If we skip the well-known cliche of the things you hate about someone or something, inevitably we come to the point where the only things we can think of is why we actually love it. That is how I feel about the Serbian town of Nis, located in the southern part of the country. Perhaps there will be some of you smart cookies who will say that there is no persuassion needed, as you do not have an interest to go to this lovely town. However, I gladly take this challenge on me and I am willing to provide you with all the simple and to the point reasons why you should definitely go to Nis, if not even asap, then this year.
Affordable and amazing alcohol - Now that I have your attention on this one, I must tell you that indeed, apart from not so pricey beer, wine and rakija, this third largest city of Serbia has way much more to offer. Feeling thirsty yet?
Gastronomy - A typical Serbian menu includes baklava, burek, cevapi, pljeskavica and sarma. And although the kitchen of Nis is known for its grilled meat dishes, which include sausages and chicken, if you are not the meat lover, you will not be hungry, because vegetable soups, salads, grilled peppers, bean dishes and fresh fruit are included in almost every meal. Moreover, Nis has an incredible amount of kafanas (restaurants) so for the authentic local cuisine visit restaurant Nislijska Mehana on in the city centre.
Direct flight access from ten cities in Europe - which also involve extermly affordable flights from the European capitals. Accessibility to Nis is genereally great. Constantine the Great Airport is the second airport by size in Serbia, which is only 3.5 km away from the city and super close to the highway leading to Belgrade. From Belgrade, Nis is only 2-3 hour ride by bus, car or a train.
Breathtaking scenery - get your camera and phone ready, as this city will be the best food for your social media feeds. Don't believe me? Take a look at the few I have picked for you.
Sightseeing - Great news for the adventure lovers! Nis has has at least a dozen must sees. The various sights and historical spots are marked on convenient small sized city maps, while all the sights are all easily accessible in a range of 5 to 10 kilometers, on foot or by highly affordable taxi. The most important ones are Red Cross concentration camp from the Second World War, Skull Tower, another chilling attraction from the early 19th century, Nis Fortress, Mediana, legacy of the Constantine the Great, archaeological museums and many more about which I will write in the articles to come.
Festivals - Nis is a proud host of several festivals. One of the best known is Nisville, nominally a jazz festival, but in practice a music festival with plenty of different music types such as blues, rock and reggae. Most importantly, religious tolerance and diversity are widely promoted as part of the program. Simultaneously with the jazz festival a wine festival is held, where you can taste superb Serbian wines throughout the evening for only 500 dinars (less than 5 euros) entrance fee.
Day trips - The surrounding area of Nis is gorgeous, and the proximity to amazing places definitely offers you a great opportunity for some short excursions. Within a fifteen minutes drive from the city, the mountains can be reached. The Jelasnica gap is ideal for climbing, hiking or having a picnic. Moreover, Niska Banja is a mountain spa resort surrounded by forests, which promises you an amazing time. Rafting, bird watching and paragliding are some among many organised activities in this area. Furthermore on the road in the mountain villages you will see traditional houses, donkeys and oldtimers, such as Fiat and Zastava.
Affordability - Prices in Serbia are generally much lower than in the European Union. Drinks, food, clothes, hotels, public transport and taxis are a real bargain in the eyes of foreigners. So, go lose and enjoy this amazing vacation destination to the fullest.
Nightlife- As many cities in the Balkan region, Nis also promises a crazy, never-ending nightlife. Kazandzijsko sokace, is the epicenter of the nightlife, where you will find modern bars with hard liquor at affordable prices. In fact, any spot you pick at the area is an excellent choice.
Safety- Nis is definitely very safe city. Late at night walking home on your own, is generally not a problem, as all of my experiences so far have been more than positive.
And there you have it, all the reasons why you must embark on the journey and visit Nis this year. If you did not find this convincing enough, then stay tuned for more tips, tricks and less known facts about the city and the region that will surely persuade you to book your plane tickets. Stay tuned for more!
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