If you follow me over on Instagram or Twitter, you might have caught a glimpse of my adventures in the Balkans (with a quick zip over to Turkey for good measure) back in June. Initially I thought I’d do a one post roundup including a photo or two of each place, but with five countries visited in 21 days that makes for a severely edited yet still long post. Instead I’ll be trying for quick highlights of each country, possibly with longer, detailed posts in the future. First stop, Serbia.
P.S. I guess this means I should post pics from Portugal and Morocco one of these days too…
Above: View from my 15th floor room. I arrived in Belgrade a few days ahead of our crew in an attempt to straighten out my jet lag. One perk? Awaking early to beautiful morning light.
Train to Novi Sad (shown in the two pics below), the second largest city in Serbia. More on that day over here.
And then back to Belgrade.
Though I didn’t fall head over heels, all in all, I ended up liking Belgrade. One wrong turn, some help from friendly locals, and I found my way easily from there on out. While Belgrade didn’t have the wealth of museums many capitals do (I think they’re still getting the national museum back up to speed, though it’s worth a peek), it forced me to check out a few I might not normally have, namely the Nikola Tesla Museum (ask for the guy who demos the exhibits) and the Aviation Museum. Also, bring your appetite! Belgrade has no shortage of food offerings with its abundance of cafés/kafanas. Everything I had was very good and affordable.
As with most places a good bit of wandering is the best way to take it all in. Belgrade boasts a ton of details if you pause to look. It’s a city of contrasts. There’s obvious appeal in centuries of history in a scenic fortress, churches, squares, and art nouveau embellishments juxtaposed with the beauty of decay and grit of recent history – communist era buildings, a bombed Ministry of Defense ruin, and a revered and graffitied printing institution. Obviously with only five days, there is plenty I did not get around to seeing or experiencing – given the right opportunity, I would definitely return.