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Sarajevo Travel guide

Sarajevo is a casual city with a lot of people, but even for the number of people that there are it is very warm and welcoming for everybody. The food is amazing and the attractions are even better, check them all in this Sarajevo Travel Guide.

Even though we all know about the war on Balkans, I don’t want to talk about that, I would rather talk about how Sarajevo is thriving today. So much in fact that it’s even been picked as one of Lonely Planet’s Best Cities to Visit and one of Europe’s most underrated capitals. For me, the biggest charm was the city’s traditional authenticity. Of all the Old Towns I’ve visited in Europe, Sarajevo is the most authentic one with an incredible old-world feel.

Girl looking at Skenderija Bridge in Sarajevo

What to expect in Sarajevo

Language spoken in Sarajevo

Bosnian is the official language of Bosnia and Herzegovina, it is very very similar to Croatian and Serbian with some small word differences, but even if you are not from Balkans and speak English you will have an easy time navigating through Sarajevo.

Currency used in Sarajevo

Bosnia-Herzegovina Convertible Marka is the official currency. If you are going to Bosnia from any of Balkan countries you can easily change your Euros, Kunas or anything else to Bosnia-Herzegovina Convertible Marka.

Credit cards and ATMs

I have three words for you on this topic “Cash is King”. I highly recommend stacking on cash if you are traveling to Sarajevo because most of the restaurants do not accept cards or they make your receipt on cash without asking you. But if you run out of cash there are ATM-s everywhere so you can easily withdraw more.

Is it safe in Sarajevo?

Safety: Similar to Zagreb, Sarajevo is very safe for any type of travelers, but be aware of pickpocketers in the Old town.

Cost of food in Sarajevo

Sarajevo is one of the cheapest cities that I have been, period. You can have a meal for 2 to 10 Euros to more depending on what and where you are eating.

Ćevapi cost around 5 Euros which is a steal, and you can find a burek for around 2 Euros. Keep in mind that supermarkets are also very cheap.

Girl posing at Sebilj in Sarajevo

Getting around Sarajevo

Sarajevo is a walking city, you can easily walk all over the city and if needed can take a tram.

There is also a number of walking tours if you like to explore Sarajevo with a group of people.

Taxis in Sarajevo

Uber or any other taxi service is not available in Sarajevo or Bosnia as a whole, so you will have to rely on local taxi drivers. You will not get scammed if you look at the taximeter and how much it will cost you, but keep in mind that if you are putting luggage in the car it will cost 2 Convertible Marka per luggage.

  • Where to Stay
  • Where to Eat
  • What to Do
Girl looking at Sarajevo from balcony

Hotel Sana

Locate in the Old town of Sarajevo, this 4-star hotel is one of the best that you can find. Bascarsija Street, Latin bridge, and Sebilj fountain are all located just 500 meters from the hotel. But that isn’t even the best part, the best part is the outdoor terrace with a bar and restaurant on-site. Check out the amazing Hotel Sana.

Location:  Mula Mustafe Bašeskije 53, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia & Herzegovina
Accommodation: Hotel
Price range: €79 +

Hotel President Sarajevo

One of the top-rated hotels in Sarajevo, President Sarajevo feature a classy decorated interior with all state of the art appliances. It is located also in the Old town and just a few minutes away from any major attraction. Check out Hotel President Sarajevo.

Location: Bazardžani 1, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia & Herzegovina
Accommodation: Hotel
Price range: €99 +

Girl standing at balcony and looking at Sarajevo

Hotel Latinski Most

Based on its name, it is very close to the Latin Bridge in Sarajevo, far more you can see it from your window. Also, everything is close to the hotel, supermarket attractions you name it. I consider this Hotel on the premier accommodations if you are visiting Sarajevo based on its price, attractions. Check out Hotel Latinski Most.

Location: Obala Isa-bega Ishakovića 1, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia & Herzegovina
Accommodation: Hotel
Price range: €40 +

Hotel Old Sarajevo

Looking for a cheap hotel in Sarajevo? Then you have found your match. Old Sarajevo is a budget hotel that has amazing recommendations and everything that you might need to stay for a couple of days in Sarajevo. Alongside the small price the amazing part is that it is in the city center, and you won’t have to walk too far if you want to visit anything or just go for a night stroll around the city.  Check out Hotel Old Sarajevo.

Location: Bravadžiluk 38, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia & Herzegovina
Accommodation: Hotel
Price range: €60 +

Room at Hotel Old Sarajevo
Hotel Old Sarajevo, photo from: booking.com

Apartment Latin Bridge

This 4-star apartment was decorated by arts and antique dealer, therefore you can imagine that it looks amazing. But it also has everything that you need for a longer stay if needed with a kitchen that has everything and if you do not like to cook, or just do not feel like it there is a restaurant right next door. Check out Apartment Latin Bridge.

Location: Obala Kulina Bana 35, 71000 Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Accommodation: Apartment
Price range: €99 +

Common area at Apartment Latin Bridge in Sarajevo
Apartment Latin Bridge, photo from: booking.com

Apartment Cobanija

If you are not a fan of restaurants or hotels, then Apartment Cobanija is the accommodations that you were looking for. Located in the city center similar to other accommodations, in this complex of apartments you will find everything that you have at home from the kitchen, to terrace to the state of the art appliances. Check out Apartment Cobanija.

Location: Skenderpašina 3, 71000, Sarajevo 71000, Bosnia & Herzegovina
Accommodation: Apartment
Price range: €66 +

People walking at Bascarsija in Sarajevo

If you go to Sarajevo or even Bosnia and, in general, you will always hear how the food is amazing, there is also a saying: „Sarajevo ćevapi are the best ones out there.“ which I can confirm.

Easily the most traditional dish in Bosnia and Herzegovina is Burek, and I have eaten my fair share of bureks and I can say that the one is in the Buregdzinica Bosna. Located in a small street in the Old town, you can sit indoors and outdoors if you like and enjoy your meal in the traditional Bosnian fashion.

There is a couple of spots that feature Zeljo name, but the best one is in the Old Town, and it is almost always busy and crowded, so be prepared to wait a couple of minutes is you are craving some ćevapi.

Traditional lepinja in Sarajevo

If you do not feel like eating ćevapi, Pirpa pizza is a restaurant that has amazing pizzas, burgers, and kebabs. The restaurant is very laid back and people enjoy it.

Similar to Zeljo, you can find a couple of spots where Zmaj is located, but the main benefit of this restaurant is that they if needed, deliver your meal to your doorstep from 6-24, you if you really do not feel like going to the city at night or you just want a midnight snack.

Food at Restaurant Zmaj Sarajevo
Ćevabdžinica Zmaj, photo from: cevabdzinicazmaj.ba
Meat at Restaurant Zmaj Sarajevo
Ćevabdžinica Zmaj, photo from: cevabdzinicazmaj.ba

If you do not wish to drink coffee in a crowded Old town, and you just want to feel like local, then Kamarija is for you. This cozy cafe has a beautiful terrace and delicious drinks. They have everything from traditional Bosnian coffee to smoothies and desserts so you will surely find something.

Girl standing in front of Bascarsija

City Hall

Sarajevo City Hall (Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian: Gradska vijećnica Sarajevo) known as Vijećnica, is located in the city of Sarajevo. It was designed in 1891 by the Czech architect Karel Pařík, but criticisms by the minister, Baron Benjamin Kallay, caused him to stop working on the project. It was initially the largest and most representative building of the Austro-Hungarian period in Sarajevo and served as the city hall. The building was reopened on May 9, 2014.

Girl shopping in Sarajevo

Sarajevo Old Town (Barščaršćija)

As I mentioned before, if you go to Sarajevo this is the place you are coming for. The old town is a mix of 15th-century culture and modern flavor that you can feel all around. You can find a souvenir of virtually everything from old ammunition to pendants.

Sebilj Fountain

Next, to the Old Town, there is Sebilj Fountain, in which you can have a cup of coffee right next to it in the morning when there isn’t a lot of crowd gathering around.

Girl looking at Old ruins in Sarajevo
Girl posing at Sebilj in Sarajevo

Gazi Husrev-Beg Mosque

Back in the Old Town where most of the action is, you’ll find the Gazi Husrev-Beg mosque.

 

It deserves a visit because it’s the largest historical mosque in Bosnia and one of the most representative Ottoman structures in the Balkans. Also to note that the structure is stunning and you can’t go to Sarajevo and not visit it.

 

Also, I liked visiting churches, a synagogue, and a mosque while I was in town. They showed the religious diversity and how people from different faiths have coexisted in Sarajevo both before and after the war.

Girl standing in front of well at Gazi Husrev Begs mosque

City market (Gradska tržnica)

The City Market isn’t located in the center of the Old Town rather then that it is located in the newer part of the city which if you walk around the center of Sarajevo will see that it is vibrant and crowded as the Old Town.

 

One of the main attractions of the locals but now for the tourists also is the City market or as local people call it Gradska tržnica. The building of the City Market in Sarajevo was built out of the need of citizens to put in one place the trade of groceries, which was intensified due to the construction of the railway station. The City Market was open on 1 November 1895 and to this day it has the same purpose.

Girl surrounded with flowers at entrance to City market in Sarajevo

Coffee drinking

Through hundreds of years of often turbulent history, coffee has become a way of life and is much more than simply a beverage. There are no takeaway mugs here. Sit at one of the many cafes, be present at the moment, and slowly enjoy the dark roast in petite cups — just don’t call it Turkish coffee.

Bosnian coffee with beans

How exactly do you drink it? The traditional Bosnian way is to dip a sugar cube into the hot beverage, nibble on the coffee-soaked cube, take a sip and repeat. In between, talk to your friends about the day, the weather, the three joint presidents of the country, or just your plans for dinner. When you enter a shop, you’ll likely be offered the chance to sit down and partake in the ritual with shop owners. Invited over to someone’s house? Expect to have at least two or three servings. The first is to welcome you, the second is for pure enjoyment, and the third signals it’s time to go — but not until you reach the grounds at the bottom of the cup, of course.

The view from the top

As my apartment was looking on the whole Sarajevo I didn’t have the need to go to the Yellow bastion or even the Olympic Mountain, but if you wish to look at this beautiful city from the up-down you can also visit Avaz Twist Tower which has an amazing view of the whole city.

People walking in Sacred hearth cathedral in Sarajevo
Girl sitting on Latin bridge in Sarajevo

Latin bridge

This is where prince Ferdinand and his pregnant wife were killed by Bosnian-Serb Gavrilo Princip on the 28th of June, 1914. Princip was just 19 years old.

If you walk to the northern end of the bridge, you’ll see the spot of the assassination.

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