Thursday, July 6, 2017

Balkan Road Trip: Serbia

Serbia was high on the priority list for our Balkan road trip, mainly because there is another Olmsted scholar and his family there, but also because we had read such great things about it.  The scholar is studying in the capital, Belgrade, so we made our home base at his house which meant we got to spend a lot of time with him, his wife and 2 year old daughter.

Between the beautiful landscaping and the refurbished buildings, Mike and I were pleasantly surprised at how aesthetically pleasing Belgrade is.  We got to take in the majority of the city the first morning we were there while Nick and Christine led us on a walking tour around the city.









Their parliament building











Clearly, the strollers are the way to travel. Nap time for anyone under the age of 28!




We ended the walking tour at the fortress which is pretty impressive considering the country's war-torn history.



We spent Sunday at the beach! Yup, you read that right.  We spent our Sunday in land-locked Serbia at the beach.  Belgrade is one of the four country capitals located on the Danube and there is a small beach that tons of Serbians go to, especially since it's so hot.  There was some sort of boat race going on, so we couldn't go in, but we sat under a canopy, drank a beer, and enjoyed the people watching. Finn had so much fun his diaper exploded!


That evening, we headed to the lookout so we could see all of Belgrade before heading to a crepe restaurant for dinner. 


Carrying strollers up stairs...an all-too common occurrence. 
The views from the top didn't disappoint.





The walk to the crepe restaurant, Keops. was a little long, but it just meant that we earned our dinner and dessert! Plus, it was along the water, so we had great views.


Our last day in Belgrade, Finn, Mike and I ventured out of the city to a small town.  Finn wasn't having his best day, so our plans to stop a monastery got nixed because I wasn't about to bring a crying baby into somewhere like that, but we still managed to do some wine tasting and grab lunch in the town square.





Plotting.
Finn really only wanted to be held, which makes doing things like eating lunch a little more difficult, but considering how happy he was when he was held, we couldn't resist.  Plus, who would pass up the chance to hang out with Finny?






That hand. 

"Hey Finn, do you want anything for lunch?"
"Nope,  I'm all good. I've got my hand."

We ended our last night in Serbia with dinner at a tapas restaurant. I had coordinated with Nick and Christine to get a cake so we could celebrate Mike's birthday (a day early), so we ended our night and our time in Belgrade with a chocolate cake for the birthday boy.  Not too shabby!

Thanks to our wonderful hosts, Nick, Christine and Casey Avila for showing us around their beautiful city.  They were such great hosts and Belgrade was definitely a highlight of our trip!