|Travel info - How to Get to Belgrade|
Travelling to Belgrade
Belgrade is a crossroads of Eastern and Western Europe, which lead via the Morava-Vardar and Nišava-Marica valleys to the Aegean coast, to Asia Minor and the Middle East.
Belgrade lies on the Danube, a waterway connecting Western and Central European countries to the countries of south-eastern and eastern Europe. With the construction of the Đerdap artificial lake and hydroelectric power plant, Belgrade became a river and a dock for river and ocean-going vessels. Its harbour is visited by ships from the Black Sea, and with the opening of the Rhine-Main-Danube Canal it became a central point of the most important waterway in Europe, that connectş the North Sea, the Atlantic and the Black Sea.
Belgrade railway junction is an intersection where 7 main railway lines carrying international traffic and 5 local lines meet.
The two coach stations (BAS and Lasta) have a total of 80 departure platforms and 20 arrival platforms, with a daily turnover of more than 1,400 coaches.
Nikola Tesla Airport is equipped to handle 5,500,000 passengers annually and is connected via regular routes to 39 destinations worldwide, served both by local carriers and by 18 foreign airlines.
Belgrade is serviced by Nikola Tesla International Airport , about 12 kilometers west of the city center, and is the home base of Jat Airways – Serbia's flag carrier airline – which flies to nearly 40 destinations worldwide. Other major airlines fly to Belgrade, such as Air France, British Airways and Lufthansa. Discount and no-frills carriers such as Ryanair, EasyJet and Wizz, however, have yet to make their entrance in the Serbian market, which makes the cost of flying to and from the city a bit higher than other destinations, although Germanwings does have a number of less expensive flights to Germany and Norwegian Air is another low cost airline operating to Belgrade.
There are shuttle busses to the city center from the airport, operated by both Jat and Lasta. These will pick up and drop off passengers at the Slavija square-final stop (Jat) and the central train station (Lasta). The fares are about 200 RSD (~€2.50) for the Jat shuttle, and 80 RSD (~€1) for the Lasta bus.
Avoid taxi service being offered by drivers in the airport terminal, the drivers won't use their meters, and will charge many time the normal fare. Metered taxis can be rung in or picked up from the stand outside; just be sure to chose one with a roof sign indicating it's a city-regulated (see below) radio taxi, and insist that the trip be metered. Alternatively, you can go upstairs to the departure section and catch one of the taxis dropping off passengers. They will be happy for the return ride, and the fare should cost around 800 - 1000 RSD (~€10-13) to the city.
There is also city bus service to and from the airport. Line #72 from Zeleni Venac in central Belgrade runs twice an hour, and costs 45 dinars (~€0.5). The trip is around 40 minutes, but is decidedly less comfortable than a shuttle bus or taxi. A more comfortable city bus option is the E7 minibus, going from the airport to Kralja Aleksandra Boulevard in the city center, stopping at the major hotels (Continental, Hyatt and Park) along the way. The buses are comfortable and air-conditioned. The fare is 60 RSD (~€0.75), which is paid on-board; be sure to tell the driver what your destination is before departure.
The Central Train station is located, not surprisingly, in the city center. All national and international trains stop here.
There are several international train connections from Budapest-Vienna and Zagreb-Ljubljana-Munich-Zurich, Normally, trains should not be too late (seldom more than 1 hour), and usually are very safe. Expect the overnight train from/to Budapest to be overcrowded in summer.
There are also direct (day and night) trains from Bucharest, Kiev, Moscow, Skopje, Thessaloniki, Istanbul (21h) and Sofia and an overnight train from
Bar, Montenegro to Belgrade. It arrives early in the morning (around 7). This is a
reasonably comfortable train with sleeper cars and nice views (even at night). Upgrade to the cabins with two beds only for 100% improvement. Prices are pretty reasonable.
For timetables and all other infos check website of national career Serbian Railways (telephone for information +381 11 360289).
Belgrade's central bus station is next-door to the central train station, in Karađorđeva street. Whilst coach service to national and international destinations is frequent, departure times are usually reliable, but arrival times may be not. Timetables aren't clearly posted; the timetables that are there are in Serbian only, so ask for information inside the terminal.
Ticket reservations and purchases are made in the terminal building.
When buying a bus ticket, you will also receive a token to enter the platform area, for national travel. For international travel, you will be given a paper stub to present at the platform gate.
Be aware that most coach drivers will charge you a fee for baggage handling in the cargo compartment, though this is not a uniform practice with international travel. Also be aware that drivers rarely speak English or any other foreign language. Inform yourself about your trip prior to departure as much as you can; if in doubt, ask a fellow passenger for assistance.
Coach travel in Serbia is a hit-and-miss experience; whilst there is a huge number of companies to chose from, not all of them have clean, modern coach fleets, particularly for travel within Serbia or to neighbouring Montenegro. Coaches are more often clean and modern when embarking on trips to Croatia and Western Europe.
For international trips to the rest of Europe, Lasta is the Eurolines carrier.
For long trips, drivers usually stop for 15 minutes breaks roughly every two hours, though this isn't by any means guaranteed. Pack appropriately with food and bottled water. When disembarking on breaks in the trip, make sure to either secure your belongings, or take them with you.
Coming north from Subotica and Novi Sad, the E-75 highway is recommended, as well as driving to Belgrade from the south. There is also a major road called Ibarska magistrala, which provides approach from south-west (direction of Montenegro, for example). From the west, use the E-70 highway (from Zagreb, Ljubljana etc.). Major roads can be used coming east and north-east from Vršac and Zrenjanin.
Highways have toll stations, which are moderately priced. As of summer 2007, there is major roadwork on the E-75 highway north, so expect occasional delays. Serbia's only highways are parts of E-70 and E-75 roads and the highway passes right through Belgrade without a bypass, causing large unavoidable traffic jams on the Gazela bridge and at the Mostar junction.
Public Enterprise "Roads of Serbia " is responsible for maintenance, protection, usage, development and management of state roads of I and II category in the Republic of Serbia.
Belgrade lies where the rivers Sava and the Danube meet. Passenger ships enable you to reach every place along the Danube in a very convenient and meditative manner with many fascinating attractions along it, but it is a quite slow and rather expensive way of travelling.
Port of Belgrade (Luka Beograd) is a cargo port on the Danube in Belgrade, Serbia. It is located in the center of Belgrade, near Pančevo Bridge (Pančevački most). The port also manages the passenger terminal on the nearby Sava. Port transfer capacity is 3,000,000 tons per year and 10 000 TEUs. It also has 300,000 m² of warehouses and 650,000 m² of open-air storage areas.
The Port of Belgrade has operated on this location, and under this name, since 1961. There is a plan to move the port to the other side of the Danube, providing more space for the development of Belgrade.