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New Year & First time in Belgrade

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London, UK
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New Year & First time in Belgrade

Hi

We've just booked a short break on impulse in Belgrade (30th Dec - 2nd Jan) and will be staying at the Admiral Club Hotel. Can anyone give me any tips about what not to miss at this time or ideas about what to do on New Year's Eve there? We are both in our mid thirties and not especially clubbing types. I'm ideally looking for suggestions for a nice restaurant with a bit of personality and a few bars. Is it essential to book before we go?

Thanks for all your help.

Belgrade
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1. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Hi,

I am actually from Belgrade so I could give you some tips.

Don't miss:

First route:

Republic Square with Knez Mihajlova Street continuing to the Kalemegdan Park with the view over the confluence of the river Danube and the river Sava.

Second route:

Republic Square, Terazije,Sqare Nikola Pasica, Parlament then Bulevar Kralja Aleksandra(boulevard of King Alexandre) then right in Beogradska(Belgrade) Street or Srpskih Vladara Street downto Slavija Square with the Temple of Saint Sava.

Third Route:

Republic Square, Francuska Ulica(Street), parallel to the right Skadarlija, but if you continue down the Francuska Street and take a left turn at the Greek Embassy it is the Strahinjica Bana Street with lots of clubs, bars and hot girls =).

Fourth Route:

Hotel Yugoslavia (from the New Belgrade side of the river) and the splavs(rafts-bar/restaurants) there or Zemunski Kej and the rafts there (more to the north, in part of the Town called Zemun)

Fifth route:

Ada Ciganlija, a park near the center with an artificial lake and with a lot of bars, but it is actually nice to go there during the Summer when there are a lot beach bars and people.

Also visit Nikola Tesla museum in the Krunska Street near the center.

For the New Years Eve there are going to be concerts on the squares I mentioned which are free for attendance, but differ in music style. They are perfectly OK if you don't have anything booked.

For the restaurants(and clubs) it is necessary to book one month before for the New Years Eve program. I suggest you to book in one of the restaurants in the bohemian quarter Skadarlija(there are a lot of them there). I was in Dva Jelena(Two Deers) in Skadarlija once and it was really nice. Good restaurants are also Stara Tresnja(Old Cherry tree), Pink, Srpska Kuca(Serbian House), Chedic(this one is a little hard to read for people that don't know Serbian and also a little hard to find).

Last year I was in a restaurant that is located in the Partizan Station and owned by the club. Don't worry there won't be any crazy Partizan fans there, only really nice and civilized people go there.

Hint: Look for a restaurant that has live music(Zhiva Muzika) if you want a nice atmosphere. Most of them do have this plus you get drinks and meal included. Basically every restaurant,club and hotel(Hyatt is nice)offers these New Years Eve parties.

Typical prices ranges between 100 euro to infinity =), but I doubt whatever you what to book that people from UK wont have the money for it.

To eat:

Chevapi, Pljeskavica, Kupus, Kajmak, Sarma, Shopska Salad

To drink:

Rakija(Schnapps) of any sort...Viljamovka(from vine), Shljivovica(plum), Kajsijevaca(apricot) and so on.

Wines and domestic beers(Jelen-Deer) are good.

Wine- Vino

Beer - Pivo

Water - Voda

Trg - Square

Guided tours around the city and other things: www.tob.co.yu/english/index.html

Hint: Younger people(18-30) know better English than old volks. Don't be afraid to ask anybody for directions, people are here willing to tell you anything.

Hint: At the airport go with the buses if you don't want to pay for the taxis. The buses stop usually stop in the center of the city.

Hint: The tickets for transportation(sorry only buses and tram-Belgrade is a hilly place so it is hard and expensive to build a metro system) are sold in the Kiosks(Trafika-A place where you can buy anything =), cheap cigarettes also!) and also in the buses(more expensive, need to ask the driver when you get on the bus,tram). There are (manual =))automates(yellow or red, doesn't matter) in the vehicles where you put you ticket. The ticket is valid for only one line,no changing lines allowed, even in the same line backwards.

Have a nice stay in Belgrade! I hope I helped you.

Cheers

Nenad

U.K.
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2. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Nice tips and ideas from Nenad, so I won't add too much.

The street scenes will be wonderful at New Year, so just take in the vibe. Belgrade and it's people are wonderful, just do a few bar crawls and join in the fun.

Skadarlija is a must do for 1 night for sure, but the food is not the best from most restaurants in that street, it's a place to go for history and ambiance. I like My Hat restaurant but all similar menues in that area..

I would recommend Kalamagden Terrace restaurant if you want to be a little more up-market but at reasonable prices. They have live music every night but it tends to be more classical than national folk music that you find elsewhere mentioned. Excellent food & service , very cheap by London standards.

You are staying in a great location, I've not been in the hotel but it looks good.

I expect Nenad will also offer more tips, just ask here. If you want any specifics from an English perspective do ask, I'm Englsh but have home in Belgrade for many years.

I expect after this visit you will want to return, do so in the summer when the beach and river life kicks of big-time. Outdoor eating with views etc.

Belgrade on impulse? Good call!

Stoofer

P.S. Bring warm clothing, it can get very very cold at times!

London, UK
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3. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Nemad & Stoofer

Thank you both so much! That's really kind of you to post so much really useful information

Hvala lepo :-)

S

Seattle, WA
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6 posts
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4. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Thanks for the into Nenad!!!

A friend and I are planning a trip to eastern europe and are looking for a place to go after Budapest. Belgrades sounds pretty cool so it's definitely an option.

Thanks again!

:-)

-Kevin

U.K.
Destination Expert
for Belgrade
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5. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Kevin

IMO Belgrade is not an option, it's a must visit. :-)

After Budapest, it's a very important city in the region. Also, it's unspolit by tourism, something that can't be said for Budapest.

What time of year are you considering? Just remember that the spring & summer will give you the added experience of Ada Ciganija and the beach/river activities. The nightlife on the Splavs

is also best i warm weather. Dancing on decks out o the river etc.

It can also be very cold in winter months, colder than many realise.

Stoofer

Seattle, WA
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6. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Stooferuk,

Thanks for the reply! You make a nice case for Belgrade! :-)

We're planning to visit Eastern Europe in late May or early June. I assume the weather should be nice that time of year.

Do you happen to know what's the best way to get between Belgrade and Budapest? It sounds like taking a bus or train are thest best options.

Are there any other cities around Belgrade you recomment?

Thanks again for the help!

-Kevin

U.K.
Destination Expert
for Belgrade
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7. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Hi Kevin

Yes, May & June should be a nice time in Belgrade, June better.

There are direct train & bus between Belgrade & Budapest. Unfortunately I'm not up on these as I don't use them myself. I know they run daily and the day train is only about EUR30.

Busses probably similar.

If you are definitely going to Budapest, try this site for info on how to get to Belgrade from there::

www.gotohungary.com

Clik on On 'General info', then 'getting around'. it gives you much detail on train & bus companies, routes etc.

You will find that everything is difficult in Belgrade but easy in Budapest, so starting a return journey from Hungary is best option.

Actually, when you are in Belgrade, you can work things out at the station yourself and there is unlikely to be a need for booking the day train, but by telephone and email you may have problems.

If you arrive from Hungary, you will learn for yourself on arrival of course.

So, what I'm saying is, Belgrade you will understand when you arrive but not before:-)

Other cities? Novi Sad is en-route so maybe good to see but IMO

nothing beats Belgrade in Serbia and its worth spending a good few days. On a summers day when you discover where to go, Ada and the nightlife etc. you won't want to leave too quickly, it's hard to explain until you arrive.

Of course you could head further south to Bosnia & Croatia. I don't know what your plans are or your time scales.

Personally I would not recommend Romania or Bulgaria unless you are very clued up. Apart from that you can rail link some great cities from Budapest, immediately Prague comes to mind.

If you want any further tips on Belgrade let me know but as you can see I'm no expert on public transport.

Stoofer

Belgrade
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8. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

Hi Kevin,

I don't know how far away from Belgrade do you want to go but I can recommend you some places, so you can decide:

If you are coming from Budapest a nice place to stop for a break as soon as you cross the border is Subotica with its lake Palic:

http://www.palic.co.yu/

subotica.org.yu/new/cgi/frontpage/index.php…

After that go to Novi Sad and visit the centre and the big hill Pertrovaradin where the EXIT festival takes place every year. There is a fortress on the hill with some nice views of the city.

Then go to Belgrade =)

Then if you go to the south-west visit Divcibare(Divčibare) which is a ski resort but also nice to visit in the summer. Then a must is Zlatibor! More famous than Divcibare and a superb place to visit. Every one in Serbia goes there for summer and for winter. It is a ski resort but also an etno-town and simply a wonderful place to take long walks in the surrounding area of the town but both. Zlatibor means (Golden Oak) and the trees really look like they are from gold. The town itself is completely a tourist area so I suppose foreigners won't have any troubles finding their way there. There are a lot of hotels in the region so finding an accommodation is not a problem, but booking is still advised. For the new years eve the town is packed full so it is almost impossible to find somewhere to stay. There is also a lake in the town...Anyway perfect for foreigners!

Just google search Zlatibor and you will find a lot of information...

If you continue to the northwest you can go to Tara, another mountainous/ etno-town place near the west border. Also beautiful to visit but a litle hard to find.

If you go to the east following the highway to Greece and Macedonia visit Nis and stop by in Vranje. If you want, you can go to Kopaonik our most famous mountain(a lot of British folks started to go there in the last years with Thompson) where it is cheap(for British people) and also a huge ski resort, but also nice to visit in the summer. There are a lot of hotels there: Konaci, Jat appartments, Grand hotel, Nebeska stolica and so on. Just google search it...

In the winter are a lots of people there so you have to book in front..It is also full of cafes, bars and restaurant (especially in the Konaci area which is a ring shaped hotel so from the inside there are a lot of shops and bars).The food in the hotels there is usually very nice so you wont have a problem with that.

If you have google earth go to these coordinates:

Kopaonik:

Latitude :43°16'41.76"N

Longitude:20°48'37.23"E

Zlatibor:

Latitude: 43°43'26.49"N

Longitude: 19°42'3.45"E

These are the places that I suggest for foreigners and that have strong bus connections with Belgrade. But I have a better suggestion for you:

If you have a car I suggest you to use it to visit these places, if not a better solution to go to Kopaonik or Zlatibor is to rent a driver and one of those huge cars where there is place for 5-8 people(also available for less number of people). I actually did traveled once with friends like this(but usually by bus)and as far as I remember it wasn't that much expensive. You just book the driver and a car and tell him when do you want to go back and that is it. It is also possible to buy the bus tickets from Kopaonik to Belgrade while you are there, but usually you do this the first day when you arrive at Kopaonik. I will try to find out for you the telephone numbers and hopefully the web site of the company that did the rent-a-driver thing. You can at least use it to go to Zlatibor or some other place.

Best regards,

Nenad

Belgrade
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9. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

On more thing:

Zlatibor doesn't mean Golden Oak..it is Golden I just don't know how to translate Bor in the word which is a type of a winter tree but don't know the English word for it. Looks something like a Christmas tree =).

And yes: Belgrade(English) = Beograd (Serbian) = Beo Grad = White City(translation) =)

Best regards,

Nenad

U.K.
Destination Expert
for Belgrade
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10. Re: New Year & First time in Belgrade

I was in Zlatibor in August, be prepaed for prices much higher than Belgrade. They seem to work two tiers, higher prices or foreign tourists.

Stoofer