recommendations or advice regarding budget accommodation in Sarajevo please contact our local Sarajevo team. Please comment if you know of any other great little budget accommodations in Sarajevo that deserve a mention!

Getting to Medjugorje from Dubrovnik

Medjugorje is a beautiful little town located in the lush green mountains of Bosnia & Herzegovina, famous for the apparitions of the Virgin Mary in 1981. Medjugorje has now become one of the most visited sites in Bosnia & Herzegovina, with devout Catholics aiming to make the pilgrimage at least once in their lifetime.

Many decide to take a pilgrimage to Medjugorje, lasting anywhere from a few days to a few weeks or months. Of course, some people cannot afford such privilege and instead opt for a shorter trip to Medjugorje. Located just a few hours from the popular Dubrovnik in Croatia, it’s possible to take either a bus to Medjugorje or one of the many private tours available.

St. James Church - Medjugorje

St. James Church – Medjugorje

If you would like to visit Medjugorje from Dubrovnik and are on a budget (or enjoy public transport!) then consider taking taking a bus from Dubrovnik to Medjugorje. The ticket costs around EUR 10 and leaves the main bus station of Dubrovnik at 17:15 daily, arriving in Medjugorje at 21:10. So be sure you book your Medjugorje Hotel before arriving!

One such company offering a private transfer service from Dubrovnik to Medjugorje and private tours is Medjugorje Tours and Travel. Their transfer service from Dubrovnik to Medjugorje is affordable and reliable.

A private tour of Medjugorje is the best way to see this lovely town if you are staying in Dubrovnik and don’t have time to spend longer in Bosnia & Herzegovina on one of the Pilgrimages of Medjugorje. A transfer from Dubrovnik to Medjugorje, highlights of the town on a private guided tour, daily Mass service, and the transfer back to Dubrovnik will cost for; 2 Adults – 90 EUR Per Person, 3 Adults – 60 EUR Per Person, 4 – 8 Adults – EUR 50 Per Person.

Medjugorje pilgrims at the wooden cross

Medjugorje pilgrims at the wooden cross

If you are staying in Dubrovnik and looking for something interesting to do and perhaps you are not such a devout Catholic, then a day trip to Medjugorje still makes for a nice tour! With lush green forests and cascading waterfalls, Medjugorje is a place of peace and serenity, a place for everyone to relax and unwind. With so many little pensions in Medjugorje it is also possible to stay the night if you decide you like it so much!

Medjugorje Tours and Travel is located in Medjugorje right next to the St. James Church in Medjugorje – pretty much the centre of town! So if you are looking for some advice regarding a day tour to Medjugorje or just general information about Medjugorje then contact these guys. You can actually book a day trip of Medjugorje from Dubrovnik online with Medjugorje Tours & Travel.

If you have more time and would like to visit surrounding cities in Bosnia & Herzegovina consider a private Medjugorje Tour with pickup from Split, Dubrovnik or Sarajevo. It’s the perfect way to have a quick pilgrimage to Medjugorje with most things organised but enough time to still have your independence. Our partner Gunyah offers Bosnia Herzegovina Tours.

Bosnia & Beyond

Experience the cultural variety and rugged natural beauty of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro

Your chance to

  • Explore rugged landscapes
  • Discover a rich cultural heritage
  • Enjoy warm hospitality

At a glance

  • 10 nights hotels and pensions These are often small and family run and in convenient locations for the itinerary All rooms are en suite
  • Travel by air conditioned bus
  • Cultural discovery trip
  • Gentle walking – no experience required
Experience rugged natural beauty
Bosnia & Herzegovina and Montenegro have for centuries been at the crossroads of ancient civilisations, with a magical mixture of European and Near Eastern culture. The diversity is very clear, from the vibrant cities to the tiny traditional villages. Here we find a unique fusion of traditions, religions and architecture. Outside the towns and cities the raw natural beauty is breathtaking, with ancient forests, rugged peaks and the beautiful Adriatic coastline where we explore the magnificent Bay of Kotor, and make a stop in the wonderful Croatian city of Dubrovnik.

Itinerary

Show detailed itinerary
1Day 1
Start Dubrovnik; drive to Kotor in Montenegro.
2Day 2
Kotor city tour; boat ride to Gospa od Skrpjela and Perast islands in the Bay of Kotor.
3Day 3
Transfer to Cetinje for city tour. Drive to UNESCO Durmitor N.P.,visiting Ostrog Monastery en route.
4Day 4
Gentle walk around Zabljak Plateau with its lakes and traditional highland villages.
5Day 5
Transfer to the Piva River on the border with Bosnia; lunch and a short walk along the banks of this beautiful river; drive to Sarajevo.
6Day 6
City tour including the Sarajevo Tunnel Museum.
7Day 7
Drive to Lukomir, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s highest inhabited village; gentle walk to canyon.
8Day 8
Transfer to Mostar for sightseeing and city tour.
9Day 9
Explore Ottoman town of Pocitelj, Kravica Waterfalls and visit nearby village of Blagaj.
10Day 10
Transfer to Tvrdos Orthodox Monastery, followed by wine tasting; continue to Trebinje and then Dubrovnik.
11Day 11
End Dubrovnik.

images

Guided Group

This is a small group guided holiday. The group is usually between 8 and 18 in size, with an average of 12 like-minded clients booking individually, in a couple or as friends together.

Activity level

You are reasonably fit, enjoy the outdoors and are looking for some exercise. Some previous experience is preferable for activity based trips.

The Inside Word on… Medjugorje, Bosnia and Herzegovina

With so many destinations in the WHL Group‘s ever-expanding network, we have an incredible wealth of local travel information at our fingertips. Through the Inside Word, our local partners – all travel experts – share their top tips on what to do, what to eat, where to party and where to shop in their necks of the woods. This month, we hear from Zana R-Bilal about local travel in Medjugorje, Bosnia and Herzegovina … from the inside.

bosnia Medjugorje Inside Word - personal reflection

Take time for personal reflection and meditation in the peace-filled mountain paths surrounding Medjugorje, Bosnia. Photo courtesy of Zana R-Bilal

As an apparition site of the Virgin Mary that is well recognised by Catholics worldwide, Medjugorje is a Bosnian town with deep spiritual poignancy. Pilgrims and soul-searchers come from far and wide to partake in the sanctity of the place, get in touch with visionaries and simply enjoy the grace-filled ambiance. I recommend a minimum of three days in Medjugorje, as the longer you stay the more you can make time for personal prayer, reflection and religious activities in the community.

To start out, follow the path up Apparition Hill where the young visionaries first encountered Our Lady.  As you climb, you can see the inspired artistry of the bronze plaques depicting each mystery of the rosary. If climbing Mount Krizevac is too arduous, there is also a gentler path with the Stations of the Cross around the Risen Christ statue.

bosnia Medjugorje Inside Word- Cross Mountain

Visitors congregate at Cross Mountain, one of the many spiritual draws to the apparition town of Medjugorje, Bosnia. Photo courtesy of Zana R-Bilal

In addition, there is a daily International Mass with the Rosary and Healing Prayers, and Veneration of the Cross and Adoration in the evenings. Daily Holy Masses are made in several languages. Frequent talks by local Franciscan priests of the Medjugorje parish are also held in the blessed John Paul II Hall and there is daily adoration of the Blessed Sacrament each afternoon in the Adoration chapel.

Day trips

Before leaving Medjugorje, visit the surroundings full of natural beauty and historical interests. The gem of the region is the famous Waterfalls of Kravice, where in summertime you can swim with the locals or just enjoy the scenery while having a meal or cup of coffee at the nearby restaurant.

For a bit of history, visit the old city of Mostar with its historic bridge rebuilt across the beautiful Neretva River. The bridge and the area around it has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Wander through the narrow streets of the old town filled with souvenir shops, restaurants and historic buildings.

bosnia Medjugorje Inside Word- Waterfalls Kravice

The shimmering waterfalls of Kravice make a great day trip into the beautiful Bosnian countryside surrounding Medjugorje. Photo courtesy of Zana R-Bilal

Even closer, in Ljubuski (15 minutes’ drive of Medjugorje), you will find the parish church of St. Anthony, where you can take in the ancients relics of the first Franciscan priests in this area. Then visit ”The Mother” gallery with its splendid portraits and statues.

Not everyone realizes that the town of Medjugorje is also in close proximity to fantastic Balkan cities. A one-day excursion could take you to Sarajevo (the capital of Bosnia) or a four-day trip could cover Dubrovnik and Split in Croatia. If you would like to combine a pilgrimage with some relaxation by the beach, try a day trip to the breathtaking Makarska Riviera along the Adriatic coast.

Shopping

Purchase rosaries, statues or books at different local souvenir and handcrafts shops. You will find interesting wooden crafts of Jesus and Mary, as well as angels and crucifixes hand-carved from Medjugorje stones. Medjugorje souvenirs can be blessed by a priest if you bring them to evening prayer at St. James Church.

bosnia Medjugorje Inside Word- Local priest

Connecting with local priests in Medjugorje, Bosnia, is one of the biggest treats in this spiritual place. Photo courtesy of Zana R-Bilal

Restaurants

At mealtime there is a good choice of cafés and restaurants in Medjugorje that serve local cuisine.

Galileo Restaurant is known for its exclusive fish delicacies, and at Columbo Restaurant you will find the best choice of Italian cuisine and other International dishes. Have a meal at Voktor’s Restaurant for the kinds of homemade local specialties that keep people coming back for more.

Local Treats

The biggest treat in Medjugorje is the peaceful time for prayer in such inspired surroundings. Just walk through the fields to the Blue Cross or Apparition Hill. If you stay longer, take time to be a part of Medjugorje’s local community. Meet the families while attending Holy Mass, stop for casual conversation with locals or simply take your quiet time and space for personal reflection.

bosnia Medjugorje Inside Word- Outside Mass celebration

Catch an outside Mass celebration in Medjugorje, Bosnia. Photo courtesy of Zana R-Bilal

Night Out

To liven things up with locals, visit The Garden House, where local musicians play traditional instruments every Friday night. During the evenings, most cafés and restaurants are open. Try a glass of warm red wine or tea while sitting on one of their terraces and enjoying the great people-watching views of the streets from above. You will be able to feel the peaceful yet joyful vibe of quiet little Medjugorje.

The Hidden Beauty: My Photographic Journey Through Bosnia & Herzegovina

Recently I traveled around Bosnia & Herzegovina, a beautiful country in the Balkans. Without any proper plan, I rented a car in Sarajevo and started driving aimlessly throughout the country for 2 weeks to blend myself with the beauty of its countryside and mother nature. I was surprised that there were not so many tourists here as the country offers so many beautiful spots yet to be discovered.

Paris And Its Beautiful Girl To Accompany You

When you heard Paris, what do you have on your mind? Different people will depict Paris differently, and you? Mostly people admit that Paris is one among some romantic cities on earth that you’ll love to spend your time with the loved one. However, just because you want to avoid the romantic atmosphere as you are alone, you think about skipping your idea to enjoy Paris, you know, you need to think twice. If what you need is a companion, you have callgirl Paris, and yes, they are the only thing that you need.

Paris callgirls aren’t ordinary girls you can meet everywhere, they are beautiful, smart, and know how to comfort you. Let say that you have problem dealing with a personal you just met, fear not, since it won’t be happened. Paris callgirls know how to build comfortable atmosphere to reduce your nervousness. But before you go that far, you need to ensure that you choose trusted site as if you don’t, you will regret it. Considering only trusted site for call girl, you get the real girl just like you have on mind.

The pictures that are posted on the gallery are their actual self. If you want to be more convinced, you can request their personal information, such as their real name, address, and origin. Suppose that you want more, the site offers you with their previous job information, and for your surprise, you will meet with ex-model, ex-actress, and so on. What you have on your mind? Some of you may like or dislike the idea, but how about if beforehand, you find good site like escort24h for instance to look around from the girls to choose to the services that are offered ? Say that you love this very idea, you can continue to arrange the contract with Paris callgirl agency, and you’re done.

 

Getting Yourself Beautiful Girl In Brussels, What It Takes?

Brussels by itself is a good place for those who appreciate the story of the past through its old building, but you know what? It is not the only reason why Brussels can be an interesting place to visit, just in case you are from somewhere far. Brussels in one among few places on earth where the most gorgeous girls are there. Feeling lucky as you have time to visit there as you consider yourself to have some chances to hit a beautiful girl there? It depends. However, you better consider Brussels call girls, if you are very serious with the ideas, asking why?

It is just not easy to find perfect girl for some reasons, you admit it or not. That said call girls in Brussels make something impossible to possible. Not to say, but for any pleasure seeker in Brussels, this idea is just so perfect. In addition, you have privilege to choose girl that you want before hiring their services. Describe a typical girl that fits your criteria and the agency will assist you to get exactly what you want. You maybe love a red-haired girl with hazel eyes, slender body feature that is not too tall, truth be told, that typical girl is available for you.

Not stopping there, you also can choose the origin of the girl. The reason why Brussels escort agency provides you with many selections of girls, it is because based on their experience, they know exactly that each of their clients can’t not be treated the same way for their different taste of beauty. In addition, you may have kind of worry that the girl is not real, however, you better not that paranoid since a Brussels escort girl with good reputation will never allow you to experience something that you consider as inconvenience.

 

 

 

 

6 Things to be aware of when backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Jajce, Bosnia and Herzegovina with a big waterfall going through the centreVisas

1) With or without a visa?

  1. A) No visa

Citizens of the 67 countries listed below may stay in Bosnia and Herzegovina for up to 90 days without a visa.Visa policy of Bosnia and Herzegovina - countries that don't require a visa. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

  1. B) With visa

Citizens of all the other countries must obtain a visa from one of the Bosnia and Herzegovina diplomatic missions. An application for a tourist visa application must be accompanied by a voucher from the tourist agency organising the visit. The cost of a single entry visa is €31.

Learn more here.

  1. C) No passport necessary

Citizens of the European Union, Schengen Agreement, Andorra, Monaco, Montenegro, San Marino, Serbia and the Holy See may enter Bosnia and Herzegovina using just an ID card.Koski Mehmed Paša Mosque and the Neretva River in Mostar old town, Bosnia and Herzegovina. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Mostar old town

Food & Drink

2) Multicultural cuisine

Bosnian cuisine is rich in eastern and western influences and it’s closely linked to Turkish, Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cooking. While in Bosnia you should try a variety of dishes (most based on mince meat) you wouldn’t be able to taste anywhere else in Europe. In Bosnia you can really eat well on a budget! Learn more about Bosnian cuisine.Sarajevo, Bosnia & Herzegovina (62) - Bosanski Lonac served at Nanina Kuhinja. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Bosanski Lonac served at Nanina Kuhinja, Sarajevo

Accommodation

3) Camping wild can be dangerous

Due to the huge amount of land mines that are still buried in Bosnia, camping wild is dangerous and discouraged. There are not that many organised campsites either. If CouchSurfing fails you, don’t fear as there are plenty of accommodation options in Bosnia, starting with youth hostels and ending with communist style abandoned hotels.

While hitchhiking we did get stuck in Bosnia but never had problems finding a place to sleep. Just ask around and somebody will help you.Old communist hotel in Jablanica, Bosnia and Herzegovina. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Old communist hotel in Jablanica

Weather

4) Gorgeous summers & snowy winters

The southern and western parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina lie in the Mediterranean climate, with relatively mild winters and very warm summers.

Inland and highly elevated parts of the country experience short, cool summers and long, severe winters.

The average yearly temperature in Sarajevo is 10 °C, with January (−0.5 °C) being the coldest month of and July (19.7 °C) the warmest month of the year.Sarajevo weather graph - by climatemps. backpacking and hitch-hiking in BosniaSarajevo weather - by climatemps. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

source: climatemps.com

Current weather in SarajevoJajce, Bosnia and Herzegovina with a big waterfall going through the centre. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Jajce Waterfall

Culture & History

5) Three distinct cultures

You should know that in Bosnia there are three distinct cultures, all identified with a particular religion but with almost exactly the same language and on sight, physically the people are indistinguishable. Within the country of Bosnia & Herzegovina there are two states, the Federation of Bosnia & Herzegovina, consisting of: Croatian Catholic communities (in the west),  Bosnian Muslims (in the centre) and Orthodox Serbs in the east; and Republica Srpska, a relic of the Dayton Peace agreements, which covers vast tracts of the east and north, and populated by Serbs.Administrative division of Bosnia and Herzegovina - Republika Srpska and Federation of Bosnia & Herzegovina. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Administrative division of BiH, source Wikipedia

The peace, to say the least, is an uneasy one. Some villages are Muslim, others are Orthodox, some are Croatian and others are mixed. War memories still remain vivid and forgetting, let alone forgiving, is not an easy process. While hitchhiking we have had the chance to meet people from all these different groups.

Learn more reading our post Bosnia & Herzegovina, Republica Srpska & the problem of perspective.Lovely Bosnian girl in Mostar. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Language

6) Bosnian or Serbo-Croatian?

After Yugoslavia split, the Bosnian government declared the official language to be called ‘Bosnian’ rather than ‘Serbo-Croatian’. However, many linguists and consider Croatian, Serbian and Bosnian to be the same language, with only minor idiomatic differences.

Bosnian is one of the three official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina, together with Croatian and Serbian. It is also an officially recognized minority or regional language in Serbia, Montenegro, Kosovo, and Macedonia.

Standard Bosnian uses a Latin alphabet. Despite its Slavic roots, it also uses some Arabic, Turkish and Persian loanwords, especially linked with Islamic culture and cuisine.

Bosnian is a South-Slavic language and for me, a Pole (and a West-Slavic language native) it was possible to understand the basics although I wouldn’t be able to hold a complex conversation. I was surprised, however, that despite larger distance it was easier for me to understand Bosnian (Serbian and Croat) than Slovenian. If you speak any Slavic language you will be able to get by and get your point across.Old souvenir vendor in Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina. backpacking and hitch-hiking in Bosnia

Best Hotels in Lombok, Where To Go?

Are you looking for a good site to find the best hotels in Lombok? Not to mention, but hotel is one among other things that you put into your vacation list, and you better never take it lightly. Some budget friendly travelers in order to suppress their budget, they overlook the hotel and simply choose any hotel that gives them with the lowest price without further considerations. When it comes to something cheap, sometimes it is not equal with cheap quality, since if you want to do some investigative work, you can find less pricey hotel with best quality.

When it comes to best hotel to stay in Lombok, everyone defines it differently. Those who are price conscious may determine what is best and what is not based on couples of factors like the prices and the services that they get. To put it more simply, the best hotel means, a hotel with affordable luxury. Meanwhile, those who are not that tight for its holiday budget, they may look the best hotel differently, even though, it will make them happy as well if they don’t need to pay that much for a hotel room with good quality.

Nevertheless, talk about the best hotels that are available in Lombok, herein you will find some of them. Sudamala Suites & Villa Senggigi it sounds like a good idea if you love to stay in a typical hotel room where you get access to such a mesmerizing garden view with mixture either beach or swimming pool. In addition, if you consider that having fun in hotel club as good idea, the previously mentioned hotel caters you with the best hotel club. Puri Mas Boutique & Village is another good place to stay, moreover if you spend your time in Lombok with your significant one.

Those who expect luxury, the abovementioned hotel is worth considering. As it caters you with deluxe quality, the rate is quite pricey for some people, however, if you have no problem about it, then, it is okay. In need for more affordable hotel with top notch quality? The lists are Golden Tulip Mataram Lombok, Lombok Raya, Favehotel Lengko and many others. Simply check for some additional information through a certain site like Mister Aladin to figure out more, since you will find any information that you need. In addition, you can search a hotel room there through the hotel room rate, best review, and so on that ease you to look a certain hotel that fits to your qualifications.