Life from Mostar Bridge

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Manu | 31 October 2016 | 2 comments
Mostar, Mostar bridge, Bosnia

Mostar, landmark of Bosnia

The road that goes from Sarajevo to Mostar is probably one of the most beautiful of the entire Balkan region. As soon as you go out of the capital, you enter in a region of stunning mountains and beautiful river sceneries that, in the colours of Autumn, shine of splendour at every turned bend. It is sweet to get lost in s[ace and time along the road while admiring the landscape that keep changing and becoming more and more beautiful the more you step up the mountains entering this wild region. And it is just among those mountains that you will find Mostar, one of the oldest and most charming towns of the Herzegovina region.

Bosnia, Mostar, sarajevo

The road from sarajevo to Mostar is one of the most beautiful of Bosnia

The old town is seriously trapped by the tourism business, though. There are bars, restaurant and souvenir shops literally in every corner of its tiny roads. Despite being so late in the season, while in Sarajevo there was almost no trace of tourists at all, and if there were we talk about the alternative tourists, coming form different corners of Eastern Europe mainly, in Mostar you fell the ,mass tourist presence so much that even prices of souvenirs and food are in Euros and Dollars rather than in the local convertible mark. Everybody in Mostar speaks Italian, this tells you a lot about the Italian presence in this area, and every tourist in general is from the traditional tourist countries such as US or Asia.

Mostar bridge, Bosnia, mostar

The tiny streets of Mostar full of souvenir shops and tourists

Mostar, bosnia

The war recycled to tourism

When you get to the famous bridge, it is almost impossible to take a photo as you are surrounded by people everywhere. It is easier if you find the little alley that brings you to the spot under the bridge, from where you can have an unconventional view of it and be free to move around. Same if you walk out of the old town and reach the other bridge opposite to the old one, from where the view on the old town is simple mesmerizing.

Mostar bridge, war in Jugoslavia, Bosnia

An old picture of Mostar at the time of the war in the ’90s

Said that, Mostar has its own charm and most of it is linked to that bridge, of course. I saw a video few days ago about how it went destroyed by the Croatian army in 1993. That’s the reason why walking on it again today feels almost like a miracle. How much life that bridge has held since its construction back in 1557 by Suleiman the Magnificent is admiring. 

Mostar bridge, bosnia

Mostar bridge in all its beauty

When it went destroyed it was like the town got amputated, and actually not only the town but part of the entire human civilization went destroyed by that bomb and that war. That bridge has always been a symbol of connection between the two people, worlds, religions that have lived this area since ever. That bridge is a symbol of life for the town and that’s why even though the place is super touristic, it is almost with pleasure that today you look at it, as it is a symbol of life that has reborn in this part of the planet that, only 20 years ago, was completely destroyed.

Mostar bridge, Bosnia, Jugoslavia war

The bridge seen from underneath, with a special model!

my_1st_impressions_mostar-view-4

Mostar old town as seen from the bridge

If you want to find the real Mostar, you need to get our of the old town and walk along its quiet streets, it is there where you can find the real Bosnia, the real food, the real people. Mostar is a vey small, pretty and quiet place. Like all the rest of the country, Bosnians are really friendly and welcoming people who love to go a step further in order to communicate with you. What I loved of this place is that, despite being touristic, people still treat tourist with a lot of respect, and you will find noone trying to fool you on prices. People here now the value of the visitors and respect it.

Mostar, bosnia

Outside of the old town, the real Mostar seems stacked in time

Mostar, war, bosnia

Scars of the war are all over Bosnia as a reminder to never fall in that madness again

 

One of the biggest attractions on the bridge is definitely to see young men leaping out of the bridge into the Neretva river. As the Neretva is very cold, this is a very risky feat and only the most skilled and best trained divers will attempt it. The practice dates back to the time the bridge was built, and despite the years and despite the fact that nowaday it is just a show for tourists, it still hold its fascination.

Mostar bridge divers

The biggest attraction on Mostar bridge has always been the group of young divers who jump in the freezing river underneath

Mostar bridge jump

Diving from Mostar bridge has always been a Bosnian tradition, now a tourist attraction

Mostar is a must see in life and a must stay for a day. Then you can keep going discovering this stunning and undiscovered country.

night view mostar

Night view of Mostar Bridge is simply speechless!

HOW TO GET THERE: By Bus from the central station of Sarajevo it is about 2,5 hours and the return ticket is 28 KM, around 16 euros. There are buses almost every hour.

HOW LONG TO STAY: I suggest you to stay only for one afternoon. Mostar is way too small to pretend a full day or an overnight stay. From there you can go further to Dubrovnik, Split, Zagreb, belgrad or Sarajevo.

WHEN TO GO: I don’t know how the situation is in Summer, but from what I have seen, even in Autumn that place is packed with tourists. Avoid the weekends for sure.

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Mostar, Bosnia