Banja Luka is located in northwest part of country. It had very good road connection with rest of Europe.
1. From Ljubljana, Slovenia follow the route: E70 Zagreb, Croatia - E661 (Bosanska) Gradiška, B&H - E661 Banja Luka
(323km; 3h 43min)
2. From Budapest, Hungary follow the route: E73 M6 Udvar, Hungary - E73 7 Osijek, Croatia - E70 A3 Okučani, Croatia - E661/5 (Bosanska) Gradiška, B&H - E661/16 Banja Luka
3. From Belgrade, Serbia follow the route: E70 Okučani, Croatia - E661/5 (Bosanska) Gradiška, B&H - E661/16 Banja Luka
(332km; 3h 30min)
4. From Split, Croatia follow the route: 1 Brnaze, Croatia - 60 Trilj, Croatia - 220 Kamensko, Croatia - M16 Bugojno, B&H - E661 Route - M16 Banja Luka
(266km; 4h 36min)
I put lots of details here How to get to and around Banja Luka
I wish you safe trip!Related to:
- Road Trip
Transport to TZL
Tuzla International Airport (TZL) is located about 16 km far from Tuzla in village call Gornja Dubrava.
Best way to travel there is by car. There is signs on road Tuzla - Izlaz zapad (west gate) – Par selo – Dubrave.
There was problem with public transport from and to airport since beginning. Wizz Air company start transportation with small minivans from Tuzla, Sarajevo and Banja Luka.
I still didn't use it but I find information about return ticket prices: for Banja Luka 58 EUR, for Sarajevo 36 EUR and for Tuzla 16 EUR.Related to:
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Bus network is fairly branched and frequent and vehicles are modern and comfortable. There are direct bus lines from all major cities in the region of Bosnia and Herzegovina, from Croatia, Serbia or Montenegro, to Sarajevo, Mostar and other major cities of Bosnia. There are no highways in BiH so the speed of buses is limited, especially if passing through populated areas.
From Zagreb there are night bus lines to Mostar and Sarajevo and it is, in my opinion, the most convenient way to travel. As for the local inter-city bus lines, they are good and frequent.
The largest part of Bosnia and Herzegovina is not covered by railway traffic, primarily because of the terrain, which is mostly mountainous with numerous canyons and sections. There exist only two main railway lines, which extend along the river valleys, from north to south line goes Vinkovci (in Croatia)-Doboj-Zenica-Sarajevo-Mostar-Ploče, and another from west to east which goes Bihač-Prijedor-Banja Luka-Doboj-Tuzla-Zvornik. There are also two or three local lines but they almost have no significance to the overall train connections.
The structure of railway lines is quite bad so the trains are slow, uncomfortable and often late. On the other hand, trains run through beautiful landscapes and to one who is a passionate photographer the traveling can be very interesting and attractive.
Cheap flights from Tuzla
Tuzla International Airport (TZL) (or Airport Dubrave) is small civilian airport. As International civilian airport start on 5 June 2008.
It was larges military airport in Yugoslavia. You could still see some military objects near airport. Note that there is forbidden to use your photo camera on that sector. You will see on some signs that indicate that.
It is located in village call Gornje Dubrave. It is about 16 km far from Tuzla. From summer 2014 low-cost carrier Wizz Air start operate from this airport. That makes TZL transportation hub within country.
Now Wizz Air connect Tuzla with Basel/Mulhouse, Dortmund, Eindhoven, Gothenburg-Landvetter and Malmö several times per week.
There is expect to start new lines to Europe: Hahn (begins 24 June 2015), Memmingen (begins 26 June 2015), Sandefjord (begins 24 June 2015) and Stockholm-Skavsta (begins 26 June 2015)
Airport is small. There is one duty-free shop and small restaurant/cafe on upper level. Parking cost 2 KM (about 1 euros). Use only national money. There is lots of touristic signs, especially for rent-a-car. You could find there lots of small companies ticket offices within airport.Related to:
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Take the Train
I'd heard that the train journey to Sarajevo was scenic and so boarded the early morning train from Mostar. It was certainly a pleasant experience offering good views and you can see how the track bends and loops around and through the many tunnels of the surrounding hills. The journey took about two and a half hours. I bought my ticket half an hour before departure but I would advise checking departure times and booking in advance as the train is popular and was full. (I visited in September)Related to:
I suggest you to travel by...
Bosnia and Herzegovina is a small country, easy to travel around. The distances between the towns are very short and you don't have to be vorried about accomodations.
The best way to explore the country is definetely by the car. Although there are no highways in B&H at all, the narrow and very curved roads are very attractive.Related to:
- Family Travel
Rental Cars / Mostar
A good place to hire rental cars in Mostar is the Hotel Bristol; they offer competitive rates (office is open from 9. a.m.). It might be sensible to book or call ahead, as I don`t know how big their car-pool is.
Bosnia has a very efficient, reasonably fast and cheap bus system which connects all major cities within Bosnia and even the neighbouring countries (Croatia, Serbia). Usually it is not necessary to book ahead or reserve a seat. You should check the arrival & departure times early. A good website to do so would be the autobus Kolodvor website.
Tour groups to Bosnia
Many buses link cites in Bosnia and Hercegovina. However, the best way (if you want to be absolutely safe from the mines!) is to take a one day excursion tour from the ATLAS travel agency in Dubrovnik, Croatia to Mostar and Pocitelj. They also have tour to the holy village of Medjugorje as well.
By car in Western Balkans
OK - I used to be the "train expert" here... but after moving from the States we landed up taking all our cars with us and I did not board the train since ;-)
On the other hand with our driving habits we scared the heck out of the poor citizens all across ex-YU, Srpska and Kosovo included so I maybe can help.
1) GPS. Do not be stingy, buy one. You have pretty much only one choice - Garmin. Do NOT, NOT and NOT buy anything fancier than 265W Nüvi because they have a nasty firmware bug. Garmin Nüvi 255W is just perfect, but I got a bit better one (285W, US model) lately (still have the old 255, just in case - before it goes on eBay). Do not buy TomTom: you have practically zero coverage in YU.
That GPS is not enough, you will need extra maps. These are the "Adria Route" (Slovenia-Croatia-Bosnia) and "SCG Route" (Serbia with KiM - Macedonia - Montenegro). You can google and buy on-line. The "generic" European map is OK for the rest. You can store the maps of YU on an SD card. Don't be stingy - buy 4 GB and buy a good one. Otherwise you land up like I did, bought a crappy one at Auchan and returned it twice. The lost time and gas was more than a better SD card like Kingston would cost.
The SCG Route is now 2.20, mine is 2.00, time to upgrade...
"Adria Route" is made by their colleagues in Croatia, but usually "somehow" these two are being often sold together.
Looks they, too have updates and Summer is coming. Good, I did see that update.
NB: these guys are the ONLY players out there - AFAIK, nothing else comes even close.
2) I think probably the UK cars (like US cars) are the least what the thieves want. You drive always on the wrong side of the road and have cars with the steering wheel in an improper place. :-D And we in the States have completely different parts than European cars do have, even for the same model.
The market for such cars in continental Europe is limited at best and in many countries such cars can't be even registered, unless exception is made for the original owner. If you want to be a nice girl, please provide the thieves the original title (in his name), original UK passport (in his name) and so on. Than it could work out for him, otherwise what he will get for a UK or US spec. car is 5-10 years, LOL.
Where Keti is 100% right: tourist scam, theft, etc. is more typical for Italy. Car theft included.
3) The roads are not bad, but NARROW. Be very careful with trucks. In general the drivers of exYU are NOT aggressive - they are CARELESS. They would overtake a truck in a sharp curve and risk a frontal collision.
4) The fines in Serbia are brutal (just in case if you go there). Speeding is the usual thing they looking for, also wrong turns and such. The "cheapest" fine is now 30 Euro, earlier one could get away with 10. If the speeding is significant (if I recall, over 40 kmh) they can go as high as 200-300 Euro, just for speeding alone.
5) For some reason they are fancy about the lights. Once I was stopped for not having (sunlight was still OK), that went smoothly. Just to being stopped 200 km later for having too much of it (I used both fog lights and regular but no high beam), that was 10 Euro. So I am not sure, better ask the police when you can or have to use lights and what is allowed.
6) Make sure you have the proper insurance. You can get away (maybe!) with the "old" green card in Croatia, Bosnia, Slovenia. If you decide to visit Montenegro or Serbia - you will need the "new" green card. In continental Europe this is not a problem - but for some mysterious reason in UK and US they love to sell people OUTDATED green cards. This is essentially illegal, what you can do is to point out to the insurance that they sold you a wrong thing. Since June 14 2009 the insurance companies are obligated to sell the new form. You can easily distinguish the new form from the old. The "old" form has entries like "IRQ", "SCG" or "YU". The new form does not have "IRQ" entry anymore (wonder, why???) but has "SRB" and "RUS" instead. In other words, if you get the old form you can't legally drive to Novi Sad or St. Pete. But you could drive between Mosul and Baghdad as much as you like.
Since last year things changed, so don't complain if you will be turned back to Turkey somewhere at Al-Qamishli :-)
Penalty on a bus without a fare
in Sarajevo, when you buy a ticket from the drivers, be sure to insert the machine to validate your ticket, otherwise your ticket is not valid. Bus conductors are trying to find tourist to impose penalty, even if you have a valid ticket.Related to:
- Budget Travel
Bus from Sarajevo to Belgrad
The bus from Sarajevo to Belgrad departs from Lukavica bus station in the Serb-dominated eastern parts of Sarajevo. The tour takes approx. 9 hours with several stops in the serbian areas in Bosnia. The price was 20 USD.
It was very strange to notice that the serbs had passport control of all the passengers after 1 hour drive. The two men in their old russian dress asked where I was going, and I said Belgrad. They gave the passport back to me with a smile.
The passengers on the bus were mainly serbs. I thought they were friendly and maybe proud to have tourists in this parts of Bosnia.
The bus went through small villages and narrow roads. Very steep roads with beautiful mountains and forrests. Almost all the parts of Bosnia towards Serbia is mountainous. And Serbia is flat. The bus had some stops on the way where passengers could buy food and drinks, and go to toalet. All the letters are russian in this part of Bosnia, and you have to ask.Related to:
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Very good bus connections from Sarajevo to Mostar
If you are travelling in Bosnia, and do not have an own car, the public transportation system is very good; at least between the main cities. I found it very comfrotable to travel from Sarajevo to Mostar (and later back all the way from Dubrovnik/Croatia to Sarajevo).
Tickets were not expensive, they were easily available from the bus station, no lining. Buses were comfortable and it was nice to enjoy the changing landscape. Especially beautiful was the green river beside the road; against the mountains.
I suggest everyone who travels to Bosnia, to visit both Sarajevo and Mostar. They are different cities but I wouldn't leave none of them away at any price.Related to:
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The railwaynetwork in Bosnia-Herzegovina is not very big (about 1000 km). There are 2 main axes: Loznica (Serbia) - Zvornik - Banja Luka - Bihaæ - Knin (Croatia) and Slavonski Šamac (Croatia) - Doboj - Maglaj - Zenica - Sarajevo - Mostar - Ploèe (Croatia). Some minor lines exist, deriving from one of these axes. Bijeljina also has a railwaystation but is it only connected with Šid in Serbia. Since many bridges etc. have been damaged during the war, services are not frequently.
There are 2 companies: The ŽBH (in the Federation) and the ŽBH. International connections exist (e.g. Zagreb, Budapest, Belgrade) but local traffic runs till the entity-border, where travellers must switch trains.Related to:
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