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Forgotten handcrafts of Sarajevo

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Anyone who visits Sarajevo will not miss to see the Old City called Baščaršija, famous for its artisanal tradition. A must-see place, this cultural and historical nucleus of Sarajevo is as old as the capital of Bosnia & Herzegovina is. Originally, the name “Baščaršija” comes from Turkish language, meaning “the main trading square”, which is exactly what it stands for.

©iStock/BalkansCat
©iStock/BalkansCat

While wandering around the old city, you will feel that you entered into the time machine and travelling in the past. Simply put, Baščaršija makes you travel couple of centuries back in time. Founded in the 15th century as a smaller trading area, it developed into different bazaars. During its golden age, Baščaršija was the largest trading hub in the Balkans, with 12,000 shops and even trading colonies with merchants from Florence and Venice.

©iStock/dabldy
©iStock/dabldy

A tour of countless artisanal workshops in Baščaršija will inspire you to buy some handmade crafts, the most sought-after souvenirs one can take from Sarajevo. It could be some traditional handmade coppersmiths’ items such as coffee pots, coffee & tea sets, mills, carafes, baking pans and trays, etc.

©iStock/mariusz_prusaczyk
©iStock/mariusz_prusaczyk

Or it could be also a piece of unique jewellery made by local traditional jewellers, and some of them create true masterpieces. If you want to go very original, the best is to opt for “aladinke”, the exceptional slippers made in fabrics of 18 colours and 25 leather nuances. They are all handmade and embroidered by the local artisans.

©iStock/satura86
©iStock/satura86

Wherever you pick your souvenirs, make sure that the shop displays the Sarajevo Original Quality Seal, as this is the best guarantee of the authenticity and quality of the artisans’ products.


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The author

Ljiljana Krejic

Ljiljana Krejic

I am Ljiljana, from Bosnia & Herzegovina. Being a journalist, I can't escape from that perspective when travelling. My mission is to make you explore the last Europe’s undiscovered gem.

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