- Area: 359.96 km² (139 sq mi)
- Calling Code: +38111
- Currency: Serbian dinar (RSD)
- Population (EST): 1,182,000
- Official language: Serbian
- Time Zone: CET (UTC+1)
Belgrade – Overview
The capital of Serbia, Belgrade, is located in the north of the country at the confluence of the two rivers; Danube and Sava. Its population of over 1.5 million people make it the largest Serbian city and the third largest in South-East Europe, with only Istanbul and Athens topping it in size. One of Europe’s oldest cities, Belgrade is bursting with things for visitors to see and do. Once part of the Former Republic of Yugoslavia, the country has seen some turbulent times but is now becoming an increasingly flourishing tourist destination.
Old Belgrade on the eastern shore of the River Sava is a treasure trove of wonderful architecture with dozens of historical buildings. The compact size of Old Belgrade means it is easy to explore on foot, from the impressive military stronghold of the Kalemegdan Fortress to the romantic and neoclassic buildings of Parliament, religion and royalty a day spent exploring this part of the city throws up all sorts of cultural treats. If seeing the sights isn’t enough, step indoors and take in the world class exhibitions of Belgrade’s museums and art galleries, check their opening times though as many are closed on a Monday.
Summer in Belgrade is delightful, the city’s parks and gardens are open and full of local residents and visitors making the most of the sunshine. The most famous and well frequented outdoor recreation area is Ada Ciganlija, a former island on the River Sava that is now connected to the shore, forming a huge artificial lake for swimming or taking part in water sports. Running and cycling tracks are also plentiful on the island but if you’re not feeling active why not head to the 7km of sandy beach for a spot of sunbathing?
Serbs love their food and many of the traditional dishes contain grilled meat and sausage, not ideal for vegetarians though there are plenty of meat free options. Skadar Street, located in Skadarlija the city’s old bohemian quarter, is where to find the best and oldest restaurants in Belgrade, some of which date back to the nineteenth century. Despite Belgrade’s lack of ethnic diversity there are many good international restaurants offering up dishes from around the world, the large majority of which are located in the new part of Belgrade on the opposite shore of the Sava River.
Belgrade has a buzzing nightlife; voted number 1 party destination by the Lonely Planet the city attracts visitors from all over Europe that come to experience its lively atmosphere. With all night clubs and bars Belgrade is made for night owls and the best place to find them is in New Belgrade which is definitely the place to see and be seen! For more traditional Serbian evening entertainment in small atmospheric taverns head down to Old Belgrade, where musicians play traditional songs and revellers drink the local beer, brewed just down the road in Belgrade’s oldest brewery.