Ask a hundred people to pick their ideal holiday and the majority of them would tell you: “Ah, just give me a tropical island, a nice sandy beach, a hammock, a cocktail, and I am set.” A few would pick hiking or some other activity-packed holiday, but, a surprising number of you, mostly younger generations, would definitely go for an adrenaline-fuelled vacation.
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Well, Serbia is catching up to the rest of the world in that aspect and Serbian travel agencies are starting to offer heart-pumping, hair-raising, adventurous getaways that take the word vacation to the next level. As usual, we have picked a few activities that may appeal to you, and if you are interested, now is the time to indulge in them because spring / summer are the perfect time for this kind of adventure.
1. Serbia from air
If you are petrified of flying, you might as well jump to number 2. If you are not, and would love to explore Serbia from a bird‘s-eye view, paragliding is right up your alley. There are paragliding clubs all over Serbia and there are paragliding tours that will take you to see the Zlatibor Mountain, Uvac, Djerdap, the Kopaonik Mountain etc. The best time to paraglide is definitely between May and October, but you can do it throughout a year.
The most popular places for paragliding in Serbia are the area around the town of Vrsac in Vojvodina, the Crni Vrh peak, 15 km west from Bor, and the mountains Kopaonik, Rajac, Sićevo, Rudnik, Rtanj and Ovčar.
2. Caving tours
Again, this is not an activity for faint-hearted and claustrophobic people, and it does require a certain level of fitness. Draperies, pillars, stalactites, stalagmites, large halls, narrow channels, all those strange shapes that exist in the cave world are yours for exploring. Serbia is abundant in caves with most of them located in Eastern Serbia, seven of which are fit for organized tourist visits, while several caves are more for extreme adventurists offering the true speleological tours with guides and necessary equipment. The longest caves in Serbia are the Lazareva cave near the city of Bor (9,000 meters), the Ušački cave system (6,185 metres) and the Cerjanska cave near the city of Niš (6,025 meters).
Of course, unless you are a seasoned and trained cave explorer, you are strongly advised to hire a tour guide, or join one of the cave exploration groups because as magnificent and exciting as they are, caves could be quite dangerous places for beginners.
3. The Drina Regatta
This is one of the iconic experiences that are so typically Serbian, yet fun, entertaining and having an element of adventure. Obviously, the regatta takes place on the River Drina, and you don’t need any qualifications or training to participate in it. Just bring a vessel (a dingy, a raft, anything that floats, for that matter), a few friends and good mood. This year, the regatta takes place from 18th to 22nd July. The three-day regatta, accompanied by concerts and other events, attracts over 100,000 visitors from the country and abroad. The regatta participants usually have an opportunity to tour the local monasteries and canyons and engage in sports and recreational tourism, fishing, cycling, rafting, hiking, scuba diving and canyoning.
Day one is usually reserved for a swimming competition and fish soup competition, day two for the regatta itself, and day three for the most entertaining event – the downhill ‘race’ (we are using the term ‘race’ here very loosely) which involves hundreds of vessels of various sizes and shapes, trumpet music, fun activities and other shenanigans. For more information, please click here .
4. Hop on a quad!
Zlatibor is, undoubtedly, one of the most beautiful Serbian mountains, and the second most popular with tourists, after Kopaonik. This year, the Zlatibor Tourist Board is organizing quad tours that will take you through the mountain’s meadows, villages, lakes and forests. Weather permitting, you will also be able to swim in mountain rivers. Half-way through the trip, there is an organized lunch break at the Trčinoga Restaurant.
Just a note – you will require a driver’s licence (B category) if you want to drive a quad.
Photo credits: Paraglajding.rs, Balkanway.com (caves), Serbia.com (Drina Regatta), Palisad.rs (quad)
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