Monday, March 31, 2014

Strolling Sarajevo

We landed in Sarajevo Saturday at noon and it's been one non-stop stroll. Not just us but the whole city. Seems that the locals love to walk just about as much as they love to sit in cafes and drink strong Bosian coffee or tea or the local Sarajevska beer.

We are staying just a few meters from the Old Town strolling street Ferhadija, where East meets West and on almost any day the locals outnumber the tourists.

Yesterday, we made a Sunday excursion to Ilidza - riding the tram - where the locals head to walk, bike, run, rollerblade, or take a horse-drawn carriage ride 4 kms down a tree lined road to Vrlo Bosne, the headwaters of the Bosne River; and then back.

Today we walked 4 kms east from the Old Town to the Goat Bridge, an Ottoman era bridge. Not the weekend, but the few walkers and bikers are tireless.

The train ride from Mostar to Sarajevo is billed as spectacular. We rate it scenic.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Eating in Bosnia is now even easier as we've found ascinicas, cafeteria-style traditional Bosnia restaurants which serve traditional Bosnian food (cooked not grilled) where you can see what you are ordering and you can get a tasty "vegetarian plate" for about 4.50 USD.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

And the potato burek at Buregdzinica Sac is the best potato dish I've had in a long time.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

With Sarajevska beer.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

I'm about ready to have my first ever cup of authentic Bosnian Coffee. Pour so the grounds stay at the bottom of the small copper kettle.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The Main Mosque.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Visitors are allowed between prayers.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

And the Madrasah (Islamic school) across the street.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The Catholic Cathedral. Sarajevo is where East meets West so there are mosques, churches (Catholic and Orthooox), and synagogues.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Chess.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Strolling to Vrloe Bosne, the source of the Bonse River.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The springs.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

A park in Ilidza.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Back to Ascinica Asdz for lunch. ;-)
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Just before sunset we walked east and up to a viewpoint, passing a Muslim cemetery on the way.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Check out the minarets.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo Roses, imprints from mortar shells filled with red resin, are reminders of the Bosnian War. This one is near our hotel.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Another reminder of the war is the monument at the Markale (Market) to the dead from the 1994 and 1995 bombings ( of the Markale). It's the red wall in the back.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Svrzo's House: An old Ottoman house that is now a museum.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Strolling to the Goat Bridge.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

View of the Old Town from Alifakovak Cemetery.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

We finally run into an Art Deco building - The National Bank.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

And the Sarajevo Islamic Institute has early 20th century Modern lines.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The National and University Library is about ready to reopen.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

And more Bosnian coffee.
Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina


Saturday, March 29, 2014

Mostar Sun

A good day in Mostar:  a train ride, a Roman ruin, an old fortress, and sunny skies. We also saw a short film about the destruction and reconstruction of the Old Bridge - poignant.

On the train to Čapljina. The coach is "used" and from Sweden.
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina


Mogorjelo, the ruins of a 1st Century AD Roman Villa just 1km south on the main road from Čapljina.

Capljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Some views from Počitelj, a fortress town 3km north from Čapljina on the main road.
Capljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Capljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Capljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Capljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Capljina, Bosnia and Herzegovina

And finally we have sun in Mostar!
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Recent obituaries of Muslims plastered to poles and small signboards are a common site in Mostar. And people do stop to read them. Usually they are near mosques but not always.
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

This still ruined building caught my attention. We read that sometimes uncertainty regarding who owns a piece of land hinders renewal.
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Around Mostar are Muslim cemeteries filled with grave after grave of young men who died in 1993 - sobering.
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Closing up shop.
Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina



Playa del Carmen, Mexico

From Aguascalientes, there is a very convenient direct flight to Cancun.  Since the wedding is at a private beach south of Playa del Carmen,...