The Backpacking Diaries #11 Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

The sole information I knew about Mostar before visiting was that there was a pretty sick looking bridge. That was enough for me to book a bus ticket to Bosnia. Believe it or not, but there’s actually more to this city than one bridge. Blasphemy.

There was a brutal war that happened in the 90’s here, and after my walking tour with my Australian friend Josh, it’s insane the things that took place in this now peaceful town hardly 30 years ago.

The architecture is beautiful and heartbreaking at the same time. So many buildings didn’t get the funding to be repurposed by the UN while others did, so there are fancy hotels next to the rubble of old buildings. There’s an old bank (which resembles more of a parking garage) that’s now referred to as the “sniper tower.” It’s a graffiti paradise with some beautiful art, but a large physical reminder of the bloody and horrific war.

On a lighter note, my personal favorite is the life size statue of Bruce Lee. Every heard of boaty mcboatface? Well this statue falls in the same category. The government couldn’t agree on who they wanted to honor in this park, and so they left it to the people. Thus, Bruce Lee was selected.

Bosnia wasn’t ever originally on my travel list. I think the few people I texted about coming here weren’t even sure if it was really a country. It’s a city that, in my experience, is passed by word of mouth. Travelers recommended it to me as often as they recommend you try seafood in Croatia.

My experience here was fabulous. It’s actually quite a friendly tourist area. There are little Turkish markets where shopping is dirt cheap, Bosnian coffee on every corner, and someone swan diving off their beloved bridge about every hour. After a poll on my insta story, unanimously my constituents agreed that I should jump off said bridge. Thanks guys.

As it turns out, it’s not unlikely to break a rib while jumping. Not to mention that it costs 30 euros to jump. The high ticket price is because you have to take a training course that involves several jumps off a practice platform. To top it all off, the river you enter upon jumping is THE coldest river in the world. That’s not an exaggeration, it seriously is the coldest river in the world.About 3,500 people have done the jump, and 80% of those are Australian. About 300 of those total names are women. Sigh.

While the encouragement of strangers on social media had me wanting to plunge into the rapids with no regard to my physical health, I ultimately decided against it. Had I been at peak athleticism and the end of my trip, maybe I would’ve taken the leap (literally).

Before leaving Mostar for Hvar, an island off the coast of Split, Croatia, I randomly grabbed a book from the book swap at my hostel (hostel nina & it was amazing for the record). I had Eat Prey Love by Liz Gilbert finished in three days. It’s given me some cheesy life altering perspective about myself and about traveling by myself. More about that in my recap of Hvar, coming soon to a laptop near you.

Seeya when I seeya!

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