Sarajevo is an intriguing mix of east and west, old and new.
The heart of the city is the old bazaar area (Baščaršija) on the eastern side of town, and it should be on the top of the list for everyone to visit.
The western part of the centre is more modern with a big shopping center and stores with international clothing brands.
But the city centre is very small, so you don't have to worry about public transport, except when going to the airport and back.
Where to stay in Sarajevo
Sarajevo is a quite hilly city, so it could be best to stay close to where the pictures were taken.
The straight line distance between pictures 10 and 2 is only 1.4 kilometers, so everything is pretty close in the city centre.
The question is if you want to stay right in the middle of everything or not, in other words in the old bazaar area or not. It is located east of pictures 8 and 18. It is pretty busy in the summer season, and more peace and quiet can be found elsewhere. Somewhere around pictures 3, 6 and 10 would be my first choice.
Things to do in Sarajevo
White Fortress and Yellow Fortress
White and Yellow Fortresses are the most significant fortresses of the defensive walls, that were built in 18th Century to defend the City of Vratnik, an old part of Sarajevo.
Nowadays, especially the smaller one, Yellow Fortress, can hardly be called a fortress. But they offer great views over the Sarajevo area.
The yellow one is closer to the city centre, while the White Fortress is located farther and higher.
You can get to the white one also by bus, but it's a great walk as well, if you don't mind climbing a little. The Vratnik neigbourhood turned out to be the best thing in Sarajevo with its narrow streets and unique houses, far away from the busy streets of the city centre.
Mosques and Churches
Most of them are located close to each other in the city centre, so it's very easy to go from to another by foot.
The biggest cathedral in Bosnia and Herzegovina is the Sacred Heart Cathedral (or Sarajevo Cathedral). And the largest historical mosque is the Gazi Husrev Bey’s Mosque. They are located 250 meters from each other, by and at the end of the busy pedestrian street Ferhadija.
More churches and mosques in the Sarajevo centre on a map: Google maps.
Places related to the Bosnian War 1992-1995
- War Childhood Museum Focused on childhoods that have been affected by war. Website: warchildhood.org. Location: Logavina 32, about 300 meters north of the old town.
- Museum Of Crimes Against Humanity And Genocide 1992-1995 Location: Ferhadija 17, very close to the Sacred Heart Cathedral.
- Gallery 11/07/95 Dedicated to the massacre in Srebrenica in July 1995. Website: galerija110795.ba. Location: Trg Fra Grge Martića 2/III, next to the Sacred Heart Cathedral.
- War Tunnel A long tunnel that was built in 1993 during the Siege of Sarajevo to link the surrounded area with the outside Bosnian held territories. Website: tunelspasa.ba. Location: Tuneli 1, behind the airport.
From the airport
There is only one option for public transport directly to and from Sarajevo airport: airport bus.
It operates between Sarajevo airport and Baščaršija bus stop, which is located in the old town and is marked on the map. The distance is about 11 kilometers. It should stop at the bus stops along the way if needed, but I'm not sure about that. I read it here (link to the tripadvisor forum).
I didn't use it, but took a picture (image on the right) of the stop and the white-and-blue Centrotrans bus. There were no signs of an airport bus stop there, and no clear signs on the bus either, except on the driver window: Baščaršija - Aerodrom. But it stopped where it is in the picture. Just wave a hand to the driver to be sure, because the exact place for the stop is not that clear.
Weather in Sarajevo
Winter: The winter months in Sarajevo are cold and the temperature goes below 0°C from December to February. Proper winter clothing is necessary, such as hat, winter shoes, gloves and scarf. Sunny days during the winter time are scarce.
Spring: By March, the temperature starts rising towards further spring. The temperature is on average around 8°C - 15 °C. May can be already a very warm month with temperatures going over 20°C. The evenings aren’t that warm so it’s still good to have a coat with you along with a jumper and trousers. There is often a wind blowing during the spring time as the Sarajevo area is hilly.
Summer: June, July and August are the warmest months of the year and the average high temperatures are around 25°C. The thermometer climbs can climb to 30°C and over and sunny days are frequent. There are afternoon thunderstorms in the summer months and that's the period when it rains the most, though the precipitation is pretty evenly distributed around the year.
Autumn: September is still a warm month but towards October the temperature drops to 8°C - 15 °C. In November the temperature can be already at 0°C. Similar clothing than in the spring time is advisable.