Tuesday, October 18, 2022

[NOVI SAD] Novi Sad Boi Daytrip


Novi Sad, am I a decade too late? The only reason I am aware that Novi Sad exists is because one of the Polyglot Conferences/Gatherings were held there after I attended the one held in Berlin in 2014. It’s been ages! And so, somehow, I’ve always wanted to visit. If not for this, I would have just gone to Subotica instead because it seems more popular. For this particular trip, I only had room for one. Subotica will have to wait until I get a Schengen Visa so I can just cross the border to Hungary right after the visit.


I rely on a website called getbybus to purchase my bus tickets in the Balkans. Based on the currency they charge you in, I believe it is a Croatian company. So far, everything has been flawless. Sometimes they ask you to print the ticket. Most of the time, a screenshot of the QR Code will suffice. Anyway, the bus station was around 20 minutes away from my Belgrade hotel on foot. The trip to Novi Sad took a little over 2 hours because the bus stopped at small villages along the way. The trip time was reduced to just half of that going back because the bus driver decided to pass through the highway instead.


They say that you can also ride the new high-speed train between Hungary and Serbia to get to Novi Sad. The thing is, the train station in Belgrade is a bit inaccessible, unlike Novi Sad’s which is just right next to the bus station. When you arrive there, check out the giant clock on the façade of the train station if you want to check the time. On the other side is a display train. Across the parking lot is McDonalds if you want to have breakfast. They have free WiFi too so you can research your destinations while eating.


Since I had an entire day to spare, I decided to just walk everywhere despite the distances being too great. You can divide it in two. From the train station, walk for around half an hour to reach the old town by heading South. Novi Sad’s old town is intact and surprised me with the wealth of classic buildings that greeted me when I got there. The first you will see is the Serbian National Theatre. The building itself looks boring but there are benches in front if you want to stop for a while for people watching.


A few cartwheels to the east and you will end up at a square with a monument in the middle. Behind him is the County Government Office. In front of him is the Name of Mary Catholic Church which is hard to miss because of its tall spire. Go past that church and you will end up in a pedestrian street full of restaurants and bars. Marking the crossroads at the end of this street is the Bishop’s Palace shimmering splendidly in its pink and beige façade. To its left is Saint George’s Cathedral, whose interior you can check out for free. It has a nice painting or two inside and a big cross at the garden outside.


After that, head southeast to Dunavski Park to chill there before heading farther east to a bridge called Varadinski Most. Crossing the Danube on this bridge gives you a good vantage point of Petrovaradin Fortress, a hilltop stronghold that serves as one of Novi Sad’s biggest tourist draws in modern times. The hike does not take that long and is not that stressful because the steps are paved and you have gorgeous panoramic scenery all-around you as you ascend. Once on top, you will see a t-shirt shop, some restaurants, and of course, that clock tower that everyone loves.


I believe sunset would be the best time to come over for a visit just to enjoy the red orange hues the sun will showcase. Going earlier leaves you to the mercy of a sun that is stark raving mad, and finding shade is difficult there at the top. Make sure you have enough sunblock on. You can go around the fortress to check out the surrounding views. It’s nice wherever you go anyway. Once done, remember that the walk back to the train station might take a while, so make sure to factor in your departure time unless you want to spend the night here.

[NOVI SAD] Novi Sad Boi Daytrip

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