Tourists and travelers around the world know France, Italy, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and Spain. That is for sure, but Europe is beyond that. There are lesser known countries in Europe that, aside from having very fascinating names with interesting meanings, have beautiful natural wonders and intensive historical bounty to offer.
In this article, we will focus our attention on Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Now, let’s get started.
Bosnia and Hergezovina with kids means an exciting adventure since the country is certainly a place to discover and is much more than just a former Yugoslav Republic. Here are some of the reasons why kids and kids-at-heart will love it there:
1. It is a place of interesting culture.
Being a Balkan nation gives Bosnia and Herzegovina a historical and cultural advantage. While it is true that it was once part of the Yugoslav Republic, it is also true that it has very rich cultural heritage that dates back several centuries. It is a melting pot and a diverse country made up of Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats. The communities in the country are also composed of people of other ethnicities who follow a mix of different religions and faiths such as Muslim, Eastern Orthodox, and Roman Catholic. There are religious architectural wonders that the family can visit, food to devour, and tourist attractions to enjoy.
2. Its people are known for their hospitality.
Despite its troubled past of war and chaos, present-day Bosnia and Herzegovina promotes peace and harmony in the community. That is why family and kids play an integral part in the country. If you visit, you can expect hospitality to be a common theme. You’ll be greeted with a smile by the friendly locals at cafes and restaurants, and fairly anywhere. Don’t forget to smile back.
3. The national capital of Sarajevo is a unique place.
Like many travelers, you can kickstart your journey in the capital, where you will see many interesting places. The street life, the food, and the people all come together to offer a unique experience. Its well-preserved old quarter of Baščaršija that has landmarks such as 16th-century Gazi Husrev-bey Mosque is worth visiting.. The city’s old town that was founded by the Ottoman empire provides a beautiful contrast to the active streets around it. Needless to say, once you get to the old town, you’ll find Islamic traditions and architecture everywhere.
4. The country’s history is jampacked with significant events.
A trip to Bosnia and Herzegovina with kids will have to include visiting museums and historical sites to learn about the country’s rich and colorful history. You won’t be disappointed with the facts you will learn. Among the highlights that are worth noting are:
- it was conquered by Romans during the first and second centuries B.C.
- the country became part of the Byzantine Empire in the sixth century;
- it was under Turkish (Ottoman) rule in 1448; and
- World War 1 was triggered in Saravejo – the country’s capital.
To learn more about the country’s history, you can take the kids to the National Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Sarajevo Tunnel. Don’t miss out on them.
5. Kids will love the view of Stari Most.
Stari Most is a postcard-worthy location. It is an iconic and a popular ancient arched bridge over the Neretva River located in the city of Mostar. For locals, it is their version of the Eiffel Tower. As one of the country’s best known sites, one can expect nothing but spectacular scenery. Kids will love the view – from the emerald-green Neretva River to the imposing bridge, plus the stunts that local men do during summer. It may not be ideal for young kids, but brave souls and adventure-seekers find cliff jumping an amusing thing do during summer.
6. It is blessed with overwhelming natural wonders.
Did you know that Bosnia and Herzegovina is covered in green forest? Yes! That is right. The country is a landlocked nation of 40 percent pines, oaks, and beech trees. Not only that, there are picturesque natural parks and stunning rivers that are waiting for you to explore, too. Some of the best you can visit are:
- Sutjeska National Park – An ideal weekend-getaway destination for those who are looking for adventure at mountain peaks, lakes, and forest.
- Vrelo Bosne – A natural park where you can relax and unplug from the busy life of the city. It is a woodland that offers springs, pools, and wildlife.
7. It is a land of adventure.
With its overwhelming natural beauty and emerald-green rivers, there is no doubt that Bosnia and Herzegovina is a place of adventure. Apart from cliff jumping at the Neretva River, there are so many things the family can enjoy when visiting the country during summer. You will not come short of activities to do. Your day will, for sure, be filled with adventures such as river rafting, swimming, boating, paddling, and cliff diving. During winter, the mountain peaks of Vlašićare where the family can enjoy skiing and hiking.
8. The food is a must-try.
You’ve never really traveled to a country if you haven’t tried their local food. Food is another aspect of travel that kids must be exposed to. Though parents still need to take caution when letting them try new dishes, traditional Bosnian food is something one shouldn’t miss. Popular foods that you should try include baklava, a type of sweet cake, and stuffed vegetables, which both share similarities with Turkish cuisine. Other dishes that the kids will enjoy are:
- Cevapi – An oblong-shaped kebab.
- Burek – A delicioussnack of flaky pastry filled with cheese and meat.
- Tufahija – Like baklava, Tufahija is a famous dessert introduced by the Turkish to Bosnia. It is made of apple boiled in sugar and filled with walnuts and whipped cream toppings.
This article is part of our popular series, Place To Go With Kids!