Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, is one of the oldest cities in Europe. Belgrade has something for every taste. If museums are your thing, a visit to the Nikola Tesla Museum is a must: more than 2,000 of the Serbian inventor’s books and over 160,000 of his documents, plans, drawings, and photographs are displayed there, as per his last wish. The numerous museums provide a glimpse into the country’s cultural, religious and military heritage.
The many sides of Belgrade
Belgrade is known by many names. It is also referred to as the “White City” by the Slavs due to the city’s fortress, Beogradska Tvrđava, appearing white from the River Sava and Danube. The fortress was destroyed and rebuilt numerous times over sixteen centuries and today is recognised as the symbol of the Serbian capital.
While Chicago certainly has its fair share of great live music, comedy shows, and a wide array of lively bars and clubs, Belgrade’s vibrant nightlife has earned it the title of “the city that never sleeps”. A trip wouldn’t be complete without a visit to one of the famous splavs – floating riverboat clubs, restaurants, and bars. Around 300 rafts line the waterways, offering casual Serbian folk music for chilling, and disco and eclectic funk for dancing. With so much on offer, it’s no wonder that Serbia’s nightlife has been described as the best in the Balkans.
When is the best time of year to visit Belgrade?
Belgrade’s climate is sub-tropical and the city experiences even precipitation throughout the year. Summers are mildly warm and winters freezing. The best time to visit Belgrade is between the months of March and September. Chicago is known to be chilly in December, but the winters can be quite unkind in Belgrade as well, with day temperatures of around 32°F, which can drop to as low as -4°F during the night. Things get especially chilly when cold Arctic or Russian winds cause intense frosts. The summer months are therefore recommended, with highs of around 86°F and lows of 59°F.
How do I get from Belgrade airport to the city centre?
You’ve just arrived at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport from O’Hare International Airport and need to get to the city centre. There are three options available for the journey of 18 km (11 miles) to the centre:
- Taxi: The journey takes between 20 and 30 minutes and should cost no more than 1369 RSD ($12.85).
- Bus: The journey takes around 30 to 40 minutes and costs between 137 RSD to 342 RSD ($1.25 to $3.20) depending on which route you take: A1 Mini Bus, Bus 72, or Bus 607.
- Car rental: Located at Terminal 2 international arrivals and Terminal 1 ground floor. Prices start at around 1643 RSD ($15.40) per day.
Key details about Belgrade
Belgrade is the capital of Serbia, as well as its biggest city with almost 1.4 million inhabitants and an area of approximately 360 km2 (140 sq. miles). Knez Mihailova, a bustling pedestrian boulevard, is home to magnificent coffee houses as well as smoky dives and historical buildings. Kafanas (traditional taverns) offer national cuisine specialities such as pljeskavica (grilled and spiced meat patty) and gibanica (egg and cheese pie).
- Currency: Serbian dinar (RSD)
- Language: Serbian
- Time zone: CET (GMT+1)
- Capital: Belgrade
- Other Serbian destinations: Kraljevo, Subotica, Novi Sad, Kragujevac, Sremska Mitrovica
- Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport (or Belgrade Airport): Located 18 km (11 miles) west of downtown Belgrade near the suburb of Surčin
- Address: Aerodrom Beograd 59, Beograd 11180, Serbia
- Phone no.: +381 11 2094444
Top attractions in Belgrade
- Belgrade Fortress
- Nikola Tesla Museum
- Skadarlija Bohemian Quarter
Belgrade’s best attractions include the fortress that overlooks the Sava and Danube rivers, the museum dedicated to Tesla and the inventor’s incredible life, and last but not least, the Bohemian quarter: With bars, cafés, and restaurants dotted along the cobblestones, it’s an area you won’t want to miss!
If you visit in August, take advantage of the famous Belgrade Beer Fest, which takes over the Ušće shopping centre, providing Pivo beer to hundreds of thousands of visitors.
Chicago - ZurichFlight duration: 08:40 hrs total, Frequency: 5 x daily
Departure ChicagoTerminal: 5Counter opening time: 3 h prior to departure
Airbus A330-300Height: 16.80 mLength: 63.70 mSeats: 236
Crew:Pilots: 2Cabin crew: 11
Transit Zurich (ZRH)Arrival: 11:00Transit time: 1h 15m
Zurich - BelgradeFlight duration: 01:45 hrs total, Frequency: 1 x daily
Airbus A320-214Height: 11.80 mLength: 37.60 mSeats: 136-168
Crew:Pilots: 2Cabin crew: 4
Arrival BelgradeDistance to city centre: 18 km