Great snow coverage, a range of slopes for all levels and the mountains proximity to the city centre, are just a few of the great reasons why you should be choosing Sarajevo as your next skiing holiday destination.
1. Great value for money
With ski passes at Jahorina costing around €20.00 each day and at Bjelasnica around €18.00 per day, skiing in Sarajevo is very affordable for everyone. In comparison this will cost you around half what you’d pay at resorts in the Alps and cheaper than nearby skiing destinations such as Bansko in Bulgaria and the Tatras. Food & drink at the resorts and accommodation will also cost you less than other popular ski destinations.
2. Plenty of snow
The mountains in Sarajevo typically receive a high and regular amount of snow allowing skiers and snowboarders to head to the slopes from December to March and into April. Jahorina has artificial snow making facilities already onsite and pipes have been laid at Bjelasnica, which could expand the season from November to May. Check out snow conditions at Jahorina and Bjelasnica.
3. Variety for all levels
Whether you are new to skiing or a hardcore skier or boarder, you’ll find a fun range of slopes suitable for all. Across Jahorina’s 25 kilometre piste, there are red, blue and black slopes as well as cross country trails on offer. Bjelasnica matches Jahorina’s variety across a total of 14 kilometres. 11 lifts serve Jahorina and in Bjelasnica there are 7 lifts, with a new 4 and 6-seater opening for the 2018 ski season. The resorts also cater well for families, with baby slopes, lessons for children and childcare at some of the hotels available.
4. Ideal place for beginners
We hadn’t skied before and learning to ski in Sarajevo was fantastic. You can read more about our experiences and tips as beginner skiers HERE. Beginner slopes are available at both Jahorina and Bjelasnica where you’ll also find professional and encouraging ski instructors. You can also hire skis and boots from both resorts. If you’re going to be in Sarajevo this winter and new to skiing, why not join us on our Beginner’s Ski Day which includes return transfers from the city.
5. Accommodation for all budgets
You can either stay at the mountains or in the city, which is a short drive away. At the mountains you can find luxury hotels, chalets, apartments or B&B style accommodation. At the top end, the Hotel Termag in Jahorina is an excellent choice. The hotel also features a restaurant and spa. For a family run option, check in to Rajska Vrata where you can also dine on tasty home-cooked meals.
6. Apres Ski & things to do for the non-skier
Whether you want to take a break from the skis or skiing just isn’t your thing, you’ll find plenty of other ways to keep you entertained. For relaxation, how about a visit to a spa, a game of bowling or a night at one of the local bars. For something a bit more active, you can go sledging, snow shoe walking or take a hike around the mountains. And if you’re staying at the mountains, it’s just a 45 minute drive to the city where you’ll find great night-life, superb restaurants and cultural activities. You’ll find more ideas here.
7. Experience Bosnian cuisine and hospitality
The ski resorts are as popular with the locals as the tourists, so you know you’re going to get an authentic experience. You’ll find cosy restaurants serving delicious traditional style meals served by warm and welcoming hosts. We recommend heading to Rajska Vrata in Jahorina for filling home-cooked meals.
8. New infrastructure and continued investment
Sarajevo hosted the Winter Olympics in 1984, so these slopes are definitely made for skiing. The war in the 90s seriously halted and delayed any continued developments at the resorts, but Sarajevo is now back on the up. The opening of two new lifts and the introduction of snow-making facilities at Bjelasnica, plus the new gondola that will provide an exhilarating ride from Pale to Jahorina, are just a few examples of current investment. New accommodation units around the resorts are also adding extra modernity to this up and coming skiing destination.
9. Night skiing
How about skiing under the stars? Well you can enjoy this atmospheric experience at both Bjelasnica and Jahorina, where flood lights allow night skiing. Last winter Bjelasnica had night skiing daily from 18:30 and at Jahorina three times a week from 18:00, both until 21:00. Now your skiing and snowboarding doesn’t have to stop, just because the sun has gone down.
10. Close to a fantastic city centre
The city of Sarajevo is just around a 45 minute journey from the mountains. Whether you stay there throughout your holiday, or take a few day trips as a break from skiing, it has so much to offer. Take a guided tour of the city and learn about it’s rich history and culture, browse the streets of the old town to pick up some home-made souvenirs or educate yourself at one of the city’s museums. It is possible to take a bus or taxi between the mountains and the city if you do not have a car.
Do you have any other reasons why Sarajevo is a great place to ski? Let us know in the comments below.
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