20151003_175642Happy Sunday dear readers! As I am enjoying the sunshine on a crisp autumn afternoon, I hope you will enjoy today’s postcard from Skadarlija – Belgrade’s charming Bohemian quarter. A charming cobblestone street filled with old fashioned restaurants which have been in the same place for over 150 years, Skadarlija, is the Montmartre of Belgrade – and my absolute favourite part of the city. <3

The history of Skadarlija can be traced back to the 1830’s when a settlement of gypsies found shelter in the abandoned buildings and made “The Gypsy Quarter” their home. At the turn of the 20th century, Skadarlija acquired its true bohemian charm when all the prominent writers, actors and artists moved from the Dardaneli Inn to the up and coming Skadarlija. Over time, Skadarlija became popular with international artists, writers, poets and actors, adding an even bigger bohemian influence…can you imagine having a drink with Toulouse Lautrec or Pablo Picasso right here!?

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At this time, the three most popular restaurants, Tri Sesira (3 hats), Dva Jelena (2 deer), and Zlatni Bokal (the golden jug) opened,  and 150 years later, still stand in the same place. Over the years a few more restaurants have opened, reflecting the same style and serving traditional Serbian cuisine. The most popular item on the menu in Skadarlija is rostilj (mixed grill) and pivo (beer), while a band of musicians provide the ideal entertainment, quite literally taking you back in time. Apart from the three original restaurants, one of my favourites is called Kapetan Koca Putuje (Captain Koca is travelling) – with its vivid rainbow colours and exquisite gulash.

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While Skadarlija is mostly popular today for its authentic restaurants, further down the street, you can admire statues of Ivo Andric (writer) and Djura Jaksic (poet). During the warmer months, local vendors display works of art and creative memorabilia, adding to the vintage charm of the street. The last part of Skadarlija is home to a brewery which belonged to the most distinguished Belgrade family, Bajloni. The brewery produced “Aleksandar” beer and was made very interestingly, from thermal waters which sprung out of the brewery’s backyard.

Skadarlija today is also home to several B&B’s and hostels and is extremely popular with the backpackers and tourists who visit during the summer months. It’s range of restaurants, pubs and cafes, art galleries, antiquities, souvenir shops and vivid nightlife make it an ideal place to simply immerse oneself in the charming bohemian ambiance, as it once was.

 

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Who is in the mood to watch Moulin Rouge and Midnight in Paris now? 🙂

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