Many travellers have Croatia, Slovenia and Greece on their travel bucket lists. But Bosnia and Montenegro have much to offer for visiting families as well.
Here are Five Reasons you should travel to Bosnia and Montenegro:
1. Family-friendly destinations
In Bosnia and Montenegro, children are welcomed with open arms. Families will be very pleased to discover that Bosnians and Macedonians are friendly and very open and welcoming of children. Hospitality is taken seriously and accommodation and restaurant owners are warm and hospitable towards families with kids; children are viewed as a joy. This is music to any parents ears when travelling as a family!
2. Top-notch sights at a fraction of the cost
Bosnia and Montenegro boast truly impressive natural and historical sights. Like the dramatic coastline of the Adriatic in Montenegro and the Bay of Kotor. Or the Dinaric Alps in Montenegro and Bosnia. And the literal street corner that sparked the First World War (Bosnia). These lesser-visited countries boast beautiful scenery, plenty of opportunities to explore, and numerous important historical sights. And yet, both of these countries still maintain very affordable accommodation, restaurants, transportation, and entry fees for tourist sights. This makes both Bosnia and Montenegro less expensive to travel through than neighbouring countries. While exploring Bosnia and Montenegro might take less of a toll on the bank account, it is just as rich in the experience department!
3. Hidden historical gems without the crowds
Bosnia and Montenegro both receive a fraction of the international visitors that neighbouring Balkan countries do every year, which gives them an “off-the-beaten-path” feel. It also means you can visit any of either country’s important historical sites, like the Sarajevo bobsled track, the corner where Franz Ferdinand was assassinated (sparking WWI), explore the Bay of Kotor, or visit the Mostar bridge, without sharing your experience with thousands of other people.
4. A crash course in modern history
As challenging and uncomfortable as seeing the wounds of the past can be, understanding history can help us to not repeat it. When the former Yugoslavia collapsed, one country at a time descended into civil war. The evidence of the Yugoslav wars is still very evident, especially in Bosnia, where buildings reveal bullet holes and other signs of fighting. While this can elicit all sorts of emotions, and children may have lots of questions about the events that took place, learning about the Yugoslav wars and the recovery period can help families gain perspective on the impact of conflict and how it applies today.
5. Explore the crossroads of history
Over the centuries, Montenegro and Bosnia have sat centre stage, along with other Balkan nations, as empires large and small rose and fell. Many of history’s great empires – Greek and Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman – ruled and controlled this slice of Europe. Each empire left its mark as well, from architecture and culture to religion and language. Roaming through Bosnia and Montenegro offer a first-hand experience of the textured and complicated history of these places and brings lessons in social studies to life.
Take my advice, and just go!
About the Author: Amie Gosselin loves adventure, exploring and travelling the world, especially with her husband and three daughters, and inviting others along for the ride. She blogs about family travel and adventure at www.steveamie.com.