In our new Globe Trotter series, Viral Travel reviews all the best places to see, eat and stay at in every country of the world!
This week we visit: Bosnia and Herzegovina
To many, the country is still synonymous with the Yugoslav wars that ravaged the Balkan region in the 1990s. However, there are many amazing things in the county’s urban centers, most notably the cosmopolitan capital of Sarajevo with its Turkish heritage and great cafe scene. There are also fortresses, old mosques, monasteries and Catholic shrines to enjoy.
The country’s second largest city and administrative capital of RepublikaSrpska, is home to the fantastic Tvrdjava Fortress. Also, nearby are several Orthodox monasteries that are worth a visit.
Shop and stop to enjoy a traditional Turkish black coffee at one of district’s many cafés.
It is home to the Fathija Mosque, which used to be a church, and is also a great place for rafting on the fast Una River.
Visit the dervish tekkija at the base of a 200m (656ft) cliff in Blagaj, a village that is only a half-day trip from Mostar.
The world’s second most visited Catholic shrine, Medjugorje, is a place where many claim to have seen apparitions of the Virgin Mary. Hundreds of thousands of visitors come to see the shrine each year, but it has yet to be recognized as an official pilgrimage site by the Vatican.
See the elegant Ottoman bridge that connects the two sides of the town across the Neretva River. The original 16th-century bridge was destroyed during the war but it has since been rebuilt with the help of the Turkish people. The town also has 16th- and 17th-century mosques, medieval architecture and cobbled streets that survived the war.
See how 500 years of the Turkish rule have left the mark on Sarajevo. The Turkish quarter (Bascarsija) and the town center were rebuilt and the city is slowly coming back to life. The colorful bazaars are what is left of the city’s Ottoman heritage.
Sutjeska National Park
Witness the wildlife and the beauty of Sutjeska National Park. It contains Maglic Mountain – at 2,368m (7,769ft), the highest point in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Perucica Forest, one of the last remaining primeval European forests.