Every year number of tourists visiting Sarajevo and BiH is rising-this year eight percent more than last year. I know those I brought here are keep coming back and they bring their friends with them. Those who lived here before war started are also coming back to revive their memories.
They come for different reasons. To see museums and galleries, to visit war monuments or just to experience Sarajevo in all of its diversity. To feel those historic layers through food, architecture, lifestyle and people. They are very interested in life people here live and not rarely very surprised how things are still hard…for so many Bosnians.
Still, pleasent experience is what they are paying for and this is ultimately that what they want to take with them home. Classical sightseeing of older and newer history is just part of it. Wish for being part of what is abroad known as Bosnian hedonism is inevitable. To chose place of your choice and to relax and enjoy! As this is an impression Sarajevo people give to the foreigners – to be always relaxed, enjoy and not to hurry anywhere. To always have time for that coffee.
Although Sarajevo is not a big city compared with other world’s capitals it offers a lot of different possibilities for tourists to make their memories. Eating traditional food in local restaurant or fancy dishes in modern food establishments. Shopping high fashion brands or exploring world of hand made goods. Hiring touristic guide and making sure to see it all in short period of time or just rumbling through the city, drinking, eating and meeting local people. Hunting for great photos locations to pack your memories perfectly before leaving home.
I think that everybody has his usual behaviour when traveling and it does not change with changing locations. I almost never visit museums, galleries or art exhibitions. It seems to me unnecessary to stand in crowds to see something I am not really interested in just to satisfy that typical touristic profile. To have a topic on the flight back home with stranger sitting next to me.
I love to explore cities with no real plan. Just with some approximate geographic coordinations (not to get lost:) and focus on that what I would like to see or to experience. I am more on photographing, sitting in local cafes and restaurants and trying local food, shopping, sightseeing great architecture of the city, feeling the city vibe…This kind of trips make me feel happy and fulfilled when I come back.
I am Sarajevo girl. But being so away from my home town and coming for shorter periods of time makes me kind of tourist here too. With the difference that I know this city vibe and I love to experience it over and over again.
My friends love to come back too. Their impressions move so quickly from those they had when they first came-poor Balkan country, divided and destroyed with war and nationalism. They take home that feeling when they were sitting relaxed in the Old town drinking Bosnian coffee, eating best food ever or shopping local goods with insanely cheap prices. But what always prevails in their feelings are people – always around in the city, ready to help and to chat. Memories on streets full of beautiful Bosnian women. They get reminded that here was much more before the war and especially there is much more to come in future. And this is the best export Bosnian product.
I would love to help to build that positive impression to be exported worldwide not only for my friends but for all those who would like to come here and find piece of themselves. Piece of their own Glow. I feel that I own it to my city for letting me grow up with it. About My Sarajevo soon much more on Glow hunters. Stay tuned.