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The confusion starts when solo travelers book their next trip to the Western Balkans. Doesn’t it make more sense to choose a more well-known place, like Greece or Spain?
As one of the most ethnically diverse countries in Europe, there is one Balkan country that should definitely be on everyone’s solo traveler’s bucket list.
Sneaking up on people’s radars, the Balkans have seen a surge in tourism in recent years. Often overshadowed by its neighboring countries of Croatia and Montenegro, Bosnia and Herzegovina it has not yet appeared on most travelers’ maps.
Remnants of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s tumultuous past remain, but the country has not let that stop it. A historic capital city with medieval charm and quaint villages ready to be explored – it truly is a solo traveller’s playground.
The country welcomes travelers
There are fewer people as welcoming to tourists as the Bosnians. With the country still recovering from the war of 1900, tourism plays a very important role in the economy and brings back what it used to be.
As you stroll through the streets, you will notice that companies are eager to show you their products. As a religiously diverse country, there is a wide variety of people who live in Bosnia. The locals are extremely friendly and discuss their cultures with newcomers.
Costs are a huge draw for solo travelers. The Balkans are a cheaper alternative than other destinations in Europe, but Bosnia puts the icing on the cake here. You’ll find that you’re getting a lot more for your money, and your money will go a long way.
Travelers are often surprised when a traditional hearty meal costs them anywhere from $5 to $8. If you plan to explore the country, a one-way ticket on a local bus will typically cost you $1. Shopping for groceries is the best way to save for travelers. Solo travelers, and you’ll be happy to know that a loaf of bread is around $0.81, we’ve got that!
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With so many people and religions in one region, the Bosnians have mastered the art of accepting and intertwining cultures. The country has a welcoming community of locals and expats built on a foundation of pride and learning.
With a variety of holidays, celebrations, and traditions, it’s easy for solo travelers to enjoy themselves here and find their place.
Every year, people travel from all over the country to witness the infamous Mostar Bridge Jump. It’s a great way to cheer on the brave, immerse yourself in a deeply held tradition, and meet other solo travelers and locals!
The true beauty of Bosnia and Herzegovina comes from its diverse landscapes. In a minute you could be admiring the towers of an old mosque; the next, you could be walking the cobbled streets of the Mostar fortress.
With stunningly blue rivers, high bridges, and breathtaking mountain scenery, it’s hard not to fall in love. For the adventurous party, Bosnia is a country to experience it all: rafting, cliff jumping, hiking and swimming.
Mixing cultures, Bosnia has a food culture full of delicious flavors and inspirations. The advantages of being a solo traveler are to try everything (and as many times as you want!)
There are numerous quaint restaurants to enjoy or just grab and go from a local hawker. Ćevapi is a popular meat dish, made with minced beef or lamb (yum), or opt for Burek, which is a flaky pastry stuffed with different fillings.
There is something here for everyone and at a very affordable price!
It is safe
Although often overshadowed by its past, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a very safe solo travel destination. Like anywhere in the world, it is important to remain diligent and to be smart.
Being here for a few hours, there is no doubt that you will experience the friendliness of the locals and their rich culture. If you are alone in a restaurant, always ask what the locals recommend: because you will definitely have a lot of conversation!
traveler alert: Don’t forget travel insurance for your next trip!
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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com