Friday, November 03, 2017

Bosnia & Hercegovina: Driving the Beautiful Neretva River Valley Highway

One of the nice surprises I experienced in my last spring's Balkan Road Trip was the drive from Sarajevo to Mostar. It was quite spectacular.


We highly recommend the drive along the Neretva River Valley.


Sarajevo to Mostar took approximately 2+ hours (about 130 kilometres) on the E73 highway passing by towns, Konjic and Jablanica. The highway is laid out parallel to the beautiful Neretva river and valley, also known as Narenta, flowing through Bosnia & Herzegovina and all the way to Croatia and out to the Adriatic Sea.

I must say that the waters of the river are turquoise blue and the canyons and hills on both sides of the valley were just stunning. A great backdrop during the 2-hour drive.

[To read the rest of the post and see more pictures, click the READ MORE link below]


We are on the road to Mostar, our second stop in the Balkan Road Trip, this picture was taken kilometres before we enter the Neretva River Valley.

Bubbles, my travel partner, have the tendency to doze off when sitting in the front seat of a moving car. I guess the car functions as a womb that lulls her to sleep. But we have been very clear in the beginning of this road trip that I will be the only driver and that she will be my co-navigator.

I am happy being the official driver in road trips. In fact, I like driving itself, it is one of those activities that people can count on me when road tripping as a group. Driving gives me the feeling of freedom and control. Bubbles was a bit surprised that I seldom got tired. Well, let us just say that I am one of those high energy types =)

So we have a deal that as a co-navigator, she will watch for me. She will be my extra eyes. We have a GPS so that is handy. But the extra precaution also has something to do with on-the-road visibility and language. In Bosnia & Herzegovina, we noticed that the road signs are in Roman and Cyrillic alphabets.Along the Serbian border, the signs posted were mostly in Cyrillic and we have to figure out the Roman translation.

This is our route:



This is the only car route from Sarajevo to Mostar and it is one of the most scenic driving routes in the country.

However, there are also some stretches that are somewhat boring, long and quite safe to drive. So I do not mind if Bubbles can take some rest and sleep.

But when we were passing the Neretva River Valley, which had very good and well-maintained roads, less incoming traffic and shall I say, would pass in the category of long and quite safe to drive on road (but not boring!), Bubbles remained very much awake.

Well, no wonder, because the scenery is just spectacular!


The pictures will probably not do justice, but it is one of the beautiful things we have seen on this trip.

The weather was not that great that day though, it was a bit greyish with no promise of sun and blue skies at all. So you can just imagine what this place would look like on a great weather day. It will for sure be breathtaking.

On the other hand, Bubbles had to be awake because she was watching me closely. She was watching me more than the beautiful natural surroundings. You see, I was taking pictures, albeit very quickly, while driving and she did not like it one bit at all, lol.

'You are worrying me! Stop taking pictures! Just drive.'

I reasoned to her that I am a pro (in driving and taking quick pictures), so there's nothing to worry about.

'Concentrate on your driving, please!' she reprimanded me.

It is one of those things, the quirky habits and behaviours of other people travelling with you that you need to get used to, haha. Anyway, no one should follow me. That is all that I am going to say =).

With all that has been said and done, I am very careful though with my driving. The highway on this river valley is very relaxing to drive, it has a suggested slow speed of 50 kilometres per hour, there are a few (incoming) vehicles driving on it and the roads are very well-maintained and well-proportioned.

So I guess it is a combination of both, the stunning beauty of the Neretva River Valley and the irritating moi on the wheel that made Bubbles awake the whole time we were driving on this surprise stretch of our Balkan road trip =)


Just too bad that the weather did not cooperate. Let your imagination go wild with sun and blue skies. It would be stunning.


Travel Period: April 2017
Destination: Neretva River Valley, Bosnia & Hercegovina

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Happy Travels! Enjoy Life =)

All pictures were taken by a point and shoot pocket camera or a smartphone.

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