I left Dubrovnik about 8.30am this morning but on the way out, I stopped at a lay-by on the road above the city and got some more photos.
Within a few minutes of leaving Dubrovnik I was at the Croatia-Bosnia border. At the Bosnia side, the police officer checking passports wanted to see my vehicle documents, specifically the registration document and my insurance green card. I produced my insurance document with the ‘green card’ replacement information and an endorsement saying that the insurance covers Bosnia. No good! They want to see an actual green card document. I pointed out that the EU no longer provides actual green cards and that this document is accepted throughout the EU as a replacement. I was soon told that Bosnia is not part of the EU and is not bound to accept documents that they have adopted. I was then told quite bluntly that I have two choices – buy border insurance from the little hut or turn around and go back to Croatia! So, 30 Euros coughed up for five days of vehicle insurance for Bosnia and I was on my way!
Once over the border, I headed to Mostar to see its famous bridge. I arrived there before noon and paid for one hour on the parking meter. It was going to be a quick visit. The Mostar Bridge was first completed in 1566 having taken nine years to build. It was a remarkable feat of engineering in its day and is a wonderful example of a single span stone bridge. Unfortunately, the bridge was destroyed in 1993 during the war here. It has subsequently been repaired and the area is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
After my brief visit to Mostar, I continued north to Sarajevo where I checked in at the Hotel Latinski Most (Hotel Latin Bridge), named after the famous bridge that is very close by. The stone Latin Bridge dates back to about 1541 (although there was a wooden bridge at the site earlier). The bridge became famous (or infamous) in 1914 when Archduke Franz Ferdinand (heir to the Austro-Hungarian throne) and his wife Sophie (Duchess of Hohenberg) were assassinated at the corner next to the bridge. It was the murder of Archduke Ferdinand that started the first World War.
Within an hour of my arrival in Sarajevo, a thunderstorm rolled in and chased me back to my hotel. It is still raining outside, but now that I’ve updated the blog, I think I’ll venture out and find something to eat. Hopefully it will be drier tomorrow so that I can explore the city some more.