Today was an opportunity to escape Sarajevo and see a bit more of the country. To help me do that I booked a trip on Viator, a website that acts as a portal to local travel companies; definitely recommended. Even better given it was the down season and they were still able to accommodate my trip. It did mean I was the only one to go, but an exclusive trip is a good one, right?
Our route would take us south-west down close to the border with Croatia and Dubrovnik
Stop 1 was the town of Konjic and it's famous bridge which is a National Monument now. It was originally built in the 1680s.
Stop 2 was Jablanica a site of a famous act by the Partisan forces in the attack of the Chetnik forces. In a rather shrewd move they destroyed a bridge to fool the opposition into going another way and then rebuilt the bridge to continue on their original path. The bridge seen on the site today was put in place for a film of the story. So this ended up being a site where the bridge was destroyed 3 times.
Our furthest stop south was the town of Pocitelj, a tiny village with a really cool tower atop a hill that offered an amazing view of the area.
My favourite stop of the day was the Dervish house at the Buna River Spring in the East of the town of Blagaj. This was so scenic and the original house is in incredible condition. I did have a weird encounter when I caught a Russian Tourist putting on my boots when I returned to where we had to remove them, but a stern if amusing telling off got them back.
The final stop was the UNESCO listed city of Mostar. Another small but beautiful town that is still overcoming it's battle scars.
The centrepiece is the bridge destroyed by rocket fire but recently rebuilt. It's now part of the Red Bull Diving tour and is really pretty. They've done an incredible job restoring back to its former glory. Watching a video of the attack in a nearby museum hurt. It's ridiculous how people can do this to each other.
On the way back a quick stop at Lake Jablanica and their "Gold Gate Bridge" as the guide described it in jest. More stunning scenery.
And back in Sarajevo where I missed this piece in the park near Cafe Tito. It was originally a sculpture of a can of Spam but looks to have been given a re-theme.
This was a great day and I totally recommend this tour. Sarajevo is cool but there is so much more to see outside of the city and this was a great tour to cover some of it.