Welcome to part 3 of my Bosnia blog series! In part 2 we discovered the capital of Bosnia, Sarajevo. After spending a few nights in Sarajevo we took an incredible train journey through the mountains to the beautiful city of Mostar!
The beautiful city of Mostar
Getting There: Mostar is located in Southern Bosnia and has to be the favourite city I visited whilst in Bosnia. It is an incredibly beautiful city situated alongside the Neretva River with so much culture and history. We decided to travel from Sarajevo to Mostar by train after reading about how incredible the views were from the train. Earlier this year the train was closed due to rebuilding, but thankfully it had reopened when we were travelling. I’m so glad we travelled by train – it will definitely be a journey I will always remember!
The train from Sarajevo to Mostar runs twice a day – once early in the morning and once in the afternoon. The train departs from Sarajevo’s main train station. You buy the tickets when you arrive at the train station and they cost around 5 euros. The journey takes around 3 hours and there is plenty of stunning views to take in throughout your journey.
I personally found the train to be really comfortable. The train I was on was clean and spacious and had toilets, wifi and charging ports. They were also showing a movie on a small screen at the front of each carriage. I personally did not watch the movie as I spent the whole time looking out of the window, soaking in the sights, including a bride having a photo shoot on the train 😀
Sights on the train journey to Mostar
You can also travel from Sarajevo to Mostar by bus if you choose to. You can also fly straight into Mostar from London – although depending on the season you are flying ticket prices can be pricey.
Accommodation: We took the afternoon train and so arrived in Mostar around sunset – which at the time was around 6:30pm. We decided to walk from the train station to our accommodation. According to Google maps it was a 30 minute walk to our accommodation. We were happy to have a walk after being on the train for 3 hours. You can easily get taxis from outside the train station if you want. The walk from the train station into the old part of Mostar is an interesting mix of old buildings, small shops and hostels. The best of Mostar is in the old part of the city and so we were sure to find accommodation in the old town. We booked a bed and breakfast using booking.com and were staying about a 10 minute walk from the Stari Most Bridge. There are lots of different types of accommodation in Mostar, catering to all price points.
Things to see and do: The most spectacular thing to see in Mostar is of course the Stari Most – the Old Bridge! As we had decided to walk from the station we turned a corner whilst walking through the old town and saw the bridge in all its glory – it truly is a breathtaking sight! The bridge was built in 16th century by the Ottomans and connects the two parts of the city of Mostar with the Neretva River flowing below it. The bridge stood for over 400 years before it was destroyed in 1993 during the siege of Mostar. The bridge was rebuilt and reopened in 2004 and is now a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site. As well as crossing over the bridge and looking across the city, you can also walk down to the viewing platforms on the river banks below the bridge.
The bridge has been a popular site for bridge jumping for hundreds of years. Local divers often put on a show and dive off the bridge into the river below. Also every year the city hosts the Red Bull Cliff Diving competition.
Stari Most – The Old Bridge
At the base of the Stari Most there is a small stone that serves as reminder of the war.
‘Don’t forget’ stone
We were unable to find the time to visit, but close to the Stari Most is also the Old Bridge Museum where you can find more detailed information about the city and the bridge, as well as enjoy a panoramic views of the city.
There are a number of other bridges that cross the Neretva River including the Kriva Cuprija – The Crooked Bridge – a miniature Stari Most, said to have been a trial run for the famous bridge. Again the bridge was weakened and destroyed by floods and the war and reopened in 2001.
Kriva Cuprija – The Crooked Bridge
Lining the cobbled streets close to the bridge is the Čaršija or Bazaar with a range of different shops selling a range of crafts, ornaments and trinkets.
Čaršija or Bazaar
The streets leading off from the bridge have many different cafes and restaurants, including one of the most popular places to eat in Mostar called ‘Tima- Irma’. We asked a few local people where they recommend for us to eat and all of them suggested Tima- Irma. It is voted #1 on TripAdvisor and is always busy! It is a small little restaurant a few minutes walk from the Stari Most selling delicious Bosnian food. The portions are really generous and the prices are super affordable – I would highly recommend it!
‘Tima- Irma’ – voted #1 on TripAdvisor
There are also a number of places to visit close to the old town that can be travelled to in less than an hour – check back to see my next blog post all about the near by excursions – they are truly incredible and some of the most beautiful places I have visited.
Final Thoughts: I absolutely fell in love with the city of Mostar – it is truly an incredible place to visit and definitely a place I would visit again. The atmosphere and sights of the city are really beautiful. The small city has so much to offer for an amazing and memorable trip. Day or night the old town is bustling and offers some spectular views wherever you look.
Remember to check my previous posts for more general information about Bosnia including weather, currency and pricing.
Make sure you check out the next blog post where I share my final post in my Bosnia series – all about excursions from Mostar!