Mostar – Bosnia and Herzegovina

Map courtesy of The Organization for World Peace modified for JBRish readers.

Mostar is located in the southern portion of Bosnia and Herzegovina and is divided by the Neretva River.

Walking near Mostar’s old town, tourists may sense that the architecture has Turkish influences with minarets piercing the air.

Of particular note is the Koski Mehmed-Pasha Mosque (below) which stands as an outstanding example of Ottoman architecture. The tall and thin minaret can be climbed with paid admission.

Another aspect of Mostar that is reminiscent of Ottoman and Middle Eastern culture is the Bazaar-like section of old town.

Picture courtesy of mynoadiclifestyle

Flowers carefully planted outside the vintage windows help take the edge off the overabundance of souvenir shops.

The intricate patterned cobbled streets are sometimes tricky to negotiate.

It is the Neretva River, however, which necessitated the creation the area’s most famous landmark – – the “extremely arched” Stari Most (Old Bridge). The bridge has a storied history which you can read HERE.

While crossing the Stari Most, visitors will soon realize that there are raised horizontal strips which may make walking somewhat awkward, but without them the bridge can be very slippery. Tourists are advised to walk on the raised sections if possible.

To entertain visitors, young men stand atop the railings of the bridge and when enough people have provided monetary encouragement, they dive 70 feet from the bridge into the Neretva. The river also serves as a venue for rafting and kayaking.

The panoramic views from the top of the bridge are scenic and picture-worthy.

Mostar came under attack during the Bosnian war and the Croatian army destroyed the famed landmark.


While UNESCO and other countries assisted in rebuilding the bridge between 2001 and 2004, the painful experience the destruction represented has been seared deeply into the psyche of the local population.

Orašac Village – Earlier in the Day

On the way to Mostar, we stopped in a very quaint, quiet and picturesque town of Orašac, Croatia founded in 1040.

We were there to visit a small private garden and olive mill that has retained some of the traditional methods of producing olive oil.

The old olive press was quite a machine to see, but what was even more interesting was how the press was operated. One horse power was all that was needed.

Beautiful garden features lined the paths.

After a sampling of the offerings, we were on our way!



See Previous Posts in this series:

Dubrovnik, Croatia – Pearl of the Adriatic

Old Town Dubrovnik – Above it all

Old Town Dubrovnik – The Low Down

Dubrovnik from the Adriatic and Mt. Srd

Montenegro & The Walled City of Kotor



Romantic and Fabled Granada, Spain

Traveling from the mountain town of Ronda, we headed to the fabled Spanish city of Granada. Our residence during our stay in Grenada was the elegant Alhambra Palace Hotel.


The hotel was constructed at one of the high points surrounding the town and afforded views of the rooftops and distant mountains.


This was one of the views looking out of our hotel window.


A special Flamenco program with accompanying Sangria was hosted for our group. This took place in a cozy theater venue designed to provide an intimate entertainment experience.


Visitors will find that Granada has a certain romantic flare almost any time of day, but in the evening this allure intensifies. The subdued lighting along the downhill slope of the street leading to the main part of the city is just one example and one website describes it as “Andalucia’s most dreamy destinations.”


The older parts of Granada offered more of the quaint, winding cobblestone streets and colorful housing that we found throughout our tour.


The marketplace arcades were interesting with maze-like narrow alleyways. Churches rose above the pedestrian thoroughfares to cast their religious overtones.


In and around the Calle de la Calderería Nueva (the Street of the New Cauldron Factory) there is a significant Moorish influence and this sector sometimes assumes the moniker of “little Morocco.”

Of course there were the familiar vendors of spices and…


exotic teas.


Herbalist and Essences from Granada
The sign – “Teas, Plants and FLowers collected. Safron, Spices, Granada’s products.
Natural cosmetics. Tea items and Incenses.”

A number of merchants were selling Turkish mosaic lamps that we hadn’t seen or noticed during our stops at the previous Spanish cities and towns.


Here is a vendor setting up his display of goods to attract passersby using the colorful garb as a lure.


We enjoyed strolling around the city in the early morning as the plazas were just awakening and tourists were fewer in number.


The colorful mosaic tiles of San Juan de Dios Roman Catholic Church atop the dome-like structure caught our eye.


And likewise as part of the facade of the Church of Iglesia de Santa Ana in the Albacin Quarter


Most tourists will want to visit the older sections of Granada as they should, but there are more modern flares to be enjoyed as well. This statue of Queen Isabela accepting the proposal of Columbus is set in front of a modern office building at the Plaza de Isabel la Católica (Columbus Square).


And in a nod to our technological societies there was a battery recycle bin on at least one corner in the central section of the city.


On our way back to the hotel to refresh a bit before we set out for our next adventure, we passed a seemingly popular bakery with happy cookies!


We were happy indeed because our next stop was the fabled Alhambra Palace.



Continue reading about our trip to Portugal and Spain.


Read more Hiking and Exploration posts HERE



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