9 Countries in 7 Weeks: Serbia

Each year Messina Hof Wine Cellars, Inc offers travel to a wine region.  Paul and Merrill Bonarrigo lead these travel tours. This year our Messina Hof Travel was on Amawaterways from Budapest to Bucharest. This was an unexplored wine region for wine and food.

Tip for Travel: If you are traveling abroad for a guided tour, try to go early before the tour and/or stay after to explore other areas. Make the most of your time there to do as much as possible. Airfare and 9 hours of flight time are investments.

This was a great trip and we wanted to share our favorite finds and some tips along the way.

Tips for all destinations:

  1. If you are traveling by train, book your hotel near the train station or tram stop that runs from the train station. It makes movement around the city and to other destinations much easier.
  2. On the first day we either take the sightseeing Hop on Hop off bus to learn more about the city or we jump on the local buses and trams to see every part of the city. This allows us to identify areas we want to explore more. We usually go to the local Tourist Information office to get maps and points of interest.
  3. We use the bus and metro to move around the cities. Most towns offer one and two day passes for all local modes of transportation.

Novi Sad, Serbia – “The Athens of Serbia” walking tour provides a history of the area and a peek at   cultural events. Be sure to taste the Bermet, a dessert wine from the region.

Scenic Cruising through the Iron Gate Gorge and Golubac Fortress visit were one of the most dramatic and beautiful parts of the cruise. It was like stepping back in time and seeing firsthand the environment of that time.

Folk dancing is a long-standing tradition in the Balkans. We were treated to several performances.

Belgrade, Serbia – Bucharest Henri Coanda International Airport (OTP) to Belgrade Nicola Tesla Airport           (BEG)

Hotel: One Luxury Suites

Cika Ljubina 16, 11000 Serbia

Tesla Museum (Paul pretends to talk with Nikola Tesla)
Church of St. Sava

Serbia and Croatia claim Tesla because the way country borders have changed. The museum in Belgrade is a do not miss.  It is a hands on exhibition of his original equipment.

Orthodox churches in the Balkans are elaborately ornate. The Church of St. Sava is one of the newest and most elaborate we have seen. It ranks as one o the largest churches in the world.  Modelled after the Haghia Sophia in Istanbul, it can accommodate 10,000 people.

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