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5 ways to travel cheap and out of the beaten path in the Balkans

Why the Balkans? All the wonderful places that Europe has to offer for you to spend a beautiful trip considered, the Balkans are becoming a more and more popular choice.
For those of you who want good weather, delicious food and incredibly nice people, it's the place to be.
Not only these countries have exceptional landscapes, but they count themselves amongst the cheapest and unknown alternatives in Europe to travel to, taking into account that they do not have mass tourism or overcrowded villages.
If you’re up to this kind of plan, even traveling alone, here you have 5 ways to travel cheap and out of the beaten path in the Balkans.


Ohrid, Macedonia

ways to travel cheap macedoniaSource: Yomadic 

Why

It is an extremely easy country to visit. It’s not crowded with tourists and you can enjoy an environment that hasn’t been taken over by Western customs. Ohrid is a place that is not that well know, but has an amazing nature and “old-Europe” kind of atmosphere.

Transportation

You have options like local taxis that can drive you to bus stops, actual buses (that take a little bit longer), boat trips or even lake taxis to get to see lake Ohrid - where you’ll find many great local people to ask for directions.  

What to visit

Two nice options are the Ancient Theater, built in 200 BC, during the Hellenistic period; you can also go to Samuil Fortress, where you’ll be able to spot the city’s skyline and see the whole panorama view. Really impressive.

Eating

The most budget friendly places are the skaras (typical grills), where you’ll find lots of meat, salads and beans mostly. Avoid the buffets for tourists, they are way more expensive.

 

 

Tryavna, Bulgaria

ways to travel cheap bulgariaSource: Senderismo Europa

Why

This is one of those little villages that has a charming impact on you. It is located in the mountains of central Bulgaria, and offers you different architectural and ethnographic opportunities to visit, as well as a feeling that you are going back to the beginning of the XX century.

Transportation

The best means of transport you’re going to find are the buses that connect Tryavna with Sofia and local buses. Anyway, this community is small and interesting enough to see it by foot.

What to visit

The spectacular Bacho Kiro Cave- for nature lovers- and Dryanovo Monastery, a historic complex full of beauty and stories.

Eating

You can find delicious traditional Bulgarian Cuisine in Kalincheva House. You’ll be amazed by their kebabche, kuftes (grilled meats) and pitkas for a really reasonable price.



Peja, Kosovo

ways to travel cheap kosovoSource: Pinterest 

Why

This city has impressive religious monasteries, old-turkish houses and mosques. You can clearly see the Ottoman heritage and being surrounded by mountains, it’s a great place for our outdoor activities like hiking or rock climbing.

Transportation

It is very well connected to the main cities in Kosovo by bus. You can also take the train or even rent a car. Personally, I’d recommend wandering around by foot, although if you’re in a hurry, local taxis will never cost more than 2 euros.

What to visit

The Gryka e Madhe cave is a mysterious place to visit if you’re an adventure lover. In fact, this should be visited with a professional guide. If you’d rather go to safer spots, you have to check the Patriarchate of Peja (UNESCO World Heritage Site), an Orthodox monastery founded in the XIII century.

Eating

Places like Sofra Pejane, where besides offering traditional food, you can hear popular singers while having your meal.



Dalmatia, Croatia

ways to travel cheap croatiaSource: Yummy Planet

Why

This coastal region of Croatia is mostly surrounded by the Adriatic Sea that, in its wider point, it is only about 50 km, so it is very easy to visit. Water related activities and islands tours are going to make you fall in love with this city.

Transportation

Walking is a great alternative, while one of the most popular ways of spotting the place is by scooter. For longer distances, you have options like the ferry if you head to the islands or train/local buses for when in the city.

What to visit

Go kayaking to Lokrum island, a really cool way of having a sea adventure. You also have the Plitvice National Park, where a microclimate takes place, making the area very unpredictable.

Eating

Organic local markets and small food stalls are the places to go, where they make amazing cheeses, tomatoes and a great variety of farm and small producers food.



Niš, Serbia

way to travel cheap serbiaSource: Easy Voyage

Why

This city, which is one of the oldest from the Balkans, is full of interesting contrasts. Whereas in one hand, you can find many college students and bars to hear great live music, in the other, there are also many markets and picturesque old alleyways.

Transportation

You can go to the Downtown easily taking the bus or train. Be prepared to “climb”  a little bit: when you get away from the center, many streets are sloping.

What to visit

For a little history, The Nis Fortress: it was built over the remains of a Roman military camp in the XVIII century by Istanbul stonecutters and bricklayers. For getting into the local activity, go visit the market, full of fresh fruit, veggies and soft cheese.

Eating

In the center, you’ll find plenty of traditional restaurants, which will offer typical food such as burek, Shopska salad or pijeskavica. They also cook locally made delicious pizzas.

 

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