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Previously known mainly for its siege during the 1990s conflict and hosting the 1984 Winter Olympics, Sarajevo has become a veritable hotspot for travelers interested in something different – many are surprised and enchanted by the city’s vibrancy and vitality. Sarajevo is packed with history and fascinating architecture – there are mosques, churches, cathedrals, synagogues, and elegant Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian era buildings. The Baščaršija market is the beating heart of the city, with its artisanal workshops, coffee houses, kebab houses, mosques and tons of souvenirs. Reminders of great historical events abound in Sarajevo, among them ...

Previously known mainly for its siege during the 1990s conflict and hosting the 1984 Winter Olympics, Sarajevo has become a veritable hotspot for travelers interested in something different – many are surprised and enchanted by the city’s vibrancy and vitality. Sarajevo is packed with history and fascinating architecture – there are mosques, churches, cathedrals, synagogues, and elegant Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian era buildings. The Baščaršija market is the beating heart of the city, with its artisanal workshops, coffee houses, kebab houses, mosques and tons of souvenirs. Reminders of great historical events abound in Sarajevo, among them the spot where World War I was effectively started; recent conflict is palpable in the Tunnel Museum and the gutted National Library and City Hall. Sarajevo's food is famous — try the ćevapčići, (small, spiced kebabs), or the cheese, meat or potato pita (fillo pastry); alternatively, opt for one of the traditionally themed restaurants serving home-made Bosnian specialties. The people are friendly here, and you’ll do best to appreciate the city at a relaxed pace, chatting with locals and wandering the streets. If you’re here in the winter, hop up to one of the local mountains for a spot of skiing.

Vesna Maric
About the Expert

Vesna Maric has contributed to Lonely Planet guides since 2004, including titles such as Croatia, Cyprus, Sicily, and Sardinia, as well as sections on Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia and Macedonia for Western Balkans and Eastern Europe.

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Facts at a Glance

  • Location: Sarajevo is located close to the center of the triangular shape of Bosnia and Herzegovina in southeastern Europe, in the middle of the Dinaric Alps.
  • Language: Bosnia, Croatian, Serbian
  • Currency: Convertible Mark
  • Research: Wikitravel | Wikipedia
  • Weather: Rainfall | Daylight

Climate

  • Best Time to Visit:

    Spring, summer, winter