Bosnia and Herzegovina Tourist Attractions

  • The town of Travnik can trace historical records back to 1244, however Slav settlers have been here since at least the first few centuries CE. Over the centuries, it has been occupied by Romans and Ottomans, and seen both Christian and Islamic influences. There are 28 protected cultural and historic buildings in the area. 

    • Fortress Stari Grad (Old Fort) is one of the best preserved medieval fortified buildings in Bosnia. It is speculated to have been built in the late 14th or early 15th century, although it is not known by whom.  The invading Turks won the fort by occupation in 1463, and their influence on the building can be seen. 

    • The town of Travnik is the birthplace of Nobel laureate Ivo Andric, a Yugoslav novelist and poet.  His home is now a popular museum. 

    • There are two 18th-century Sahat Kula (meaning Clock Towers), built during the Ottoman occupation. One is situated in the centre of town close to the mosque, while the other is slightly hidden away on the lane to Stari Grad. 

    • Plava Voda (Blue Water) is the turquoise river that runs through the town. There is a path along the river all the way to the source - perfect for roaming.  Alternatively, visit one of the restaurants along its banks. 

    • Due to the Ottoman influence, there are a number of mosques including: Sarena Dzamija (multi-coloured mosque), Jeni mosque (the oldest mosque in Travnik) and The Hadzi Ali-begova mosque (the only mosque in Bosnia & Herzgovina with a sundial). Another important islamic building is the Elci-Ibrahim pasina Medresa.

    • Important Christian buildings include the the Catholic Church of St. Ivan Krstitelja, The Church of the Lords Source (built near to a water source said to have healing powers) and the orthodox church of Znamenitosti.

     travnik

  • The old Ottoman town of Mostar is perfect for a one-day walking tour.

    • Stari Most ("The Old Bridge") is a 16th century bridge that crosses the river Neretva and connects two parts of the city. The Old Bridge stood for 427 years, until it was destroyed during the Bosnian War. Following this, it was eventually rebuilt in 2004. The bridge is a symbolic meeting point for the East and West. 

    • The Old Bazaar, Kujundziluk is named after the goldsmiths who traditionally created and sold their wares on this street, it is the best place in town to find authentic paintings and carvings of the Stari Most, pomegranates.

    • The Koski Mehmed Paša Mosque, built in 1617 is open to visitors.  The minaret is also open to the public and is accessible from inside the mosque.

    • The Tepa Market has been a busy marketplace since Ottoman times. It now sells mostly fresh produce and honey. 

    • In terms of traditional Ottoman residences, there are a few options, all well worth visiting. the Muslibegovic House is one of the most representative monuments of the Ottoman residential architecture.
      The Biscevica House is a 17th century Ottoman house which contains original household objects. The Kajtazova House is an authentic Ottoman residential house with separate sections for men and women.

    • The Karadozbegova Mosque is the most important and significant of sacred Islamic architecture in all of Herzegovina. Completed in 1557, its designer was Kodza Mimar Sinan, a great Ottoman architect. The mosque is open to visitors.

    • Other worthwhile sites include: The Synagogue (built in 1889, currently used as a theatre, Stara pravoslavna crkva – Crkva rodjenja Bogorodicina (Old Orthodox Church of the Birth of Virgin Mary), Metropolis “Vladikin dvor”, Hamam (public bath built during the Ottoman period). This is one of the rare remaining Ottoman public baths in Herzegovina.

    • In Raska Gora, near Mostar, one can find examples of Stecci (Stecak). 

    mostar

  • Stecci are medieval tombstones (dating from the 12th-16th Century) found in most graveyards across Bosnia & Herzgovina. What makes them unique is their decorative carvings - motifs that depict knights in armor, hunters, farmers, warriors competing in tournaments, horses, dancers, flowers, wolves, bears, wild boars and dogs. Among favored ornaments were the crescent moon, stars, cross and swastika.

    Little is known about the cultural practices that led to the Stecci, but they have been inscribed as a UNESCO World Heritage site, a move which many hope mean will result in detailed study. 

    Almost 60000 stecaks can be found in cemetaries across Bosnia & Herzgovina, at over 3000 locations. 

    stecci

    For further reading: www.bosniafacts.info

  • Kravica Waterfalls (also known as Kravice) is a 25m waterfall with a huge pool at the bottom, perfect for swimming (although the water can be chilly). There is also a rope swing, cafe and picnic area. The best time to visit is springtime.

    kravica falls

    The falls are located about 10km from Ljubuški and 40km from Mostar.  Tours of Mostar will often include a trip to the falls. 

  • Sarajevo is the capital of Bosnia-Herzegovina, rich in cultural and religious diversity. Longstanding traditions in Catholicism, Islam, Eastern Orthodoxy and Judaism blend together here.  Sarajevo is also a city with a tumultuous past, including a terrible civil war. Much has been done to rebuild the city in recent years. 

    Things to do:

    • Stroll through Baščaršija (Old Town) - cobblestone roads, streets littered with cafe's and copper works, and an old-world charm

    • Visit the spot that started World War I - the very street corner where Princip assassinated Archduke Franz Ferdinand is memorialised with a plaque, and a museum has also been established here. 

    • Take a tour of the Tunnel Museum - The Sarajevo Tunnel was built underground, by hand, by Bosnian soliders. Built beween the airport and the home of an average middle-class citizen, the tunnel was used to bring in food, supplies and ammunitions.  Today, the tunnel is known as The Tunnel of Hope or The Tunnel of Life. 

    • Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque - built during the Ottoman period - is one of the most beautiful mosques in Sarajevo

    • Visit the Sarajevo National Museum amd trace Sarajevo's past - from prehistoric times to modern. 

    • Discover the war-torn past. Be on the look out for shrapnel- and bullet-damaged buildings, a stark reminder of the horrifying past.

     sarajevo