Sarajevo photography guide
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Sarajevo is one of Europe's most fascinating historical cities. Its turbulent history is reflected in the many different architectural styles, from Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian and socialist to modern avantgarde, supported by rich oil countries. Within this mix, Sarajevo has created a unique city atmosphere where cultures, religions and people coexist. It hasn't always been without problems, but through history there have been periods when this has been one of the most tolerant cities in this part of the world.
Expect to photograph religious monuments of all four big religions, Islamic, Roman-Catholic, Orthodox and Jewish. The recent bloodshed left vast cemeteries that can serve for some impactful photography with a chilling message to never forget.
In spite of its history, Sarajevo is a city of optimistic, humorous people with strong zest for life! Sarajevo's nightlife was always legendary and local music is still popular across the borders into neighbouring countries. Hospitality is warm, food is tasty and the beer is very good!
Visiting Sarajevo is a rich cultural experience that will yield plenty of great travel shots!
Most popular Sarajevo photo spots
Sarajevo is located among mighty mountains with no good road access. The drive from Zagreb, Belgrade or the Adriatic coast is long and adventurous. The best was to get there is by air - Sarajevo airport is well connected to major European hubs.
Getting around the city can be time consuming as the city is spread along a long valley along Miljacka river. Traffic is getting worse too, but luckily, you can minimise travelling by car by staying close to the old part of the city. Most of the photographically interesting locations are within walking distance of Baščaršija (the old Ottoman shopping area).
It's better to stay in smaller hotels; there are a few that have been nicely renovated in the old Turkish style and these are best for a more local experience. There are many big hotel chains as well and finding a room in Sarajevo is easy.
If arriving by car, it is important to book accommodation that offers secure parking for your vehicle. Sarajevo is notorious for car break-ins or even car theft. Never ever leave anything valuable in the vehicle.
Safety considerations mainly include pickpockets in the busy streets. Around Baščaršija is a territory where organised pick-pocketing gangs operate.
This said, the city is relatively safe, one can go out shooting at night with a camera gear and a tripod as long as avoiding dark alleys and if you just apply common sense as you would anywhere. Most of the historical part of town is safe to visit anytime.
Sarajevo is a good base from which to explore the nearby area too. A day trip to Bjelašnica mountain can be an amazing lifetime experience, especially if you like hiking. A visit to traditional Lukomir village is an experience in itself and Travnik is another great day trip. Visiting Mostar can also be done as a day trip, but an overnight stay there is advisable to make the most of it.
Explore more photo spots in Bosnia and Herzegovina
If you want to explore beyond Sarajevo, we have 83 photo spots that you can visit in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Luka Esenko Team
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