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Thursday, 24 July 2014

The Exit adventure: My time in Serbia and Montenegro

Novi Sad, Serbia
I seriously do not know where to begin with this post. For those who do not know, I had spent the past 10 days (9-18 July) camping in Eastern Europe (4 nights in Novi Sad, Serbia – 2 nights in Montenegro) all in the name of a music festival! I always try not to have expectations of countries I have never visited before as it makes your travel more of an experience and you are then less prone to disappointments during la voyage. Exit festival without a doubt is the largest festival I have ever been to with 200,000 people filling Novi Sad’s Petrovaradin Fortress every night. Exit village/campsite was located just a 20-30 minute walk away from the festival venue making the walk back to camp at 6am alongside other EXIT festival goers bearable. I am so glad I camped as camping only added to the adventure.

En route to the Petrovaradin Fortress

After arriving at Belgrade airport we took the Exit Trip coach to the campsite in Novi Sad, which is a 2 hours journey from the airport. When noticing the streets and shops after we had set up our tent on camp I felt as if I had been teleported back a decade or two as many of the architecture and designs didn’t look as modern as a lot of the structures we are used to seeing do in the UK, I liked this stripped and laidback aspect of the town. During my time in Novi Sad, I found that the local people were very friendly (as well as fascinated by my complexion). They were willing to help a lot of the time even though many people spoke solely Serbian. In Serbia they use Serbian Dinars as their currency, which works out as 147.00 RSD to the British pound. We visited a Serbian bar with some German friends we met on camp before making our way to see UK act Rudimental headline the second night of the festival.  We unfortunately missed the first half of their show. I wish I got to see more of Serbia, but the honest truth is a lot of my time spent there consisted of sleeping or eating before or after 5-6 hours spent living it up at Exit fest!

Some Serbian apartments

After the 12 hour coach ride to Southeastern European country Montenegro from Novi Sad, we finally arrived in the hours of the morning around 10am and I couldn’t believe the country’s scenery of ever lasting atmospheric mountains surrounding us as we arrived at Jaz Beach, where the sequel festival Sea dance took place. After we put managed to put our tent up successfully by ourselves at the campsite, which was only a few yards away from the Sea Dance main stage. We decided to take a tour into Budva town with our newly met camping neighbours who fascinatingly were from different parts of the globe, Australia, Poland and USA. It always nice meeting people of different nationalities abroad, I find there is always a lot to converse about and you are not worrying over an awkward moment. Budva was only a 5 minute bus journey from Jaz beach costing 1 euro each way (yep – different currency here! Overall the scenery here is stunning the landscape set up almost resembled Freetown, Sierra Leone to me, with the odd dotted houses built throughout the a staggering levels of greenery before viewing mountains. Montenegro was slightly more costly than Serbia but I had predicted so as they use Euros. However I say this, we managed to find a nice family owned restaurant that were serving a 2-course meal for 6 euros. Montenegro which means ‘black mountain’ are well known for producing the fruity yet strong brandy names ‘Rakija’ which the restaurant boss generously gave us multiple dosages of on the house. Although I cute finish 1 and a half out of the three cute potion glasses they were served in. It was not a bad way at all of welcoming us to Montenegro!

Camping neighbours go out for lunch
Grape Rakija! 
Us and the lovely waiters at Pero's Restaurant, Budva Montenegro
Sea Dance Festival camp site - Budva, Montenegro


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