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83 travelers at this place:

  • Day39

    The Iron Gates

    October 7, 2017 in Serbia ⋅ 🌧 9 °C

    Until the point we reached Serbia we could hardly imagine what it would be about. One thing we've noticed quite from the beginning was the way Serbians are welcoming us in their country (yes, that started right behind the border crossing). People passing by are waving at us and quite a few of them do speak German what makes it a lot easier for us to decode Cyrillic letters.

    Not only the people, but also
    the landscape has impressed us. Especially the section around the Iron Gates where the Danube passes through a narrow long gorge.
    From the little-used road alongside the river we obtained several panoramic views over the gorge - paired with sunny weather we enjoyed perfect days (and one day passed through 21 (!) tunnels along this brilliant road).

    For unknown reasons, we are meeting more and more other cyclists compared to the weeks before - a French guy cycling to Greece, a couple from New Zealand cycling all around Europe, a German women cycling to Istanbul, another one cycling to the Black Sea, a Serbian couple enjoying an extended weekend trip, a French couple cycling the Danube up to Vienna with backpacks on their bicycle racks.

    Right now we're staying in a cosy guesthouse at Bojan's place in Negotin, decided to take a rest day, enjoy tasty tea and pastries and wait for the rain to pass. Tomorrow, we're going to continue our journey and probably reach Bulgaria :)
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  • Day14

    The Balkan Express

    June 17, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ 🌧 19 °C

    The Cyrillic alphabet is used throughout Bulgaria with very few concessions in English. Accordingly, in Sofia station only numbers are an indication of where you should be and when. The train departure board indicated that my train number was leaving at platform 4 so I made my way there only to find it deserted. The only passengers I could see were a couple of Norwegian backpackers on platform 5, so back down the stairs and along the underground passage and back up the stairs I eventually found my train there. The International Balkan Express consisted of only two carriages, both filthy, littered and covered in graffiti. There appeared to be only 6 passengers on board this once per day international train, so why reservations were essential was beyond me. I eventually found a seat at a window with minimal graffiti which I could actually see out of. Looking around I wished I had packed the G Tech vacuum cleaner Mum had bought us, to freshen the place up a bit. The toilet had no lock, seat, toilet paper, soap or towels and was already blocked before we left Sofia. I can safely say this is the dirtiest train I have ever had the misfortune to travel on. Given there were no catering facilities again on this lengthy journey, I had fortunately stocked up with provisions including what looked like a 4 pack of Greggs sausage rolls mounded into one, with the sausage meat cut up into bits. It was filling if nothing else.

    Again we were stopped at the Bulgarian border for passport checks, and the Border Police ordered passengers to stay in their seats while they searched the whole train - luggage racks, toilets, even ceiling panels and electrical equipment areas were removed by screwdrivers and meticulously searched. A similar procedure took place a little later at Dimitrovgrad as we entered Serbia. Two of the other passengers turned out to be train buffs from Dublin (one of them a driver on the Maynooth-Dublin train, Jennifer) who were excited when the Bulgarian engine shunted off and was replaced by its Serbian counterpart.

    As the train meandered across Serbia at a leisurely pace, the scenery became more mountainous and dramatic, and for a while followed the scenic route of a muddy, brown river. The heat rose, and by early afternoon the smell in the compartment had deteriorated. A Serbian couple a few seats in front fortunately managed to screw open a few windows. She then proceeded to strip off her top half standing in her bra for a good 10 minutes enjoying a cigarette (yes!) before fanning herself and putting her top back on. She had clearly never heard of deodorant.

    Serbia is not included in the list of countries where you can benefit from using your mobile phone at the same rate as your agreement allows in the UK. Neither was I offered the same deal of unlimited calls, texts and data for £4.99 by o2 as you are in some other countries. At £2 per minute per call, the phone would stay off until I got WiFi.

    Eventually, 11 hours after it left Sofia, the Boggin’, sorry Balkan, Express limped into Belgrade, Serbia. I was never so glad to disembark.
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  • Day15

    Belgrade, Serbia

    June 18, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ 🌧 20 °C

    The 2 star Bristol Hotel in Belgrade where I was spending two nights is certainly faded grandeur. A bit tired and run down, it still exuded a certain old fashioned charm. And at a total of only £28 for two nights including free WiFi and breakfast how could I complain? It does have have a remarkable history, built in 1912 it is said to represent the pinnacle of Secessionist architecture in the city. Apparently at one time it was the centre of fashionable life in the whole of the former Yugoslavia, and previous guests have included members of the Rockefeller family and the British Royal family.

    I set off on a walking tour of the city. A bit down at heel in places, Belgrade reminded me a bit of Glasgow - lots of lovely buildings but you had to seek them out. A climb up to the Belgrade Fortress rewarded me with fabulous views of the confluence of the city’s two great rivers - the Sava and the Danube. Ah, the Blue Danube, or as my Big Granny used to call it, the Blue Daniel. A circular tour on the No. 2 tram helped me get my bearings. I had a delicious Serbian lunch sitting outside - pork chops with a creamy, mushroom sauce. When a thunderstorm arrived in the afternoon, I sought refuge in the beautiful Hotel Mockba (Moscow) where I enjoyed afternoon tea. It’s a hard life, but someone has to do it!

    The Church of Saint Sava is one of the largest Orthodox churches in the world. Although it is bigger than the one I saw yesterday, the Alexander Nevski Cathedral in Sofia, the interior is quite unfinished, and I much preferred the Sofia version.

    Well, I have walked my feet off today. Belgrade may not be my favourite city, but perseverance paid off and I enjoyed seeking out some of its treasures.
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  • Day34

    Berlin of the Balkans

    October 2, 2017 in Serbia ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    The fact that we came up against the town sign of Belgrade almost 20km before our hostel in the city center, made us aware of the size of this city. Novi Grad (the new town) welcomed us with new buildings made from steel and glass while on the eastern side of the holy river Save, the old fortress at the outlet into the Danube and a mixture of a few remaining pre-war and concrete buildings are dominating.

    We did not expect too much of the Church of Saint Sava, one of the largest Orthodox churches in the world, as the inside is still under construction. However, the outer appearance of it (inspired by the Taj Mahal?) and even more the crypt are impressive. We can hardly imagine how it will look like when it is finished and provides space for more than 10,000 people.

    Rakija enriched with honey sweetened our days walking around, exploring the fortress and discovering delicious food in the countless bakeries - and for some reason, Belgrade, 'The White City' reminded us of Berlin.
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  • Day54

    Outside EU: Welcome in Serbia

    June 28, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ 🌧 19 °C

    We crossed the boarder to Serbia! Now, we have to get used to the cyrillic letters to find our way. At least language is almost the same as in Croatia. We ate lunch for ~4€ (~480 Dinar) both and two kids were begging. It felt like another world.

    On the way to Novi Sad, the rain was pooring for ten minutes so we had to make use of or plastic folia, hide and wait. :D it worked out!

    In Novi Sad, we visited a warmshower family who received a package from Germany from us that we could pick up at their place. We had a great chat with them, a juice and they even gave us a prepaid sim card!

    The city Novi Sad was astonishing! Young people everywhere on the streets drinking and chatting and we only made it to drink one wine because we were so tired. But it is an awesome city for all type of activities. Also, it could have been a part of Berlin or some other cool Western city ;) Wi loved the place immediately.

    We realized that we need to cycle ~100km per day for the next days that Jo catches his flight from Sofia. So, we keep going now! (wi)
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  • Day57

    Serbia, what a beauty

    July 1, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ 🌙 17 °C

    After the night in the hydro electric water station, Јовица even made us coffee! I'm still absolutely stunned about the hostility we have been facing by the Serbians we met so far! :) :) We took the ferry as our first thing in the morning at 7:30h and had a small break first at the shore.

    After two hours of nice landscapes even with some touristic beaches and cafes, we passed the Golubac Fortress (Голубачки гра) which is a quite impressive fort from the 14th century and had been owned by Turks, Hungarians, Bulgarians, Austrians and finally Serbs with its significant location to control the Danube river traffic during the battles.

    Our last hour, we joined a French cyclist who just started a cycle tour for the next two years. He carried 50kg (!!) on his bike even though he was only 60kg himself after loosing 8kg in 4 weeks (!) Just. Wow.

    I need to mention that a man gave us fresh pears on the street today :)

    Tonight, in Donji Milanovac, there's a live band playing at a fishing festival and they even organized a firework (wi)
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  • Day203


    September 3, 2018 in Serbia

    Um nach Serbien zu kommen, durften wir wieder zurück nach Mazedonien fahren, weil wir mit unseren Reisepässen nicht direkt nach Serbien einreisen durften.
    So fuhren wir wieder ein paar Stunden zurück, tankten nochmal billig voll und reisten dann nach Serbien ein.

    Unser erster Stop war die Stadt Nis. Auf den ersten Eindruck nicht die schönste Stadt doch unsere Hostel, wie auch die Innenstadt war dann doch ganz schön anzuschauen.

    Am nächsten Tag ging es weiter nach Zrenjanin (ca. 1h nördlich von Belgrad) zu Jovan und seiner Frau Lidia.
    Abends gingen wir gemeinsam aufs Bierfest um etwas zu feiern.

    Die Fahrgeschäfte und Spielbuden hätten die TÜV Plakette vermutlich nicht bekommen, doch funktioniert ja auch ohne.
    Das Beste war ein Kettenkarussell, an dem die Sitze an einem überdimensionalen Fleischerhacken befestigt waren...

    Nach einer kleinen Stadtführung und einem leckeren Mittagessen mit Lidias Familie ging es für uns weiter Richtung Ungarn.
    Abends, 20 km vor der Grenze machte Kenny´s Schaltung wieder schlapp.
    Wir übernachteten auf einem Rasthof und überließen Zukunft´s Chris und Zukunft´s Marci das Problem.
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  • Day58

    Taxi nach Неготин, nur für eine Nacht...

    July 2, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ 🌙 18 °C

    Rabenschwarzer Tag? Eigentlich schien die Sonne am wolkenlosem Himmel.
    Es standen gleich zu Beginn 700 Höhenmeter an. Jo bog, fast oben am Berg angekommen, auf einen Feldweg ab, der nochmal steiler war, um zum Ausichtsturm zu gelangen. Doch er trat mit aller Kraft ins Leere. Das Schaltauge, welches das Verbindungsstück zwischen Schaltwerk und Rahmen ist, brach entzwei. Infolgedessen rissen auch gleich noch die Führungsschienen des Schaltwerks. Die Folge: kein Weiterfahren/Rollen möglich. Nach einer kurzen Analyse stand fest: Gewaltbruch in Folge eines Dauerbruchs. Dies half uns jedoch nicht weiter. Mitten im Nichts auf dem Berg verloren sah Jo gerade noch ein T4 mit Tübinger Kennzeichen passieren, war jedoch zu langsam, um ihn anzuhalten. Wäre das die Rettung gewesen?
    10min später kam ein Bauer, der Holz sammelte um daraus Kohle herzustellen, mit seinem altem Traktor vorbei. Wir hielten ihn an und verständigten uns mit Händen und Füßen. Er verstand uns und kramte ein Tüdeldraht aus seiner Notfallzauberkiste hervor mit dem Jo Kette und Schaltwerk befestigen konnte, um zumindest weiter rollen zu können.
    Die Entscheidung den eben hochgefahren Weg wieder zurück ins nächst größere Dorf zu rollen, lag auf der Hand. Den Berg herunter war es entspannt. Auf der Ebene waren es noch 7km bis zum Ort. Wi zog Jo die Hälfte der Strecke, bis ein Moped vorbei kam, bei dem Jo sich festhalten durfte. Jetzt ging es schnell aber auch anstrengend bis ins Dorf, wo wir am Morgen gestartet waren.
    Im Dorf versuchten wir ein Ersatzteil zu bekommen. Im Hostel traffen wir einen Österreicher der mit dem Kajak! die Donau runter paddeln und wieder Rum einen kannte der einen kennt der vielleicht das Rad reparieren könnte. Dies ist jedoch leider wie schon vermutet in ganz Serbien nicht erhältlich, da Spezialteil. Also machten wir uns mit dem Taxi auf nach Negotin, unserem eigentlichem Tagesziel. Wir fanden eine super Unterkunft, wo wir zwei andere nette Biker aus Deutschland trafen mit denen wir den Abend verbrachten. Jo
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  • Day55

    Schlammschlacht - Fight with the clouds

    June 29, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ 🌧 19 °C

    Der Tag begann mit einem Frühstück an der Donau mit Blick auf das Fort von Novi Sad, welches nie eingenommen wurde. Zum Frühstück gab es unter anderem eine viertel Melone vom Markt zum Touripreis natürlich, aber immer noch sehr günstig. Wir waren gerade fertig, ehe der erste Schauer des Tages einsetzte.

    Entlang der Bundesstraße 100, die aufgrund einer Baustelle später gesperrt war, wurde der Verkehr immer weniger. Wir hielten seitlich bei einem netten Reifenservice, um den Reifen Nachdruck zu verleihen.
    Kurz vor Beginn der Baustelle machten wir mit zwei Hunden Bekanntschaft welche die Autos durch ließen, aber uns Fahrradfahrer ein Stück bellend und nach der Fahrradtasche schnappend für einige Meter im Spallier begleiteten. Ich hab Wi noch nie so schnell ein Berg hochfahren sehen.
    Wenig später bogen wir auf ein Feldweg ab, um die Baustelle zu umfahren wie es auch wenige einheimische Autos taten. Doch als der Schotter aufhörte war erstmal kein weiter kommen. Zahlreiche Autos hatten sich auf einem Lehmmatschweg, der so schmierig war, das auch wir schoben, festgefahren. Ein Geländewagen mit Seilwinde leistete erste Hilfe. Auf den hundert Metern sammelte sich bei Jo soviel Dreck an Reifen, Bremse und Kette, dass er beim nächsten Einheimischen anhielt um sein Fahrrad dort zu waschen.
    Kurz darauf trafen wir eine Familie aus Südkorea die mit dem Fahrrad unterwegs ist!
    Ansonsten haben wir noch Kühe auf einer Kreuzung getroffen und wieder versucht Wolken zu entkommen. Eine gab uns keine Zeit zum Nachdenken und begrüßte uns mit Platzregen. Wir bogen ins Maisfeld ab und schützen uns unter der bewehrten Plane. Nach dem Regen sahen wir, dass uns nur 300m von der Trockenheit getrennt haben.
    Wir kamen vor dem nächsten Schauer in Belgrad an und freuten uns auf die Waschmaschine in einem kleinem Studio.
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  • Day59

    Time for stats

    July 3, 2018 in Serbia ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

    Rückblick in Zahlen des zweiten Monats:

    29 I 29 Tage Reise
    27 I 21Tag (wi -4)Radfahren
    2 I 8 Tage Pause
    Gefahrene km: 1.786km I 2031km (wi -500)
    Durschnitts km pro Radtag: 66,1 I 96,7 (Jo) 89,8 (wi)
    Max km/h: 63 (wi) 85,66 (Jo)
    Min km/h: 6,0 I 3,4
    Camping Nächte: 10 I 9
    Warmshowers: 7 I 7
    Pensionen/Hotel: 12 I 12
    Wasserkraftwerk: 0 I 1
    Pannen: 0 I 2
    Rad upgrades: 3 (wi) I 2 (Jo)
    Stürze: 0 I 2(wi) 1 (Jo)
    Umfaller: 0 I 2 (jo) 1 (wi)
    Fliegen verschluckt: 4 (jo)
    Fliegen im Auge: 3 (jo), 15 (wi)
    Wilde Tiere <20m:
    Unzählige Vögel
    Schutz gesucht vor Regenschauer 0 I 3
    Wi, jo
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You might also know this place by the following names:

Serbia, Serbien, Sèrbia, Serwië, ሰርብያ, صربيا, ܣܪܒܝܐ, صيربيا, Sirwiya, Serbiya, صربیستان, Сербия, Serbya, Сербія, Сърбия, সারবিয়া, སེར་བི་ཡ།, সার্বিয়া, Srbija, Серби, ᏒᏈᏯ, سربیا, Sırbistan, Srbsko, Serbskô, Срьбїꙗ, Sırbıstan, Serbiska, ސާބިއާ, Σερβία, Serbio, Sérbia, صربستان, Serbie, Sèrbie, Servje, An tSeirbia, An t-Sèirb, Sevia, सर्बिया, સર્બિયા, Yn Serb, Seripia, סרביה, Sèbi, Szerbia, Սերբիա, セルビア, serbias, სერბია, Сербиэ, ಸೆರ್ಬಿಯಾ, 세르비아, Сӧрбия, Serbi, Servië, ປະເທດແຊກບີ, Serbija, Serbeja, 塞爾維亞, Сербие, Сербий, Србија, സെര്‍ബിയ, Serbja, ဆားဘီးယား, Сербия Мастор, صربستون, Terbiya, Serbii, Sarbiyaa, ସର୍ବିଆ, ਸਰਬੀਆ, سربيا, Sérvia, Sirbya, Seribiya, Serbėjė, සර්බියාව, Seerbiya, Srbiyakondre, ISebhiya, Syrbijo, செர்பியா, సెర్బియా, เซอร์เบีย, Serbiýa, Sēpia, Sebia, Terepia, سېربىيە, Servia, Xéc-bi, Särbän, Seerbi, 塞尔维亚, Серпудин Орн, სერბეთი, סערביע, Sérbíà, i-Serbia

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