Coming up with a place to go to for a vacation on your own or with friends can be challenging enough. However, finding the perfect spot for families can be much tougher, as you will need activities that will keep everyone happy for the whole break. If you have children and want to take them to somewhere new, you’re in luck, as we happen to know a place just for the occasion.
Bosnia and Herzegovina has everything you need for a fun time in a populated area as well as near nature. Tours are available for a variety of places that make you feel like you’re traveling back in time and viewing beautiful structures. And since this country falls into our list of cheapest but safe countries to visit, you can save some money while on your trip! Here are five things you should do with the kids in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
1. Old Bridge
Views are among the most enjoyable experiences on a vacation, and they are much better when you have different environments close together. Bosnia and Herzegovina have no shortage of views thanks to the Old Bridge, a.k.a. Stari Most, in Mostar. You can take your kids to the middle of the bridge and look down to check out the Neretva River, which always has a clear appearance no matter the time of day. The greenery outside the buildings by the river add to the scenery, especially if you’re stopping by in the spring or summer.
The bridge itself makes a great addition to your photo collection if you’re taking a shot from either end. There are plenty of shops on both sides, so you can use the bridge for easy access to different stores that have clothes and souvenirs that your kids can take home to show off to their friends at school. You can take photos with your family from different angles and include the mountains and buildings down the river in the background. The view of the Old Bridge alone gives Bosnia and Herzegovina a worthy place on our list of ten cheapest countries to visit in Europe this year!
Do you want your kids to feel like they’re exploring beautiful structures like the ones they see in their favorite fantasy movies and TV shows? We advise taking them to Bihac for an afternoon. This city is home to Ostrozac Castle, which comes with different structures and areas that your kids can explore. The views from the top of the castle will allow you and your family to check out the rest of the town, as well as the mountains in the background.
You can also check out Fethija Mosque, which is the oldest gothic building in the country and has winds, structures and other forms of architecture that are works of art. The kids may also get a kick out of City mosque, which is put together with more modern technology and provide just as many beautiful views as traditional alternatives. Sokolacka Kula is another traditional, castle-like place that your gang will enjoy because of the views, and Gradaski Park will serve as a nice break from the traveling so that you can sit down on a bench and enjoy the sun setting over the hills and river.
3. Una National Park
If your kids are bigger fans of the wildlife and want to find their inner outdoorsmen, then spending a day at Una National Park should be at the top of your to-do list. One spot you need to check out is Strbacki buk, which features waterfalls on top of waterfalls surrounded by woods. There’s also the Great Una Waterfalls, which are a little higher and present clear, clean water for tourists to check out. While we advise being careful, it helps to stand as close to the falls as possible if you want great photos.
The hiking trails in Lohovo and Kulen Vakuf provide for a great workout so that whatever huge dinners you have at the end of the day are well earned. The views of the area at the top of the mountains are also a great reward for the trip. Some spots in the park include bridges so that you can get safer views of the falls and wildlife that may be in the area, Tufa is the perfect blend of all of these environments and make for a great spot for relaxation.
Visiting a place you’ve never been to before provides you an opportunity to understand other cultures. One spot you need to explore for this purpose is Sarajevo, which includes enough remains from the Bosnian War of the 1990s to show people the struggles that people went through 20 years ago. This will be a more engaging education lesson for your kids than reading textbooks in class.
Areas in town that can provide such lessons include Sarajevo Tunnel, Gazi Husrev-beg Mosque and Bascarsija. The latter is full of shops that make sure that you end the day taking something home. Subilj Brunnen in the middle of the town makes for a beautiful fountain for you to stop by for a break during tours and take photos of. If you’re looking for large structures to check out, then we recommend Vijecnica and the Church of the Holy Archangels Michael and Gabriel.
5. Banja Luka
Some parts of Bosnia and Herzegovina are better suited for nice walks around town and going out for a bite with friends and family. That’s where Banja Luka comes in, as this spot will serve as a nice break from the mountain climbing and castle tour that you and the kids have done throughout the week. There are areas such as Kastel and Vrbas canyons that make for great attractions, but they are small enough to require minimal walking.
Green hills are positioned throughout the town so that visitors get a balance of the city life and nature, making for great sites that may be hard for your kids to come by back at home. Banja Luka is also home to a variety of festivals, such as Demofest, Fresh Wave Festival and Kastel Rock Fest. We recommend timing your break so that your family will get to enjoy new forms of entertainment while you enjoy a nice meal.
Put these activities on your to-do list so that your kids will always remember their time in Bosnia and Herzegovina and want to go back as soon as they get the chance.