It’s been a while since my last post. Well, I was at my Advent family trip to Sarajevo and it was Christmas right after I came back. So, I was really busy these days with packing, unpacking, laundry and making cakes for Christmas dinner.
Advent in Sarajevo
As I mentioned, this year I decide to go somewhere unusual at this time of the year. Everybody goes to Christmas markets in Europe and America, drinking cooked wine and eating sausages. Why is Sarajevo unusual? Well, Bosnia and Herzegovina has three major religions. First is Islam with 50.7%, second is Serbian Orthodoxy with 30.75%, third is Roman Catholicism with 15.19% and others with 3.36% in total population. So, people of Islamic religion do not celebrate Christmas or New Year, people of Serbian Orthodoxy religion celebrate first New Year on 1st of January, then celebrate Christmas on 7th of January and people of Roman Catholicism religion first celebrate Christmas on 25th of December, then celebrate New Year. These are big differences between religions which are fused in one city.
We didn’t have much time on this Advent family trip to Sarajevo, we only have one day to visit as much as possible. But with 7 months old baby who needs to eat every 4 hours and also have infant reflux – GERD (often vomit after eating), that was a quite challenge. We couldn’t feed her wherever we wanted, we had to go back to the apartment for every feeding, then we had to plan departures from the apartment, all adapted to her feeding. It was difficult, we couldn’t see everything we wanted, but we saw quite a lot.
What to Visit in Sarajevo
During sunlight we visit Sarajevo Sebilj fountain, Baščaršija, Gazi Husrev Beg’s Mosque and Gazi Husrev Beg’s Tube, Miljacka river, Music Pavilion – At Mejdan and Ferhadija Mosque. For the breakfast, we tried Sirnica – a specialty of Bosnian cuisine taken from Turkish cuisine. It’s a cheese pie that rolls into a thinly stretched noodle dough. For the dinner, we eat Ćevapi (tur. kebaps) – a minced meat dish popular in Bosnia and Herzegovina. They are served in flat bread, which can be poured into a special sauce that gives a special aroma. They are prepared in many ways and the recipes are secret.
I didn’t expect any Christmas decorations in town, because the predominant religion is Islamic with almost 51% of population. But I was left quite surprised and shocked. The city was really beautifully decorated with Christmas decorations. It was not excessively decorated, there were enough decorations to feel that Christmas spirit with all its charms, but in its moderation.
Where to Stay in Sarajevo
As I always worry about where to stay, I mostly choose hotels like Bestwestern and Mercure. This time I got out of my safe zone and decided to book an apartment. I went to booking.com and searched for the apartment as close to the city center as possible and it had to have a parking space. The offer was quite large, but most of the apartments were either outdated which is not acceptable to me. Herc apartment stood out by design and decoration. Of course, next I went to browse through all the available apartment pictures. They took my breath away. Every subsequent picture of the apartment was nicer than the previous one. Then I typed the address into google street view to really make sure that such a nice apartment is so close to the center. The street view confirmed allegations and I booked an apartment.
After a short period of time I was contacted directly by the owner of the apartment with a “thank you for booking” and asking will I need anything special in the apartment. My every query was answered asap. The owners welcomed us in front of the apartment, directed us to a secure parking space and offered to help us unload our luggage. When we were accommodated, they gave us directions on where to eat and where to avoid, and explained how to get to the center even though it is really so close to the apartment that you can’t go wrong. Both owners delighted and enchanted me so much that they made this trip even more beautiful. They contributed to the fact that I will remember this journey with a smile on my face.
That was my Advent family trip to Sarajevo. Unusual with a lot of surprises, but which I would definitely like to repeat. To anyone who wants and has the opportunity, she would invite them to visit this beautiful city and even more wonderful people in it. The whole experience cannot be described with words; you need to experience it.