Getting to know Belgrade

Belgrade once the powerful city and the capital of Yugoslavia, but now remains much scaled down the capital of Serbia after Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia, Kosovo, and Macedonia has broken away from Serbia.

Belgrade is not a common destination among many western travelers, unlike Prague or Budapest, this beautiful city does not get much attention. After visiting for the first time I found this country to be absolutely beautiful and worth to experience Serbia.

Aeroflot from Moscow to Belgrade

Best Time to Visit Serbia

When planning my trip to Belgrade I wanted to make sure that I visit there when the weather is perfect. In the month of July, it was a little hot but still comfortable. So, in my opinion, the best time should be between May and early July and again in September. Winter is pretty cold and quite depressing so I would avoid tour activities between December to February unless you have a good reason to be there. Summer in Belgrade gets quite warm, August is the hottest month of the year. 

How to Get To Belgrade

There is always a great travel deal available online to fly to Belgrade from neighboring Europe countries. When I was searching for my flight from Moscow to Belgrade I found a great deal that I could not refuse. It was by Aeroflot, 3 hours flight to Belgrade. In another occasion, I also took a short 55 minutes Air Serbia flight from Sarajevo to Belgrade and found it most continent based on my personal preferences. 

There are bus services from Sarajevo, Dubrovnik, Podgorica, and these trips are adventurous and not a bad options, but you may need to deal with lack of highways, reckless drivers, long wait at the border crossing, one lane, and mountainous winding roads, and getting stuck behind trucks for hours without a chance of overtaking. 

Top Things To Do In Belgrade

My favorite place in Belgrade was the Kalemegdan Fortress, from where you can enjoy the beautiful view of the Danube and Sava Rivers.  The fortress is over 2,000 years old and is significant because hundreds of important battles were fought there.  For good photo opportunity, the best time to visit would be during the sunset. 

Visit The Cathedral of Saint Sava

St. Sava Temple is an iconic landmark in Serbia. This is an Orthodox Cathedrals which was dedicated to Saint Sava, founder of the Serbian Orthodox church. 

The Cathedral of Saint Sava

Wandering in Republic Square

The Republic square is Belgrade’s main square and gathering point for the locals and tourists alike. This place is surrounded by the National Theatre, National Museum, the Army House, the monument to Prince Mihailo, and many restaurants.

Prince Mihailo Monument in Republic Square

The House of the National Assembly

This is a major tourist attraction in Belgrade and it is centrally located on Nikola Pasic Square. This iconic landmark is a symbol of Belgrade and attracts many tourist and locals for its architectural masterpiece. 

House of the National Assembly of Serbia

Visit Belgrade Fortress 

Belgrade Fortress is a must see, which contains the old citadel and Kalemegdan Park on the junction of the Sava and Danube river, in an urban area of modern Belgrade. This fortress complex is lying on a hill overlooking the beautiful vista. A great place for a photographer for picturesque sunset. There are several galleries and museums, sports courts, and restaurants in the complex also close to the Belgrade Zoo. It is the most visited site in Belgrade. 

Belgrade Fortress

The Danube and Sava River

The Danube is Europe’s second largest river, a vital transportation route connecting many countries along the way. The famous Danube river flows through 10 countries, more than any other river in the world. Originating in Germany, the Danube flows southeast for 2,860 km (1,780 mi), passing through or touching the border of Austria, Slovakia, Hungary, Croatia, Serbia, Romania, Bulgaria, Moldova, and Ukraine before emptying into the Black Sea. 

whereas the Sava was the largest “national” river in Yugoslavia, connecting its capitals Ljubljana, Zagreb, and Belgrade. It meets the Danube in the center of Belgrade, at the spectacular location known as Usce forming two islands at its delta.

Belgrade river cruise is a great way to enjoy the Sava and most famous Danube river, war islands, 6 bridges on Sava river, the Belgrade city skyline, millennium tower, old town, and Belgrade fortress. 

Danube River and Belgrade Fortress

How To Get Around

Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport to the City Centre

The best way to get to the city hotels from the airport is to hire a taxi from the airport taxi information desk, the fixed price is 1800 Dinars (I US$ = 117 Dinar) and its reliable. This is a much safer option than to take any taxi and risk of getting overcharged or ripped off by any possible means. 

If you are traveling light then the airport bus would be another option. There is a minibus service from the airport to Slavija Square with stops at New Belgrade and near Belgrade main train station. At the airport find ‘Mini Bus A1’ soon you exit the arrival hall. Tickets will be available in the bust and the cost is 300 dinars.

Transportation in the City

Normal Flag Down charge for a metered taxi in Belgrade is 170 RSD (1 US$ = 117 Serbian Diner), each mile is about 112 RSD. Belgrade taxi service is cheap, but be careful, sometimes taxi drivers heavily overcharge clients. It is safe to hire a taxi through your hotel. 

City Bus, Trolleybus, and tram provide good services throughout the city and they are convenient. You can buy tickets from the driver/conductor, or from designated kiosks and also from official ticketing sales

As a first time tourist with the language barrier I preferred to buy paper cards, one day ticket unlimited rides for 1st or 2nd zone cost me  250 RSD ( US$ 2.25). They also have option for 90 minutes, 3 days, and 5 days validity.  

Where did I stay in Belgrade

Mr. President Hotel. Karadjordjeva 75, Beograd

Mr. President Hotel
Mr. President Hotel in Belgrade

My Opinion and Tips

Have you been to Belgrade, Serbia? Any additional tips to share?

Please leave a comment below! I’d love to hear from you to improve my knowledge. 

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Hasan Mahmud

Traveler, Blogger, and Travel Photographer!

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