Preface : As a Berliner, I was always curious about Belgrade, because so many people told me that it’s a new Berlin! Well, why I should wait any longer….So I booked a round trip ticket to Belgrade for my Summer vacation.
In my opinion
Public transportation : ✪ ✪ ✪
Getting around on foot : ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪
Daytime safety : ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪
Nighttime safety : ✪ ✪ ✪
✪ = poor, ✪ ✪ = fair, ✪ ✪ ✪ = good, ✪ ✪ ✪ ✪ = very good
HOW TO SPEND 3 DAYS IN BELGRADE
FYI, 1 Euro = 120 Serbian Dinar.
How to get to the city from the Belgrade Airport a.k.a. Nikola Tesla Airport :
- Bus A1 – I took this one from the airport to the city. The fee was 300 Serbian Dinar for a one way trip. The bus condition was generally good and spacey, so there was no worry about how to place my luggage.
- Taxi – It was actually my transportation from the city to the airport. I learnt beforehand that it shouldn’t cost more than 2000 Dinar for a one way trip, which was true.
Where to stay :
As usual, I choose to stay close to one of the airport bus stops, so there is hassle free. This time, I chose to stay close to the stop at the main train station which was a great choice, because this place is close to everything literally.
Life Design Hotel was my choice and I was totally happy that I chose to stay here, because everything was perfect and the staffs were really helpful. It is recommended.
Where to go :
If you are not a museum fan, you will need 2 full days in order to see most of places in Belgrade.
Here was my plan for the 1st day in Stari Grad; I started to walk from the hotel which located in Balkanska to Hotel Moskva. The location of Hotel Moskva is actually where all the activities begin. This area is called Terazije or the central town square. From there you can walk to the city center walking street called Knez Mihailova. It is full of shops, restaurants, café including street performances and arts. My first impression was – the city is living on this street and it’s the heart of the city, literally! It’s beautiful and well restored, not excessively though you can still feel the communist style. The street is a pedestrian zone leading to the Belgrade Fortress a.k.a. Beogradska tvrđava which declared a Monument of Culture of Exceptional Importance in 1979. It consists of the old citadel (Pobednik) and Kalemegdan Park. I can guarantee that you will love this historical place and also the spectacular view where the River Sava and Danube meets. From here you can walk down hill to the International Passenger Dock a.k.a. Međunarodno putničko pristanište where you can enjoy a cup of coffee or a glass of wine or a lunch from a café or restaurant by the Sava River. It’s really a lovely spot and you can certainly escape from busy Knez Mihailova.
The old citadel (Pobednik)
Knez Mihailova Street
FYI: At the International Passenger Dock, you can book a short boat trip to see a beautiful skyline of Belgrade along the Sava and Danube River.
After that I went to Skadarlija for a dinner. Skadarlija is generally considered the main bohemian quarter of Belgrade and is located less than 300 m. north-west of Terazije. It doesn’t consist of restaurants and café only, but also art galleries, antique and souvenir shops. It’s a beautiful street made of cobblestones. It’s a must to visit and I love this street from the first sight!
A historical fountain at Skadarlija
My second and third day
I visited the west side of Terazije area. From there you can walk to Nikola Pašić Square a.k.a. Trg Nikole Pašića decorated with a lovely fountain. It’s a lovely spot to take a picture of National Assembly of Serbia – Narodna skupština Republike Srbije.
National Assembly of Serbia – Narodna skupština Republike Srbije
A few hundred meters further, you can also walk to the fabulous Byzantine styled St. Mark’s Church – Crkva Svetog Marka located in the Tašmajdan Park. Interestingly, this church was built in the Interwar period between 1931 – 1940. It’s one of many beautiful places in Belgrade and hence it’s a must to see!
St. Mark’s Church – Crkva Svetog Marka
From St. Mark’s Church, you can walk downhill along Resavska to Cvetni trg or Flower Square for a cup of coffee or a glass wine. This square is full of café and restaurants as well. From this point you have 2 choices: either to walk to St. Sava Temple or Hram Svetog Sve which is under construction at the moment (Summer 2017) and you can see only the exterior, or walk to the direction of Pionirski Park where you can visit 2 beautiful buildings: The Presidential Palace and The City Assembly or Skupština grada respectively.
Now you can probably get some ideas where to go and where to see in Belgrade, but where to eat? Let me tell you in a second.
Where to eat :
From my opinion, there are 2 places which I had great impression.
- For a chill out evening, I would suggest that you go to one of the Boutiques. They are all located in the Stari Grad. The restaurant offers quite good and delicious food with reasonably price.
- Restoran Vuk (Вук) in Vuka Karadžića 12 where you get a mountain of meat with reasonably price and very delicious Ćevapi a.k.a. cevapcici with creaaamy butter sauce….hmmmm….
Conclusively, I think Belgrade is yes and no a new Berlin;
Yes, because it offers various night life activities. Literally, the city is still so lively even Sunday midnight!
No, in the sense of architecture and urban planning.
Finally, Belgrade is a fabulous city, and the Belgradian are really kind. It’s truly worth visiting, especially in Summer !