Welcome to Mostar – one of the most popular tourist destinations in Bosnia and Herzegovina and home of the world famous bridge. In Mostar you can look forward to the postcard motif of Bosnia par excellence.
However, the Mostar Bridge is not the only sight worth the trip. The beautiful, medieval old town of Mostar stretches all around . With its cobbled streets, it too (just like the bridge) is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
In this blog article we tell you everything you need to know for your trip to Mostar. We will show you the most beautiful sights and of course provide you with our personal travel tips.
1. Mostar FAQs: First travel tips at a glance
Exciting facts & interesting facts about Mostar
- The symbol of Mostar and one of the most famous sights in all of Bosnia and Herzegovina is the Mostar Bridge (“Stari most”).
- The bridge originally dates from the 16th century, was completely bombed during the war and then rebuilt.
- Not only the bridge is worth seeing, but also the beautiful medieval old town all around. It is not for nothing that the old town and bridge are part of the UNESCO World Heritage.
- Mostar’s bridge jumpers are legendary . It has been a tradition for centuries to dare to jump 20 meters from the bridge into the Neretva River. Nowadays you will mostly see locals jumping to make money.
- Due to the basin location, Mostar is considered the hottest city in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Can we confirm this: Mostar was by far the hottest travel destination on our trip in midsummer.
How much time do I need to visit the main attractions in Mostar?
Although Mostar is one of the larger cities in Bosnia and Herzegovina with a good 100,000 inhabitants, the old town (i.e. the area around the bridge) is really comparatively tiny. Within a short time you will pass most corners and sights several times.
We ourselves were in Mostar for one night (about 24 hours) and can highly recommend this period of time. We would definitely advise staying the night, because during the day there are a lot of day visitors in the very small old town. Mostar is most charming in the evening and morning hours.
If you want to take it even easier and also want to explore some less well-known sights or excursion destinations around Mostar, you can of course stay two to three nights .
Where is Mostar and how to get there?
Mostar is located in southern Bosnia and Herzegovina, roughly level with Split, nestled between the two mountain ranges of Velež and Čabulja.
Because it makes sense to head for other destinations in Bosnia and Herzegovina in addition to Mostar, we recommend arriving by car. Either with your own car or with a rental car (e.g. from the airport in Sarajevo). We always book our rental car through Sunny Cars .
If you are arriving by car, then an important note: Bosnia and Herzegovina is not part of the EU. Therefore, you need the so-called “green insurance card” for your car when entering the country .
It is also important to know that on the way to Bosnia and Herzegovina you have to cross several national borders and pay tolls in several countries. The highway in Bosnia and Herzegovina itself is under construction and only some sections have been opened. There is also a toll to pay here.
You can find more tips in this article: Travel tips Bosnia and Herzegovina
We searched for the perfect accommodation for Mostar for a long time and finally found it: In the stylish, family-run Shangri La Mansion, we felt incredibly comfortable from the very first moment.
The historic house from the 19th century was renovated with great attention to detail and only has a few rooms. These are extremely comfortable and furnished to a high standard. A highlight is the roof terrace. Here you can enjoy the evening hours with a drink (vending machine available).
The location of the accommodation could hardly be better. The house is situated in a quiet, somewhat elevated position in the immediate vicinity of Mostar’s main attractions. It is only about a three-minute walk to the bridge. Parking spaces are available, only the access road is quite steep and requires some practice.
Our conclusion: A great place to stay with incredibly friendly and helpful owners. We would stay here again anytime.
Here you can book the hotel: Shangri La Mansion
3. Sights in Mostar: Our tips
Stari Most: The famous bridge of Mostar
By far the most important sight in Mostar is the eponymous bridge of Mostar, called “Stari most” (which means something like “old bridge”). It is the symbol of the city and is famous far beyond the borders of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The magnificent, striking one-arch bridge originally dates from the 16th century. Sadly, it was bombed and reduced to rubble during the war in the 1990s. After the war, the bridge was rebuilt true to the original and has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site ever since.
When you walk over the bridge for the first time (caution: quite slippery and steep), you will quickly notice how touristy the center of Mostar is. There is so much going on here during the day that it is almost impossible to enjoy the flair. In the evening, as soon as the day visitors leave Mostar, a visit is much more relaxed.
Incidentally, the bridge jumpers in Mostar are legendary . It has been a tradition for centuries to dare to jump down from the 20 meter high bridge. Don’t be surprised if you’re asked for small change: most of those who jump here earn their money and put on a little show.
Our tip: Photo spots around the bridge
Maybe you are wondering from which place you can capture the bridge particularly well photographically? These are our favorite photo spots:
- From the opposite bridge “Lučki most”: The postcard motif of the bridge.
- From the rocks/stairs just below the bridge: Another classic. From here you can watch the bridge jumpers well.
- From the minaret of Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque: The best bird’s-eye view of the bridge.
Altstadt von Mostar & Kujundžiluk-Straße
The small but fine old town of Mostar extends around the bridge . There is not much more than a few cobbled streets – but these are extremely worth seeing.
We find the area around the Krumme Bridge particularly picturesque (more on that in a moment). The most touristy area is along Kujundžiluk Street, the former bazaar. Here one souvenir shop follows the next.
Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque
One of the most famous mosques and main attractions in Mostar is the Koski Mehmed Pasha Mosque, which is located just a few minutes’ walk from the bridge on the east side of the river.
The Ottoman-style mosque, which is well worth seeing, dates from the 17th century and can be visited for a fee. If you are already there, then we strongly recommend that you also pay the surcharge to visit the minaret.
From the minaret you can enjoy a fabulous view of Mostar including the bridge. The stairs are incredibly narrow and there is really little space at the top, so don’t be claustrophobic. Nevertheless, the effort is very worthwhile.
Also included in the entrance fee is a visit to a small viewing platform near the river bank at the back of the mosque.
Admission: 8KM/4 Euros (Mosque only), 14KM/7 Euros (Mosque & Minaret)
Opening times: vary according to the season (when we visited in July it was open until 7pm)
Kriva Ćuprija: Krumme Brücke
Would you have thought that there is a second, equally beautiful bridge in Mostar? The Crooked Bridge (“Kriva Ćuprija”) is not nearly as famous, but it is in a very picturesque location. It is located in the middle of the old town, just a stone’s throw from the big bridge.
Not much is known about the origin of the Crooked Bridge. Legend has it that it was a test before the larger, more important Old Bridge was built.
More sights in Mostar for more time
Fortica Viewpoint: On a hill to the east of Mostar, high above the city, is the viewpoint called Fortica. From here you have a great panoramic view of Mostar from afar, especially before sunset. A modern skywalk with a glass bridge was opened here in 2021.
Kajtaz House: This old Ottoman house is located a little away from the tourist hustle and bustle in the old town of Mostar. For a small entry fee, you can peek inside and learn some fascinating details from the past from the owner.
4. Eating & Drinking in Mostar: Cafes & Restaurants
As in many places that are heavily influenced by tourism, the choice of restaurants in the old town of Mostar is not exactly what we remember most. Nonetheless, we ate well in Mostar. Here are a few recommendations:
Café de Alma: Do you want to try Bosnian coffee? Then off to the Café de Alma. This small, friendly café will give you the perfect introduction to Bosnian coffee culture.
Teco: Outside the old town near the university district is this very nice modern café with a surprisingly hip menu (smoothie bowls, sandwiches – vegan options too). We were the only tourists – only young locals sat around us.
Restoran Hindin Han: Traditional Bosnian cuisine is served in this very nicely located restaurant. Although meat and fish predominate, there are also some vegetarian options. From the terrace you can enjoy a really nice view.
Restoran Lagero: If you want to dine with a view of the bridge, then this restaurant might be for you. Here you can expect traditional cuisine at fair prices.
5. Tips for excursion destinations around Mostar
One of the most famous destinations in the vicinity is the small town of Blagaj, which is about 10 kilometers south-east of Mostar. Here is the famous Dervish monastery (“Tekija”), which is enthroned in front of a steep rock face directly at the source of the Buna (“Vrelo Buna”).
In case you are wondering what the name is all about: A so-called dervish is a member of a Muslim religious order. The monastery in Blagaj was built in the 15th/16th century built.
We can only warmly recommend that you also visit the interior of the Dervish Monastery. You really feel like you’ve been transported back in time and you can imagine how people used to live here.
Our tip: You can enjoy a beautiful view of the Dervish Monastery from the small viewpoint on the other side of the river.
Another note on how to get here: the monastery is down in the valley at the end of a very narrow road. Most cars (especially larger ones) park at the top of the large car park (4KM). From there you have to walk about 10 minutes down to the monastery. With a bit of luck, the parking attendant will guide you down towards the monastery, so that you can park right next to it along the road. (Caution: Very narrow and difficult to turn. If you are inexperienced, it is better to park upstairs.)
Entry: 10KM/5 euros
A special natural jewel is located about an hour’s drive south-east of Mostar: the Kravica waterfalls. They are probably the most famous waterfalls in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The dimensions are gigantic. The Trebižat River plunges about 30 meters over several cascades and waterfalls. The power of the water is impressive – especially when it has just rained a lot.
A curse and a blessing in equal measure: You can swim at the waterfalls – more precisely in the large natural “swimming pond” where the fallen water collects. Curse because it gets packed on hot days in the high season.
We have to admit that there was too much hustle and bustle for us and we also thought it was a pity that nature was so severely interfered with here (keyword: concrete areas). If you plan to visit the Kravica Waterfalls, be prepared for a fairly touristy experience unless you come in the off-season.
A little more information on how to get here: You can park comfortably in the large car park. (Parking is included in the admission ticket.) From there, a 10-minute walk takes you down to the waterfalls. Alternatively, you can also take the slow train.
Entry: 20KM/10 euros
6. Map: Sights & tips at a glance
To make it easier for you to find your way around, we have marked all the sights and our tips for Mostar on this map. A little tip: If you click on the rectangle at the top right, you can save the map in the Google Maps app on your smartphone. (Important: Roaming is not free in Bosnia! We will tell you our tips in this article: Travel tips Bosnia and Herzegovina.)
Transparency: Affiliate links
This blog article contains our personal recommendations in the form of so-called affiliate links. If you book or buy something through the links, we will receive a small commission. For you, this does not change the price at all. A thousand thanks from both of us!