The word “Bosnia” brings up vivid images of a war-torn nation. When we were vacationing in neighboring Croatia, we were surprised at the number of travelers who were raving about Bosnia so we decided to overcome our initial misgivings and give Bosnia a whirl. The city of Mostar does not disappoint. While several legacies of the recent Balkans conflict remain, the city itself is on the rapid road to recovery. The Stari Most (Old Bridge) is in the state of repair and we can easily imagine throngs of tourists leisurely strolling across it in just a few years. Visit Bosnia and see what it has to offer yourself!
While visiting Croatia, we decided to put Bosnia on the itinerary. On day three we drove to Mostar, the capital of Herzegovina…most visitors just refer to the country as Bosnia. Lots of scars still remain from the war as evidenced by the pockmarked buildings. Still, Mostar is hauntingly beautiful, especially the view from the Stari Most (Old Bridge). Mostar first appeared in the 15-th century when a small settlement began to form around a wooden bridge suspended on chains, on the left bank of the River Neretva. The bridge’s name is probably rooted in the word “Mostar” (a bridge guard). In 1566 a new stone bridge was erected in its place. The Stari Most served many purposes throughout its 400-year life. Unfortunately, the original bridge was destroyed during the war and a more modern foot bridge has been built across the emerald Neretva River for pedestrians to reach the old town. The good news is that there is a current project to rebuild the destroyed bridge in its original form. Within the tiny old town are a few narrow winding cobblestone streets lined with souvenir and handicraft shops. After a few hours exploring Mostar, we headed back to Croatia towards Split, where we arrived just in time for lunch.