Blog Archives

New mid-market hotel opens in Tokyo Asakusa – TravelDailyNews Asia

Tokyo

New mid-market hotel opens in Tokyo Asakusa

Luc Citrinot – 27 August 2012, 11:44

The Gate Hotel Kaminarimon by Hulic opened on August 10 in Asakusa, one of the main tourist areas in Tokyo.

<!–

Lorel ipsum

    alt text

  • . Philippe Chereque, Amadeus, .

  • . 41 ..-

–>

The Gate Hotel Kaminarimon is an ideal property caring for the mid-market. It is designed as a three and a half/four-star hotel, the property offers 137 rooms with various types of design: it goes from style M “modest” (15-19 sq. m.) to “the Gate” (58 sq. m.) with a “retro yet contemporary” theme to satisfy the budget and preferences of every tourist. Standing on 14 floors, the hotel offers a rooftop terrace with great views over Asakusa area with its old Tokyo style flavour as well as on the grand city skyline. The hotel comprises also a bar and a restaurant.

Its location is perfect for foreign travellers: it is just around the corner to the Great Kaminari-mon Gate of Senso-ji Temple and only two minutes walking distance from Asakusa Subway station. It takes also roughly 15 minutes walk to reach Tokyo newest landmark, the Tokyo Skytree, located 1.2 km away. Packages to visit the Skytree Tower are also on offer from the hotel.

The Gate Hotel used to be an office and was rebuilt by the real estate company Hulic Co. ltd. to which it belongs. It is the first hotel property of the group in Tokyo but more are likely to come as highlighted in Hulic’s investors’ first half year presentation as the company wants to diversify its portfolio. Hulic already manages a hotel in Yokohama, also close to a train station with direct services to Tokyo.

Hotels offering more perks to federal travelers

The Hilton Hotel in San Francisco’s financial district offers a variety of amenities for federal travelers, including a fitness room, wireless Internet and meeting spaces.

But in late 2010, the hotel began offering a more unusual service for feds: an electric vehicle charging station, which is the first commercially available charging station in the city and is available for the price of parking in the garage, according to Jason Beckham, the hotel’s director of sales and marketing.

Across the country, hotels are reaching out to travelers and attracting new business by offering a wide range of amenities, according to government travel experts.

One of the most reliably popular freebies for feds is free breakfast, said Ted Lawson, president of Charleston, W. Va.-based National Travel, which helps manage travel for federal agencies, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

“That’s the amenity that always stands out for most government travelers,” Lawson said. “People will ask about them.”

Lawson said hotels are increasingly offering more perks to feds who used to be more limited in their hotel selection but can now stay at three- or four-star hotels.

“Hotels are always very creative, and they are always looking for new items,” he said.

Travelers also increasingly demand wireless Internet access, according to a January survey released by hotels.com. For more than 38 percent of travelers, the availability of free Wi-Fi affected their choice of hotel.

“Many guests never travel without their tablets, smartphones and laptops,” said Taylor Cole, a spokesman for hotels.com. “It’s as intuitive as packing a toothbrush.”

Survey respondents also said their favorite new amenities are free food and drink events at hotels, including receptions, breakfasts and happy hours.

Goran Gligorovic, executive vice president at Omega World Travel Inc., whose customers include the Justice and Treasury departments, said hotels are offering a wider range of amenities as a way to market themselves to federal travelers — including pet services.

Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants, which owns about 50 hotels across the country, allows federal employees traveling on per diem to bring a pet of any size, shape or breed for no extra cost.

Gligorovic said pet services are becoming more common at hotels as a way to build loyalty and repeat business.

But he said the big winner among federal employees is free food — and lots of it.

“We see a lot of hotels offering amenities such as free breakfast, afternoon receptions and free parking,” Gligorovic said.

He said federal travelers will search out and take advantage of free breakfasts, afternoon snacks and complimentary dinners in order to save on per diems.

SpaceX teams up with Bigelow on space station marketing

Bigelow Aerospace

Bigelow Aerospace’s Genesis 2 inflatable space module rushes into an orbital sunrise.

SpaceX and Bigelow Aerospace plan to meet with officials in Japan soon after this month’s scheduled launch of SpaceX’s Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon capsule, to kick off an international marketing effort for private-sector space stations.

The plan, laid out today in a jointly issued news release, calls for clients to go into orbit inside the Dragon and link up with Bigelow’s BA 330 inflatable space habitat.


“Together we will provide unique opportunities to entities — whether nations or corporations — wishing to have crewed access to the space environment for extended periods,” said SpaceX’s president, Gwynne Shotwell. “I’m looking forward to working with Bigelow Aerospace and engaging with international customers.”

Robert Bigelow, the billionaire founder and president of Nevada-based Bigelow Aerospace, said he was eager to join up with California-based SpaceX and tell international clients about “the substantial benefits that BA 330 leasing can offer in combination with SpaceX transportation capabilities.”

SpaceX is planning to launch an unmanned Dragon cargo capsule into orbit as early as May 19 for a potential test linkup with the International Space Station, and is already working with NASA to modify the Dragon for carrying astronauts as well. Just this week, NASA announced that SpaceX reached a milestone in that development effort by showing that seven astronauts could maneuver effectively inside the Dragon space taxi, even under emergency scenarios.

SpaceX

Astronauts and experts check out the crew accommodations in SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft. On top, from left, are NASA Crew Survival Engineering Team Lead Dustin Gohmert, NASA astronauts Tony Antonelli and Lee Archambault, and SpaceX Mission Operations Engineer Laura Crabtree. On bottom, from left, are SpaceX Thermal Engineer Brenda Hernandez and NASA astronauts Rex Walheim and Tim Kopra.

Bigelow’s BA 330 space module would be designed to provide 330 cubic meters of usable volume, which is about the size of a two-bedroom apartment. The BA 330 could accommodate up to six astronauts, depending on how cozy they plan to get. Two or more BA 330 modules could be connected together in orbit for lease by national space agencies, companies or universities, according to Bigelow Aerospace.

Bigelow made his fortune in the hotel industry, which led some to suppose that he was getting into the space-hotel business — but the first users are likely to be researchers or governments aiming to pursue their own space programs on a leased orbital platform. The company has launched two prototype inflatable modules on Russian rockets — Genesis 1 in 2006 and Genesis 2 in 2007 — and both of those unmanned spacecraft are still in orbit.

Mike Gold, who serves as Bigelow Aerospace’s director of Washington operations and business growth, told me that the company was ready to move forward with the BA 330 as well as the Bigelow Expandable Activity Module, or BEAM, an upscale version of the Genesis module that could be attached to the International Space Station. Future progress on both those projects is dependent on decisions made by NASA, however. NASA has not yet made a commitment to using the BEAM, and it has not yet announced how it will proceed with the next phase of its effort to support the development of commercial space taxis such as SpaceX’s Dragon.

“We’ll be ready to proceed when commercial crew is,” Gold told me.

In addition to its marketing arrangement with SpaceX, Bigelow has partnered with the Boeing Co. on a project to create a space taxi called the CST-100 to ferry NASA astronauts. That scenario could see a successor to the CST-100 launched toward a Bigelow-built space station atop United Launch Alliance’s Atlas 5 rocket.

Bigelow Aerospace

An artist’s conception shows a Boeing spacecraft pulling up to a Bigelow space station.

Gold said the commercial crew vehicle development program was the “long pole in the tent” for Bigelow Aerospace’s plans. Even if Bigelow Aerospace built its BA 330, it would have to rely upon an affordable, reliable, safe system for orbital transport — and that system probably would have to be developed and tested with NASA’s help.

Four companies, including Boeing and SpaceX as well as Blue Origin and Sierra Nevada Corp., have been receiving hundreds of millions of dollars in funding from NASA, but it’s not yet clear how much money Congress will approve for the next phase of the program. If the funding matches NASA’s projected levels, space agency officials have said commercial space taxis could be flying astronauts by 2017. “We hope it could be even earlier,” Gold said.

However, it’s highly questionable whether NASA will get as much money for commercial crew development as it has requested. The request for fiscal year 2013 was almost $830 million, but a Senate subcommittee cut that figure to $525 million. Today the House passed a bill specifying an even lower funding level, $500 million. The White House has threatened a presidential veto of that bill, in part because of its concerns about the cutback in commercial crew support.

More about SpaceX and Bigelow:


Alan Boyle is msnbc.com’s science editor. Connect with the Cosmic Log community by “liking” the log’s Facebook page, following @b0yle on Twitter and adding the Cosmic Log page to your Google+ presence. You can also check out “The Case for Pluto,” my book about the controversial dwarf planet and the search for new worlds.

MINSK

Minsk

Table of Contents

By train
From Berlin
From Kiev
From Warsaw
From Vilnius
From Moscow
By bus
By plane
Visa on arrival
By car
Get around
See
Do
Buy
Eat
Advice for Vegetarians & Vegans
Drink
Sleep
Embassies
Get out
Minsk is the capital and biggest city of Belarus. It is situated on the Svislach and Niamiha rivers. From 1919-1991 it was the capital of the Former Byelorussian SSR. It is also the capital of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). The city was 80% destroyed during World War II and as such was rebuilt in the 1950s to the liking of Stalin. Large Soviet-Bloc style buildings make up a large portion of the city. For this reason Minsk is a wonderful place to visit for those interested in the Soviet Union and are interested in seeing it almost alive. English is rarely spoken, and tourism is not a priority in Minsk. It would be wise to learn some key phrases in Russian (which is the default language, but Belarusian may also be spoken or understood).

By train

The width of the train tracks is different in Poland and in Belarus, so if you choose to arrive by train please be prepared for long wheel changing. However, if you are arriving from say, Kiev, Moscow, or Lviv (Lvov) you need not worry about this. Plus as an added bonus, the prices are substantially cheaper from CIS countries.
From Berlin

There is almost always a daily train leaving from Lichtenberg station. It leaves at 13:49 and arrives the next morning at 9:30 or so. Note: This is the train en route to Russia.
Second Class, €69, 3 people per compartment – men and women separate.
First Class, €109, 2 people per compartment – not gender separated.
From Kiev

There is always a daily train leaving Tsentralnyi Vokzal (Central Station) station (at the eponymous metro stop in Kiev). It leaves Kiev at 18:22 and arrives the next morning at around 06:00. A 4 person berth should cost around 12 USD. From Minsk, train #86 leaves at 20:51, and arrives in Kiev the next morning at around 09:00. A 4 person berth should cost less than 12 USD.
From Warsaw

The trip is about 10 hours. There is one train a day that departs from Central Station at 20:35 which arrives in Minsk around 8:00.
From Vilnius

From Vilnius, Lithuania, the train takes about 4-5 hours. You will be given a card with two sides to fill out, and the guards at the Belarussian border keep one. You need to keep the other one for your hotel to stamp, and give it back to the guards when you leave Minsk. There are two stops. You should have your insurance and invitation letter (if you’re a tourist) out to show the guards. The train from Vilnius is pretty cheap: about $10-15 one way. Also quite comfortable. You can check schedules at www.litrail.lt There are also trains from Prague and other European cities.
From Moscow

Overnight train leaves Moscow about 23:30 and arrives Minsk about 06:30. No stop at the border for passport checks, so a good nights sleep in the 2 berth cabins.
By bus

There are several bus routes from Vilnius central bus station to “Avtovokzal Vostochniy” bus station in Minsk. The Minsk bus station is not very close to downtown, however you can have a taxi ride with 10 000 rubles (less than €4). The bus also drops passengers off outside the railway station (look out for two Stalinist towers) in the centre of Minsk before proceeding to the Vostochniy (Eastern) station. The bus service takes up to 5 hours and costs around 36 litas (be prepared to spend more than 1.5 hours at the border). Due to the bad quality of the train service, bus ride should be preferred.
By plane

Visa on arrival

Travelling by plane is much easier, and you can get a visa just upon arrival! But beware, getting a visa at the airport is 3 times more expensive than getting it in advance at the Belarusian Embassy in your country. Only if there is no such embassy, you will be charged the normal visa fee. If your travel is arranged with a Belarusian Agency, the procedure may be well planned for you – the original of the tourist invitation letter will be delivered to the Minsk Airport Consulate (don’t forget to bring one passport size photo!). Sometimes the Consulate people speak several languages, sometimes none at all International flights arrive at the National Airport Minsk (MSQ, formerly known as Minsk-2) located 37 km north-east from the city border. The spacious terminal building is impressive from outside, yet its interior and infrastructure are ideal examples of poor USSR-style design that renders the quiet airport with very sparse traffic ugly and inconvenient. There are some issues to be aware of about . Flight information: +375 (17) 279-13-00, 279-17-30, and up-to-date schedule on the website. After passing the customs (first comes the Visa Office on the second floor, second – passports control, third – customs control), you find yourself in one of the dim arrival halls on the ground level. Each of the two halls offers a currency exchange booth (only one of them functions – the one at sector 5-6, 24/7 but with lots of stupid “technical breaks”), a newspaper kiosk sector 5-6, 3rd floor, and lots of private taxi drivers. ATMs are few and badly marked, but they do help in avoiding the queues at the exchange booths. Car rentals (Sixt and Europcar) are located at the sector 5-6, on the far left. Departure hall on the third floor is more bright and comfortable, with a 24/7 restaurant and few other place to eat (open 9—21) as well as a small souvenir shop and a bank office. Upon departure, you have to go through a very slow security control before you are allowed to check-in. The area behind the check-in features several duty-free shops and pricey bars with limited choice of snacks. The whole terminal is covered by decent wireless internet from Beletelecom, but you have to purchase an access card (very cheap, though) at their office or at the newspaper kiosk in the departure hall (before check-in). Getting to the city by public transport is a tough job. The airport is served by regular buses that run every 45-60 minutes from Moskovsky or Vostochny bus terminals. The bus stop is well hidden so that many passengers do not even know about them. In the arrival hall, you won’t find a single sign indicating the buses, but don’t be confused: the bus stop does exist! It is next to the terminal, close to the exits 3-4, and designated by a small plate with the timetable written in Russian. The buses are punctual, and bring you to the city in 30 min for 5000 rubles. Tickets are purchased from the driver. You can go to any of the bus terminals, but it is advisable to get off at the subway station Uruchye and continue to the city center by subway (as most people do). On the way back to the airport, leave the subway station through the front exit, turn right, and find the outermost bus stop. There is again a small, well-hidden plate with a timetable. The schedule is also available on-line (type НАЦ АЭРОПОРТ МИНСК in the search form). Alternatively, travel to Moscovskaya Metro Station, walk forward for 500 meters and turn right to arrive at Moscovsky Bus Station. Unless you are prepared to a strenuous search for the bus, taxi is the only option. There is no official taxi service, yet private drivers abound. The ride to the city center should not cost more than 25—30€, and bargaining is recommended. If you prefer official service, call a taxi from any company in the city and pay the same price. To reach the airport by car, leave the city by Nezavisimosti Avenue and follow the M2 highway. Flight connections to Minsk are somewhat scarce. Belavia operates regular flights to Moscow (6 times a day), Saint Petersburg and Kaliningrad (1-2 flights a day) as well as Tbilisi, Praha, Kiev, and Riga. It also has flights to major European airports, but none of these destinations are served on an everyday basis. Alternatively, you can fly to Minsk with Aeroflot (Moscow, twice a day), Lufthansa (Frankfurt, 1-2 times a day), Austrian Airlines (Vienna, twice a day), LOT (Warsaw, once a day), and Aerosvit (Kiev, once a day). Although low-cost airlines do not serve Minsk, most of the available carriers offer cheap tickets every now and then. If you are unable to find a cheap ticket or a suitable connection, consider flying to Vilnius, Moscow, or Warsaw and traveling to Minsk by train. However, the overland travel may require an additional visa and generally causes more bother than the arrival by plane. Minsk-1 is an old airport in the very center of the city. The airfield is still in operation and, until recently, was used for domestic flights. As of April 2011, these flights are canceled with a faint chance of resumption. Unless the airport is permanently closed, it might be interesting to visit the terminal building, a fine example of Stalinist architecture, and watch small airplanes scattered around the airfield.
By car

Driving in, while possible, requires knowledge of the border system. This is a border of European Union, so control is very strict. Crossing it can take 2 hours. They may check your bags. Without knowledge of Russian, Belarusian or Polish, this can be very hard. There is a very long line of cars at every border crossing. However, if you have passport, VISA and car registration papers prepared, act honest and helpful and arrives as a tourist in a personal car the border crossing can go very smoothly and be over within 45 minutes.
Get around

Get around by using bus, tram, or subway or rent a car. First three are cheap and reliable. The subway is noted for being clean and safe. Additionally, each subway station is decorated uniquely. For instance, the station at Oktober Square is decorated in the theme of the Communist Revolution. The station at Victory square is decorated in a victory theme, and the Lenin Station includes a bust of Lenin and a host of hammer and sickle reliefs. A panoramic English-language map of the centre of Minsk that shows every building individually is widely available from bookshops and kiosks for 5000 rubles. It also has a conventional map showing more of Minsk and some tourist information. It is worth buying a copy as early on in your visit as you can because it makes getting around on foot easy and fun. The subway (Minsk Metro) is the most reliable transport system around Minsk. The Minsk subway consists of two lines crossing at the very city centre, the red line runs from the northeast to the southwest (currently being expended with three more stations) while the blue line runs from the the west to the southeast. Train depart every 3 min and are almost never late. You can buy tokens at a window inside the station. One ride costs 850 rubles, but if you speak no Russian, just give 8500 rubles and stick 10 fingers up. Make sure you hold on because it goes very fast. For those staying a week or longer, a 10-day or a 14-day pass may be a good option. Taxis are cheap as well. You will notice 10 000 rubles will already be on the meter. You may also rent a car to travel around the country. Rates depend on period of hire and start from $20 US a day. There are offices of Europcar, Avis, SIXT and other rental companies. Regional trains from Central Station are also cheap. A trip from Minsk to Gomel (5 h) with a cabin for 4 cost 20000 rubles and almost never full.
See

Former Residence of Lee Harvey Oswald, Vulitsa Kamunistychnaja 4 (the bottom left apartment). Lee arrived in the Soviet Union in December 1959 willing to denounce his US citizenship and was sent to Minsk. He changed his name to Alek and married a native woman, Marina Prusakova, with whom he had a child. The young family left for the United States on June 1, 1962.
St Mary Magdeline Church (Tsarkva Svyati Mary Magdaleny), Vulitsa Kiseleva 42. Metro: Nemiga. It was built in 1847 in the Orthodox style – with a pointed octagonal bell tower over the entrance.
Saint Peter & Saint Paul Church, Vulitsa Rakovskaja 4. Metro: Nemiga. Built in 1613 and restored in 1871, it is the oldest church in Minsk. It is worthwhile to go inside.
Belarus National Museum of History and Culture, Vulitsa Karla Marxa 12. Admission 7,000 rubles. Open Thursdays to Tuesdays from 11AM to 7PM. There is plenty to see here, sadly there is only Belarusian explanation panels.
Palats Mastatsva (Art Palace), Vulitsa Kazlova 3. Admission Free. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10AM to 7PM. Several exhibition spaces showing modern art, second hand books and antiques stalls.
The Museum of History of the Great Patriotic War , Praspekt Nezavisimosty 12. Open Tuesdays to Sundays from 10AM to 6PM. Several halls with the WWII exhibits on display with no English translation to the inscriptions. .
Mastatsky Salon, Praspekt Nezavisimosty 12. Open Mondays to Saturdays from 10AM to 8PM. An art gallery with local artists exhibitions and some overpriced souvenirs.
KGB Headquarters Prospekt Nezavisimosty 17,
You might be willing to hire a private guide when staying in Minsk or another major Belarusian city. Please note that private guides are licensed by the National Tourism Agency – and you can check the list of their names on the official website of the Agency . A licensed guide in Belarus must always wear a special badge .
Do

Minskoe More (Minsk Sea) is an artificial reservoir 5km north of the city centre. There’s a free public beach, and pedal-boat and catamaran rental. Buses leave the central bus station regularly. To get there by car, head north along the P28 and lookout for signs after Ratomka village.
Ice Skating Rink infront of the Palats Respubliki. In Winter there are crowds of people ice skating here. It is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., and a pair of skates should cost 3000-5000 rubles to rent.
Skiing resorts located at Silichy and Lagoisk are the most popular place to have a rest in Minsk. Located not far from the city they provide wide range of winter activities: skiing, snowboarding, skating, tubing etc.
Buy

Local goods are usually bad quality, but there are several things that are worth buying. Some wool and linen clothes – you can get very good stuff for little money. Linen in all forms is a special bargain. Typical is a woven patterned linen tablecloth, excellent quality, 150cm x 300cm (about 5 ft x 10 ft), for 34,280 Belarus rubles, approximately $16.25 US (10.30 euro, 8.25 GB pound) (as of May 2008). Womens housery “Milavitsa”, is widely known across former USSR. This good quality, and cheap as well. Various types of cosmetics – firstly brand-name, are called “O2″. Vodka produced by Brest spirit factory, is probably the best in the world. This easily outperforms Stolichnaya, Absolut and Smirnoff. Generally, the Minsk Airport has a very reliable duty free shop with rich choice of fragrances, spirits and souvenirs. There is no sense to get international brands- usually it costs 20-50% more than European average.
Podzemka, Praspekt Nezalezhnasti 43. An underground bookshop-cum-art gallery.
Suveniraja Lavka, Vulitsa Maxima Bahdanovicha 9. A souvenir type shop with straw crafts, wooden boxes, embroidered linen & Belorussian alcohol.
Tsentralnaja Kniharnya, Praspekt Nezalezhnasti 19. A bookshop with posters of Belorussian president Alexander Lukashenko.
Eat

Advice for Vegetarians & Vegans

Meat is always on the menu. It isn’t considered a meal if meat isn’t a part of it but, because of a love of the potato you should be able to get vegetarian side dishes. Sometimes borsch is made with only potato and beetroot, but be aware that borsch is sometimes cooked with meat. Some golubsty are only stuffed with rice. If you’re a vegan you will have a very hard time trying to adequately feed yourself; buying fresh produce at the numerous markets might be your best bet. Often it can be a lot easier to try and find perhaps an Indian restaurant. Pizza restaurants usually have a meat-free pizza on the menu. Belarusian cuisine is similar to that of the rest of Eastern Europe but particularly Russian and Ukrainian. Generally it features heavy-fat potato dishes, mushrooms, soups and baked meat. The quality of Western European cuisine (Italian, French…) is not amazing. The average level of cafes and restaurants is low but there are several good places in the center of the city. The price of a meal at these places should cost between 20,000 and 40,000 rubles. The list of the restaurants ->
Pechki-Lavochki, Main Ave. Is a great Belarusian restaurant.
Beze, Main ave. Viennese style café with a great bakery and light snacks.
Gourman, close to Grand Opera Theater. Styled as an Italian trattoria. It serves Belarusian and European cuisine. Excellent quality and affordable prices.
Freskee Cafe, Niezaležnaści Square. Café with a large choice of main dishes.
Taj, vulitsa Brilevskaja 2. Wonderful North Indian restaurant. Vegetarians will find heaven. There should be an English menu available also. Vegetarian dishes start from around BR6,000 and Mains from BR12,000. Open Noon-Midnight.
Chomolungme, vulitsa Gikalo 17. Huge menu with an array of cuisines: Nepalese, Tibetan, Sushi & Indian. Vegetarians and Vegans should also be able to find something here. Mains from BR8,000 to BR30,000.
National Food, Trinity Suburb. Not the restaurant’s real name but this place has “National Food” on the front in big English letters so should be easy to find. It has a large menu of traditional food available in English, including a couple of vegetarian options. Mains BR20,000 to BR30,000. The food really sticks to your ribs. They also sell honey-flavoured kvass.
McDonalds (corner of Pr. Nezavisimosti and Ul. Lenina / corner of Ul. Nemiga and Ul. Romanovskaya Sloboda)
Drink

A typical drink is “Kefir”, which is a sort of sour milk, similar to yogurt. “Krambambulya” is a traditional medieval alcohol drink which you can buy in most stores or order in a restaurant. It’s a pretty strong drink but its taste is much softer than vodka.
London Pr. Nezavisimosti (close to KGB headquarters, on the other side of the street)
Sleep

40 Let Pobedy (40 Years of Victory) Azgura 3, Minsk 220088, Price: $45/shared room
Hotel Belarus 220002, Minsk, street Storozhevskaja, 15-201, ☎ (017) 209 75 37, (http://www.en.hotel-belarus.com) Price: 35 Euros/single
Hotel Orbita Praspekt Pushkina 39. A clean 208 Room Hotel with friendly but boring staff. There is a supermarket next door and Cash Exchange in the hotel lobby. The airport and Train terminal are about 6km away. It is in the western part of Minsk not far from the Republican Exhibition Centre.
Minsk Vacation Apartments and Vacation apartments for rent in central Minsk. Near major railway stations. 1-3 room flats. Rates: 30-200 EUR.
Planeta (Planet) 31 Pobediteley avenue, 220126 Minsk, ☎ (+375 17) 203 85 87, (http://www.hotelplaneta.by)
Hotel “Europe” (Отель «Европа») 28, Internatsionalnaya st., Minsk, ☎ (+375 17) 229-83-33, (http://www.hoteleurope.by/en/) Price: from 265 EUR
Crowne Plaza Hotel 13 Kirova St., 220040 Minsk, ☎ +375-17-2005354 or 0800 181 6068, (http://www.ichotelsgroup.com/h/d/cp/1/en/hotel/msqmk)
Unfairly overlooked by international tourism, this Minsk Hostel of the International Relations Center (Belarus Ministry of Education) is a well-located block of budget rooms that has no match in budget quality/rate category. The hostel can only be booked by telephone +375 17 200 42 50. No English-speaking personnel, naturally. You can see the rooms but CAN NOT book them . On the web you can find a lot of cheap offers to rent a flat. Average price is about 50 USD for the night. There is also a good rental service provided by www.belarusrent.com . They rent rooms in good quality in the center of Minsk. They also provide assistance for Visas. Please note that a foreign guest must get registered with the local police department – Department for Citizenship and Migration within 5 business days. This means that you can arrive in Belarus on Tuesday and leave on Sunday without the registration stamp. Most hotels process the registration automatically upon check-in while many apartment rentals might be reluctant to provide registration. Check if the rental service offers registration service and at what price. Read more about the new . You might receive a call to your hotel room late at night offering a “massage”. To avoid being woken up it is worth unplugging your phone.
Embassies

Japan Pr. Pobediteley 23/1, 8F, ☎ +375 17 2236233, fax: +375 17 2102169, (http://www.by.emb-japan.go.jp/j/index.html)
United Kingdom (http://ukinbelarus.fco.gov.uk/en/)
United States 46 Starovilenskaya St, ☎ +375 17 210-12-83 / 217-7347 / 217-7348, fax: +375 17 234-78-53, (http://minsk.usembassy.gov/)
Get out

Lake Narach is the largest lake in Belarus, located about 160 km north of Minsk.
Brest is a regional capital on the border with Poland and is rich with history from both the Soviet times and before. You can see a Brest Hero Fortress, perhaps the most impressive Soviet monument ever built. You can get there by train (~20 daily trains running from Minsk) at $5-20USD. It takes 3-4 hrs by train.
Grodno is a border town in north-west Belarus, near Kuźnica-Białostocka in Poland.

GRYTVIKEN

Grytviken

Table of Contents

Get in
Get around
See
Do
Buy
Eat
Get out
Grytviken is the whaling station made famous by Shackleton’s reunion with civilization on South Georgia after losing his ship, the Endurance, to Antarctic pack ice in 1915. Toast “Bring ‘em Back Shack” at his gravesite in a small cemetery overlooking the bay. Although the grave of Ernest Shackleton can be found in the little graveyard here, Grytviken is not the whaling station where he finally found help after his epic journey. This was at the nearby Stromness whaling station.

Get in

The usual way to arrive is by ship.

Get around

Walk.
See

The abandoned whaling station has undergone a project to remove all asbestos and dangerous collapsing buildings and may be explored. The station was active in the whaling industry until the middle of the last century. In the meantime the museum, operated by Tim & Pauline Carr, is an excellent place to learn about the natural and whaling history of the island. Other popular visitor destinations include the restored Norwegian church, and the cemetery, which contains the grave of the famous explorer Ernest Shackleton. The British Antarctic Survey maintains a presence on the island in a recently renovated research station on nearby King Edward Point.
Do

Hike up to the reservoir. Located on the hill above the whaling station is a fairly large lake. Footing may be muddy, but the scenery is nice and the view of the bay is excellent. Be aware that terns may begin attacking from the air; if they do it means that you are near their nest and should backtrack until they feel you are a safe distance away.
Visit Shackleton’s grave. The cemetery is on the opposite side of the whaling station from the museum. Shackleton is buried here along with many of the whalers who died on South Georgia.
Visit Shackleton’s cross. The cross is located at the end of King Edward Point, beyond the British Base. A trail to the cross is fairly easy to follow. While visiting be on the lookout for the very territorial fur seals; should one charge you it is best to carry a long stick or tripod with which to tickle its whiskers, which surprisingly deters most attacks.
Write letters home. There is a mailbox in front of the museum, and stamps and postcards can be purchased in the gift shop. Mail will reach most destinations within two or three weeks.
Buy

There is a small gift shop in the museum that sells books of local interest, posters, and sundry other souvenirs. British pounds, Falklands pounds, Euros, and American dollars will all be accepted, as will Visa and Mastercard (but not AMEX). The Post Office is open upon request 1km away at King Edward Point and may be brought on board larger ships. The Post Office has a range of postcards, stamps, first day covers, South Georgia coins and a few South Georgia Government publications for sale.
Eat

You will need to bring your own food.

LJUBLJANA

Ljubljana

Table of Contents

Understand
Orientation
By plane
By train
By bus
By car
By foot
By bicycle
By city bus
By taxi
Talk
See
Museums
Do
Opera & Theatre
Water Parks
Cinema
Learn
Buy
Eat
Budget
Mid-range
Splurge
Drink
Cafes
Bars
Clubs
Budget
Mid-range
Splurge
Stay safe
Internet
Embassies
Hills around the city
Farther out
Hitchhiking out of Ljubljana
Ljubljana has no world-famous attractions, which is just great: there’s no need to hop from one place to another, taking photos and crossing the items on your checklist. You have all the time to stroll around and enjoy the city itself. In the summer, its center hosts a number of city sponsored events, from children workshops and public playgrounds on the streets that get closed for traffic for the occasion, to Trnfest’s off-beat street performances and musical events of all genres. In autumn it shows its academic face as it fills again by students of the state’s largest university to whom the city owes much of its youthful character. Cold December days are warmed by thousand of lights, the new year’s decoration conceived by local artists, and by food and drinks sold from street stands on the banks of Ljubljanica river. After surviving the boring gray remaining of winter, the city erupts again with spring flowers planted on its streets and crossroads.

Understand

Ljubljana (“lyoob-lyAH-nah”) is a charming city full of artists, museums, and galleries. With a population of 300,000, it is one of the smallest capital cities in Europe.
Orientation

The Ljubljanica river flows through the center of town, past Baroque buildings and under the ramparts of the ancient castle on the hill. The new city and modern-day commercial core lies to the west of the river, while the old city and the castle are located on the east side of the river. Many bridges cross the river, the most famous of which is the Tromostovje (triple) bridge, designed by architect Jože Plečnik.
Ljubljana Tourist Information Centre Stritarjeva (Next to the Triple Bridge) (http://www.ljubljana-tourism.si/)
By plane

Jože Pučnik Airport (commonly referred to as Brnik Airport) IATA: LJU is located 27 km north Ljubljana. Airport facilities include parking, a bank, money exchange, ATMs, a post office, an information desk, free wi-fi in the terminal, a general store, duty-free stores, a self-serve restaurant, bars, and cafes. The following airlines operate service to/from Ljubljana: Adria Airways (Amsterdam, Athens, Barcelona, Belgrade, Brussels, Copenhagen, Dublin, Frankfurt, Istanbul-Atatürk, Kiev-Boryspil, London-Gatwick, Madrid, Manchester, Moscow-Sheremetyevo, Munich, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Podgorica, Priština, Sarajevo, Skopje, Stockholm-Arlanda, Tirana, Vienna, Warsaw, Zürich), Air France (Paris-Charles de Gaulle), Czech Airlines (Prague), EasyJet (London-Stansted, Milan-Malpensa, Paris-Charles de Gaulle) Finnair (Helsinki), Jat Airways (Belgrade), Montenegro Airlines (Podgorica), and Turkish Airlines (Istanbul-Atatürk). There are regular public buses (€4.10, 50 min) and minibuses (€5.00, 30 min) from the airport to the main Ljubljana bus and train station, located next to each other in the city center. Alternatively, a metered taxi from the airport to the centre will cost €30-40; however, the following companies offer cheaper options:
Tima Ekspres (http://www.taxitimaekspres.com)
Ljubljana Transfer (http://www.ljubljanatransfer.net/) Price: From €10
By train

The Ljubljana bus and train stations are located next to each other at Trg Osvobodilne Fronte (“Trg” means square in Slovenian). The two stations are located just north of the city center and a short walk from most hotels and attractions. The train station has a tourist information center, currency exchange, and left-luggage service. Ljubljana is the hub of Slovenia’s rail system. Local trains run throughout the country – no point in Slovenia is more than 3 hours away. Direct international connections include Zagreb (2 hours), Rijeka (3 hours), Graz (3 hours), Salzburg (4 hours), Pula (4 hours), Venice (5 hours), Vienna (6 hours), Munich (6 hours), Budapest (9 hours), Belgrade (9 hours), Frankfurt (10 hours), Zürich (11 hours). Getting to Trieste by train is complicated because international train connections to Italy are rare. Train connections to Villa Opicina have been cancelled (except for one night train), so you cannot change to the tram to Trieste there any more. A taxi from Villa Opicina to Sezana however is not very expensive and train connections from Sezana to Ljubljana are frequent. Expect to pay about 10 euro and it is highly advisable to prebook the taxi, as none will be waiting.
By bus

Ljubljana bus station (avtobusna postaja ) is right next to the train station and has services throughout Slovenia, as well as to foreign countries. The station has several useful schedule search engines (also in English) for working out connections. Generally speaking, a bus can take you almost anywhere in Slovenia within a few hours. Direct international connections: Trieste (2 hours), Venice (4 hours) , Banja Luka (5 hours), Bihać (6 hours), Bologna (6 hours), Munich (7 hours), Florence (8 hours), Tuzla (8 hours) , Zenica (8 hours), Belgrade (8 hours), Ulm (9 hours), Stuttgart (10 hours), Sarajevo (10 hours) , Niš (12 hours), Karlsruhe (12 hours), Mannheim (13 hours), Frankfurt (14 hours), Skopje (15 hours), Tetovo (16 hours), Sofia (16 hours), Pristina (18 hours), Copenhagen (19 hours), Malmö (20 hours), Gothenburg (24 hours), Linköping (28 hours), Örebro (34 hours), Stockholm (36 hours).
By car

Renting a car is also an option, especially if you are visiting remote destinations outside of Ljubljana.

CARACAS

Caracas

Table of Contents

Understand
Entertainment and Nightlife
Climate
Money
By plane
By car
By bus
Get around
See
Do
Buy
Eat
Las Mercedes
La Castellana
Altamira
La Candelaria
Drink
Sleep
Budget
Mid-range
Splurge
Stay safe
Contact
Cope
Embassies
Get out
Caracas is the capital and largest city of Venezuela. It is located in northern Venezuela, near the Caribbean.

Understand

Venezuela’s urban spirit can be discovered mainly from understanding Caracas, its capital city. Caracas is not one of the top touristic destinations of Venezuela, and travelers often bypass the capital city in order to see the country’s amazing natural attractions. However, the Venezuelan capital can be a fascinating city to explore, replete with excellent art, food and a bustling nightlife. Caracas is located in a beautiful valley, overlooked by Mount Avila, an impressive mountain that separates the city from the Caribbean Sea and shapes most of the city’s landscape. It is a popular weekend destination for the city’s residents (known as Caraqueños) and is easily reached by taking a very modern cable car that goes all the way from the mountain base to the newly nationalized Waraira Repano park, which is situated at the top of the mountain. In Caracas the staggering inequalities of wealth that characterize Venezuela’s economic situation are on display. They range from very poor neighborhoods in the hills west of the city called “barrios”, to the modern business district of El Rosal, or even the huge mansions of the rich eastern neighborhoods. The city’s streets and highways are always crowded with vehicles, as Venezuela has the cheapest gasoline in the world (at about $0.12/gallon). Subsidized gasoline and inadequate infrastructure have helped spur pollution and big traffic lines in almost all of the inner city motorways. Caracas’ subway system, once one of the best in all Latin America, is still quick but is often crowded and prone to delays. Visitors need to be aware that Caracas remains one of the most violent cities in the world, with large parts of the city effectively No Go Areas to outsiders. Murder tallies of as many as 20 are not uncommon on weekends, so exercising caution and common sense – especially at night – is essential to a safe visit.
Entertainment and Nightlife

Caracas is a cosmopolitan city and is admired for its gastronomy. It has restaurants and bars inspired by the cuisine of many different countries and cultures due to great waves of immigration from Europe and the Middle East after the Second World War. The city is filled with “centros commerciales” and department stores, and the popular restaurants and clubs in the towering malls due to security concerns. In the San Ignacio Mall you’ll find the city’s young, rich and beautiful drinking whiskey and “Las Mercedes” and “La Castellana” districts are also popular late night hot spots. People often party until 4 or 5 o’clock in the morning, so it’s advisable to take a cab when heading out.
Climate

Caracas has a tropical climate with very little variation between summer and winter temperatures. Set in a valley some 900 meters above sea level, its climate is often described as its best feature: never cold, seldom too hot. Average daily temperature in summer ranges from a minimum of 18˚C (64˚F) to a maximum of 28˚C (82˚F). Winter temperatures are only two to three degrees cooler. Most rainfall occurs during the period from May to November and can be accompanied by electrical storms.
Money

The government of Venezuela implemented foreign exchange controls in 2003 including a fixed official rate of exchange against the U.S. dollar. Foreign exchange transactions must take place through exchange houses or commercial banks at the official rate. Unfortunately, it is no longer possible to exchange money at hotels. Currency exchange for tourists can be arranged at “casas de cambio” (exchange houses), located near most major hotels. It is also possible to exchange money at commercial banks; however, tourists should be aware that the exchange will not be immediate. Exchanges through commercial banks must first be approved by the Commission for Administration of Foreign Currencies (CADIVI). This requires a registration process, which delays the exchange. The exchange control mechanisms also require the exchange houses and commercial banks to obtain authorization from CADIVI to trade Bolívares Fuertes (BsF, the local currency) into U.S. dollars or Euros. It’s likely that travelers will encounter Venezuelans who are willing to exchange Bolívares Fuertes for U.S. dollars or Euros at a rate significantly higher than the official rate of exchange. These “parallel market” currency exchanges are prohibited under the Venezuelan foreign exchange controls. Travelers engaging in such activity may be detained by the Venezuelan authorities if they are discovered. Additionally, in accordance with an October 2005 law, any person who exchanges more than 10,000 U.S. dollars (or its equivalent in other currencies) in the course of a year through unofficial means is subject to a fine of double the amount exchanged. If the amount exceeds 20,000 U.S. dollars the penalty is two to six years imprisonment. Any person who transports more than 10,000 U.S. dollars into or out of Venezuela by any means must declare this amount to customs officials. Within the “Parallel Market” there are various exchange rates: the tourist, the black market (a bit higher but dangerous and shady), and the bonds brokerage one (high amounts in government bonds, when on sale). That highest one, which appears as reference on certain internet pages, is the government dollar bonds rate, inaccessible unless you buy thousands of dollars in government bonds through a Venezuelan brokerage firm. This last one determines the rate of the black market one and the tourist one. Once you change you cannot change back to euros or dollars. The rates vary around Venezuela and from week to week. The tourist rate rarely varies in time. The tourist rate is 8 to the dollar and it is 10 BsF/euro. Note that these rates are close to double the official rate. Credit cards are generally accepted at most establishments, but foreign exchange controls have made foreign credit card use less common than in the past, mostly because of the unfavorable official exchange rate. Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Diners Club have representatives in Venezuela. Due to the prevalence of credit card fraud, travelers should exercise caution in using their credit cards and should check statements regularly to ensure that no unauthorized charges have been made. Caracas has ATMs with 24-hour service where users may withdraw local currency, but many of these ATMs may not accept foreign-issued debit cards.
By plane

Maiquetía’s Simón Bolívar Airport has three passenger terminals (Internacional, Nacional and Auxiliar) and is 25 km away from central Caracas via a highway through the coastal mountains. A new road bridge, replacing one that collapsed in 2006, came into service in July 2007, ending months of tortuous journeys to and from the airport. The trip to Caracas should now take around 40 minutes or up to 60-70 minutes during rush hour. This international airport is served by American Airlines, Aeropostal, Aerolíneas Argentinas, Avianca, Aero República, Air Europa, Alitalia, Air France, Air Canada, Continental, Delta, Caribbean Airlines, Copa Airlines, Iberia, LAN, Lufthansa and TACA among others. Non stop flights are available to and from Miami, New York, Atlanta, Dallas, Houston, Havana, Curaçao, Madrid, Damascus, Guayaquil, Buenos Aires, Oporto. Santiago, Paris, Roma, Funchal, Milano, Frankfurt, Tenerife, Lisbon, Aruba, Bogotá, Medellín, Cartagena de Indias, Port of Spain, Rio de Janeiro, Panamá City, Lima, Sao Paulo, Fort de France, Toronto and other cities. Taxi fares are usually BsF 150 (US$70 at official rate, around US$ 35 at “tourist” rate) to Caracas but there are many unlicensed taxis offering their services and travelers should exercise caution. In particular, it is advised to agree on a price before getting into the taxi, not sharing with anyone other than the driver, with a preference given to the airport’s official black Ford Explorer cabs. Check with your hotel to see if they arrange airport pickup – it may need to be booked in advance. There is also a new taxi service that you can book online at . Please be aware that there is an exit fee of BsF 162.50 that must be paid in cash as the office in charge of collection does not accept credit cards. However there are ATMs, currency exchange houses (charging the official rate) and unofficial brokers willing to provide BsFs at a more advantageous rate.
By car

Nice and pretty highways connect Caracas with La Guaira and the airport to the north; Maracay, Valencia and Maracaibo in the west; Barcelona and Puerto La Cruz in the east. While driving in Caracas can be a hectic experience, renting a car to experience the outlying areas is a wonderful way to leave behind the well-traveled routes. Car rental is available in the following locations:
Hertz Car Rental Maiquetia International Airport, ☎ +58 212 355-1197, (https://www.hertz.com)
Budget Car Rental Budget Rent-A-Car Building, Avenida Nueva Granada, ☎ +58 212 603-1360, (http://www.budget.com/budgetWeb/locationsearch/location.ex?hyperlink=notenable&countryName=Venezuela&prevCountry=VE&locationCode=CCS&airportLink=true)
By bus

A taxi from the bus terminal to the center will cost you around BsF 30. Buses from the airport to Caracas cost BsF 18. Passengers have the option of alighting either at Gato Negro metro station (somewhat unsafe at street level) or under a bridge at the Parque Central bus terminal, from where you’ll need to get a taxi to your final destination or walk about 1 km along a busy road to the Bellas Artes metro station. There is also a new government-run bus service to the Alba Hotel in Bellas Artes, which costs BsF 8. Passengers do not need to be guests at Alba. Further information is available from the two tourist board offices in the international terminal of Maiquetía airport. The La Bandera bus terminal connects Caracas with towns and cities to the west of the capital such as La Victoria (1 hour), Maracay (1.5 hours), Valencia (2.5 hours) and Merida (~12 hours). The 800m walk from La Bandera metro station to the bus terminal is unsafe after dark and travelers should exercise caution at all times. For the eastern part of the country there’s the Terminal del Oriente. Beware of the small “independent” bus services which are announced by “voceros” on both terminals. Although they have more flexible departure times, the buses can be small and uncomfortable, with speakers that blast loud music even at night. There are also private carriers that offer more comfort. They also cost a little more. The most well known are Aeroexpresos Ejecutivos, Expresos Alianza and Expresos del Oriente, which operate from their own private terminals, something to consider if you plan on transferring for a destination they don’t cover.
Get around

Taxis can be easily hailed in the street and are generally (but not always) safe. They have no meters so prices should be agreed on before getting in. Some reports indicate that the situation has improved and there are fixed rates posted. Caracas traffic is notoriously bad and the metro is a better option if your destination is conveniently located near a station. Licensed taxis have yellow plates and while some private cars with white plates are taxis too, it’s generally safer to take a licensed cab.
Venezuelan taxi cab drivers may quote you about double the actual price when you ask how much a ride will be. Bargaining is totally acceptable in this case. Simply respond with a more reasonable price that you are willing to pay, and it’s more than likely you can meet in the middle. If the taxi driver continues to quote an outrageous price, simply walk away and try another. The Caracas metro is clean, modern, safe and extremely cheap. A single journey costs just BsF 0.50, “ida y vuelta” (round trip) is BsF 0.90 and a 10 journey “multi abono” ticket is BsF 4.50. Because prices have changed little in recent years and bus fares have outpaced inflation, the metro is frequently overcrowded, particularly during peak hours. The metro system is backed up by a network of metrobuses that depart from certain metro stations and take fixed routes to areas of the city not reached by the underground. Like the metro, metrobuses are cheap and clean, but passengers complain of bus shortages. Most services run only about every 20 minutes. The buses have fixed stops and will not pick up passengers elsewhere. The ubiquitous minibuses, or por puestos, run along many main roads in Caracas, often ending up in obscure residential neighborhoods that are not accessible by metro. They can be flagged down anywhere and you can generally ask the driver to let you jump off whenever he stops, such as traffic lights. Although sometimes useful (for reaching the Sabas Nieves entrance to El Avila from the Altamira metro station) the buses are more expensive than the metro (BsF 1.20 a ride), slower, and are invariably in a very bad condition.

See

Caracas has more than enough sights and attractions to fill three or four days although it is often overlooked by international travelers.
La Plaza Bolivar located near the Metro Capitolio,
La Casa Natal de Simon Bolivar
Museo de Arte Colonial Located in the Quinta Anauco on Av Panteon in San Bernardino,
Universidad Central de Venezuela
Jardin Botanico located next to the Central University,
Parque del Este (located near the “Parque del Este” metro stop)
Centro de Arte La Estancia Avenida Francisco de Miranda,, ☎ +58 212 507 8815, (http://www.pdvsa.com/index.php?tpl=interface.sp/design/readmenuprinc_cale.tpl.html&newsid_temas=270)
Do

The Avila mountain to the north of Caracas is highly recommended for hiking, views of Caracas, and its fresh air. The Sabas Nieves entrance, accessible by bus from Altamira, is the most popular.
The Teleferico is a cable-car that takes visitors up the Avila. The ascent provides a beautiful view of the city. At the top (altitude approximately 2600 m), there is a view of Caracas to the south, and of the ocean (Caribbean Sea) to the north on a clear day. It will cost BsF 25 (approx. US$ 5.81) to get a round-trip ticket to the teleferico. Reduced fares are available for students (BsF 15) and children (BsF 10), senior citizens over 60 are free. Take the ride up to Avila as early as possible before an afternoon haze obstructs your view from the top of the mountain. There are a few restaurants, many food kiosks, and numerous attractions suitable for children. These include a small skating rink, some small rides, and jungle-gyms. There is a well known fondue restaurant also located at the top. Some hiking trails branch off from the teleferico station, but without a map it is not easy to find them or know where they go, as they are not marked.
The MetroCable close to Parque Central. It is colocated in the Parque Central Metro station. It’s free and provides a fantastic view of the city.
Oficial Caracas city guide!
Buy

Most ATMs will ask you the last two numbers of a local ID, making withdrawal with a foreign card impossible. CitiBank’s ATMs don’t ask this information. There is one CitiBank branch in El Recreo shopping mall, Avenida Casanova, in Sabana Grande.
Centro Comercial Sambil
Altamira
Centro Comercial San Ignacio
Centro Comercial El Recreo
Centro Ciudad Comercial Tamanaco (CCCT)
Centro Comercial El Tolón
Centro Comercial Paseo Las Mercedes
Eat

Las Mercedes

El Granjero del Este Av. Río de Janeiro, ☎ +58 212 991 6619, Price: Cheap
Maute Grill Av. Rio de Janeiro, Price: Expensive
Malabar Calle Orinoco, ☎ +58 212 991-3131,
Aranjuez Calle Madrid, Qunita Anacoa, ☎ +58 212 993-1326,
Cafe Ole Calle California at Calle Jalisco, ☎ +58 212 993-9059,
Mamma Mia Avenida Principal, ☎ +58 212 993-7230,
La Castellana

Avila Tei Avenida San Felipe, Centro Coinasa, ☎ +58 212 263-1520,
Chez Wong Plaza La Castellana (facing the roundabout) ☎ +58 212 266-5015,
Chili Calle Jose A Lamas, Torre La Castellana, ☎ +58 212 267-9146,
La Estancia Avenida Principal La Castellana, ☎ +58 212 261-1874,
La Romanina Av Avila (between Calle Miranda and Av Mohedano, just west of Plaza La Castellana) ☎ +58 212 266-8819,
New Spizzico Av Principal La Castellana (one block north of the Plaza) ☎ +58 212 267-8820,
El Budare de la Castellana Avenida Principal de La Castellana, con 1ra Transversal., ☎ +58 212 263-2696,
Altamira

Cafe-Trattoria Mediterraneo 1ra Avenida Los Palos Grandes, Edificio Oriental, ☎ +58 212 283-3680,
La Candelaria

Bar Basque Alcabala a Peligro, La Candelaria, ☎ +58 212 572 4857,
Drink

Hotel Shelter Suites Av Libertador and Av Jose Felix Sosa, Chacao (opposite Sambil shopping mall) ☎ +58 212 265-3860, Price: Rooms starting at $100
El León. On the corner of La Castellana roundabout, this Caracas stalwart benefits from one of the best open air terraces in Caracas. Plastic tables and chairs are simple and the service is slow, but the beers are cheap and the atmosphere is good. This is a favorite hangout for Caracas’ college crowd.
Whiskey Bar. Located in the “Centro Comercial San Ignacio” (Shopping Center), it has a similar layout to a typical East Coast lounge in the United States. This place is a popular hang-out for uppity Venezuelans. If you feel comfortable around posh and preppy crowds and you have certain buying power and trendy casual wear, this is a great place to enjoy people-watching while listening to great rock-alternative music.
El Maní Es Así. Located in a side street behind Sabana Grande, this remains Caracas’ best-renowned salsa club where lower middle-class locals and tourists like to show off their moves, accompanied by live bands, till the early hours. To get a table, you’ll probably have to pay ‘servicio’, i.e. agree to buy a bottle of rum or whisky. Sadly, the area around the club is not safe after dark and visitors should arrange taxis to avoid walking in the area.
Exclusive modern nightclubs:
Sake Bar.
Sawu.
Discovery.
Triskel.
Sleep

Caracas has many hotels, but lacks youth hostels found in other South American countries. Backpackers will find that Caracas is not a cheap destination and there are not rooms available in the 20-30 USD typical hostel range. While the whole of the city is considered to be dangerous at night, it’s preferable to stay near Sabana Grande or farther east. Many hotels in the Sabana Grande area will offer rooms on an hourly basis (euphemistically known as love hotels) which are primarily for unmarried Venezuelan couples.

Budget

Most hotels are in Sabana Grande, which is the geographic center of the city or midtown. The true downtown or historic city center, is known as “el centro”, which is not a good place to stay. While Sabana Grande has affordable hotel rates (from $100 to $400 five-star), you need to be wary of occasional street crime in the form of purse snatching (on women) and pick-pocketing. Anyway, the Sabana Grande Boulevard sports high-shining lamp posts and police officers along the way. However, crooked cops are also known to sometimes harass hippie-looking travelers during the day, searching for drugs . Sabana Grande is a pleasantly walkable promenade, fantastic for people-watching and casual shopping. As for the large shopping malls around Sabana Grande, they are absolutely safe, especially one known as El Recreo. All this makes Sabana Grande one of the best place to stay for many. Neighborhoods further east or south such as Altamira and Las Mercedes offer safer accommodations, but at a much increased cost.
Nuestro Hotel (Love motel for locals) and Backpackers Hostel (for travelers) Avenida Casanova, Calle El Colegio, Sabana Grande (near Restaurant El arabito) ☎ +58 212 762-1788, +58 212 761-5431, Price: Bs. 80,000
Hotel Altamira Av Jose Felix Sosa, Altamira Sur (near Britanica Tower), ☎ +58 212 267-4284, +58 212 267-4255, fax: +58 (212) 267-1926, Price: Around $70
Casa Luisa Near El Hatillo, some 10-12km from midtown Caracas, Price: $50 a night, $5 breakfast
Nelson’s Place www.nelson.com.ve – Nelson is a fully bilingual (English-Spanish) traveler and hip college professor who has a nice apartment next to his office on the safest street near Sabana Grande, which he rents out for $60 a night (up to 3 people) and a room for $40 (up to 2). He is clearly the most helpful host in Caracas. Nelson’s Place is a block away from the Sabana Grande Boulevard, the metro station, and across the street from the El Recreo Shopping Mall. It has free internet. Nelson has a very professional airport pick-up service (included in reservation fee). He also helps you out with currency exchange and budget travel arrangements to all over Venezuela, including Angel Falls.
Caracas Hotels “http://caracas.travel” Check hotels in Caracas.
Mid-range

Hotel Milenio (located between the Ciudad Universitaria metro and the Sabana Grande metro)
El Cid ☎ + 58 212 263-1715, Price: BsF 280-360 ($130-167)
Hotel Shelter Suites Av Libertador and Av Jose Felix Sosa, Chacao (opposite Sambil shopping mall) ☎ +58 212 265-3860, Price: Rooms from BsF 190
Hotel Savoy (near the Alliance Francaise) Price: From BsF 135
Hotel Alba Caracas Avenida Mexico con Sur 25 (formerly the)
Splurge

Pestana Caracas Hotel & Suites 1ª Avenida Urb. Santa Eduvigis, ☎ +58 212 208 1916
, (http://www.pestana.com/hotels/en/hotels/southamerica/CaracasHotels/Caracas/Home/PestanaCaracas.htm/)
Gran Meliá Ave. Casanova, urb. Bellomonte, 1050
, ☎ +58 212 762-8111, fax: +58 212 762-3737, (http://www.lhw.com/property.aspx?propertyid=390)
JW Marriott Hotel Caracas Av. Venezuela con Calle Mohedano, El Rosal, ☎ +58 212 957-2222, fax: +58 212 957-1111, (http://marriott.com/CCSJW)
Hotel Intercontinental Tamanaco Final Av. Principal De Las Mercedes, ☎ +58 212 909-7111, fax: +58 212 909-7116, (http://www.ichotelsgroup.com/h/d/ic/1/en/hotel/ccsha?_requestid=553234)
Embassy Suites ☎ +58 212 700-4200,
Radisson Eurobuilding Final Calle La Guairita, Chuao
Caracas, 1064 A, ☎ +58 212 902 1111‎, (http://embassysuites1.hilton.com/en_US/es/hotel/CCSVZES-Embassy-Suites-Caracas/index.do)
Altamira Suites 1ª Transversal con 1ª Avenida Urb. Los Palos Grandes, Caracas (Chacao) 1060, ☎ +58 212 2093333, (http://www.alsuites.com/altamira.html)
Stay safe

Violent crime in Caracas is a major problem, and it has been getting steadily worse during the recent years: Caracas is now by some counts the world’s most dangerous city, with 7,676 murders in 2009. In case you are robbed, simply hand over what is asked of you. For this reason it is advisable to carry a “decoy” wallet with small bills (around $50). Most thieves carry guns and they will use them regardless of the consequences (there is a sense of immunity due to poor policing). Stick to the tourist areas and dress like the average Venezuelans (jeans and short-sleeved shirt). The barrios (poor neighborhoods/shantytowns) are to be avoided. They are mostly built into the hills around the west side of Caracas, similar to the favelas in Brazil. These neighborhoods are extremely dangerous, but they are far from the main tourist areas. Kidnapping is a major problem for upper-class Venezuelans, but is unlikely to be a concern for travelers. As with many other developing nations, petty theft is a problem. Ask hotel management to store your valuables when you leave your room and use a money belt for your passport/extra cash when traveling. The police tend to be corrupt, including at the international airport. However, Venezuelans in general are friendly and helpful.
Contact

There are many “Centros de Conexiones” in which you can easily make domestic and international calls. There is also a growing number of internet cafes.
Free WiFi
Chili Torre La Castellana,
Tony Roma Las Mercedes,
Café Ole
Cope

Caracas has been the staging ground of violent political conflict in the last few years, as well as suffering from a high incidence of crime. While taking appropriate precautions (dressing down, keeping valuables out of sight and avoiding dangerous areas) will probably keep you out of harm’s way, paranoia abounds. Traveling with a partner or in groups is advisable.
Embassies

Canada (http://www.canadainternational.gc.ca/venezuela/index.aspx?lang=eng)
Greece Av. Principal del Avila,Quinta Maryland, Alta Florida, ☎ +582 212 730 3833, Emergencies: +58 42 6906 7547, fax: +58 212 731 0429,
United States (http://caracas.usembassy.gov/?lang=en)
Mexico
Malaysia (http://www.kln.gov.my/perwakilan/caracas)
Get out

El Litoral, or the narrow band of coast between El Avila and the Caribbean Sea, is also known at the State of Vargas and the location of the best airport hotels. These beaches are not well known with visitors but are popular with Caraqueños on weekends. The area has been slow to recover from the disastrous mudslides of December 1999 which ironically made the beaches better. Still they are of lesser quality than the beaches of Choroni, Morrocoy, Mochima or Margarita.
La Guaira – historic port district
Macuto – long history as the favored among the urbanite Caracenos and most crowded on weekends
Caraballeda – upscale district with yacht marina
Naiguatá – surf and cultural festival zone
Catia La Mar – west of the airport with cheaper hotels that do airport pickup. Marginal neighborhood and beaches
El Hatillo – nice restaurants and pretty colonial architecture.

LUXEMBOURG

Luxembourg

Table of Contents

History
Climate
Terrain
Holidays
Cities
Other destinations
Get in
By plane
By train
By car
By bus
By boat
Get around
By train
By bus
By car
By bike
Talk
See
Buy
Eat
Drink
Sleep
Work
Stay safe
Stay healthy
Respect
Contact
The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg (Luxembourgish: Groussherzogtum Lëtzebuerg, French:Grand-Duché de Luxembourg, German: Großherzogtum Luxemburg), is a landlocked country in the Benelux bordered by Belgium, France and Germany, lying at the crossroad of Germanic and Latin cultures. It is the only Grand Duchy in the world and is the second-smallest of the European Union member states. With a successful steel, finance and high technology industry, a strategic location at the heart of Western Europe, more natural beauty than you might expect given its size, and as one of the top three richest countries in the world, Luxembourg enjoys a very high standard of living and has prices to match!

History

The city of Luxembourg proper was founded in 963, and its strategical position soon promised it a great fate. Luxembourg was at the crossroad of Western Europe and became heavily fortified, and you can still see the extensive city walls and towers that are its most distinctive cityscape. Due to its key position, Luxembourg was raised up to a Duchy that included a much larger territory that stretched in present-day Belgium, Netherlands, Germany and France. The powerful Habsburg family kept its hand on it until the late Renaissance times. After the Napoleonic wars, the Duchy of Luxembourg was granted to the Netherlands. It had a special status as a member of the German confederacy and the citadel was armed with a Prussian garrison: Luxembourg was still a strategic lock that everybody aimed at controlling. It was granted the title “Grand Duchy” in 1815 but lost some territories that are today parts of France and Germany. During the course of the 19th century, developments in warfare and the appearance of artillery made Luxembourg obsolete as a stronghold, and it became little more than a rural territory of no strategic interest whatsoever. The Germans relinquished their rights over it and moved out their garrison, its western half was granted to Belgium in 1839, and the Netherlands granted it complete independence in 1867. Since then, Luxembourg arose from a poor country of fields and farms to a modern economy relying on financial services and high-tech industries. Overrun by Germany in both world wars, Luxembourg was one of the major battlefields of the Battle of the Bulge in the winter of 1944-1945, a story well documented in the museum at Diekirch. The state ended its neutrality in 1948 when it entered into the Benelux Customs Union and it joined NATO the following year. In 1957, Luxembourg became one of the six founding countries of the European Economic Community (later the European Union) and, in 1999, it joined the euro currency area.
Climate

Modified continental with mild winters, although January and February can get very cold and temperatures can fall to as low as -15°C. The summer can be very hot in Luxembourg, with temperatures in July and August reaching around 30+°C.
Terrain

Mostly gently rolling uplands with broad, shallow valleys; uplands to slightly mountainous in the north; steep slope down to Moselle flood plain in the south.
Holidays

National holiday : National Day falls on the 23rd June. (Birthday of Grand Duchess Charlotte moved by 6 months to coincide with the warmer weather)
Cities

Luxembourg – Capital
Esch-sur-Alzette
Ettlebruck
Clervaux
Esch-sur-Sure
Diekirch — home to a World War II museum commemorating the Battle of the Bulge
Mertert
Echternach
Grevenmacher
Other destinations

Vianden – Quaint small town presided over by a rather splendid château
Remich – For promenades along the Moselle
Mondorf-les-Bains – Spa town located on Luxembourg-France border
Get in

Citizens of the above countries/territories – except for Antigua and Barbuda, the Bahamas, Barbados, Mauritius, Saint Kitts and Nevis and Seychelles – are permitted to work in Luxembourg without having to obtain any authorisation during the period of the 90 day visa-free stay. However, this visa exemption does not necessarily extend to other Schengen countries.
By plane

Luxembourg-Findel International Airport () () is located 6km outside Luxembourg-City. It is served by Luxair , the national airline, which flies to many EU countries (including Milan and London Gatwick and City), and Air France (Paris; actually a Luxair codeshare), KLM (Amsterdam), Swiss (Zurich), Lufthansa (Frankfurt; actually a Luxair codeshare) and British Airways (London Gatwick). Another airline to consider is CityJet, often a cheaper option than Luxair. A completely new terminal opened in May 2008, the airport site has information about all flights . Alternative airports, especially for low-cast carriers, include Ryanair hub Hahn (aka “Frankfurt-Hahn”), about two hours away by direct Flibco bus , Zweibrücken Airport and Brussels-South Charleroi, served by bus company charleroiexpress.com .
By train

Luxembourg train station can be reached directly from Paris (2 hours), Metz (1 hour), Brussels (3 hours) and Trier (43 min). Both international and national timetables can be found on the website of the national railways company CFL .
By car

Motorways from Metz (A3), Brussels (A6) and Trier (A1) connect to the ring-road around Luxembourg City, from which most other parts of the country can be reached. If you want to enjoy a nice view to the city, “Grund” and Kasematten, leave the motorway coming from the East (Germany) at exit “Cents”. Enter Cents and drive down the hill. Don’t let yourself be stopped by signs that the route is blocked via “Grund”.
By bus

Aside from the airport buses listed above, sometimes there are commuter buses to Trier and Bitburg. The train is a far preferable option for entering the country from nearby.
By boat

Luxembourg being a landlocked country, it’s extremely hard to get in by boat. But if you really want to there are boat links form the German side of the Moselle river to the Luxembourg side, but it is easier walking over the bridges.
Get around

Luxembourg is a compact country and it’s possible to reach most any place in the country from the capital in under an hour. The central railway station has a handy Mobiliteit office that will help to plan your trip with bus and train.
By train

The Chemins de Fer Luxembourgeois (CFL) train network is either comprehensive or spartan, depending whether you want to go south or north. While the south is reasonably well covered, the north is limited to one main line (Ligne 10) which runs from Luxembourg City via Mersch, Ettelbrück, Wilwerwiltz, Clervaux and Troisvierges. The line continues north into Belgium towards Liège. Diekirch has a branch line from Ettelbrück, and Wiltz has a branch line from Kautenbach. To the south you can reach Bettembourg and Esch-sur-Alzette. There is also a line to the east which crosses into Germany over the Moselle River at Wasserbillig. The same tickets are valid on trains as buses, and the same rates apply: €1.50 for two hours (unlimited transfers) or €4 for one day. A €40 month ticket can be purchased at the CFL office under Hamilius, at some newsagencies or at the station. Trains in Luxembourg generally run very much on time and are modern and comfortable. As the fares are so cheap this is a good mode of transport to use when possible. From an aesthetic view, perhaps the best way to approach Luxembourg City is by train from the north via Ligne 10 as this is a beautifully scenic route past some of the most well-known Luxembourgish sights.
By bus

Within the city, the comprehensive bus service is more than adequate for the average tourist. Buses numbered 1-25 serve the Ville de Luxembourg, with the most useful being the 16 (Town to the Airport via Kirchberg) and the 18 (Town to Kirchberg and Auchan). Almost all buses include the central bus station Hamilius (centre of town) and the Station (Luxembourg Gare) in their routes at some point. Any bus pointing stationwards from Hamilius will probably take you there (the 3 being a notable exception). Bus tickets (which are also valid on trains) are available from the driver. A standard ticket costs €1.50 and will be valid on any bus up to 2 hours after its purchase. The bus service out of town is also extensive. Every village has a convenient bus service which runs at least once every hour. Buses numbered 100 upwards will take you out of the city. Useful routes to the north of the country include the 100 (Diekirch via Junglinster, every hour), the 120 (Junglinster, every 30 minutes) and the 290 (Mersch, frequent). However, Mersch and the south are more easily reached by train (see below). Town buses experienced a reduced service on Saturdays (including those used mainly by shoppers), and many routes are barely existent (if at all) on a Sunday. This doesn’t matter, though, since most shops and attractions are closed on a Sunday. Almost all national buses run the same on Saturdays (which count as working days in this instance) as during the week, but the Sunday service is usually reduced or non-existent.
By car

Luxembourg’s road infrastructure is well-developed if not always very well thought-out. Anywhere that happens to lie along the major motorways is easily accessible via these (including Grevenmacher in the east, Mamer to the west and Bettembourg to the south). Esch-Alzette, the country’s second city (more like a small town by international standards) has its own motorway link, the A4. In addition, a new motorway is being built towards the north of the country (Mersch, Ettelbrück), but this won’t be completed until 2010 at the earliest. However, the current North Road provides easy access to these areas for the moment. Current national speed limits are 50km/h in towns and villages, 90km/h on open country roads (110 in some places on N7 and N11), and 130km/h on the motorway (110 in the rain). 70km/h also exists in some places. Speed limits are enforced by random police checks. Be aware that if you have a right-hand-drive car then you are very likely to be singled out for a customs check on the way in. Police are also very keen on stopping drivers for having the ‘wrong’ lights on in town, i.e. side lights instead of dipped headlights. Driving in Luxembourg is nowhere as testing as in other European countries. The locals are polite, even when entering roundabouts. When entering the highways from side roads into the slower traffic lane, the other drivers will allow you join the traffic line, but traffic indicators are essential. As with other highways in Europe always keep in the slow traffic lane, keeping the fast lane for overtaking. Some drivers travel at high speeds and will flash their headlights to indicate that they are in a hurry, even if you are sitting on the speed limit. Most of the time trucks keep in the slow lane at their regulated speed for large vehicles. They can be a little annoying when overtaking other trucks. The truck drivers seem to keep a watch out for other vehicles. Cars towing caravans can be a bit of a menace at times but staying alert will ensure there are no problems. The closing speeds of vehicles needs to be watched if overtaking, as some drivers travel well in excess of the speed limits. Normal day to day driving in Luxembourg is a delight but traffic does slow down in peak times. Finding parking in Luxembourg city centre on weekends can be difficult. Most spaces are quickly taken and some parking garages close early. The best option is to find somewhere near the station and then walk around the city centre. Traffic wardens are also numerous and vigilant.
By bike

The streets and landscape in Luxembourg make for good biking territory; highly recommended. Be wary, though, of small-ish bicycle repair shops in rural corners of the country — they may quite well charge you quite some money for fixing your bike when they actually break it, more or less subtly. For bicycle repairs, neighboring Trier (with a considerable University student population) is usually a safer bet.
Talk

Luxembourgish (“Lëtzebuergesch”) is the national language, while French is the administrative language. German is also widely used and almost universally understood. Luxembourgish is a separate and unique language, having previously evolved from a German dialect (“Moselfränkisch”). German (Hochdeutsch) enjoys official status and appears in some media and is used in the court system and is taught in schools. However, everything from road signs, to menus to information in stores will appear in French. French therefore is clearly the most useful of the three languages to know, essentially making Luxembourg a Francophone country for the visitor with the exception of places close to the German border such as Diekirch or Echternach. Over one third of Luxembourg’s overall population is made up of foreigners, and this figure rises to around 50% in the cities. Hence, again knowing French is your best bet if you want to converse with most people, especially as people working in shops and bars usually come from France or Belgium and don’t bother to learn the local native language. English is widely understood by such personnel as bus drivers, but many shop assistants will only respond if addressed in French or German. Educated Luxembourgers are fluent in all four of the above languages; it is the “frontaliers” (workers who live across one of the borders) who may not speak English well or at all. Apart from the more elderly inhabitants, virtually every Luxembourger understands and speaks fluent standard German and French. Luxembourgers are the polyglots of Europe, perhaps making even the Swiss jealous!
See

You may not expect it from one of the smallest countries in Europe, but The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg is a divers land, full of beautiful nature and gorgeous historic monuments. Its turbulent history is filled with stories of emperors and counts as well as many battles and disputes. Today, the almost fairy-tale like castles and fortresses are a faint but impressive reminder of those days, and amidst their lovely natural setting, they make some superb and picturesque sights. Most of the country’s population lives in rural areas and apart from the delightful historic City of Luxembourg, the country’s capital, settlements are mostly small. That said, the capital is a place not to be missed. It has a splendid location high on a cliff, overlooking the deep and narrow valleys of both the Alzette and Pétrusse rivers. Several parts of the old town are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and the most interesting places include the Gothic Revival Cathedral of Notre Dame, the town fortifications and of course the Grand Ducal Palace, which is surrounded by charming cobblestoned lanes. However, there’s far more to see, such as the Bock casemates, Neumünster Abbey and the Place d’Armes. There are several World War II memorial sites and a number of high-end museums, but just wandering through the old centre, taking in the beautiful views from the Chemin de la Corniche and crossing bridges to the nearest plateaus is at least as great a way to discover the city. The lively town of Echternach is the oldest city in Luxembourg. It boasts the country’s most prominent religious structure, the basilica of the Abbey of Echternach where the country’s patron saint Willibrord is buried. The annual Whit Tuesday celebrations in his honour involve lots of dancers in the towns old centre and are a popular tourist attraction. The Apart from its own sights, Echternach makes a great base to explore the beautiful Müllerthal, better known as “Little Switserland”. Hike or bike through its dense forests with myriad streams and even some caves. The romantic village of Vianden with its stunning medieval Beaufort castle is a tourists’ favourite, and well worth a visit even despite the crowds in summer. The beautiful location of the fortress in the Our river valley, surrounded by tight forests and a lake with swans, gives it a typical fairy-tale castle look and feel. If you’re done wandering the streets and exploring the gothic churches an fortified towers of this charming town, visit the Victor Hugo house. Afterwards, the pleasant cafés of the Grand Rue are a perfect place to kick back and enjoy. Head to Remich to start your own trip down the Route du Vin and discover the many fine wines that are produces here, in the Moselle Valley.
Buy

If you know any coin collectors, take a few local coins as keepsakes, since Luxembourgish coins are among the rarest of the euros — even in Luxembourg, most of your change will be in other countries’ coins! The general price level in Luxembourg is noticeably higher than in France and Germany, especially in central Luxembourg. Even cheap hotels tend to cost over €100 a night and you won’t get much change from €20 after a modest dinner and a drink. Basing yourself in Trier (or other cities across the border) and daytripping to Luxembourg might be a good bet. On the upside, cigarettes, alcohol or petrol are comparatively cheap, making the small state a popular destination for long-haul drivers.
Eat

Traditional dishes are largely based on pork and potatoes and the influence of German and central European cooking is undeniable. The unofficial national dish is judd mat gaardebounen, or smoked pork neck served with boiled broad beans. A must to try if you do get the opportunity are Gromperekichelchen (literally, Potato Biscuits) which are a type of fried shredded potato cake containing onions, shallots and parsley. Typically found served at outdoor events such as markets or funfairs they are absolutely delicious and a particularly nice snack on a cold winter’s day. In most restaurants however, the typical local food would be French cuisine coming in bigger portions. Italian food has been popular since the 1960s. Home cooking has been very influenced by the recipes of Ketty Thull, apparently the best-selling cooking and baking book in Luxembourg since WW II.
Drink

The Luxembourg white wines from the Moselle valley to the east of Luxembourg include Riesling, Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Rivaner and Elbling to name just a few and are good. In autumn, many villages along the Moselle river organise wine-tasting village festivals. Young people tend to drink local or imported beer. Luxembourg has a number of breweries, with Diekirch, from the village of the same name, Bofferding, Battin, and Mousel being the most popular. Despite the fact that you would be hard pushed to find any of these outside of the country, all are excellent lagers. As an after dinner digestive, Luxembourgers like to drink an eau-de-vie . The most commonly available are Mirabelle and Quetsch. Both are made from plums and are extremely strong! Sometimes these are taken in coffee which may be a little more palatable for some.
Sleep

Thanks to the heavy banking and EU presence in the city, hotels in central Luxembourg are quite expensive, although there is a good youth hostel (see Luxembourg (city)#Sleep). It may be more cost-effective to stay across the border in eg. Trier and “commute” into Luxembourg, as a day-ticket valid for a return trip and free run of the entire country is only €8.40. The Association of Independent Hotels in Luxembourg operates a booking service at hotels.lu for a number of smaller hotels, mostly in the countryside, but a few in the city.
Work

Luxembourg is a major player in the financial service sector. Many thousands of people commute from neighbouring Belgium, France (Les frontaliers) and Germany on week days, considerably swelling the population of the capital city. The majority work in the numerous financial institutions based in and around the capital (particularly in the Kirchberg district) and are drawn across the borders by the excellent salaries on offer. Luxembourg City has a very international flavour as in addition to les frontaliers, it attracts young professionals from all over the globe. In this area, business is done predominantly in English, French or German and it is necessary to be fluent in one of these as a minimum although many jobs will demand proficiency in at least two.
Stay safe

In many surveys, Luxembourg has been named “safest country in the world”; if you follow usual precautions, you should be fine.
Stay healthy

The food and tap water supply in Luxembourg is perfectly fine and the country’s healthcare system is first-class. The climate is average even though the summers can get hot. However these temperatures only rarely rise much above 30°C.
Respect

Try to show respect for the local language and make some effort to say a word or two of it even if it’s just the standard greeting “Moien”. Avoid calling “Luxembourgish” a dialect of German or think that the country itself is merely an extension of France or Germany. The locals, especially those in the small towns and villages are very friendly saying “Hello” in no matter what language you will be greeted with a smile.

NEW DELHI

New Delhi

Table of Contents

Districts
History
Orientation
South Delhi
Climate
Suggested reading
Get in
By plane
By bus
By train
New Delhi Railway Station
Delhi Railway Station
Hazrat Nizamuddin
Anand Vihar
Get around
By metro
By local train
By bus
Hop on Hop off
By taxi
By auto rickshaws
By cycle rickshaws
On foot
Talk
See
Beware
Red Fort
Humayun’s tomb
Qutub complex
Museums
Monuments
Parks and gardens
Religious buildings
Other
Do
Learn
Work
Buy
Malls
Bazaars
Handicrafts
Clothing
Computers
Books
Eat
Budget
Delhi (Hindi: दिल्ली, Urdu: دلّی, Punjabi: ਦਿੱਲੀ) is northern India’s largest city. One part of it, known as New Delhi (Hindi: नई दिल्ली Naï Dillî), is officially designated the capital of India, but the names are often used interchangeably.

Districts

South Delhi
East Delhi — across the river
North Delhi
West Delhi
Central Delhi
History

Delhi is said to be one of the oldest existing cities in the world, along with Jerusalem and Varanasi. Legend estimates it to be over 5,000 years old. Over the millennia, Delhi is said to have been built and destroyed 11 times. The oldest alleged incarnation of the city shows up in the Indian mythological epic Mahabharata as Indraprastha.
Qila Rai Pithora – This dates back to the 10th century A.D. as per available historical records. Also known as Rai Pithora, this city was the capital during the reign of Prithviraj Chauhan, the local hero famous for his first defeating, before finally losing to, the marauding invaders from central Asia (Muhammad Ghori in particular). Chauhan’s ancestors are said to have captured the city from the Tomar Rajputs who were credited with founding Delhi. Anangpal, a Tomar ruler possibly created the first known regular fort here called ‘Lal Kot’, which was taken over by Prithviraj and the city extended. Some of the ruins of the fort ramparts are still visible around Qutab Minar and Mehrauli.
Mehrauli – Muhammad Ghori managed to defeat Prithviraj Chauhan in battle in 1192. Ghori left his slave Qutub-ud-din Aibak as his viceroy, who in turn captured Delhi the subsequent year. After Ghori’s death in 1206, Aibak proclaimed himself the ruler of Delhi and founded the slave dynasty. Qutb-ud-din contributed significantly in terms of architecture by getting Mehrauli built. His most prominent contribution is the starting of Qutab Minar. This 72.5 m tall tower was built across three generations and finally completed in 1220AD. A visitor to the Qutab Minar could also see the mausoleum of Kaki, Shamsi Talao and some other mosques. The Slave dynasty ruled until 1290, among them was Razia Sultan who ruled for just three years, but became a historic figure for being the first empress in India.
Siri – Qutuddin Aibaq’s ‘Slave Dynasty’ was followed by the line of Khilji (or Khalji) rulers. The most prominent among the six rulers was Allauddin who extended the kingdom to the south of Narmada and also established the city of ‘Siri’. Among some of the remaining ruins, is part of the Siri Fort in the greater Hauz Khas area. The madrasa at Hauz Khas was constructed during Allauddin’s reign and bears the stamp of West Asian architecture. Hauz Khas is more often visited today for the chic botiques and restaurants.
Tughlakabad – Exactly as it happens during the fall of a lineage of kings, after the Khilji’s there was administrative chaos for sometime as the last Khilji ruler was slain by Nasruddin Mohammed. Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq (a Turk governor) invaded Delhi in the 1320s, started the Tughlaq dynasty, and founded the city of Tughlakabad, the ruins of which still remain. His descendant Muhammad Bin Tughlaq raised the fort walls, created another city called Jahapanah (which enclosed the area between Siri and Qila Rai Pithora). Tughlakabad continued, however, to be the main capital city. Muhammad Bin Tughlaq is also known as the mad king for wanting to move the capital from Delhi to Daulatabad (now near Aurangabad in Maharashtra) and making the entire population travel, only to return in a few years because of water shortage in the new town.
Firozabad – Muhammad Bin Tughlaq’s son, Firoze created the next city which was called Firozabad or Firoze Shah Kotla. There still are some ruins which are visible around the cricket stadium by the same name. The city was a enclosed a large area, and contained many palaces, mosques, pillared halls, and multi-floored water tank. Firoze Shah also planted a 1500 year old Ashokan Pillar on top of the palace. This pillar was originally planted in Meerut by Samrat Ashok.Feroze Shah, also repaired many of the older construction in Delhi including Ghori’s tomb, Qutub Minar,Suraj Kund and Hauz Khas. He, himself, was buried inside a lofty tomb in Hauz Khas. Quite like earlier, after Feroze Shah’s death, the sultnate became unstable and weak, and was invaded by Taimur the Lame (from Samarkhand) who created havoc in the city by looting, killing, raping and plundering. The Sayyids and Lodhis who ruled Delhi after the Tughlaq’s paid more attention to re-establishing miltiary and political stability to the kingdom. The only relevant architecture visible from this period are the tombs at Lodhi Gardens. The last of the Lodhi’s was defeated by Babur in the first battle of Panipat. Babur then proceeded to establish the Mughal dynasty.
Shergarh – Babur’s son Humayun ruled the kingdom for a few years only to be defeated by Sher Shah Suri (1540), who established the new city Shergarh (on the ruins of Dinpanah, built by Humayun) towards the north and near the river. Shergarh is what you see at Purana Qila today, near the Delhi zoo. After Humayun came back to power, he completed the construction and proceeded to rule from Shergarh.
Shahjehabanad – the next of the Mughal emperors chose to move away from Delhi and established Agra as the capital of their kingdom. Shahjehan (Humayun’s great-grandson) returned to Delhi and established Shahjehanabad. This included the Jama Masjid, the Red Fort and all that in enclosed within the walls of Old Delhi. This wall is still around in many parts and three of the six gates (Delhi gate, Lahori Gate, Turkman Gate, Ajmeri Gate, Kashmiri Gate, Mori Gate)to Delhi still exist. Kashmiri Gate was reconstructed and widened by the British after the 1857 revolt.
Lutyen’s New Delhi – The final city as you see today expanded from what Sir Edwin Lutyens.
The population of Delhi is a heterogeneous mix of people originally belonging to different parts of North India and beyond. Among the prominent North Indian communities are the Punjabis. Delhi also has a prominent South Indian Community, primarily in areas like RK Puram, Mayur Vihar and Munirka. A Bengali Settlement, the Chittaranjan Park in south Delhi is the Mini Calcutta of Delhi. Quality education also draws students from different states, making up one of the most diverse student populations in the country. To be noted is the fact that the descendants of the builders of Delhi’s many Muslim monuments no longer stay in Delhi. Most of them migrated to Pakistan during the Partition, with only a small, ever-diminishing community in Old Delhi keeping old courtly traditions alive.
Orientation

Like the rest of the Gangetic Plains, Delhi is as flat as a pancake. The only geographical features of any significance are the river Yamuna, which flows down the eastern side of the city, and the Aravalli Hills which form a wide but low arc across the west. On the west bank is the crowded and congested Old (Central) Delhi and, to the southwest, the broad, tree-lined avenues of New Delhi, built by the British to rule their empire. The rest is an endless low-rise sprawl of suburbia and slums, with southwestern Delhi (nearer to New Delhi) generally somewhat wealthier.
South Delhi

Indeed, on a broad scale Delhi is not difficult to navigate. The Outer Ring Road, and Ring Road, offer simple connections between districts. In South Delhi, most of the major districts lie on either the inner or outer ring roads. Travelling west on the Ring Road from Nizammudin, the following colonies lie in the following order, Friends Colony, Lajpat Nagar, Defence Colony, South Extention, INA, Safdarjung, Bikhaji Kama Place, RK Puram, Chankyapuri, Dhaula Kuan. And on the outer Ring Road, travelling west from Okhla, the following colonies lie in the following order,Nehru Place, Kalkaji, GK2, GK1, CR Park, PanchShil Park, Hauz Khas Enclave, Safdarjung Enclave, Munirka, Vasant Vihar. The only major areas that lie in between the Ring Roads as opposed to adjacent to them are are Anand Niketan, Hauz Khas Village, Green Park. However, these areas are easily accessible from Shanti Path, Aurobindo Marg, and Khel Gaon Marg respectively. Inside the colonies it is another issue, often akin to mazes, finding your way around the inside of any colony other than Vasant Vihar or Chanakyapuri is not for the faint hearted.
Climate

Delhi’s climate is, sad to say, infamously bad, combining the scorching aridity of Rajasthan’s deserts with the frigid cold of the Himalayas. From April to October, temperatures are scorchingly hot (over 40°C is common) and, with every air-conditioner running at full blast, the city’s creaking power and water infrastructure is strained to the breaking point and beyond. Monsoon rains deluge the city from July to September, flooding roads on a regular basis and bringing traffic to a standstill. In winter, especially December and January, temperatures can dip to near-zero and the city is blanketed in thick fog, causing numerous flight cancellations. The shoulder seasons (Feb-Mar and Oct-Nov) are comparatively pleasant, with temperatures in the 20-30°C range, but short.
Suggested reading

The City of Djinns, William Dalrymple; another travelogue and well-written. (ISBN 0142001007)
“The Last Mughal”, William Dalrymple; well documented chronological events of the fall of Mughal Enpire. (ISBN 1400043107)
Get in

By plane

Indira Gandhi International Airport (IGI, ) , located in the west of the city, is the arrival point for many visitors into Delhi. Once notoriously bad, since privatization the airport has been extensively revamped and, with the opening of Terminal 3 in 2010, has been transformed into a thoroughly modern facility equivalent to the best airports in the world. Delhi Airport has no less than six terminals, but only two are currently operational:
Terminal 1D, also known as “Palam” or “Domestic”, is used only by low-cost carriers IndiGo, GoAIR and SpiceJet. (Oddly, their flights arrive at neighboring Terminal 1C)
Terminal 3, the enormous main terminal, is used by all international flights and all full-service domestic carriers including Jet Airways, Air India, and Kingfisher.
A free shuttle bus operates between two every 20 min. While the terminals share the same runways, connecting between the two requires a massive detour via a nearby highway, so allow plenty of time to connect. The Delhi Airport Metro Express (DAME) is a Delhi Metro train line from New Delhi Metro Station to Dwarka Sector 21, passing through airport. As of April 10, 2011, its operating timings are from 5AM-11PM every 20 min. In the future, the trains may run 24 hr/day. The one-way fare between the airport and New Delhi Metro Station is Rs 80. The journey time is 20 min. From the railway station, you can transfer to the Metro (it’s a bit of hike though), continue by taxi, or simply walk to backpacker ghetto Paharganj. There are also public buses to and from the city throughout the day and night. Travel time is approximately 50 minutes. There are two bus companies: Delhi Transport Corporation (green-yellow buses) and EATS (white-blue buses). The EATS (Ex Serviceman’s Airlink Transport Service) Buses run to ISBT (Inter State Bus Terminal) near Kashmiri Gate, Connaught Place, Delhi Train Station and many hotels in the city centre, departing from both airport terminals every 60 mins from 00:10AM-11:10PM. The Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC) (schedule: ) offers 8 bus routes to both the city center and the more outlying areas of Delhi. Tickets can be bought and a fixed seat can be booked at a desk in the Arrivals Hall. 1 way fare for both companies: Rs 50 per adult, Rs 25 per child below 12 years, Rs 25 for heavy luggage. If you’d prefer to go directly to your destination and are willing to sit around in traffic, or are arriving on the many long-distance flights that land in the dead of night, take a taxi. The easiest and safest way is to arrange transport ahead of time through your hotel (some hotels provide this service for free). Alternatively, you can pay for a taxi at the prepaid taxi booths in the international terminal. The pre-paid booths are visible as soon as you exit customs. The one on the left is managed by the Delhi police. To the right of the exit door are private taxi operators. They are more expensive but the cars are air-conditioned. The number of the taxi assigned to you will be on the receipt. Then, go straight through the airport and turn right immediately outside the front doors and someone will help you find your taxi. There are several options, but the booth operated by the “Delhi Police” is considered the best, with non-A/C taxis to most points in the city Rs 200-300. Do not give the receipt to the driver until you get to the destination as this is what they are paid on. Also, ignore the explanation of the driver for additional payment. There is no practice of tipping taxi drivers anywhere in India. When you reach your destination, take your baggage first, then give the driver the receipt and walk away without further discussion. There is a minor problem with this system. As there is a checkpoint manned by the traffic police just as your taxi moves away from the airport, you will have to give the receipt to the driver who will hand it over to the police who will record the taxi number. Make sure that you get the receipt back from the driver which you would hand over to driver only after you have safely reached your destination. When leaving Delhi from international terminal, security at the airport is tight, so you should show up three hours before your flight is scheduled. For domestic flights two hours should be enough. While sometimes time-consuming, the process is smooth, and the new terminal’s shops and restaurants are sensibly located at the gate area, not before security. However, if you wish to change Rupees back into foreign currency, you must do this before clearing security. During the winter (Dec-Jan), Delhi often experiences dense fog and visibility is reduced considerably, making it difficult for flights to land and take off. Both international and domestic flights are often diverted or cancelled, so plan accordingly and allow for one or two days for possible delays.
By bus

Buses arrive from Kathmandu and Chitwan in Nepal (36 hr+) and virtually every city in India. Although not as comfortable as the trains, buses are the only choice for some destinations, mainly those in the mountains. Delhi has a confusing slew of inter-state bus termini (ISBT), which all have two names. The Delhi Transport Corporation is the major operator, but every state also runs its own buses and there are some private operators too.
Kashmere Gate ISBT (aka Maharana Pratap), Metro Kashmere Gate, Line 1/2. This is “the” ISBT and the largest of the lot. Buses to points north, including Nepal.
Sarai Kale Khan ISBT (aka Vir Hakikat Rai), next to Hazrat Nizamuddin railway station. Buses to points south.
Anand Vihar ISBT (aka Swami Vivekanand), on the east bank of Yamuna. Buses to points east.
Bikaner House bus stop. Buses, including air-conditioned Volvo buses from Jaipur arrive at this place. For travel between Jaipur and Delhi, this bus stop is very clean, less crowded than ISBT, and easy to reach.
Majnu ka Tilla Tibetan colony, a short cyclerickshaw ride from Metro Vidhan Sabha. Buses to Dharamsala.
By train

Trains arrive at one of four main stations: Delhi Junction, also called Old Delhi or Purani Dilli; the second at New Delhi which lies in Central Delhi; Hazrat Nizamuddin a few kilometers to the south; and the upcoming Anand Vihar station to the east. (A very few trains use Delhi Sarai Rohilla or Delhi Cantt stations.) Delhi Junction and New Delhi Railway Station are now conveniently connected by Metro Line 2, just minutes apart, while Anand Vihar is served by Line 3. It will take about 40 min-1 hr to travel from the New Delhi Railway Station to the airport by car, depending on traffic. A ticket office open to all is on the road to Connaught Place with longer hours. It often has waiting times not much longer than at the tourist booking office. You will need to know the number or name of the train you want to take. Easiest of all, though, is to book on-line through the Indian Railways booking website . (Note, however, that you are required to have both an e-mail address AND a mobile phone number that is registered within India in order to access the booking area of the site.) Once you have purchased a ticket either at the ticket office or online prior to the trip, all you need to do is go to the rail car labeled with your class of service purchased. You can either just get on and sit in the first available seat or often times for higher classes of service, they will post a passenger list on the car when it stops. Look for your name and go to the assigned car, cabin and seat. There is never a need to get a boarding pass so if anyone comes out of the crowd to tell you that, don’t listen to them. It is a scam. If you’re brave, you can simply purchase a general 2nd class ticket and then get on any car where there is availability. The conductor will come by and check your tickets after the train starts moving. If you are in a higher fare class than you are ticketed for, all you have to do is simply pay the difference in fare to the conductor. The only risk here is that the train could be full and you could be stuck in the lowest fare class which can be very crowded with little room to sit.
New Delhi Railway Station

The main entrance to New Delhi Railway Station (code NDLS) is located just outside of Paharganj, also known as the backpacker ghetto. The Delhi Metro now connects directly here, but the metro exits are at the Ajmeri Gate (second entrance) side near platform 12. You can also take prepaid rickshaws and taxis from the plaza outside the main entrance. The station is large, crowded, confusing and packed with touts. Allow one hour to find your train the first time you visit. Don’t trust the electronic display boards, which often show incorrect information. Instead listen to the announcements and ask multiple people in uniform (policemen) until you find your train. However, anyone who approaches you spontaneously should be completely ignored. Use one of the porters (in orange uniform and a metallic badge on arm) to find your train and carry your luggage, in exchange for a tip. A tourist ticket office called the International Tourist Bureau is open during office hours upstairs of but still within the main New Delhi railway station. Note that it is only for foreign tourists, so you must have a tourist visa (i.e. student and working visas are not acceptable). Non-resident Indians can also book their tickets through this office. Bring your passport and cash or traveller’s cheques in U.S. dollars, British Pounds or Euros. If you wish to pay in Indian rupees you must show an official exchange certificate (from India, not valid if you changed in another country) or an ATM receipt. To get a ticket, first get a form from the centre of the room, and fill it out. Then go to the information desk near the entrance. There, have the clerk check the availability of the train(s) you desire, and fill out your form accordingly. Then line up at one of the two u-shaped lines of chairs for the reservation desks. Just do not trust strangers who appear out of the crowd to help you and completely ignore them. Always ask at the enquiry counter or the policemen (in khaki uniform).
Delhi Railway Station

Formally Delhi Junction (code DLI), but best referred to as “Old” Delhi Station for clarity. Like New Delhi RS, this station is huge and confusing. The platforms are not in linear order, with some hidden in the west and east wings of the stations. The railway station is served by Metro Line 2 Chandni Chowk station.
Hazrat Nizamuddin

Hazrat Nizamuddin (code NZM) is the departure point of many trains heading south. Practically speaking, the only way to get here is by taxi or auto. The budget alternative is to take a bus to the Sarai Kale Khan Inter State Bus Terminal (ISBT) on the ring road and then walk over to the station (400 m). It’s the least chaotic of the Big Three, but still pretty big and poorly signposted; listen to the announcements to figure out your train. The station has a pretty good food court that sells inexpensive, hygienic takeaway snacks including sandwiches and samosas. If you have some time to kill, pay a visit to Humayun’s Tomb, which is so close to the station that you can hear the announcements from inside — although it’s a long, circuitous walk from the station to the entrance.
Anand Vihar

Anand Vihar (code ANVR) is Delhi’s newest station, located well to the east of the city near Noida. Repeatedly delayed, the station finally opened in December 2009 and will gradually take over all east-bound services. The station can be reached by Delhi Metro Line 3.
Get around

Getting around Delhi is always an adventure. Traffic is, by and large, horribly congested and many drivers will think nothing of quoting ten times the going price to a tourist. Use the prices below as broad guidelines, agree on prices before setting off.
By metro

The fast-growing Delhi Metro network provides a cheap, quick, hassle-free and air-conditioned way of zipping around the city. As of February 2011, the following lines are open:
Red Line: Dilshad Garden – Rithala
Yellow Line: Jahangirpuri – HUDA City Centre, Gurgaon
Blue Line: Dwarka Sector 9 – Vaishali/ – Noida City Centre
Green Line: Inderlok – Mundka
Violet Line: Central Secratariat – Badarpur Border
Airport Express: New Delhi Railway Station – Airport – Dwarka
Fares range from Rs 8-30, just buy a token, change lines as necessary, and deposit the token in the slot as you exit. Tokens can be used only from the station they are bought, so you can’t buy two and use the second to return home. If you’re planning on sticking around for a while, you can buy a “Smart Card” for Rs 100, which is worth Rs 50 and includes a Rs 50 deposit; using this saves 10% and, more importantly, lets you avoid the queues. There is also a “Tourist Card” allowing unlimited use for Rs 100 (1 day) or Rs 250 (3 days), but it’s highly unlikely that you’ll travel enough to make this pay off. Special fares apply for travel on the Airport Express. Line 2, in particular, is useful for getting to the Old Delhi (Chandni Chowk, Jama Masjid) and New Delhi railway stations, the ISBT bus terminal, the backpacker ghetto of Paharganj, Hauz Khas and Qutub Minar. Line 3 is also handy for visiting Akshardham and accessing the western parts of Paharganj through RK Ashram Marg station.
Beware: Metro stations all use the new, official, Indianized names, so Connaught Place is “Rajiv Chowk”, Old Delhi Railway Station is “Chandni Chowk” and ISBT is “Kashmere Gate”.

By local train

There are limited commuter services on Delhi’s railways, but the facilities are a far cry from the user-friendly Metro and stations. For the most part, train stations are inconveniently located. There is no passenger service on the Delhi Ring Railroad outside rush hour. Please note that railway sites do not accept foreign credit cards.
By bus

All parts of Delhi are well connected by buses and with tickets ranging from Rs 5-15 they are very cheap, but they are also quite crowded most of the time. The red coloured buses are air-conditioned and the green coloured are not. As bus stops do not have bus routes written properly, it can be difficult to find your way. Asking other people at the bus stop is often the best way to find out about bus routes to your destination. However, the buses are pretty frequent, running every 15-20 min or so on most routes. There are two kinds of buses in Delhi:
Government run DTC buses (red and green coloured with big windows)
Privately run Blue-Line buses (blue coloured)
If you have a choice, please go for a DTC bus. They will stop less frequently and will generally be less crowded too. Note that many buses, DTC ones too, will stop pretty much anywhere if there are enough people getting on or off. Board buses at the back and pay the ticket seller sitting right next to the door. Be sure to hang onto your tickets, as ticket checks are fairly frequent. Some seats on the left side of the bus may be reserved for women and the handicapped. When it’s time to disembark, move to the front of the bus. As you might expect, all these guidelines are regularly ignored when buses are very crowded.
Hop on Hop off

Delhi Tourism department has launched the “Hop On Hop Off (HOHO)” service, where airconditioned low floored buses go around pre-defined set of stops around the city and one can hop off the bus, see the place at one’s own convenience and hop in the next bus, which will come at the same stop in not more than 30 minutes time. This service covers important monuments, memorials, museums and shopping places in the city. Each bus is staffed with a knowledgable English speaking guide. The ticket costs Rs 300 and is valid for 2 days. The service does not operate on Mondays.
By taxi

A taxi or hired car (usually with driver) is required to see many of the far-flung sites within and around Delhi. However, the metro is a far cheaper and equally comfortable option. Most Delhi taxis are old but reliable CNG-run Ambassadors or Omnis in distinctive black-and-yellow livery and a green stripe. The hired family car of choice is usually a Toyota Innova or Chevrolet Tavera. While all are equipped with meters and should cost Rs 15 for the first km Rs 8.50 per km, the meters are often rigged and it’s better to agree on the price in advance. Most trips around the city should be Rs 200-500, while a trip to the airport would be higher, depending on starting location. An eight-hour charter should cost around Rs 1,500, and a tip is expected if the driver is helpful. Note that black and yellow taxis are not air-conditioned. Even if they do have air conditioning, you will be charged extra (and the rates are up to the driver, so bargain hard). The death knell of the Ambassador was rung in December 2006, when modern radio taxi services were launched. At Rs 20/km, they’re more the list price of the competition, but they use modern vehicles with air-conditioning and GPS and can be dialed 24 hr/day. The flag fare is Rs 20, and the fare increases by Rs 5 for every 250 m after the first km. If you need an SUV, you need to inform the company in advance, but the fare remains the same. Night charges (25% extra) apply between 11pm to 5am. Book upto a few hours in advanc. Many corporates rely on these cabs for their daily commute and they may be booked during office hours. Tipping is not expected. After booking, you will receive an SMS with the car license plate number, and the driver’s name and mobile number. Usually the driver will call you and inform you that he’s arrived. Most drivers speak English, but at a very basic level, so use short phrases.
EasyCabs . ☎ 43434343
Mega Cabs . ☎ 41414141
Meru Cabs . ☎ 44224422
There are car rental portals like www.CabYatra.com which provide cabs for local usage in Delhi. These portals work with different car operators in Delhi and ensure good quality cab service. You shouldn’t take non-official taxis, sometimes they take you to a wrong hotel, or to a “tourist information centre”, and try to sell you overpriced things.
By auto rickshaws

Auto rickshaws (also called three-wheeled scooters, tuk-tuks or simply autos) are good for shorter trips. Always in a distinctive yellow-and-green livery, auto rickshaws are three-wheeled partially enclosed contraptions (no doors!) that run on CNG and can seat three people in the back. In general, they are much cheaper than taxis and can be hailed from the street. Although by law the rickshaw drivers should charge according to the meter in their vehicle (Rs 19 for the first two kms, Rs 6.50/km after), this rate is unrealistically low and they will almost always try to haggle for price. As rules of thumb, even the shortest journey costs Rs 30, but you should not need to pay over Rs 150 for any trip within the city. If you’re overquoted, don’t be afraid to walk away. It’s usually easy to find another one soon, usually with a driver who won’t rip you off. If you have any trouble with them, go to any of the numerous tourist police stations in the city center and they will give you a complaint slip which will result in a Rs 500 fine for the auto driver. There should also be a telephone number written on the vehicle to call in case of any complaint. There are a number of “Pre-paid” Auto stands run by the Police. Tell them where you want to go and pay them upfront. The charge will include Rs 5 for the service. You then take the coupon and stand outside where a policeman will direct you to the next available Auto. When your journey is completed you hand the coupon to the auto driver and that’s it. Nothing more to pay (despite what they may say).
By cycle rickshaws

Cycle rickshaws are three-wheeled, pedal-powered rickshaws with seats in the back to seat passengers and a driver in the front. They are good for short distances, or places which are too far to walk but too short for taking a bus/taxi/auto rickshaw. Cycle rickshaws don’t use meters, so establish a price before getting on. Rs 20 is reasonable for most journeys of 1-2 km. Cycle rickshaws are best to use in Old Delhi to visit the intricate galis (walkways) and to enjoy the smells and sounds of the city.
On foot

Much of Delhi is quite pedestrian-hostile. Distances are long, road signage is poor, and in the more tourist oriented areas, you’ll be constantly accosted by beggars and touts. Crossing roads often involves wading across multiple lanes of heavy traffic. Try your best to move in a predictable straight line, so vehicles can weave around you. (Better yet, latch onto a group of locals and cross in their shadow.) If you really want to walk around, these places would be good:
Walk from Rashtrapati Bhavan (President’s house) to India Gate on the Rajpath (a walk of close to 3-4 km).
Walk from Jama Masjid to Red Fort in the Chandni Chowk area.
Far South Delhi go walk about in the forest. Try starting from south of Indian Institute of Technology through Sanjay Van to Qtub Minar. Note however that Sanjay Van is not always safe, and it is advisable to go there in a group, preferably during daylight hours.
South Delhi-Green Park-Hauz Khas Village, then to the Hauz Khas ruined madrasa, offers a newer shopping area, an up-market arts village, old ruins, and some quality gardens.
There are many walks that you can do in Old and central Delhi
Talk

The native language of the Delhi area is Hindi, which also happens to be the main official language of the Union Government. However, for official purposes, English is more widely used than Hindi. Almost everybody you meet will be able to speak Hindi, quite often with the Bihari and Punjabi accents. However, most educated people will also be fluent in English, and many shopkeepers and taxi drivers will have a functional command of English. Punjabi and Urdu are also official languages, but they are spoken much less widely. The Hindi spoken in Delhi is quite Persianized, similar to the Hindi spoken in Western UP and much less Sanskritized than the Hindi spoken in MP. Signage is usually bilingual in Hindi and English, but some road signs (especially in South and Central Delhi) are in Hindi, English, Punjabi and Urdu. Announcements on the metro are in Hindi (male voice) and English (female voice).
See

The staff at the Delhi tourist office is very helpful, and the office has a lot of free information: The Government of India Tourist Office 88 Janpath, Connaught Place. ☎ +91 11 2332 0005, +91 11 2332 0008, +91 11 2332 0109, +91 11 2332 0266. The Government of India Tourist Office offers daily tours, covering all of the major Delhi sites. If you should choose to go with the government-sanctioned day tour, be aware that due to the heavy agenda, you will need to have a quick foot, only 20-40 min are given for each sight, which is next to no time. Consider this day tour as a sampler. If there is a sight of particular interest, bookmark it and return at a later date.

SARAJEVO

Sarajevo

Table of Contents

Understand
Get in
By plane
By train
From/to Serbia
From Croatia
From Ploče via Mostar
By car
By bus
Hitch hiking
Get around
See
Museums
Religious Buildings
Do
Events
Winter Sports
Buy
Budget
Mid-range
Splurge
Cafes
Bars
Clubs
Budget
Mid-range
Splurge
Stay safe
Cope
Get out
Sarajevo , the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, is a lively city of 430,000 people (urban area), nestled in a valley, mainly within the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, but with parts in the Republika Srpska entity.

Understand

Sarajevo is one of the most historically interesting cities in Europe. It is the place where the Western & Eastern Roman Empire split; where the people of the Roman Catholic west, Eastern Orthodox east and the Ottoman south, met, lived and warred. It has been both an example of historical turbulence and the clash of civilizations, as well as a beacon of hope for peace and tolerance through multi-cultural integration. Today the city has physically recovered from most of the war damage caused by the Yugoslav Wars of the 1992-1995. Sarajevo is a cosmopolitan European capital with a unique Eastern twist that is a delight to visit. The people are very friendly, be they Bosniaks, Croats, or Serb. There is very little crime.
Get in

The city is very tourist friendly – once you get to the city centre. There is a tourist info office in the centre of town, take the #1 tram in front of the station and it will take you to town or just walk for about 20 min going right out of the train station and follow the river. Tram #1 will follow the river up until Bascarsija square (in the Turkish quarter) where it will make a 180 degree turn and drive back towards the station. The Bascarsija tram stop is located directly after the tram turns away from the river. If you are not staying at a hotel (i.e. a private residence), you must register with the local police within 24 hours of arrival. Failure to register may result in a fine or possible removal.
By plane

Sarajevo Airport () is located 6.1km southwest of the railway station, in the suburb of Butmir. The following airlines operate service to/from Sarajevo Airport:
National Carrier has the largest network (Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Gothenburg-Landvetter, Istanbul-Atatürk, Stockholm-Arlanda, Zürich),
Adria Airways (Ljubljana),
Austrian Airlines (Vienna),
Croatia Airlines (Zagreb),
Germanwings (Cologne/Bonn, Stuttgart),
Jat Airways (Belgrade),
Lufthansa (Munich),
Malév Hungarian Airlines (Budapest),
Norwegian (Oslo-Rygge, Stockholm-Arlanda seasonal), and
Turkish Airlines (Istanbul-Atatürk)
Getting to/from the airport by direct public transportation has been made significantly easier with route operating directly to the city centre. Alternatively, you can take Bus #36 to Nedžarići (1.6 km). The bus stop is located on the main road outside the airport parking lot. At Nedžarići, you can change for a tram to the city centre (1.6 km). Bus #36 runs about every 30 minutes. Service hours are 06:00-23:00 Mon-Fri, 06:00-08:00 and 14:00-18:00 Sat and 08:00-15:00 Sun. Taxi fares to/from the airport are surprisingly expensive for the short distance, an alternative is to take a taxi to the tram terminus at Ilidža and then take the tram into the city centre (1.6 KM).
By train

From/To Hungary A train now leaves Budapest (Déli pu. station) daily at 09:56, arriving in Sarajevo at 21:20. One-way ticket costs more than the return ticket (€53,20). There is a dining car, but it is only operational until the train reaches Pécs and only takes Hungarian Forint. Bring some food as you otherwise will not have access to buy any for the duration of the trip after Pécs, which is over 9 hours. Typically, it departs from platform 1 and the first two cars are for Sarajevo, which may not be hooked up when the initial train arrives. So wait and do not panic. You will be bothered at least four times for your passport, and around four times for your ticket. The return train departs Sarajevo daily at 06:55 for Budapest, via Osijek and Pécs, costing 105.90 KM. It arrives at Déli pu. station in Budapest at 18:10. For more information visit Hungarian State Railways .
From/to Serbia

Trains operate between Sarajevo and Belgrade, leaving Belgrade daily at 08:15 and arriving in Sarajevo at 17:30. The trip costs 2267.20 RSD one way. The train passes through Croatia, so your passport will be checked four times. The return train departs Sarajevo daily at 11:35 to Belgrade arriving there at 20:09. For more information visit Serbian Railways .
From Croatia

There are two daily trains between Sarajevo and Zagreb, as follows: A train leaves Zagreb daily at 08:55, arriving in Sarajevo at 18:05. This train continues onto Ploče, arriving there at 22:15 The return train to Zagreb, via Zenica, Doboj and Banja Luka, departs Sarajevo at 10:27 (having started in Ploče at 06:00). It arrives in Banja Luka at 15:24 and finally into Zagreb at 19:45. Tickets cost 22 KM one way, 26 KM return. The train does NOT have a dining car on board, though men with trolleys selling food and drink will board the train at various points on the journey. Be advised to bring supplies beforehand! A night train leaves Zagreb at 21:25 arriving in Sarajevo at 06:39. The return train leaves Sarajevo at 21:27 and arrives in Zagreb at 06:42. While this train occasionally operates with a couchette car, the inconveniently-timed border crossing from Sarajevo to Zagreb (ensuring you won’t get a full night’s sleep) remains! Travelling on this train has the benefit of comfort (as opposed to the bus journey taking almost the same time), or the cost factor of flying and a night’s accommodation in either city. Be careful (as with all overnight rail travel in Europe), that thieves may operate on the train, stealing passports, money and mobile phones.
From Ploče via Mostar

There is another train route from Ploče in Croatia to Sarajevo via Mostar. One of the most beautiful and scenic rail routes in Europe, travelling through lakes and mountains with many tunnels and switchbacks. Trains depart Ploče daily:
06:00, arriving in Sarajevo at 10:15, via Mostar at 07:58
17:00, arriving in Sarajevo at 20:59, via Mostar at 18:38
Trains from Sarajevo to the south:
07:05, arriving in Ploče at 11:00, via Mostar at 09:24
18:18, arriving in Ploče at 22:15, via Mostar at 20:41
Single tickets from Sarajevo to Mostar cost 9.90 KM (return: 14.10 KM). Additional trains operate each day to the town of Konjic (about half way between the two cities). Holders of an ISIC student card can get a 30% discount. See the Croatian Railways website for more information.
By car

Roads in Bosnia are often only a single lane in either direction, and due to the mountainous topography tend to be very windy and speed limits are lower (mostly 80kph). Beware of trucks and people dangerously overtaking on any road. There are many tunnels, and you must always drive with your lights ON (day or night).
From Zagreb (Croatia) – taking direction to Slavonski Brod – Derventa – Doboj – Zenica – Sarajevo
From Adriatic Sea – taking ferry Ancona – Zadar, then by car Zadar – Split – Metkovic – Mostar – Sarajevo.
From Belgrade (Serbia) – taking direction to Sabac – Zvornik – Vlasenica – Sokolac – Sarajevo.

** GEA Tours (Sarajevo and Kneza Milosa 65, Belgrade) Belgrade and Podgorica, ☎ ☎ +381 11 2686, +381 635,2686, +381 622,2643, +381 840, +381 268 5043, Price: A single journey between Sarajevo and Belgrade costs €30 and it takes about 5 hours and a half to 6 hours.
By bus

There are two bus stations in Sarajevo. The main bus station (‘autobusna stanica’, by the train station) serves Croatia and most other international destinations, as well as destinations within the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. It is in the end of number 1 tram line that takes you to the old town (1.60 KM). There is also another bus station in Eastern (Serb-dominated) Sarajevo on the outskirts of the city serving the Republika Srpska and destinations in both Serbia and Montenegro. To get to this bus station (called ‘Lukavica’ or ‘Istočno (Источно) Sarajevo’) it is probably easiest to book/order a taxi (cost from the Turkish Quarter was around 15KM in September 2005). If you prefer public transport, use 103 and 107 bus/trolleybus, or the 31E, exit at the last station, and ask people how to get to Lukavica bus station (buses and trolleybuses to the city centre depart from a terminal around 200m from where the international buses arrive). Be warned that Lukavica is the name of suburb/district, not just the bus station! In this bus station, Cyrillic script is prevalent so you should probably check the spelling of your destination. If you need Bosnian currency there is a Visa/Mastercard cash machine (bankomat) in the nearby Tom shopping centre. At the main street in central Sarajevo there is an Eurolines office near the cathedral between the old bazaar and the city centre where is possible to get bus tickets to any other country, also it is possible to get ticket to any other major cities in Bosnia like Mostar although they do not run the services, they only provide the tickets. A ticket to Zagreb costs €30, May 2008 prices and it runs three times a day. Lines tend to be much shorter, and the staff have a much stronger command of English. This can be helpful as if you do not speak Bosnian well, it can be rather hard to get good advice from the bus station. Double-check with the tourist office as they can often confirm the existence of a route or timetable that the staff at the bus station have denied! From the main bus station, there are several buses a day to/from Mostar which also stop at Konjic and Jablanica along the way. These leave at 06:00, 07:00, 07:35, 08:00, 08:15, 09:00, 09:30, 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 14:30, 15:30 and up to 18:00, and journey time is approximately two and a half hours. Single tickets cost 13.50KM, return tickets are 19KM. There are also buses to Split (5-6 hours) and a daily bus to Dubrovnik which leaves at 07:00 and costs 40-160KN. There are several buses a day from the main bus station to Banja Luka. These leave at 05:00, 07:55, 09:15, 14:30, 15:30 and 16:30. Journey time is approximately 5 hours. The bus ride from Lukavica bus station to Podgorica in Montenegro takes 7 hours but is an absolutely amazing ride through some wonderful countryside on the route Lukavica-Trnovo-Rataj-Foca-Brod-Hum-Goransko-Niksic-Danilovgrad-Podgorica. As of September 2009, buses leave at 08:15, 09:00, 14:00 and 22:30. Cost is 35 KM (July 2008), which is about €18. Cost is about 40KM (Sept 2009) to Budva. Payment in Euro is accepted. Buses to Tuzla leave from the main bus station approximately every hour every day. The journey takes approximately 3 hours, and costs around 11 KM (June 2006). There is a daily bus to Graz and Vienna (Centrotrans/Eurolines), leaving from the main bus station at 08:00, reaching Graz at 19:45 and Vienna around 2 hours later. A one-way ticket is €44 (note that when I asked for a cheaper student ticket, the seller told me that this includes only Bosnian students). You will have to pay the driver 2 KM to transport luggage. There are frequent stops on the way, including for food and toilets. Do not rely on this “food stops” very much as the drivers stop at the places like local coffee etc. The problem is that it is not any petrol station and you have to have the currency of the country where you are. The longest 30 min. stop is at one village local coffee in Croatia, and if you don’t have any Croatian money, you’ll be waiting in front of the bus for 30 min. unable to buy anything but coffee or non-alcoholic drinks. Do not waste your time in Sarajevo if you want to travel with Eurolines and buy your ticket ASAP because the buses to European Union use to be very crowded. There is a bus every day to Pristina in Kosovo at 22:00 from the main bus station. The bus is listed on the station schedule as traveling to Novi Pazar, Serbia. From there it travels on to Pristina. You can buy the ticket to Novi Pazar at the bus station, or from the Eurolines office mentioned above, where you can pay with credit card. It should also be noted that the second ticket does not seem to include a seat, so even if asked don’t leave your seat if a new passenger asks you to. There were quite a few people standing the whole second part of the trip, so don’t end up in that situation. There was no fee for luggage for the whole journey. Once on the bus when your ticket is collected you can tell the controller that you are going to Pristina. The price from Novi Pazar to Pristina is 10 KM or €5, and payment is possible in Marks, Euros, or Serbian dinars. The bus arrives in Novi Pazar around 05:00, and Pristina around 10:00, with a stop in Mitrovica along the way. Another possibility is to book a bus to Podgorica in Montenegro, and then travel from there to Pristina. From Pristina to Sarajevo, the bus leaves daily at 18:30.
The journey to Belgrade goes through amazing scenery, takes about 7-9 hours and was 28 KM (bought from the bus driver) in September 2005. The bus departs from Lukavica bus station in Eastern Sarajevo. There are several buses a day. There is also a daily service from the main bus station which departs at 06:00, costs 43 KM. There are many bus lines linking most towns and cities in Bosnia and Hercegovina. See Centrotrans for details (in Bosnian only). Check the transport sections of other destinations for more information. From Germany you can go by Euroliner (Centrotrans is part of it), have a look on Touring.de . On all intercity buses you pay a fee for luggage. This fee of €1 per piece of luggage is paid to the driver upon boarding. Some drivers are rather picky about being paid in exact change in the correct currency (sometimes a local currency, at other instances requesting to be paid in Euros) and sometimes also refuse to be paid in too small coins. So keep some change ready. A compilation of departure times from the main station can be found here:

Hitch hiking

From Mostar, hitching a ride through the beautiful mountains up the M-17 road to Sarajevo is quite easy. Make sure you have a sign though and a Bosnian/Croatian/Serbian language phrasebook would be useful. If you have trouble getting out of Mostar, change the sign to Jablanica where traffic will branch of NW to Banja Luka and then hitch on to Sarajevo from Jablanica. Sarajevo is a long thin city so try to get a lift into the centre. If not, get one at least to the tram tracks that go there from the west of the city limits.
Get around

The centre of Sarajevo is served by a spinal tram network which makes a counter clockwise loop around the central district (the first in the Austro-Hungarian Empire, opened in the mid-1870s) and a number of trolley-bus and bus lines which fan out into the suburbs. Tickets should be purchased in advance from kiosks labeled tisak on the street or from the driver, where they cost slightly more (around 1.80 KM). Tickets should be validated upon boarding the vehicle and are valid for a one way trip only. Changing tram or bus means validating a new ticket. A day card valid for unlimited travel on all local public transport in zone A is available for about 5 KM. Please note that inspectors board public transport very frequently. The local transit network is operated by GRAS. More information including timetables can be found at the website: . To reach the Tunnel museum in Butmir you can take the tram to the terminus at Ilidža and change there for bus 32 to Butmir. Leave the bus at Butmir, where the bus turns around to go back, near two small graveyards. From there you cross the bridge on your left hand facing the airport into Tuneli Street. A better option could be to catch a taxi from the tram terminal. In Sarajevo, street signs are few and far between, and small and on the sides of buildings too far away to see when you’re standing on a street corner. Building numbers are more or less consecutive but don’t follow the “hundreds” styles of the United States, e.g., 23 Bjestiva street may be blocks from 27 Bjestiva street. An excellent map of Sarajevo is available at bookstores, all of which are located downtown and not open early or late or on holidays. Maps aren’t sold in gas stations or other stores. Alternatively, the kiosk next to the Latin Bridge (a.k.a. the Princip Bridge) also sells maps. Lastly, asking Sarajevans for directions is an exercise in futility. People don’t know the names of streets a block from the building they’ve lived in all their lives. However, they won’t tell you this, and as a rule will point you in some direction, usually not the right direction. Taxi drivers can’t be expected to find anything but the most obvious addresses unless you tell them where to go, in Bosnian. So buy the map before you go to Sarajevo, and when you get there walk around a bit instead of taking taxis. It’s a small, beautiful city with many landmarks. Getting lost is next to impossible if you have the map, and maybe a compass. Be careful taking taxis from the main train or bus station and the airport. The well-known “taxi scam” operates in Sarajevo, where the unsuspecting tourist will be taken to a more expensive hotel than the one he or she has asked to be taken to, and the driver and receptionist will swear that the new arrival is in fact in the right place. Many accommodation options, even the cheapest, will offer a pickup from wherever you arrive, and this is usually free or at a very minimal cost.
See

Old Town
Latin Bridge
Views from Surrounding Hills
Yellow Fortress
Cemeteries
Markale Market Place (It is a big yellow building)
Vrelo Bosne
Vijecnica (City Hall) Obala Kulina Bana,
Morica Han (Morica Inn) Saraci (Old town)
Sebilj (Fountain) Bascarsilja (Old town)
Museums

Sarajevo’s museums are in disrepair, due to disputes over which arm of the government is responsible for funding them. However, they are still worth visiting.
Bosnian Historical Museum (100m from the Holiday Inn, just past the turn off to the Central Train Station on the left) Price: 4 KM
National Museum (In a classical building across the road from the Holiday Inn.) Price: 5KM
Sarajevo Tunnel Museum (Taxi from the centre city costs ~17 KM one way. Take the #3 tram to the end of the line from the city centre. Then get a taxi to the Tunnel Museum and walk back to the tram station if it) Price: 5 KM
Sarajevo City Museum (in the Old Town)
Svrzina kuca (Svrzo house) Glođina ulica 8 (200 m north of the old town) Price: 3 KM
Sarajevo Art Gallery (On the third floor of the building south of the Orthodox Cathedral (entrance is down a side street next to the municipal government building, look for the number 8 above the door)) Price: Free
Religious Buildings

Stara pravoslavna crkva (Old Orthodox Church) Mula Mustafe Baseskije (Old town)
Careva dzamija (Emperor´s Mosque) Obala Isa bega ishakovica,
Begova dzamija (Bey
Crkva Sv. Ante (St. Anthony´s Church) Franjevacka,
Do

Sarajevo Football Club (Olympic Stadium)
Events

Sarajevo is a vibrant city that lives all year long. Sonar compiles the city’s regular calendar of events to make it easier to plan your visit.
Sarajevo Film Festival (http://www.sff.ba/)
MESS – International theater festival Sarajevo
Sarajevo Jazz Festival (/)
Sarajevo Winter International Festival (http://www.sarajevskazima.ba/)
Winter Sports

Sarajevo offers excellent possibilities for winter sports, as 40 mins. drive from the town centre you find two Olympic grade mountains: Bjelasnica and Jahorina. With combined over 28 km of ski trail and 5,000 tourist beds, it ofers what the hardcore winter sporter needs: & http://www.jahorina.org/en/
Buy

Look through a solid collection of historical literature at the old-school TKD Sahinpasic bookstore on Soukbunar 12. If you can’t afford the carpets and local copperware on sale there’s cool t-shirts for 20Km in the souk area. One such shop is Maloprodaja, Saraci 21. Next to the Emperor´s Mosque you’ll find the small shoemaker’s shop “Andar”. Besides old fashioned stuff they have some nice shoes, I got one pair of handmade sandals (Roman style) for 45 KM.
Budget

Sarajevo has countless shops selling burek (meat pie, sold in layers by weight or by piece), ćevapi and pizza stores. Pita (burek, sirnica, krompirusa, tikvenica, zeljanica etc) is a filo type pasty pie generally offered in several varieties – meat (meso), cheese (Bosnian cheese called “young cheese” similar to ricotta and never aged) (sirnica), cheese and spinach (zeljanica), pumpkin (tikvinica), and spicy potato (krompirusa). It is usually served and consumed with a traditional yogurt sauce which resembles sour cream. Most Cevapi places do not serve alcohol.
Ago Fast Food Pizzeria Mula Mustafe Baseskije 17,
Mid-range

Bambus #32, Ferhadija bb 557-190,
Bosanska Kuca Bravadziluk 3, Bascarsija, Price: Muckalica, a veal broth, is delicious and good value at €5
Capucino Grbavica (near river Miljacka in green area.)
Hacienda Bazardzani 3, (http://www.haciendasarajevo.com/) Price: 8-12KM for a main course
Inat Kuca Veliki Alifakovac 1, Bascarsija,
Karuzo Mehmeda Spahe bb,
Mrkva
Ottoman Kebap House Price: Entrees: 7-12 KM; Sargile: 8-10KM, depending on the flavor.
Park Princeva Iza Hrida br. 7, ☎ +387 61 222 708,
Sarajevo Brewery
Vegehana Ferhadija 39 (opposite the Bazaar on Ferhadija.
) ☎ +387 33 570 682, (http://www.vegehana.com)
Zeljo 4 different locations,
Splurge

Moja Mala Kuhinja
Cafes

Connectum/Klub Knjige Veliki Curciluk 27, ☎ +387 33 574 700, +387 33 574 701,
Opera Bar/Café B Sarajeva 25 (opposite the city) (http://www.caffebaropera.ba/) Price: Espresso: 2 KM
Bars

Central Cafe Štrosmajerova 1, Bascarsija, (http://www.centralcafe.co.ba/)
Tre Bicchieri Wine Store & Tasting Bar Cobanija 3, ☎ + 387 33 222654, (http://www.uva.ba/)
Clubs

Baghdad Cafe Bazardzani 4 (across from Hacienda in Bascarsija) (http://www.baghdadcafe.ba/)
Budget

If you arrive late at night, the weather is right and you have a tent with you, you can camp quite undisturbedly in the park next to the Miljacka river. Chances are that there already some more tents put up Follow the road on the west side of town, stay close to the river and end up around . In summer there is a public toilet. Be aware that this is wild camping, and there is no guard or anything. There are numerous houses around town offering accommodation in rooms for as little as 3 KM per night, although they can be hard to find. Best bet is to go to one of the accommodation bureaus near the old town and find somewhere for a night (at their prices, with their 500% markup), then arrange with the landlord/lady to stay on for their own rate. When you get tired of being bundled in cars by various agencies to look at various far-flung and grotty rooms, nip one door down from Sartour’s office on Mula Mustafe Bašeskije. Down a passage is an internet cafe with a big sign saying “ROOMS”. They’re cheap (€30 for a twin room) and cozy and clean enough, you get a little terrace and the staff are very friendly. Can be a bit noisy from the cafe and aircon though, but the location, virtually opposite the central square and right near the tram stop, is perfect. ‘Sarajevo Accommodation’ , run by Mersad Bronja aka ‘Miki’, arranges overnight stays in private rooms as well as hostels, pensions and hotels in Sarajevo and its surroundings.
Haris Youth Hostel Vratnik Mejdan 29., ☎ +387 33 23 25 63, (http://www.hyh.ba/)
Hostel & Guesthouse SA Hrvatin 15, ☎ Arijan: +387 61 54 89 34 or +387 33 23 88 91, (http://www.hostelguesthousesa.hostel.com/) Price: From €12
Hostel City Centre Sarajevo Saliha Hadzihuseinovica MUVEKITA No. 2/3 (LOCATION – http://www.hcc.ba/sarajevo/en/location.html) ☎ +387 33 203 213 (24h), (http://www.hcc.ba/) Price: Dorm bed: €15, Dbl room €20
Hostel Ljubičica (in the Old town, just next to the tram station) (http://www.hostelljubicica.net/) Price: 23 BAM/dorm
Hostel Posillipo Besarina Cikma 5 (almost directly opposite the fountain () ☎ +387 62 910546, Price: 30KM
Hostel/Prenociste Kod Keme Mali Ćurčiluk 15 (in the heart of Bascarsija) (http://www.hostel.co.ba/index.htm) Price: Single: €15
Pansion Sebilj Obala Kulina baba between Careve cuprija and Novi most (at the Miljacka riverside) (http://www.pansionsebilj.ba/eng/aboutus.html) Price: €15
Sartour Hostel (http://www.sartour-hostel-sarajevo.ba/) Price: Dorm bed: €10-15
Hotel KAN, (near the bus station), ☎ +387 33 220 531. Single to quadruple bed- bedrooms as well as apartments. Restaurant on site and personal assistance with sight seeing. From €20.
Mid-range

Garni Hotel Konak Mula Mustafe Başeskije 54 (Take the number 1 tram from the train station to Pigeon Square. Follow the tram tracks west for two blocks, and it will be on your left, look for a red and white sign.) ☎ +387 33 476 900, (http://www.konak.ba/) Price: Single: €50-60; Double: €70-80
Hotel Michele (http://www.hotelmichele.ba/)
Motel Sokak Mula Mustafe Bašeskije 24 (just down the road from the old town central square and the tram stop.) ☎ +387 33 570 355 / +387 (0)33 446 344, (http://www.sokak-motel.com/) Price: Double: €68
MD Apartmani Bistrik 84 (200 m from the Old Town in the neighborhood of Bistrik)
Pansion Ulitza Mali Curciluk 15 (in the old centre of town) ☎ +387 33 531140,
Pansion Cobanija Price: €50
Skend Apartment (15 minutes walk from the centre) ☎ +387 61 537775, or, for English, +387 91 2523834, (http://www.skend.ba/en/index.html) Price: Single: €35; Double: €50; Triple: €70
Splurge

Hotel Bristol Sarajevo Fra Filipa Lastrica 2 (15 minutes by car from airport, 5 min walk to Parliament, 5 min by car to Old Town) ☎ +387 33 705 000, (http://www.bristolsarajevo.com) Price: Superior Room from BAM 160.00
Holiday Inn (5 minute walk the train and bus station, and about 10 minutes) (http://www.holiday-inn.com/sarajevo) Price: €118
Radon Plaza Džemala Bijedića 185 (at the bottom of Avaz tower, next to the BMW showroom) ☎ +387 33 752 900, (http://www.radonplazahotel.ba/?jezik=eng)
Stay safe

There are still many minefields and unexploded ordnances in the Sarajevo area and its surrounding suburbs. Never go into damaged buildings (which are really rarely seen) and always stick to paved surfaces avoiding grassy hills that surround the city . Areas that are not cleared are marked by yellow tape or signs, but still not all minefields have been identified due to the lack of resources and the lack of International help. Paved roads are always safe. Crime against foreigners is very rare and the city is safe to visit. (As with any country in former Yugoslavia, be careful not to get into sensitive discussions about politics with people you do not know, but even those can be very educational when you come across a person who’s willing to discuss it.) Be aware of pick pockets who usually operate on public transportation vehicles. A final point on health and safety is that the air in Sarajevo can be noticeably thick with pollution, so that asthmatics or those with other chest problems may find themselves short of breath a lot of the time, particularly at night. Please do ensure you have ample medication, just in case.
Cope

France Mehmed bega Kapetanović Ljubušaka 18,, ☎ +387 33 282 050, (http://www.ambafrance-ba.org/spip.php?rubrique1) Greece Obala Maka Dizdara 1, ☎ +387 33 211 794, fax: +387 33 211 756, (http://agora.mfa.gr/ba59) Macedonia Splitska 57, Sarajevo, ☎ +387 33 810 760, (http://www.missions.gov.mk/sarajevo) United States Alipasina 43, ☎ +387 33 445 700, fax: +387 33 221 837, ( http://sarajevo.usembassy.gov/)
Get out

On the Neretva river, 43 km southwest of Sarajevo lies the town Konjic where in 2011 the Tito bunker was opened for public entrance with the bijenale contemporary art exhibition. Some of the places worth seeing when you are in Bosnia also are: Srebrenica, Mostar, Bihac, Una river, Jajce.