Wandering the wall of the old fortress

Belgrade Travel Blog

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Entrance to the fortress

I had an unusually easy trip to the centre of Belgrade from Copenhagen. My flight was 15 minutes early and there was absolutely no queue at the immigration at the airport and the bus to the central station only took a short while.

I had agree to meet up with Yunni at the central station so given my extremely fast trip to the centre I actually had to go for a cup of coffee before her train arrived from Novi Sad. When she arrived we decided to walk to the place we would be staying. I had been really clever to print out a Google Map and I was sure I would be able to find my way to the place where the apartment was located.

Unfortunately it seems like Google Maps haven’t got particularly good maps of walking through old towns in the Balkans.

Entrance to the fortress
They have no clue about the different shortcuts you can use when walking so I had to try to use my ancient memory of the central part of Belgrade to try and find these shortcuts. I think my memory of the city had faded a bit in the couple of years since my first trip to the city so my navigation was only partly successful. But we finally got to the right street – and very close to the exact point where Google said we should go. Unfortunately the location of the street number on Google was way off – it had places the address on the wrong side of the street and at least three blocks away from its actual location. So we could have taken a much shorter route through the city if Google had been a bit more dependable.

When we finally arrived to the place there was nobody there to open the door for us – so we had to phone them and tell the owners we had arrived.

Outside the military museum
But unfortunately there were some sort of a problem with the telephone number we had and nobody picked up the phone. I was a bit annoyed and more or less ready just to go and find another place if we couldn’t get in – but we went for lunch instead. We tried to get the waiter to make the call for us – to see if he would be successful. After a few attempt he manage to get through and we walked to the apartment after lunch. We got back to the doorsteps of the place and there was still nobody there.

After waiting for a while we gave up and tried to phone again – and were told that the owner would show up shortly. Hence we waited in front of the building once again – still nobody around. But the window on the first floor was open.

Outside the military museum
Finally a woman came down from the building speaking Serbian – and for some reason she assumed I would understand Serbian – I guess I must have some traditional Serbian facial featured which I didn’t even realize. She got in and we got the key to the apartment and she phoned her son who told us he would come by to get the payment the next day and should he come at nine or ten? We decided on nine so we could get something out of the next day not having to hang around for too long.

Finally settled we decide to go out and explore the old town of Belgrade – after a bit of rain earlier in the day the weather actually looks pretty decent now. So we walk down to the old town and go to the Kalemegdan fortress. I find this is the most impressive spot in all of Belgrade with the big walls and old buildings on the fortress area.

Outside the military museum
And the views over the rivers are amazing from the top of the fortress. This fortress has been the stage of countless battle since Belgrade for many years were located just at the border between the Ottoman Turks and the Austrian-Hungarian emperies. With the location in the Southeast of Europe and all the battles which has taken place here you never know what will be around the next wall – will it be a ghost or some vicious vampires and witches.

We walk around taking in the sights of the fortress when it starts to rain again – none of us are really fond of the rain so we decide to make our way back towards the centre of the city. We get down to the main pedestrian street in old Belgrade and we walk through it just popping in for a bit at one of the cafes for a much deserved coffee and chocolate cake.

Walls of the fortress
After the cakes we continue down the street in search of the tourist information – which seems to have been moved from the location on the map I got in the airport. We manage to find – we are supposed to meet up with Dragana.

We go inside the tourist information where figuring this is where we are supposed to meet – unfortunately Dragana is waiting outside on the next street. After we have all been waiting really close to each other Dragana fortunately looks around the corner and spots us. We head out to have a pre dinner drink at bar famous for its many different rakia’s. We have a drink before dinner and then we head off to one of the restaurants in the bohemian quarter of Belgrade. We walk into a restaurant which like all the other has a free band.

My favorit building at the fortress
There are also a brass band walking around the street playing for tips – and the restaurants band really can’t compete when it comes to the volume of the music so they go on a brake while the brass band plays loudly in front of the restaurant.

The meals are huge – we only get a set meal designed for two persons – but we cannot finish it off even though we are the three of us. After dinner we joined up with Draganas cousin and friend at a place they had gone for the night for some salsa dancing.

KeikoCreative says:
If google map doesn't help in navigtion, Yunni taught me to collect a map upon arrival and look for street signs for navigation:P
Posted on: May 31, 2012
tj1777 says:
still not sure ;)
Posted on: May 31, 2012
gingerbatik says:
lucky you didn't encounter the vampires and witches:) or did you...
Posted on: May 31, 2012
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Entrance to the fortress
Entrance to the fortress
Entrance to the fortress
Entrance to the fortress
Outside the military museum
Outside the military museum
Outside the military museum
Outside the military museum
Outside the military museum
Outside the military museum
Walls of the fortress
Walls of the fortress
My favorit building at the fortress
My favorit building at the fortress
Belgrade
photo by: tj1777