12 Best Things to Do in Belgrade, Serbia: Must-See Attractions

by Emil Backup
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Are you looking to visit Belgrade, Serbia soon? Here are some of the most fun and unique things to do in Belgrade. These vibrant sights, activities, and attractions are sure to make for an unforgettable vacation experience.

Welcome to Belgrade, a city where the past meets the present in a vibrant and dynamic fusion. This Serbian capital, situated at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers, offers a multifaceted experience for travelers of all tastes and interests.

Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a nightlife lover, or a foodie, Belgrade has you covered. Historical sites, such as the ancient Kalemegdan Fortress, bear witness to the city’s resilience. Meanwhile, its lively bars and cafes along the riverbanks reveal its modern, lively side.

Wandering the streets, you’ll find buildings from various eras narrating stories of the past. And when it comes to cuisine, Belgrade’s hearty and flavorful dishes reflect its diverse cultural heritage.

In this guide, we’ll delve into the various experiences that Belgrade has to offer, ensuring you make the most of your visit. From exploring historical landmarks and serene parks to immersing yourself in bustling markets and experiencing the city’s vibrant nightlife, you’ll find a wide range of activities that won’t break the bank. Let’s dive into Belgrade’s captivating mix of old-world charm and contemporary allure as we discover the best things to do in this lively European destination. Here’s everything you need to know about these fun things to do in Belgrade.

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Best Places to Visit in Belgrade

Ready to jump into all the coolest things to do in Belgrade? As noted above, there’s something for everyone at this enigmatic vacation spot in Serbia. So keep reading to discover all these unique Belgrade places to visit.

Are you looking to stroll through historic streets and indulge in delicious Serbian dishes? Or would you prefer to dance the night away in one of the city’s lively clubs? Whatever you’re planning, these must-sees in Belgrade can accommodate your needs. Here’s all the best attractions in Belgrade that you should know about.

1. Kalemegdan Fortress

Kalemegdan Fortress, situated at the meeting point of Sava and Danube rivers, is a historic symbol of Belgrade’s rich past. This imposing fortress has witnessed centuries of history, from the Roman, Byzantine, and Ottoman eras to its role in more recent conflicts.

Visitors can explore the well-preserved walls and fortifications, offering a glimpse into the city’s military history. The fortress also houses several museums, including the Military Museum and the Museum of Belgrade, which delve into the city’s past and the broader region’s history.

One of the coolest things to do in Belgrade is to take a leisurely stroll through the expansive park surrounding the fortress. The park offers breathtaking panoramic views of the confluence of the rivers and the cityscape beyond. It’s a serene escape from the bustling city below and a popular spot for both locals and tourists. Within the fortress complex, you’ll find the iconic Victor Monument, a symbol of Serbian victory in World War I. The statue overlooks the city and serves as a reminder of the nation’s resilience.

Kalemegdan Fortress provides a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in the history and culture of Belgrade. Whether you’re exploring the fortress walls, admiring the views, or learning about the city’s past in the museums, a visit to Kalemegdan is a must for anyone looking to connect with Belgrade’s rich heritage.

Sunset bathes Kalemegdan Fortress in warm hues, guarding Belgrade's history with timeless strength and grace.
Sunset bathes Kalemegdan Fortress in warm hues, guarding Belgrade’s history with timeless strength and grace.

2. Skadarlija

Skadarlija, known as Belgrade’s Bohemian Quarter, is a charming, historic neighborhood worth exploring. This cobblestone street exudes a quaint and old-world charm, offering a delightful blend of culture, cuisine, and art.

One of the main draws of Skadarlija is its vibrant restaurant scene. The street is lined with traditional Serbian kafanas, which are tavern-style restaurants. These kafanas not only serve delicious Serbian dishes but also provide live music, creating a lively and festive atmosphere. It’s a great place to savor local specialties like ćevapi, grilled meats, and traditional pastries while enjoying the sounds of traditional Balkan music.

As you wander through Skadarlija’s narrow streets, you’ll encounter art galleries, antique shops, and boutiques selling handmade crafts. A long-time gathering place for artists and intellectuals, their influence permeates the neighborhood’s creative, bohemian spirit. Skadarlija’s historical significance also shines through its preserved architecture, featuring charming buildings adorned with colorful facades and decorative details. It’s a picturesque place for a leisurely stroll, offering a unique glimpse into Belgrade’s past and present.

In summary, a visit to Skadarlija offers a delightful escape into Belgrade’s artistic and culinary heritage. Whether you’re enjoying a traditional meal, browsing art galleries, or soaking in the ambiance, Skadarlija promises an authentic, enriching experience. This is truly one of the most amazing things to do in Belgrade, Serbia, hands down!

Cobblestone charm and Bohemian spirit converge in Belgrade's Skadarlija, a haven for art, music, and gastronomy.
Cobblestone charm and Bohemian spirit converge in Belgrade’s Skadarlija, a haven for art, music, and gastronomy.

3. St. Lava Temple

St. Sava Temple, one of the prominent Belgrade attractions, symbolizes Serbia’s spiritual heritage and architectural grandeur. This majestic Orthodox cathedral, dedicated to Saint Sava, holds a special place in the hearts of both locals and visitors.

Located on the Vračar Plateau, the temple’s sheer size and architectural beauty make it one of the best places in Belgrade to explore. The grandeur of the structure is awe-inspiring, with its gleaming white marble façade and striking dome. The interior, adorned with stunning frescoes and intricate mosaics, further enhances the spiritual experience.

Visitors can enjoy St. Sava Temple’s serene atmosphere, explore its interior, and learn its rich history. The temple’s crypt, for instance, houses a small museum that provides insight into the cathedral’s construction and Saint Sava’s significance in Serbian culture.

A must-visit, St. Sava Temple offers a spiritual retreat, magnificent architecture, and a delve into Serbian history. Its tranquil ambiance and artistic splendor offer a unique blend of cultural and spiritual exploration in the heart of Belgrade.

St. Lava Temple stands in serene beauty, a spiritual oasis blending tradition and tranquility in architecture.
St. Lava Temple stands in serene beauty, a spiritual oasis blending tradition and tranquility in architecture.

4. Zemun Quay

Zemun Quay, a beloved attraction in Belgrade, offers a vibrant atmosphere and picturesque views along the banks of the Danube River. This lively riverside promenade is one of the cool destinations in Belgrade, perfect for leisurely strolls, relaxation, and dining.

Visitors to Zemun Quay can enjoy its charming ambiance, with numerous cafes, restaurants, and bars lining the waterfront. It’s a great spot to savor a meal or sip a drink while taking in the serene river views and watching boats pass by. The Quay also features a mix of historic and contemporary architecture, creating an interesting blend of old and modern style.

One of the notable Belgrade places to visit along the quay is the iconic Gardos Tower. This attraction offers panoramic vistas of the city and river. Nearby, the Church of St. Nicholas stands as a testament to Zemun’s rich history and Serbian Orthodox heritage.

Exploring the cobbled streets of Zemun, you’ll encounter quaint shops, lively markets, and a welcoming community. The area’s cultural events and festivals, like the Zemun Film Festival, infuse the neighborhood with an artistic spirit that captivates both locals and tourists.

Zemun Quay, blending natural beauty, historical landmarks, and modern entertainment, is a delightful showcase of Belgrade’s dynamic character. Whether you seek relaxation, culinary delights, or cultural exploration, this riverside gem has something to offer every visitor.

Zemun Quay: Where the Danube whispers tales, and vibrant boats frame a picturesque riverside escape.
Zemun Quay: Where the Danube whispers tales, and vibrant boats frame a picturesque riverside escape. | Photo credits: TripAdvisor

5. Ada Ciganlija

Often referred to as Belgrade’s “Sea,” Ada Ciganlija is a vibrant river island and a favorite city recreational spot. Located on the Sava River, this picturesque area offers a variety of activities and relaxation options.

The island’s extensive shoreline, dotted with cafes, restaurants, and sports facilities, makes it popular among locals and tourists. You can rent paddle boats, kayaks, or even try your hand at windsurfing. The beaches along Ada Ciganlija are perfect for sunbathing, swimming, or playing beach volleyball.

For those seeking more active pursuits, the island boasts a network of jogging and cycling paths. It’s one of the best things to do in Belgrade to rent a bike and explore the lush greenery and scenic views that Ada Ciganlija has to offer. Birdwatchers also find the island appealing, as it attracts various bird species.

During the summer months, Ada Ciganlija transforms into a lively entertainment hub with open-air concerts, beach parties, and cultural events. There’s a waterpark for families to enjoy, and the vibrant atmosphere continues late into the evening.

Beyond outdoor activities, you can indulge in culinary delights at island restaurants or relax by the water. Ada Ciganlija offers something for everyone, from active outings to peaceful nature retreats.

Ada Ciganlija: Belgrade's urban oasis, where the Sava River meets recreation, nature, and lively summer vibes.
Ada Ciganlija: Belgrade’s urban oasis, where the Sava River meets recreation, nature, and lively summer vibes.

6. Nikola Tesla Museum

Dedicated to the renowned inventor, the Nikola Tesla Museum is an intriguing thing to do in Belgrade. Located in the city where Tesla was born, this museum offers a fascinating glimpse into the mind of a visionary scientist.

The museum houses an extensive collection of Tesla’s personal belongings, scientific instruments, and original documents. Visitors can explore the life story of this brilliant inventor, known for his contributions to the development of alternating current electricity and numerous other innovations.

A captivating exhibit in the museum is the Tesla coil demonstration, showcasing the power and brilliance of Tesla’s inventions. The museum also features interactive displays and multimedia presentations that help explain the complex concepts behind Tesla’s work.

For those seeking intellectually satisfying activities in Belgrade, the Nikola Tesla Museum is a must-visit. It offers insight into a scientific genius’s life and achievements and the impact of Tesla’s innovations on the modern world.

Whether you’re a science enthusiast or simply intrigued by the life of Nikola Tesla, a visit to this museum will leave you with a deeper appreciation for the pioneering work of this Serbian-American inventor.

Nikola Tesla Museum: Illuminating the genius of a visionary, where science and innovation converge in Belgrade's tribute.
Nikola Tesla Museum: Illuminating the genius of a visionary, where science and innovation converge in Belgrade’s tribute. | Photo credits: tesla-museum.org

7. Republic Square

Known locally as Trg Republike, Republic Square is a bustling urban hub and a must-see in Belgrade. This historic square, surrounded by magnificent buildings, has been a focal point of the city for centuries.

The centerpiece of Republic Square is the Prince Mihailo Monument, an equestrian statue of the beloved Serbian prince. Hosting the National Museum, National Theater, and historic Cafe Ruski Car, the square offers a range of nearby cultural experiences.

Visitors will find Republic Square a prime location for people-watching and soaking up Belgrade’s vibrant atmosphere. Street performers, artists, and locals alike converge here, creating a lively and dynamic scene.

The square’s central location makes it a convenient starting point for exploring the city’s historical and cultural landmarks. From Republic Square, easily access Knez Mihailova Street, the main shopping promenade, and key attractions like Kalemegdan Fortress and Skadarlija, the charming Bohemian Quarter.

Republic Square serves as both a historical treasure trove and a modern gathering place, making it a must-see destination for travelers looking to immerse themselves in the heart of Belgrade’s culture and history.

Republic Square: Belgrade's heart pulsates with history, culture, and the timeless elegance of its architectural ensemble.
Republic Square: Belgrade’s heart pulsates with history, culture, and the timeless elegance of its architectural ensemble.

8. Belgrade Zoo

Belgrade Zoo, nestled in the heart of the Serbian capital, offers unique things to do in Belgrade, providing visitors with an opportunity to connect with wildlife from around the world. Established over 80 years ago, the zoo has been a beloved institution in the city.

This family-friendly attraction showcases diverse animals, from exotic species like lions and tigers to local fauna like Balkan lynx. The zoo’s conservation efforts aim to protect and preserve these creatures, fostering an understanding of the importance of wildlife conservation.

Belgrade Zoo stands out for its peaceful, green setting, allowing leisurely strolls amid lush vegetation. Visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the River Sava and Danube confluence from the zoo’s vantage points.

For those wondering where to go in Belgrade for a relaxing and educational experience, Belgrade Zoo is an excellent choice. It combines the joy of observing animals with a tranquil setting, making it an ideal destination for both locals and tourists alike. The zoo’s dedication to education and wildlife conservation makes it a valuable resource for the community and a memorable attraction for visitors of all ages.

Belgrade Zoo: A wild haven in the heart of the city, where diverse species share enchanting moments.
Belgrade Zoo: A wild haven in the heart of the city, where diverse species share enchanting moments.

9. Museum of Yugoslavia

The Museum of Yugoslavia offers an intriguing journey through the nation’s history and its leader, Josip Broz Tito. Established in 1996, the museum showcases an array of artifacts, documents, and memorabilia related to Tito’s life and the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

Visitors can explore the House of Flowers, the final resting place of Tito and his wife, Jovanka Broz. The serene mausoleum displays gifts and awards Tito received, providing insight into his international influence. The collection extends to the May 25 Museum, exploring Yugoslavia’s history through various exhibitions. Here, visitors can immerse themselves in the country’s diverse cultural heritage and political evolution.

For those wondering where to visit in Belgrade for a deeper understanding of Yugoslavia’s past and Tito’s legacy, the Museum of Yugoslavia offers a comprehensive experience. It offers insight into the nation’s complex history, international role, and its former leader’s enduring legacy. Whether you have a keen interest in history or you’re simply curious about this fascinating period, the museum promises an informative and thought-provoking visit. 

Museum of Yugoslavia: Preserving history's echoes, where artifacts tell the tales of a nation's journey through time.
Museum of Yugoslavia: Preserving history’s echoes, where artifacts tell the tales of a nation’s journey through time.

10. Gardoš Tower

Gardoš Tower, perched atop the quaint Zemun neighborhood in Belgrade, is one of the coolest activities in Belgrade, offering panoramic views and a glimpse into the area’s rich history. Built in 1896, the tower stands as an iconic symbol of Zemun and a testament to its Austro-Hungarian past.

Visitors can climb the staircase for breathtaking vistas of the River Sava and Danube confluence, a highlight when considering what to do in Belgrade. The scenic beauty and the serene surroundings make it an ideal spot for photography and relaxation.

The area surrounding Gardoš Tower is equally charming, with cobblestone streets, historic buildings, and an inviting atmosphere. It’s one of the best places to go in Belgrade for a leisurely stroll, exploring quaint cafes, and soaking in unique character.

For those wondering where to go in Belgrade for an authentic and picturesque experience, Gardoš Tower stands as an excellent choice. It offers not only stunning views but also a chance to step back in time and appreciate the fusion of cultures that have shaped Zemun into the charming neighborhood it is today. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a photography buff, or simply seeking a peaceful retreat within the city, Gardoš Tower has something to offer to every visitor.

Gardoš Tower: Atop Zemun's hill, a timeless sentinel offering panoramic views of Danube's beauty and history.
Gardoš Tower: Atop Zemun’s hill, a timeless sentinel offering panoramic views of Danube’s beauty and history. | Photo credits: commons.wikimedia.org

11. Belgrade Waterfront

Belgrade Waterfront, a modern urban development project along the banks of the River Sava, offers a range of activities that rank among the top Belgrade things to do. This ambitious project aims to transform the cityscape with contemporary architecture, green spaces, and an array of amenities.

Visitors can take a leisurely stroll along the waterfront promenade, enjoying picturesque views of the river and the city skyline. The area also hosts various cultural events, exhibitions, and concerts, providing entertainment for both locals and tourists.

One of the best places in Belgrade for shopping, the district boasts boutiques, cafes, and restaurants with diverse cuisines. For art enthusiasts, the Museum of Contemporary Art, located nearby, is a must-visit, housing an extensive collection of modern and contemporary artworks.

As the project continues to develop, it promises to be a dynamic and vibrant addition to Belgrade’s urban landscape, appealing to those seeking a blend of modernity and tradition. Whether shopping, dining, or soaking in the atmosphere, Belgrade Waterfront offers a glimpse into the city’s growth and transformation. It’s an excellent destination for those interested in witnessing Belgrade’s future while enjoying its present.

Belgrade Waterfront: Modern elegance along the Sava, where architectural prowess meets urban chic and vibrant city living.
Belgrade Waterfront: Modern elegance along the Sava, where architectural prowess meets urban chic and vibrant city living. | Photo credits: failedarchitecture

12. Church of Saint Sava

The Church of Saint Sava, one of the most significant religious buildings in Serbia, is a prominent attraction in Belgrade. This majestic Serbian Orthodox church is a symbol of the nation’s spiritual and cultural identity.

Its stunning architecture and grandeur make it one of the unique places in Belgrade. The church’s interior is adorned with impressive mosaics and intricate frescoes that depict religious scenes and Serbian history. Visitors can explore the crypt, housing an exhibition on the church’s history and its role in Serbian Orthodox tradition. The crypt is also the final resting place of Saint Sava’s remains, a revered figure in Serbian history.

The church is a popular site for both worship and sightseeing. It stands testament to Serbian faith and resilience, built over decades amidst historical challenges. Surrounded by spacious gardens and offering panoramic views of Belgrade, the Church of Saint Sava is not only a place of worship but also a cultural and historical landmark. Its serene atmosphere and architectural beauty make it a must-visit for anyone exploring the remarkable places in Belgrade. Whether into religious history, architecture, or seeking city peace, this iconic church offers a compelling experience.

Church of Saint Sava: Majestic and spiritual, Belgrade's iconic landmark reaching for the heavens with grandeur.
Church of Saint Sava: Majestic and spiritual, Belgrade’s iconic landmark reaching for the heavens with grandeur. | Photo credits: serbia.com

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the Best Things to Do in Belgrade

Looking for more content on the top things to do in Belgrade? Here are some popular questions (and answers) I get that will help you plan your trip to Belgrade:

What is the best time to visit Belgrade?

The optimal time to explore Belgrade is during spring and fall, particularly from April to June and September to October. These periods offer pleasant weather, vibrant city life, and numerous events, ensuring a delightful and culturally rich experience for travelers seeking the essence of the city.

Is Belgrade safe for tourists?

Yes, Belgrade is generally safe for tourists. Like any major city, it’s wise to stay vigilant and adhere to standard safety practices, such as safeguarding belongings and avoiding isolated areas at night. The locals are known for their hospitality and are often willing to assist travelers.

How many days should I spend in Belgrade?

A 3 to 4-day trip is ideal to immerse yourself in Belgrade’s rich history, vibrant nightlife, and culinarvy delights. This duration allows you to explore significant landmarks, delve into the local culture, and perhaps embark on a short excursion to nearby attractions.

Can I get around Belgrade without knowing Serbian?

Absolutely, navigating Belgrade without knowing Serbian is manageable. English is commonly spoken among younger generations and in tourist-centric areas. Additionally, signages, menus, and information in popular spots are often available in English, making it convenient for non-Serbian speaking visitors.

What is Belgrade most known for?

Belgrade is renowned for its vibrant nightlife, historic architecture, and the confluence of the River Sava and Danube. The city boasts a compelling history, visible in its varied architectural styles and storied landmarks, while its lively spirit is evident through bustling cafes, energetic festivals, and the warm, hospitable locals.

Explore Belgrade's charm: eclectic nightlife, rich history, and warm hospitality make every visit unforgettable.
Explore Belgrade’s charm: eclectic nightlife, rich history, and warm hospitality make every visit unforgettable.

Is Belgrade worth visiting?

Absolutely, Belgrade is worth visiting for its rich history, eclectic architecture, and vibrant nightlife. The city offers a unique blend of Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, and Yugoslav heritage, providing intriguing sites to explore. With friendly locals, delicious cuisine, and diverse attractions, it presents a multifaceted experience to travelers.

Closing Thoughts on Exploring Belgrade

Visiting Belgrade is like stepping into a captivating novel where history, culture, and the warmth of its people come together. From the impressive Kalemegdan Fortress to the lively Skadarlija streets, every corner of the city has a tale to share, inviting you to be a part of its narrative. Whether you’re in awe of St. Sava Temple’s architectural grandeur or savoring the vibrant atmosphere at Zemun Quay, Belgrade seamlessly weaves together the past, present, and future.

This city is a goldmine of experiences, offering historical wonders, exciting nightlife, serene river views, and the buzz of urban life. Every traveler discovers their unique story within Belgrade’s borders. Your journey here will be a diverse array of experiences, each providing a fresh perspective, a new chapter, and unforgettable memories that linger in your heart long after you’ve left its streets. 

So, pack your bags and set out to explore Belgrade’s rich history, vibrant culture, and the genuine warmth of its people. Your adventure in this captivating city awaits!

Best things to do in Belgrade, Serbia for all types of travelers.
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