British media Evening Standard has recommended Bosnia and Herzegovina as the perfect ski destination this year. Their journalist visited Sarajevo and Jahorina and was delighted with everything he saw and experienced.
“You may be tempted to say that this is the moment of Bosnia and Herzegovina, especially if you are arriving with the newly launched FlyBosnia line from Luton, the first direct connection from the UK. Yes, it is too early, Sarajevo is still recovering from the gloomy war that made the capital under siege for four years, but the city is so valuable that it is not difficult to ‘sell’ it at all. It is housed in the cradle of the Olympic Mountains (1984 Winter Olympics) and has an intimately opposed and endless history that will touch your heart. What happens in such unfamiliar destinations is that as soon as one hears of one, everyone wants to go. You get that feeling here, ”wrote journalist Mike Maceacheran.
When it comes to Jahorina, it is pointed out that what Jahorina lacks to have an alpine pedigree compensates in other ways.
“Abandoned slopes without trails provide the motivation you need to get out of bed every morning, while an old-school ‘après-ski’ (1.5 KM beer, smoke bars and 1980s songs) negates all that good work. You can stay in the city center at the bazaar where Vienna meets Istanbul, bar bars and cafes or stay on the mountain in a recently renovated log cabin hotel, the journalist advised.
She recommends that the British come to Jahorina because it is not “overburdened” with foreign tourists and that it has recently started attracting foreigners.
“Under the Bosnian Serb military siege in the mid-1990s, it became a strategic location for military units deploying mines in the woods and was bombed by NATO with missiles, following the Dayton Agreement that brought peace to the region. The log cabins were occupied by displaced Serbs from Sarajevo. However, the Bosnian mountains have redeeming qualities. ‘Skiing is a sport of reconciliation’, my guide and driver Skender Hatibovic told me, and there is a sense that tourism helps. A new cable car has just opened, Bryan Ferry is playing a party to open the season in December, and Jahorina will be joined by the nearby Ravna Planina Ski Center, which will add another 15 kilometers to the runway map, “said Maceacheran.
He praised local Bosnian cuisine, which can be enjoyed on the mountain as well as Bosnian coffee. The article points out that, although he intended to write about skiing, it is difficult because of all the new and interesting things that can be experienced in Sarajevo and Bosnia, among which is the indispensable nightlife as well as Sarajevo kebabs.
“These days, there is an inherent contradiction when it comes to avoiding skiing that is crowded. Not on Jahorina. It continues to play catch-up with the rest of Europe, but as it connects to better times, it will soon be on the list of popular ski resorts, “the Evening Standard journalist concludes.