Serbia, 4thby Laurence Mitchell
Serbia is a spirited, fascinating country and tourism has grown steadily. Belgrade and Novi Sad are lively, cosmopolitan and welcoming while rural Serbia, with hidden monasteries and breathtaking countryside, is an undiscovered gem. This edition of the guide features the burgeoning music festival scene, bird-watching, wine-tasting and Serbia's growing litany of sporting stars such as Novak Djokovic. It includes a new section on the Danube cycling route. Updated throughout, the listings include boutique hotels, eco-lodges and backpacker hostels. The guide goes into greater depth than its competitors with more on the history, politics, culture and sights.
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By Laurence Mitchell
Bradt Travel GuidesCopyright © 2013 Laurence Mitchell
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Capital of the Vojvodina and, with a population of more than a quarter of a million, Serbia’s second largest city, Novi Sad is a relatively prosperous, commercial, industrial and university town on the north shore of the Danube in the Bačka region of the province. Long referred to as the ‘Serbian Athens’, Novi Sad has always been a centre of culture and learning and the atmosphere of its small but elegant city centre seems somehow a little more refined than that of the capital. Instead of looking south and east as Belgrade has historically done, Novi Sad’s cultural ties are firmly to the north and west.
With a diverse and mixed population of Serbs, Hungarians, Croats and Slovaks, together with a sizeable but rather downcast Roma population, the city’s cultural resonances bring to mind Budapest and Vienna rather than Belgrade or Sarajevo. As one writer has already noted, Novi Sad is the most easterly city in Western Europe, and the most westerly city in Eastern Europe. Famous sons – or rather, daughters – of the city include Mileva Einstein, née Marić, wife of Albert (the great man himself lived here for a few years before World War I) and Monica Seleš, the tennis star.
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