A layover in Belgrade, Serbia

Belgrade Fortress

Returning from a trip this past spring to beautiful Sarajevo, Bosnia, I had a ten-hour layover in Serbia’s capital. Having seen it on a short stop-over on the way over, I quickly realized that the Serbian airport really did not merit ten hours of my time on the return, so I was more happy to enjoy the sunny spring day exploring Belgrade, or Beograd in Serbian, which means White City.

On the way over I learned that there is no baggage storage, so I checked my suitcase through in order to be free to explore when I reached Belgrade.

A public bus (#72) runs right from the airport to the center of town every 30 minutes and you can buy your tickets on board, although you’ll have to change your currency into dinars at the airport.

The Sava and Danube Rivers

A schedule of return buses is posted at the final stop. I found the service quite reliable and comfortable, but a private shuttle service and taxi service is also available between the airport and the city center.

Kalemegdan – Belgrade Fortress. Once an important military fortification, the Belgrade fortress now serves as the central park of Belgrade. I was there on a beautiful spring day, and the park was filled with city dwellers enjoying the sun. From the ramparts, there’s an excellent view of the point where the Sava and Danube Rivers converge.

The pedestrian Knez Mihailova Street

 Knez Mihailova Street– This is Belgrade’s main pedestrian and shopping street. There are good bookshops and the street is filled with cafés and restaurants, with plenty of open air seating in good weather.

Skadarlija (Skadarska street). This cobblestoned, pedestrian street is filled with restaurants and cafes, most in the spirit of old Belgrade. Many of the buildings have been painted with impressive ‘trompe-l’oeil’ paintings of old Belgrade.

A gypsy band and wedding procession on Skadarska Street

Ivo Andrić Museum, I’m sorry to have missed this museum on Andrićev Venac 8. This memorial museum is dedicated to the talented Yugolsav author and Nobel laureate, Ivo Andrić. I loved Andrić’s masterpiece, The Bridge Over The River Drina and I would have enjoyed seeing the home where he lived and worked. Next time…

Now you know what to do on your layover in the Serbian capital. Enjoy your visit to Belgrade.

At the center of it all…

Art deco architecture in Belgrade


  1. Claire 'Word by Word' on September 18, 2012 at 9:54 am

    Beautiful, you are giving me itchy feet 🙂 I visited London last week and love it, though it is a familiar hood and part of me does indeed still yearn for new cities I have not trodden before.

    • kimberlysullivan on September 18, 2012 at 5:35 pm

      Haha! Wanderlust for you, too, Claire? I love going back to my favorites… but I have to alternate them with new places, too. Trod away – and then tell me all about it. : )

  2. ledrakenoir on September 18, 2012 at 11:31 am

    Belgrade is an interesting and beautiful city – a great poat… 😉

  3. kimberlysullivan on September 18, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    Thanks, Ledrakenoir! It certainly is… and it didn’t hurt that I saw it on a perfect May day with hardly a cloud in the sky. : )

  4. Chantel Rhondeau on September 19, 2012 at 8:28 pm

    Looks like a beautiful place! Some day, I have to travel more than the western United States. Thanks for sharing!

  5. kimberlysullivan on September 20, 2012 at 7:57 am

    Thanks, Chantel. The Balkans are certainly a fascinating place to explore.

  6. umaimahz on December 28, 2014 at 11:32 pm

    I was looking for what to do when on a layover at Serbia and I’m so happy to chance upon this post of yours! Thank you! I have a layover of almost 20 hours in Belgrade and my flight is is from Istanbul to Abu Dhabi. So I wanted to know if one needs a transit visa to explore the city? I know its an old post, but I hope you could reply 🙂

    • kimberlysullivan on December 29, 2014 at 10:08 am

      Enjoy your layover. Belgrade is small enough to explore on a layover, and there are lots of bars and restaurants in the center. You need to go through passport control and have your passport stamped. Whether or not you need a visa depends on your nationality, and you’d have to check this on the Serbian Embassy site in your country. For EU countries, US, Canada, etc no visa is required.

      • umaimahz on January 5, 2015 at 12:50 pm

        Thank you so much for your answer! 🙂

  7. E. García on July 27, 2016 at 7:40 am

    there is no baggage storage?? then you need to carry with all your baggage while visiting the city??

    • kimberlysullivan on July 28, 2016 at 8:43 am

      I knew this in advance, so I checked all my baggage through to my final destination. Nevertheless, with security concerns, baggage storage seems to be harder to find today than in the past.

Leave a Comment