1) Take a free tour: As with any busy capital, Sarajevo can be overwhelming for the first-time visitor. There are a good number of tours to go to, with varying prices. Your first pick ideally should be the Sarajevo free walking tour offered by BiH Spirit-tours and exhibitions. This is a two-hour long tour, beginning outside Franz Ferdinand museum and ending at the Children’s memorial. It basically goes round the whole city centre, the old town, eastern and western part of Sarajevo, and helps you as a visitor quickly get a feel of the city.
2) Have a cuppa with a sommelier: If you get thirsy after the long walk around Sarajevo, you may want to drink a cup of tea. Sarajevo is home to a doctor-turned-sommelier, who has his own tea shop Franz and Sophie. The shop is tiny and in a discret location. From the back of the Sacred heart of Jesus Cathedral, cross the road and walk a little bit uphill, cross one more street and you are there. Dr Adnan Smajic strikes me as soft-spoken when I get to meet him and chat over the tea brands that he has. Surprisingly, he admits that his tea is by no means medicinal though he is a doctor, but just tea that comes from the four corners of the world. The fact that he is there in an apron, and serving clients gives the tea the personal touch. For any tea lovers, this can be heaven on earth; don’t rush it though, peruse the various brands before making a pick, and allow the tea to brew a little in a tiny pot with a candle underneath…your thirst will be quenched sufficiently.
3) Go to a place of worship: Sarajevo is rich in cultural and religious diversity, comfortably accommodating different buildings for the faithful. Adherents of Islam, Eastern orthodoxy, Catholicism and Judaism have co-existed there for centuries making the city the most eclectic cultural mix of all the capitals of Europe. The distinct sound of calls to prayer from mosques, and the loud toll of cathedral bells add to the overall experience, making one feel they have slipped back to centuries in the past. You will enjoy going to a place of worship while there.
4) Feed pigeons at Bascarsija square (Pigeon square): Bascarsija square is the focal point of the square. You can eat at the nearby cafes while watching the pigeons, or you can feed them and watch them fight over tiny morsels of food or seeds. The pigeons get so close that you can almost touch them, and sometimes fly at once which is a beautiful sight.
5) Indulge your sweet tooth: There are a good number of places in the Old Town where the Ottoman influence is clearly visible, not only with the buildings but with the character of the place. A number of places in the Old town have turkish sweets and desserts that can be taken with a cup or pot of turkish coffee.
The list of other things to do is by no means exhaustible. Have you been to Sarajevo? What else did you do while there?
Categories: Bosnia and Herzegovina