Sarajevo in 48 Hours
From Zagreb, I took a detour to Bosnia’s capital city of Sarajevo, a city I was only vaguely familiar with from high school history class as the site of the outbreak of WWI. The city has a checkered past, and was besieged again in the 1990s but today is vibrant and modern, with a bustling Old Town, exotic markets and countless mosques reminiscent of the Ottoman era.
While roaming the city, I accidentally stumbled upon one of the city’s most famous mosques, Gazi Husrev-bey. The mosque is one of the few to allow non-Muslims to enter but you’ll need to dress modestly and cover your hair. The city itself is noisy and bustling with a vibrant marketplace but the mosque itself is set behind thick stone walls and extremely peaceful. Stepping inside, I felt like I had entered a calm oasis and really enjoyed the experience. For more on what to see and do with 24 hours in Sarajevo, read on below!
Highlights of Sarajevo
- Jump on tram 3 for a ride around Sarajevo’s old city core and gaze at the finest Austro-Hungarian facades
- Have some coffee at Tito’s Cafe (behind the History Museum) for a look at Yugo-nostalgic photos, army helmut lamps and a garden dotted with artillery pieces
- Stroll aimlessly around the stone alleyways of Baščaršija (the old city) centered around pigeon square. Watch the massive chess board games!
- Try some local flavors: burek (a meat and cheese filo pastry), ćevapi (a skinless sausage of minced meat) and kajmak (savory clotted cream)
- Relive history at the Latin Bridge, the site where Crown Prince Franz Ferdinand was assassinated in 1914, sparking World War I
- Rusty on your European History? Pop into the Sarajevo 1878-1918 Museum for the full textbook refresher, complete with life sized statues of Ferdinand and his wife Sophie
- The open air cafes are the perfect place to unwind with nargile (hookah) as the sun goes down