Travelling to and in Serbia
See also: Flying to Serbia
It’s no good my talking up how wonderful Serbia is and then not telling you how to get here! In these pages, which I will slowly be expanding, I will try to give you some useful information on Serbia, how to get here, what to expect, what to avoid and how you can get the most out of a trip to this relatively unknown European country. This is not just for if you are a mountain-biker coming to Serbia, but anyone thinking about a trip here. So read on for, hopefully, all the info you need. And if it’s not here, drop me a line and let me know and I will see if I can help.
Serbia in brief
Just to give you a very brief low-down – a semblance of normality has been restored in this former Yugoslav republic, after 10-15 years of dictatorship, war, sanctions and social and economic crisis. During the mid-90’s and early “noughties”, you did indeed have to have a pretty good reason to come to Serbia, like familial or, more rarely, business ties. There was a minefield of visas and bureaucracy to be negotiated, Belgrade airport was not operating during the darkest period of sanctions and the thought of the war close by in Bosnia and Croatia was enough to put anyone off a trip here.
Let me try to emphasise one thing, first of all, about the effects of the former Yugoslav civil war in Serbia. There is a common misconception that Serbia is a former war-zone, and people come here expecting to see a devastated country. Serbia at no time saw any fighting related to the civil war in the former Yugoslavia. All the fighting happened over Bosnia and Croatia, and Serbia never actually saw any action, save perhaps a few shells landing in border regions. So do not expect to see wide-spread devastation when you come here! The only destruction caused in Serbia was localised bombing of individual facilities during the NATO bombing of the country in 1999, and you may see some of these on a trip to Serbia.
Serbia is now a much easier and more friendly place to travel to, the visa regime is now a formality, the economic situation has stabilised, transport links are much better, and although there is still a certain sense of adventure involved in coming to Serbia, it is perfectly safe to do so, and you might just have a very memorable trip!
For starters, see: Flying to Serbia
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