We reached Sarajevo late, flying in from Zagreb the day I landed in Europe continent. There is an ATM machine after departed from the arrival hall. We rang up the hostel and was informed that he was on his way to pick us up.
The only accommodation we booked prior to flying was this hostel in Sarajevo - Hostel & Guest House Bistrik. Generally one would stay in the Baščaršija, Sarajevo's old bazaar and the historical and cultural center of the city. This hostel is located on the hills, about 10-15 minutes walk to Baščaršija. It was not a difficult hike but not the best if you have bags and baggage. Location wise, it was ok but definitely falls under budget stay at €28 for a basic twin private ensuite. The room we had in fact had two single beds and a double bed in a separate room. It was that big.
The next day, our 'official' or literally first day in Sarajevo, we walked down from the hill, crossed the Miljacka river towards Baščaršija. So, things to see or do in Sarajevo. Here goes...
1. Have local breakfast of cevapi (or cevapcici, also a.k.a grilled dish of minced meat and raznijici (a.k.a meat on skewer).
|Raznjici, served with flat bread|
|I bought the one with Bosnia coffee|
It is a pseudo-Ottoman style wooden fountain in the center of the square built in 1753. This square is also nicknamed "the pigeon square." A very apt name - there were loads of pigeons at this spot.
4. Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque
It is considered the most important Islamic structure in the country. It was also the first mosque in the world to receive electricity and electric illumination in 1898 during the period of Austro-Hungarian Empire.
5. Latin Bridge
On St Vitus Day, 28 June 1914 at the turning from the Right Bank into a street, Gavrilo Princip shot and killed Archduke Franz Ferdinand and his pregnant wife. The assassination sparked Austria to declare war on Serbia. Russia immediately sided with the Serbs and the world plummeted into WWI. The bridge was renamed after Princip during the Yugoslavian era and renamed back to the Latin Bridge after the Yugoslav Wars.
6. Museum dedicated to Princip
Across the street from the Latin Bridge, the building on the street corner was where Princip was standing when he fired the faithful shots was turned into a museum dedicated to him. The exact spot was standing was marked by embossed footprints, and memorial plaque was placed on the building corner.
The memorial plaque was removed for the first time during WWII, in 1941 by Nazi occupying army.
We saw the remnants of former Taslihan the first round when we were looking for a shop or mini market to buy water. It is now an archeological site. Taslihan (Stone Caravanserai) was a place of stopover for merchant caravans, mostly from Venice and Dubrovnik. The Serai, part of Gazi Husrev-bye's foundation was built between 1540 and 1543. In the great fire in 1879 it was completely destroyed.
8. Gazi-Husrev Beg's Bezistan
Next to it, is a covered market, Gazi-Husrev Beg's Bezistan selling haberdashery and crafts. No photos as the ones I had are fairly subpar.
9. Old Orthodox Church
Stepping slightly out of the old bazaar center, stood the Old Orthodox Church (Church of St Archangel Mikhail and Gavril). It is one of the oldest and most valuable cultural-historic monuments in Sarajevo. In the church dooryard, there's a museum where valuable collections of icons from the XIII-XIX centuries are stored.
10. New Temple
It is said that if one sees a church in Sarajevo, another religious building would not be far. A short walk away from this Orthodox church, we found ourselves standing in front of a synagogue.
Side note: Missing burek, pierogi, ramen, dim sum... umm...