Breakfast is called Pite – ours was a cheese one, but it also comes with spinach. Delicious!! It’s like a savoury pastry in sausage shapes.
Then, we climb into a mini van and are taken up the hill with the cross in Mostar, where we meet our war veteran guide Xjid. He is excellent and tells us what we are looking at, as we gaze down the hill at Mostar. The three sections that existed during the Bosnian Croat war in the 90s, the area of Mostar that was completely destroyed, and he took us to trenches and bunkers built by war prisoners. He also walked us carefully past some land mines. Yes. Land mines.
Then we were taken to a secret former Yugoslavian hangar – it was kept a secret from the public for 20 years, and had enough supplies for occupants to survive a nuclear attack. It was built secretly in the Cold War. We screamed in the dark to hear how long our voices would echo!
After that, we went to a medieval village with a tower that looked as if it was from Game of Thrones. We climbed up in the heat, making new friends along the way. My bus was a German guy, two French girls, two Irish girls and two English girls. Everyone I have met in the Balkans in hostels is curious, smart, kind and with a great attitude!
A new roommate arrived, obsessed with jumping from the apex of the Mostar bridge which is a Mostar tradition. I learnt that four days ago a guy jumped off, while his wife filmed, and he died upon impact. So it is not to be taken lightly. I won’t be doing it!
We took a little tour to the sniper tower, which involved, to my surprise, climbing over a big wall in the dark to get into an abandoned building that was the former bank of Yugoslavia, and then a sniper tower during the war, as its on the front line. We walked through broken glass, and on stairs without barriers, through walls decorated with graffiti.