British daily newspaper The Telegraph has published an article titled ‘The eastern European country that offers skiers a fascinating alternative to the Alps’.
Author of the article Matt Hampton claims that Sarajevo represents a cultural alternative to a traditional Alpine resort.
“Sarajevo is where Ottoman intrigue meets the grandeur of the Habsburgs”, the author wrote. “East meets west is a recurring cliché worldwide, but it’s so true here that it is physically marked in metal script on the pavement, dividing the narrow streets of the Turkish quarter from the wide boulevards of Austro-Hungarian times. And now there are 21st-century steel and glass buildings springing up, lit by plasma screens like a burgeoning outpost of Tokyo”, he explained.
“The capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina has much to marvel at: medieval mosques, catholic churches, markets, monuments; all are reminders of another era. Even the incongruous slabs of Soviet influence have a certain presence”, Hampton noted.
“A new sightseeing gondola opened in December 2019, replacing the rickety 1950s version, itself an early casualty of the Bosnian War. The 10-minute ride above the forested flanks of Mount Trebevic, home of the 1984 Olympic bobsleigh run, affords a wonderful view of the city below. There’s a choice of taking the six-seater cabins back down, or savoring a poignant walk down the concrete channel of the old bob track - its vertiginous banks are now a canvas for local graffiti artists”.
The author concluded that while Sarajevo is “not quite the Trois Vallées”, with 45km of slopes there is enough at Mount Jahorina to keep a competent intermediate happy for a few days - and another 11km at Bjelasnica to fill out a week. “Both resorts feature mostly red and blue pistes, which are quite steep by Alpine standards - you may wonder if the blues are actually a bit tougher than advertised - but there are nursery slopes too, and even floodlit night skiing”, Hampton concluded.