flag Bosnia and Herzegovina Bosnia and Herzegovina: Travelling

In this page: Entry Requirements | Organising Your Trip | Visiting | Living Conditions | Eating | Paying | Speaking | Useful Resources

 

Organising Your Trip

Means of Transport Recommended in Town

Recommendation
In cities, taxis are the best option for tourists. There is also a public transport system that includes trains and buses. However the train system was largely affected by the war, making the bus system more widespread and frequent.
Maps of Urban Networks
Google Maps

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Means of Transport Recommended in the Rest of the Country

Rail Companies
Public Enterprise Railways of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina Ltd. Sarajevo
Republika Sprska

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Airlines

Name Type Domestic Flights International Flights
Turkish Airlines International No Yes
Austrian Airlines International No Yes
Air Serbia International No Yes
Lufthansa International No Yes
United International No Yes

You Can Consult The EU Air Safety List. Look Also at the rating of the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

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Travelling By Yourself

Recommendation
The road and railway transportation system in Bosnia and Herzegovina tends to be slow due to winding roads and no highways. The roads are poorly maintained and are often blocked due to weather and traffic related incidents. It is recommended that a taxi be taken to go to another city instead of driving on one's own; it is also recommended that one negotiate a price for the ride in advance.
Road Maps
Sarajevo map
Google Maps
Find an Itinerary
Via Michelin Route Planner
Bosnia and Herzegovina Official Tourism page

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Visiting

Different Forms of Tourism

Historical
The majority of the historical monuments in Bosnia and Herzegovina date to the Ottoman Empire. An example of the Ottoman Empire's architecture is Sarajevo's Old Town, called Bascarsija. Another example is the order monastery at Blagaj on the river Buna from the 16th century, which has been submitted to the Tentative List of UNESCO's World Heritage sites as a natural and architectural ensemble of Blagaj. For those interested in more recent history, the city of Jajce is worth a visit. It is where the foundation was laid for the 2nd Yugoslavia as a socialist and federal republic in 1943.
Cultural
At least three of the cultural treasures of Bosnia and Herzegovina are linked to rivers and bridges, with two inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, Mehmed Pasa Sokolovic Bridge in Visegrad and Old Bridge Area of the Old City of Mostar. However, the most known cultural site in Bosnia and Herzegovina is probably the capital city of Sarajevo, which is inscribed on the UNESCO Tentative List of World Heritage as a unique symbol of 'universal multiculture - continual open city'. Sarajevo hosts the Sarajevo Film Festival, the largest in Southeast Europe.
Nature
Bosnia and Herzegovina has a lot to offer in terms of nature tourism, such as hiking and walking through the highlands or whitewater rafting and kayaking down rivers. One of the country's oldest parks is Sutjeska, which is also home to Bosnia's highest peak (Maglic Mt. 2,386 m).

Vjetrenica cave (heavily damaged by the war in 1991) is one of the country's nature sites that has been submitted to UNESCO World Heritage's Tentative List.

Religious
Even though it is officially not recognised by the Pope, millions of Catholics visit the tiny village of Medjugorje where it is believed that Mother Mary appeared and spoke to six teenagers in 1981.
Thermal
Bosnia and Herzegovina is blessed with a great abundance of crystal clear mountain rivers and high quality thermal springs. Thermal resorts can be found in llidza, Fojnica, Kiseljak, Teslic and Banja Luka.
Beach
Bosnia and Herzegovina has only 22 km long coastline along the Adriatic Sea, with Neum being the only resort town. Scuba-diving, parasailing, boating and jet skiing can all readily be arranged in any of the major hotels in Neum and tends to be cheaper than in neighbouring country Croatia. However during the season, it is wise to book in advance.
Winter Sports
In 1984, the Winter Olympic Games were held in Sarajevo, and those slopes from the Games still remain. Ski lifts and other infrastructure were renovated after damages from the civil war in the 1990s. Thus, the Olympic mountain of Bjelasnica offers by far the most challenging ski trails in the country, and the mount of Jahorina has made a great comeback as southeast Europe's best ski resort.
Outdoor Activities
Walking, hiking, whitewater rafting and kayaking, skiing, fishing and hunting, mountain biking, paragliding.
Shopping
In recent years, the expansion of the shopping mall concept has taken place in Bosnia. The Sarajevo City Center, which opened in 2014, hosts 160 stores and a five-star hotel.
Tourism Organisations
BH Tourism

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Living Conditions

Health and Safety

Health Precautions
No specific vaccination is required.
International Hospitals
Outside of Sarajevo it might be more difficult to find a hospital or medical professional that speaks English.
For Further Information on Sanitary Conditions
Health information from the World Health Organisation
Health advice for Bosnia and Herzegovina from the UK Government
For Further Information on Safety Conditions
U.S. Department of State's Travel Guidance on Bosnia and Herzegovina
Canadian Government's Travel Guidance on Bosnia and Herzegovina
UK Government's Travel Guidance on Bosnia and Herzegovina
 

Emergency Numbers

Emergency-Ambulance 124
Police 122
Fire department 123
Emergency-natural and other disasters 121
Road assistance in Muslim-Croat Federation 1282
Road assistance in Republic of Srpska 1285
 

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Time Difference and Climate

Time and Time Difference
It is %T:%M %A In Sarajevo (GMT+1 in winter and GMT+2 in summer)
Summer Time Period
Last Sunday of March – Last Sunday of October
 

Map of the Time Zone

Time zone

Type of Climate
Dominated by mountainous and hilly terrain, and surrounded by major rivers to the north (Sava) and east (Drina), Bosnia and Herzegovina's climate is variable. The country tends to have mostly moderate continental climatic conditions or very cold winters and hot summers.

The best time to visit is from May to October, as it is warmest and driest then. Regardless even in the summer, a sweater will be needed during the evenings. The weather in Bosnia resembles that of the southern Austrian highlands—generally mild, though apt to be bitterly cold in winter.

Bosnia and Herzegovina's climate is different for each province: Herzegovina and the southern part of the country has a modified Mediterranean climate with an average annual precipitation of 600 to 800 mm while the central and northern area of Bosnia has a modified Pannonian or Alpine climate with an average annual precipitation of 1,500 to 2,500 mm. Average temperature ranges in Sarajevo are from -0.5 degrees Celsius in January to 19.6 degrees Celsius in July.

For Further Information
Weather and Climate Agency of the Republika Srpska and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina
 

Average Annual Temperatures and Rainfall

Climate

 

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Eating

Food Specialties
The Bosnian region's diverse cultures is prevalent in its food. The Ottomans brought with them lamb or beef sausages, filo pastries, spicy meats and kebabs. While meat is prevalent in Bosnian dishes, there are also a wide variety of vegetables, fruits and milk products, such as spinach, tomatoes, courgettes, dried beans, fresh beans, onions, carrots, peppers, plums, milk and cream. The cuisine also shares elements like pita bread, feta cheese, and the use of flaky phyllo dough with its Mediterranean neighbours. When travelling across the country, the most popular items are cevapcici, Bosanski lonac (Bosnian Pot), baklava and tufahija.

The best wines come from the Herzegovina part of the country.

Drinks
Coffee drinking is a favourite Bosnian pastime and a prominent part of the culture. There are also some good local beers (try Sarajevsko pivara) and wines to accompany meals. In some Muslim restaurants, it may be difficult to get an alcoholic drink; however, this is not the case in upper-class restaurants or bars. Furthermore, Muslims are rather flexible on this point.
Dietary Restrictions
In general, Muslim restaurants do not serve pork. On the other hand, pork meat can be heavily advertised and found in Serbian restaurants.

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Paying

Domestic Currency
Bosnian Mark
ISO Code
BAM
To Obtain Domestic Currency
The easiest way to get the national currency is at ATM machines, which have seen a significant increase in availability throughout the country over the past years. Foreign currency can also be changed at banks or in hotels; however, in many cases euros are also accepted as payment.
Possible Means of Payment
Bosnia and Herzegovina is generally a 'cash-only' economy, and traveller's cheques are exchanged only at banks. Many shops and restaurants in major cities now accept some debit/credit cards. Euros and U.S. dollars are the preferred foreign currencies within the country, and euro banknotes or coins are widely accepted at stores and restaurants.

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Speaking

Official Language
Bosnian, Croatian, Serbian
Other Languages Spoken
Romani (Vlax) is a language of Bosnian gypsies.
Business Language
English
Getting Some Knowledge
The main languages spoken in Bosnia and Herzegovina are Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian. They are all of Slavic origin and are similar enough for mutual understanding. However, each ethnicity takes pride in speaking its own respective language. Therefore, it is advisable to know your business partner's ethnicity, religion and language. When necessary in a conversation, it is most practical to refer to the language as 'the local language'. To learn some basic Bosnian phrases, explore the following link here. To learn some basic Serbian phrases, explore the following link here. To learn Croatian, explore the following link here.
Free Translation Tools
Korlex : Online Bosnian-English and English-Bosnian dictionary
Lexicool.com : A list of Bosnian online dictionaries
Google Translate : Online translation tool

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Latest Update: November 2022