Belgrade, the capital and largest city of Serbia, has a rich and diverse history that spans over two millennia. It is one of the oldest cities in Europe and has witnessed numerous conquests, empires, and cultural shifts throughout its existence.

The History of Belgrade

Ancient Period: The area around present-day Belgrade has been inhabited since prehistoric times. The city’s strategic location at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers made it an important trade and military hub. The Celtic tribe of Scordisci settled in the area in the 3rd century BCE, followed by the Roman Empire in the 1st century CE.

Roman and Byzantine Rule: The Romans conquered the area in the 1st century CE and established the fortress of Singidunum, which served as a military stronghold and trading post. Over time, Singidunum grew into an important Roman city and was later incorporated into the Byzantine Empire. The city endured numerous invasions and attacks by various tribes and armies during the turbulent centuries that followed.

Medieval Period: In the 9th century, Belgrade came under the rule of the Slavic tribes, and the Principality of Serbia was established. The city became the capital of Serbia in the 14th century under the Serbian Despotate. During this time, it experienced significant growth and became an important cultural and political centre in the Balkans.

Ottoman Rule: In 1521, Belgrade fell to the Ottoman Empire after a prolonged siege. The Ottomans ruled the city for nearly three centuries, during which Belgrade served as an administrative centre and a stronghold for the Ottoman military presence in the region. The city’s population changed significantly, with the influx of Muslim settlers and the conversion of many locals to Islam.

Habsburg and Austrian Rule: In the early 18th century, the Habsburg Monarchy and the Austrian Empire gained control of Belgrade during the Austro-Turkish War. The city became a battleground between the Habsburgs and the Ottomans, frequently changing hands. The Habsburg rule brought economic and cultural development to Belgrade.

Modern Era: Belgrade became the capital of the newly independent Kingdom of Serbia in 1882. It played a prominent role in the Balkan Wars and World War I, and the Kingdom of Yugoslavia was formed after the war, with Belgrade as its capital. During World War II, the city was occupied by Nazi Germany and suffered heavy damage.

Post-World War II: After the war, Belgrade became the capital of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. The city experienced rapid industrialisation and urbanisation under Marshal Tito’s rule. However, the breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1990s led to a period of instability, economic decline, and armed conflicts.

Contemporary Belgrade: Since the early 2000s, Belgrade has been rebuilding and revitalising itself. The city has undergone significant urban development, with the restoration of historical sites, the construction of modern infrastructure, and the emergence of a vibrant cultural and nightlife scene. Belgrade has become a popular tourist destination, known for its historical landmarks, thriving arts scene, and vibrant atmosphere.

Today, Belgrade stands as a city that blends its diverse past with a modern outlook, reflecting its long and complex history as a crossroads between different civilizations and cultures.

Belgrade – The White Fortress! The capital and largest city of Serbia, and one of the oldest cities in Europe is always popular with our guests.

Belgrade Things To See And Do

Belgrade offers a wide range of attractions and activities for visitors to explore. Here are some popular things to see and do in Belgrade:

Kalemegdan Fortress: Explore the historic Kalemegdan Fortress, which dates to the Roman times. It offers stunning views of the city, picturesque parks, ancient walls, and several museums.

Skadarlija: Wander through the bohemian quarter of Skadarlija, known as the “Montmartre of Belgrade.” It is filled with cobblestone streets, art galleries, traditional Serbian restaurants, and lively cafes.

St. Sava Temple: Visit the impressive St. Sava Temple, one of the largest Orthodox churches in the world. Marvel at its stunning architecture and beautiful interior adorned with mosaics and frescoes.

Ada Ciganlija: Relax and enjoy outdoor activities at Ada Ciganlija, a popular recreational area. It features a lake, sandy beaches, sports facilities, bike trails, and numerous cafes and restaurants.

Nikola Tesla Museum: Discover the life and inventions of Nikola Tesla, one of the greatest scientists and inventors in history. The museum showcases his original artifacts, experiments, and inventions.

National Museum of Serbia: Immerse yourself in Serbian history and culture at the National Museum. It houses a vast collection of archaeological artifacts, artworks, and historical treasures.

Belgrade Fortress Underground: Descend into the hidden tunnels and chambers of the Belgrade Fortress Underground. Take a guided tour to learn about the city’s history, legends, and the fortress’s strategic importance.

Danube and Sava River Cruises: Take a relaxing boat cruise along the Danube and Sava rivers, enjoying panoramic views of Belgrade and its bridges. There are various options available, including sightseeing tours, dinner cruises, and party boats.

Republic Square and Knez Mihailova Street: Explore the vibrant heart of Belgrade at Republic Square. Admire the National Theatre, the statue of Prince Mihailo, and walk down the lively pedestrian street of Knez Mihailova lined with shops, cafes, and historical buildings.

Tito’s Mausoleum: Visit the House of Flowers, the final resting place of Marshal Josip Broz Tito, the former leader of Yugoslavia. The museum showcases Tito’s life, personal belongings, and exhibits related to the history of Yugoslavia.

These are just a few highlights of what Belgrade has to offer. The city also boasts numerous parks, art galleries and charming neighbourhoods that are all absolutely worth exploring.


Sailings Featuring Belgrade

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