In this article, I will give answers to all the questions about the coronavirus in Serbia (Covid-19) that you may have when planning a trip to Serbia.
A year has already passed since we live in a new world - the "era of coronavirus" has come. We had to change our habits, learn not to leave the house without a medical mask, use an antiseptic, once again avoid shaking hands and close communication, and even be at home in isolation for a while.
The world as we knew it will never be the same.
Previously, it was not a problem for us to leave the house, grab money and a passport, get on a plane and in a few hours be in another part of the world. Forget it. Now, when going on a trip, we should study the rules for entering a particular country, whether a medical test or other certificates are required, whether it is necessary to observe quarantine upon arrival.
This article is current as of February 1, 2021
If you look at the official statistics on the incidence of COVID-19 in Serbia, you can see that the next “wave” is developing at the moment - a surge in incidence, but it will already be the third.
Back in March 2020, when the coronavirus began to spread throughout the country at an alarming rate, the Serbian government introduced restrictive measures: bans on public events, educational institutions and entertainment establishments, cafes and restaurants were closed, entry into the country was restricted and mandatory quarantine has been introduced. These measures definitely had an effect: by May, the daily number of new cases reported had dropped significantly.
So on May 29, 2020, the country officially opened its borders, canceled the mandatory quarantine upon arrival with one condition: the mandatory wearing of masks in all public places.
Serbia is located at the junction of two geographical and cultural regions of Europe. These are Central Europe (Middle Danube Lowland) and South-Eastern Europe (Balkan Peninsula).  A variety of landscape, cultural and historical monuments, spa resorts, hunting grounds and fishing form the tourist image of Serbia. Serbia's international highways and railways link Western and Central Europe with Greece, Turkey, the Middle East, Asia and Africa. Air corridors linking West and East, North and South also pass over this country. A feature of Serbia is the relatively small number of citizens traveling abroad for tourism purposes. For example, in 2012, the outbound tourist flow in Serbia amounted to 631 thousand people . This is very little by European standards. For example, in Slovakia, a country with a smaller population, in 2012 the outbound tourist flow amounted to 3,017 thousand people .
Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers. Throughout its long history, Belgrade was conquered 60 times and destroyed to the ground at least 38 times, but each time, being destroyed to the ground, the city was rebuilt again. Today Belgrade is a city with a population of about 2 million, offering its guests a varied program of cultural and sports events. There are museums, cultural and historical monuments in Belgrade. With its Sava congress center and numerous hotels, Belgrade has become one of the most important congress and convention centers in Europe.
Other cities with opportunities for business tourism are Novi Sad ("Serbian Athens"), Pristina, Niš, Subotica, Kragujevac, Leskovac, Krusevac, Uzice. The spa tourism centers are Vrnjačka Banya, Niska Banya, Bukovichka Banya, Sokobania and other resorts.
Among the main tourist attractions of Belgrade are the historical districts of the city and architectural structures. These include Skadarlija, the National Museum of Serbia and the nearby National Theater, Zemun, Nikola Pasic Square, Terazije Square, Studentska Square, Kalemegdan Fortress, Prince Michael Street, St. Sava Church, Parliament building and Old Palace, the former royal residence of the Obrenovic dynasty. In addition, the city is home to numerous museums, parks, monuments, cafes, restaurants and shops.
From the top of Mount Avala, from the monument to the Unknown Hero, a panoramic view of the city opens. The mausoleum of Josip Broz Tito, also called the House of Flowers, and the nearby Topcider and Kossutniak parks are popular destinations, especially among tourists from the countries of the former Yugoslavia.
The White Court, or "White Palace", the residence of the royal family of the Karageorgievich family, has a collection of valuable works, including paintings by Rembrandt, Nicolas Poussin, Sebastian Bourdon, Paolo Veronese, Canaletto, Crespi, Winterhalter, Ivan Meshtrovich and others ...
Ada Ciganlija is a former island on the Sava River and the largest sports and recreation complex in Belgrade. Today it is connected to the shore, forming an artificial lake on the river. In summer, Ada Tsiganliya is one of the most popular recreation places for the city residents. There are seven kilometers of beaches and conditions for practicing various sports, including golf, football, basketball, volleyball, rugby, baseball, tennis. The number of swimmers on summer days ranges from 200,000 to 300,000 people daily. The clubs are open 24 hours a day, organizing live music concerts and beach parties that last until the morning. Extreme sports such as bungee jumping, paintball or water skiing are also available. There are many cycling and hiking trails on the island.
In addition to Hell, Belgrade has 16 islands on rivers, many of which are still not used. one of them, the Big Military Island, located at the confluence of the Sava with the Danube, stands out as an oasis of untouched wilderness. Along with the neighboring Small Military Island, it is protected by the city authorities as a nature reserve.
Serbia is a young state with a long history, which is less popular in Western Europe. There are several reasons for this, among which politics occupies a special place. It should be noted that, unlike Italy, Switzerland and Austria, ski tourism is more affordable, and the health resorts in the region are unique. The country has numerous historical landmarks that adorn Serbia.
Serbia is located on the Balkan Peninsula and borders with countries such as Montenegro, Macedonia, Bulgaria, Romania, Hungary, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia and Albania. The state has a rich history, because at different times it was ruled by the Roman and Ottoman empires, Celts and Illyrians. We must not forget about the war at the end of the last century with the subsequent separation from Yugoslavia and Montenegro.
The Balkan health resort is famous for its healing resorts and mineral springs. Low prices and a large number of Russian-speaking Serbs provide good conditions for tourists from Russia, Ukraine and Belarus. Serbia is influenced by the continental climate zone (except for the mountainous region) with hot summers and long and cold winters. In July, the air warms up to + 25º, and in winter, severe frosts are not uncommon. Due to the constant winds, it is best to visit the country in May, September and summer. The ski season lasts from December to March.
Serbian and Russian airlines operate direct flights from Moscow to Belgrade International Airport. The average travel time is only three hours, and a ticket to Serbia will cost 135 euros. Flights with connections in Istanbul, Ankara or Warsaw are somewhat cheaper, but the flight in such cases is longer. City buses and taxis run from the airport to the center of Belgrade.
There are no direct flights from St. Petersburg to the capital of Serbia, you will have to change trains in Moscow or Frankfurt. Fans of long train journeys will be able to visit with a docking in Ukraine, Hungary, Croatia, Poland, Czech Republic or Austria.
Residents of Kiev on the ships of the Ukrainian and Austrian airlines will be able to get to Belgrade with a transfer. Some travelers arrive in Montenegro, from where they travel by train to Serbia. From Minsk there are both direct flights and with a transfer in Hungary, Austria or Poland.
Serbia is famous for its medical resorts and thermal springs with a long rich history, operating since ancient Roman times:
Vrnjachka Banya. For a century and a half, this resort has been attracting guests from all over the continent with its healing mineral water. This place is considered special, because the first Serbian pool was built here. The presence of warm and cold springs is effectively used in the treatment of gastrointestinal diseases, diabetes, hepatitis and cardiovascular problems. Connoisseurs of architectural art here will enjoy the medieval Zicha Palace, the ancient monasteries of Studenica and Sopočani, and other monuments protected by UNESCO.
The southeastern health resort Prolom Banya is a water resort. This resting place is famous for the kidney-cleansing water of the same name. There are warm springs not far from the place. Skin diseases are eliminated with the help of therapeutic mud. The health resort is suitable for a calm, peaceful rest, as it is located far from the roads on Mount Radan.
Hospitable and helpful people live in Serbia. But still, at the moment, the country is still far from being a popular resort. Therefore, many may not know where Serbia is. And even the fact that in recent years the state has risen quite strongly in economic terms, has not yet allowed to restore the tourist infrastructure destroyed by the war.
The official name of the state is the Republic of Serbia. It is located in the south-east of Europe, namely in the center of the Balkan Peninsula. It shares borders with such countries:
The republic also includes Kosovo and Metohija. But as you know, Kosovo has declared its independence, and is even a partially recognized state.
But not all of the country's territory is located in the Balkans - 20% are located in the Pannonian Lowland. The northern part of the country is predominantly plain. And closer to the south, mountains begin, 15 of which have a height of more than 2 thousand meters. As for the mountains, there are four mountain systems in Serbia. And the highest point of the country is Mount Jeravitsa, which has a height of 2656 meters above sea level.
This Balkan country has a presidential form of government and is a republic. In addition, the president is not only the leader of the state, but also the head of government. He is elected by the Assembly. The Assembly is the Serbian unicameral parliament, which is the country's legislative body.
Serbia has only one official language - Serbian. But in Kosovo and the Metohija controlled by it, the Albanian one functions on a par with it. But in Vojvodina (autonomous region) as many as 6 languages are used:
The bulk of the population (namely, 90%) are Orthodox Christians, there are also about 5% of Muslims in the country and 4% of Catholics. All other religions account for only one percent of citizens.
Serbian currency is called the dinar. You can exchange money in two ways: at a bank branch or in an exchange office. In addition, in most public places, where there is a large number of tourists, there are machines that carry out currency exchange.
The ancient Belgrade fortress with a picturesque park at the foot is perhaps the main attraction of the capital of Serbia. The bastions were laid almost two thousand years ago and rebuilt dozens of times, but the predatory grin of the battlements of the fortress walls still looks menacing. The dial of the Clock Tower has been sizzling for over 300 years, and the Despot Tower offers breathtaking views of one of the oldest parks in Europe, the confluence of the Danube and the Sava, and what can I say - the whole of Belgrade! We advise you to look into the local Military Museum and the restaurant "Kalemegdan Terrace", where the heroes of Milorad Pavich's novel "Landscape Painted with Tea" were enjoying themselves with nut pie.
Parisian Montmartre in Belgrade has a younger brother - the bohemian quarter of Skadarlija. At the end of the 19th - beginning of the 20th century, artists, actors and musicians had fun here, suffered and gushed with ideas - and the emotional atmosphere has not disappeared until now. Come to Skadarska Street to fish for treasures from antique shops, walk through art galleries and, of course, taste rakia with a Shopska salad in a cozy kafan accompanied by live music. We especially recommend one of the oldest Serbian restaurants "Three Hats", which was pleased with Jimi Hendrix, Anatoly Karpov and the Spanish king Juan Carlos. And if you are on a photo hunt in Belgrade, we advise you to visit the quiet morning Skadarlija: colorful houses entwined with ivy, wrought-iron benches in the first rays of the sun and colorful old chess players are an ideal subject for a photo.
Look at how the Serbian monarchs Karageorgievich live in one of the youngest palace complexes in Europe.
The main residence of Crown Prince Alexander II is the Royal Palace with interiors reminiscent of the Moscow Kremlin, and the White Palace is a kind of royal dacha where the whole family lives in the summer. Guided tours of the palace chambers in Serbian are available on weekends from April to October. To see mahogany furniture by Thomas Chippendale, an antique globe by Vincenzo Coronelli, Venetian chandeliers and French tapestries of the 17th century, paintings by Bruegel and Veronese, or even - who knows, suddenly you get lucky? - the august persons themselves, you need to register in advance on the website or at the Belgrade tourist center, with a passport.
To be in the homeland of Nikola Tesla and not to look into his museum is sacrilege. After all, already in 15 years we will all rustle along the roads in cars bearing his name. The museum is interactive: nothing to do with dusty glass full of "do not touch" and "do not breathe" signs. The air here is literally electrified by the inventions and personal belongings of the legendary physicist. With only one Tesla coil, you can feel yourself as Zeus throwing lightning, and a Jedi, in whose hands an ordinary fluorescent lamp turns into a lightsaber.
In Belgrade, opposite the Cathedral Church, there is a restaurant with an uncertain name "?". The first owner wanted to name the institution without any fancy - "Near the Cathedral", but the diocese was against it. Then a temporary sign Znak Pitanja ("Question mark") was hung over the kafana. But as usual, there is nothing more permanent than temporary: in 2023 the name will be 200 years old. And all these years they have cooked delicious chevapchichi sausages from minced meat, pleskavitsa - Balkan steak with warmed kaymak (thick salted cream) and hanger (chop stuffed with spices). It is customary to wash down dinner with rakia or non-alcoholic carbonated corn boza.
There is really no sea in Serbia, but river and lake beaches are a dime a dozen. Welcome to Ada Ciganlija Island Park on the Sava River in Belgrade! Serbs love Ada, with 7 kilometers of clean pebble beach and inspiring landscapes. In summer they swim, sunbathe, have picnics, water skiing, play volleyball and golf here. And in winter Ada Tsiganliya turns into a skating rink.