Serbia has connected West with East for centuries – a land in which civilizations, cultures, faiths, climates and landscapes meet and mingle. It is located in the center of the Balkan Peninsula, in southeastern Europe. The northern portion belongs to central Europe, but in terms of geography and climate it is also partly a Mediterranean country. Serbia is landlocked but as a Danube country it is connected to distant seas and oceans. Serbia is a crossroads of Europe and a geopolitically important territory. The international roads and railway lines, which run through the country’s river valleys, form the shortest link between Western Europe and the Middle East. The cultural and historical heritage of Serbia begins with prehistoric archaeological sites and its legacy from classical antiquity. Perhaps its greatest riches, though, are in the many mediaeval Serbian churches and monasteries, some of which are included on the UNESCO World Heritage list. All year round, numerous cultural, entertainment, traditional and sporting events are held in Serbia, demonstrating the creative power and spiritual vitality of this country.
Serbia is a buzzy and boisterous country, compact enough for visitors to sample both Belgrade’s urban hedonism and the gentler pace of the smaller towns or national parks within a few days – and it’s one of Europe’s most affordable destinations to boot. Grittier than its blue-eyed neighbor Croatia, it is nevertheless an integral part of any backpacker’s Balkan tour: at the heart of the region, it gives easy access to the cluster of cultures and histories crammed into this small corner of Europe. Serbia is a modern, democratic European country, on the path to membership of the European Union, which a diverse range of visitors – from young backpackers to participants in congresses and fairs – visit every day.