Early this month my husband and I made an impromptu plan to visit Serbia during the Eid holidays. Serbia is one of those countries that is still off the popular tourist trails.
We traveled by direct Fly Dubai flight from Dubai to Belgrade, the capital of Serbia. It took us approximately 5 hours 20 minutes. There are direct flights from Dubai to Belgrade with different flight options.
For Indian passport holders there is Visa Exemption for a period of 30 days from the date of entry. You should have a return ticket and confirmed accommodation. We hardly spent 5 minutes at the passport control and the whole process went swiftly.
Serbia is a country located in the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It was part of former Yugoslavia. Serbia is rich in history, culture and natural resources.
Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It is one of the oldest cities in Europe and built on the confluence of Sava and Danube rivers. Belgrade is known for its vibrant nightlife.
On our 5 day visit to Serbia, we stayed in Belgrade and explored the capital and other parts of Serbia.
What is the best time to visit Serbia?
Winter can be harsh in Serbia, so it is best to travel during April till September. The first week of June when we were there, the weather was hot during the day and pleasant in the evenings.
Where to stay?
Whether it is luxury or budget hotels, Belgrade has plenty of options. We stayed in the conveniently located and modern Hilton Belgrade.
Belgrade has public transport like buses, trams and taxis. The city doesn’t have Uber, but it has a local version known as CarGo. And we tried it a few times and it was safe and inexpensive.
Things to do and see in Serbia
We stayed in Belgrade for 4 nights and 5 days and explored the Belgrade city on our own as well as with a tourist company. And on 2 days we went on day trips to different parts of Serbia.
The first day we arrived from Dubai early in the noon and after checking in to our hotel, we had lunch at Sky Lounge which had excellent view, amazing food and cocktails. After that we spent our evening at Knez Mihailova, a lively pedestrian boulevard flanked by historical buildings.
On day 2, we went on Belgrade Big Tour: Top Attractions and Belgrade Neighborhoods. It was a whole day complete Belgrade experience with a small group of five including our guide and a driver. We were picked and dropped off at our hotel.
It was the most comprehensive and jam-packed full day tour of all the sights in Belgrade. A must-do trip if you’re visiting Belgrade for the first time. We visited all the important sights in city center and the surrounding areas. It was a combination of walking tour and a panoramic car tour. And in the afternoon we had a Serbian lunch. Some of the places we visited were:
Zemun Citadel and Millennium Tower
St. Nicholas Church
Avala Mountain and Avala Tower
Museum of Yugoslav History and House of Flowers(the resting place of Josip Broz Tito)
Saint Sava Temple
Old and New Royal Palaces
Monument of Nikola Tesla
St. Marks Church
On day 3 we did a full day tour of Northern Serbia, Sremski Karlovci and Novi Sad. We were picked up from our hotel at 9am and dropped back at 6pm in the evening. Our first stop was at an Orthodox monastery in the region known as ‘The Holy Mountain of Serbia’, a lovely baroque town of Sremski Karlovci and we also visited the Chapel of Peace. The famous Bermet Wine is from this region and we tried this wine and few others wines at a local wine bar.
Our next stop was Petrovaradin Fortress that was built in 17th-18th century and from there we enjoyed the view of Danube and the city of Novi Sad. Next we visited the city center of Novi Sad, the second largest city in Serbia. We explored the city on our own and had lunch at a contemporary Serbian restaurant.
On day 4 we did a full day tour of Eastern Serbia Monasteries and Resava Cave from Belgrade. It was a 9 hour tour and we were picked and dropped at our hotel. We visited the Ravanica and Manasija Orthodox monasteries. Our traditional Serbian lunch was at a picturesque spot close to a Waterfall.
The last stop was an 80 million years old Resava Cave with its dramatic stalactites and stalagmites.
The last day or day 5, we had a relaxed day at the hotel and went on a scenic and informative 1 hour and 30 minutes Sava and Danube River cruise on a boat followed by lunch at a gorgeous restaurant on the river bank. And after that it was time to head over to the airport to catch a flight back home.
Overall our Serbian sojourn was amazing. Serbia is a beautiful country worth traveling and the people are really nice and friendly.