There are a lot of places in Central and Eastern Europe that are totally misunderstood – especially as photography destinations. In fact, lots of photographers don’t even know what there is to take pictures of in some of this region. Bosnia-Herzegovina is one of those places. It’s also a place of a massive amount of potential: in photography and tourism in general.
I’ve spent time in Bosnia-Herzegovina on three different occasions. But, each of those occasions I was working with a different project and wasn’t really able to fully explore all the country has to offer. What I will say, though, is that this place is beautiful, photogenic, and totally worthy of your time and exploration.
Below are some of the beautiful photo spots I’ve visited in Bosnia-Herzegovina
Most well-known for being the place in which World War One was triggered – with the assassination of Franz Ferdinand, or for the seize it was under during the Bosnian-Serbian war in the 1990s, Sarajevo doesn’t have the best rap. But, in my opinion, it’s beautifully misunderstood.
For people into street photography, there’s plenty of images to be had here. There’s also some beautiful architecture and historical sites. And, you’re not too far away from some really beautiful nature. It’s especially special in the fall.
Some call Lukomir “the most remote town in Europe”. I think it’s one of the most beautiful.
Accessed by a really rough road and sat on the top of an imposing valley, Lukomir is simply stunning. If you’re into drone photography this place is teeming with opportunities. And the potential both street photos, travel photos, and landscape photography here in Lukomir are superb.
Personally, I only spent an afternoon here. I would have liked to have spent a full day or two.
Boracko Lake and Kravice Falls
Over in Croatia, Plitvice Lakes and waterfalls are famous. But many don’t realize that there are similar lakes and waterfalls on the Bosnia-Herzegovina side of the border as well.
In fact, I was told that there are loads of places like Boracko Lake and Kravice Falls in Bosnia-Herzegovina. On the day I came through this area we were getting battered with a little bit of rain and wind, so my photos aren’t great. But I can assure you that this is definitely one of the places that photographers need to visit in this country.
I spent the night in Konjic while scouting parts of the Via Dinarica (a UN development project) a couple years ago. I found it to be very beautiful.
I was especially intrigued by the incredible colour of the water rolling through town. The best photo that I could come up with in the short amount of time I was there was an image of the bridge, white-stoned town, and river. I think there are far more photos here to be made as well.
The city of Mostar is perhaps the most popular photography location in Bosnia-Herzegovina – and rightfully so. The city is jam-packed with photos waiting to be taken.
The most obvious photos in town are had of the famous bridge and the river below. There’s a great little spit of cement just down river from the bridge that makes for a perfect photo spot. It’s also pretty beautiful from the bridge itself.
There are also plenty of travel and street photography images to be taken up along the main tourist strip above the bridge.
Mostar should not be missed by photographers in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Travel Logistics for Bosnia-Herzegovina
Since there’s not a lot of information out there related to the travel logistics in Bosnia-Herzegovina, I thought I’d lay some out.
Driving / Transport
If you’re spending a lot of time in Bosnia-Herzegovina you should definitely rent a car. That being said, unless you’re driving your own vehicle, an international driver’s permit is required to drive in Bosnia-Herzegovina. You’ll need to get one before you leave home.
The driving here is fairly tame, although there is some dangerous driving that happens on the highways for sure. Some of the roads in the back country can also be pretty rough.
There is a train service in Bosnia-Herzegovina as well. It is a bit slower, but connects most of the major cities.
Of course, there are also public buses that will regularly travel between major towns and cities.
Another option is to hire a driver between towns. I personally hired a driver from Dubrovnik to Mostar as it was just a lot easier and more convenient. It was fairly well priced as well.
Accommodation / Where to Stay
It’s not hard to find accommodation in most of Bosnia-Herzegovina. Moreover, it’s rare for all the accommodation to be booked up – even in the high season of summer. You’ll find a nice mix of accommodation types here too. You’ll find hostels in the bigger cities like Mostar and Sarajevo.
I would say though, that you can probably find a better deal than a hostel in a guesthouse or a hotel. So the hostels might be most valuable as a place to meet people.
I heard lots of people talking about how cheap it was to travel Bosnia-Herzegovina. And, well it’s definitely cheaper than it is in the rest of Europe, I wouldn’t act like it’s some wild bargain. A good meal will cost anywhere from 5-12 euros depending on the quality and location. Accommodation can be found as little as 30-40 euros depending on the season, and transport is pretty cheap.
The budgets I would prepare for as a tourist depending on your comfort levels are as follows:
Budget/backpacker = 50 Euros a day
Midrange = 75 Euros a day
Comfortable = 100 Euros a day
Luxury-ish = 150 Euros a day
Most of the difference in cost comes down to the accommodation and the cost of transport between destinations.
Camera Safety in Bosnia-Herzegovina
I never had any issues on any of my trips here. In fact, I never felt like there was every a situation where my camera gear was vulnerable at all. That being said, camera theft can happen anywhere, and that’s no different here. Don’t get careless with your camera equipment, don’t let it out of your sight or grasp. Theft is more likely to be of the “crimes of opportunity” here rather than anything else.
Most importantly, go out and have fun with your camera. Bosnia-Herzegovina is a beautiful country full of so many photo opportunities. It would be a shame to miss a photo because you were worried about the safety of your camera equipment.