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The travel blog for the backpackers guide to the world

Sarajevo


Posted by | Evil Kristos | June 13, 2011 | No Comments

In order to go from Mostar to Sarajevo one takes a train. I like trains a lot. Unfortunately in most countries they are too expensive to enjoy it. Not here though. Considering the beauty of the country side I’ve seen so far I was seriously looking forward. Traveling in style. Oh, how I deserve that.

The train was a heap of junk but I managed to get a seat. I wasn’t too impressed with my company though. I was sitting with two elderly women and a deaf guy. At least I assume he was deaf. He was shouting as if commanding a tank brigade in the middle of a battle. An he wouldn’t should up. I didn’t get much of the conversation but he was either an agitator or a poet. He seriously started to write a few pages and then shouted them out to the ladies. They seemed pleased.

Other than this it was epic. The train was rattling through the mountains and along the river. People were hanging out of the windows, smoking and chatting. Beautiful.

I also spotted to backpackers that were studying a guide book. I decided to keep an eye on them. I had absolutely no plan of where I was going and apparently Sarajevo is a bigger city. And it was.

The train arrived at the station, I walked out and saw … not much actually. We certainly weren’t anywhere near city center. I chatted up the couple. They took a tram into town so I followed them. The tram was a classic. You would sometimes see these in very old movies. All three of us looked out of the window puzzled. The couple looked at me indicating that they had no clue either. Eventually it looked city centerish. When I spotted a hostel I waved them good buy and jumped out. And there I was; lost in a new city. What do we now about Sarajevo?

Well not much to be honest. And it wasn’t very pretty either. The hostel was alright and he gave me directions. The place to be – I gathered – is the old market. It was just around the corner. There isn’t much to see but I found a cafe at a corner that had delicious cake. I sat down and enjoyed it. I later read that I was unknowingly doing the right thing. On the “things to do in Sarajevo”, sitting in a street cafe watching the people is number one. I couldn’t agree more. It was enjoyable.

Next I went to find the famous bridge where Franz Ferdinand got shot. Wold War I started here. The bridge isn’t very pretty but most definitely historic. The guy from the hostel also recommended a number of museums but I couldn’t be arsed. Instead I strolled around town. It is a colourful mix b all means. There undeniably is a strong Muslim influence. They even seem to have a competition who builds the higher tower. The catholics win.

Besides the old market is the colonial part with some Austro-Hungarian buildings. Since I’ve just been to Vienna it didn’t impress me that much. I do like the town as such though. It has good vibes. It doesn’t feel European at all. It strangely reminded me of northern Thailand. Don’t know whey but I liked it.

The only problem I encountered was: I was stuck. There was no way to get anywhere from here except Serbia (not interested), Croatia, (I’ve just been there) or Western Europe. Not one connection to Montenegro. The only way would have been a train to Belgrade and the take it from there, but I was told this might be difficult since the Serbian train workers are on strike. Well, well, well.

I decided, I always wanted to go to Dubrovnik. And so I did. On the way I discovered that going from Sarajevo to Mostar by bus beats the train by a mile. The road is even more picturesque and the bus did stop in one of the most beautiful spots along the way. This may not work the other way around though, since the stop was pretty close to Mostar. Despite my rather brief stay in Sarajevo I’ll give a high five. Bosnia & Herzegovina is totally awesome, as my American friends would say.

Sarajevo, right where Franz Ferdinand was assassinated.

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