BELGRADE - EUROPEAN CAPITAL OF NIGHTLIFE AND FUN
January 1, 1970
by Marina Ekmedzic
Belgrade – Capital city of Serbia also known as European night-life capital recently, is a modern European metropolis nowadays, with 1,8 million of people living in, keeping it`s essence of tradition offers different events and happenings for everyone`s taste. Ideal choice for city-break vacation, Belgrade is a unique mixture of oriental spirit and western civilization combined with famous Serbian hospitality – will knock you of your feet.
No matter what you have heard about Belgrade so far, after spending few days there all previous thoughts will be erased in a second and will be replaced with special memories. Crowded with foreign visitors all over the year, this city welcomes you and gives you once-in-a-life time experience for a reasonable price.
It is very easy to reach Belgrade from any part of Europe, as being connected with railway, bus, plane or even river cruises. The city is located on Danube and Sava river estuary and since ancient times has attracted foreign invaders. Celtic, Bulgarian, Austrian – Hungarian and Ottoman empires ruled over Serbian capital through time and each one of them left their mark for the future. These lines will try to tell you the story about unique Belgrade experience briefly with short guide about places you must visit.
Core of the city is Kalemegdan, (named from Turkish words kale – hill and megdan – battle), cultural – historical complex which comes along with Belgrade fortress, and it`s a favorite place to take a walk or just seat and enjoy in a beautiful view.
It is a unique park from medieval period where you can see “Roman well”, “Istanbul gate”, Zoo, underground dungeons, Natural or Historical museum at once. It offers incredible view on estuary and modern business city area – New Belgrade along with trade mark symbol of whole city – “Victor of Belgrade”, built to remind on a victory and great sacrifice of Serbian people in a Great War (1914 – 1918).
St. Sava`s temple
One of the symbols of entire city is St. Sava`s temple, hallowed to founder of modern Serbian church and state – Rastko Nemanjic, who gave up on his throne and become a monk Sava at the age of 18, who later on became a first arch – bishop of Serbian Orthodox church and spent the rest of his life serving to God. Along with his father and founder of Nemanjic`s dynasty – Stefan Nemanja, he managed to build one of the most important Orthodox temples outside of Serbia – The Hilandar Monastery, which takes place on Holy Mountain – Atos (Greece). The legend says that St. Sava temple is built on a place where Ottoman governor of Belgrade – Sinan pasha gave an order St. Sava`s bones to be burned to ashes (1594) in order to break pride of local people and erase a memory of this great man once and forever.
An interesting fact is that this monumental temple can be seen from almost every part of the city as it dominates over entire surrounding and it is one of the biggest Orthodox temples in the world at the moment.
Night life experience
During a last decade Belgrade got many nicknames, such as “European Bangkok” or “New York of Balkans” or simple – European capital of night life and fun. Famous for its night club – rafts placed on both rivers Belgrade is a city of enormous energy, which never sleeps and if you are looking for night adventures you are at the right spot. No matter if you like techno, rock, pop or local folk sound, be prepared to party from dusk till dawn. If you want to get known with local tradition of drinking and eating best place to visit is “kafana” – heart and soul of Belgrade, bohemian bars where you can enjoy in local meals and music. Street famous for its atmosphere and numerous bars is Bohemian street, Skadarlija, where the time has stopped in the 19th century and everything looks the same as then.
If you want to meet Belgrade completely I recommend to you – both! First, you can start the evening in some of the local bars and after that you can take few drinks or maybe a nice food. Than if you feel ready, you can go to one of the best night clubs placed on the rivers, named “splavovi”and enjoy in Belgrade vibes till the sun rises.
Ada Ciganlija- Lake and river island
One of the most beautiful urban river lakes in Europe is placed in southern part of Belgrade. This park of nature offers plenty of fun and sport activities no matter how old are you and during the summer months it is favorite place to get tanned and enjoy swimming on sandy beaches and that`s why it is called “Sea of Belgrade”.
Ada is just perfect for spending whole day enjoying the nature, playing some sports, having a barbecue with friends, swimming, jet-skiing or just hanging around and when night comes you can pick and visit one of the many night – bars placed on the beach with same feeling like you are somewhere at the sea side.
“Nikola Tesla” museum
If you got an impression that Belgrade is all about eating, drinking and partying – you are so wrong. City has dozen of various museums and cultural events during the whole year, but at the moment I will represent the one quite special and very interesting: “Nikola Tesla” museum.
Museum is dedicated to the one of the greatest Serbian and world`s minds and inventors of all time – Nikola Tesla (1856 – 1943) who became world wide famous scientist. This great mind patented more than 130 ideas and many yet to be discovered and confirmed. His museum is place one of a kind where you can read his personal letters, participate in some of his experiments, take a look of his photos and enjoy of being in the same room with this genius, since Nicola Tesla ashes, after he was cremated, are kept right there as this was his testimonial wish, although he personally visited Belgrade only once he felt deep connection with this city and his nation. The museum is opened from 10 am to 6 pm.
DID YOU KNOW..?
- Belgrade is the most times bombed capital city in Europe.
- “Eternal derby” between Red Star and Partizan is officially 4th greatest city rivalry in the world.
- Beside Belgrade (Serbia) even 16 more places are named exactly the same.