Bosnia’s new cycle trail is a big ‘open-air museum’ for budget travellers. The new 100 mile cycle route, the Ciro Trail, starts at Dubrovnik and follows the old Austro-Hungarian railway line south through Hutovo Blato Nature Park, and finishes at Mostar.
The cycle route is mostly flat and traffic-free, and goes past abandoned railways stations, Orthodox monasteries and mountain watchtowers. Perfect for budget travellers you can sleep in hostels along the way, and save a fortune on your journey to Mostar.
How to start your journey
You can hire a bicycle when you arrive in Dubrovnik airport, which is conveniently only ten miles from the start of the Ciro Trail. Renting a bike is an affordable way to go on the trail, especially if you don’t want to hire a guide.
If you want to spend some time in Dubrovnik before cycling, then you can do so cheaply by staying in one of the city’s fantastic hostels.
History of the Ciro Trail
The old Austro-Hungarian train route was closed in 1976 and was abandoned altogether during the Yugoslavian civil war in the 1990’s. The Ciro Trail aims to bring the area back to life by showcasing its natural beauty to backpackers and outdoor explorers.
From Dubrovnik to Ravno, the landscape is remote – most towns were abandoned during the war – so it’s important to bring food and drink. After you depart Ravno, the trail feeds through Hutovo into the Neretva valley, which has plenty of cafes and shops.
Make sure you check out the Kravice waterfalls and stop for lunch at Blagaj village on your way to Mostar. Here you can have lunch opposite the Dervish monastery, which is considered one of the most mysterious places in all of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
It’s open to visitors all-year-round and serves cold drinks, tea and Turkish coffee in a beautiful garden overlooking the source of the river.
After 100 miles of cycling you’ll finally arrive in Mostar. Here you can relax and watch your fellow travellers dive into the Neretva river. At this point, you’ll probably want a clean and comfortable bed to rest your legs. You can sleep cheap with you book with HostelsClub and we have excellent dorms and beds available in Mostar for under 10 Euros a night 🙂
*All images by © 2014-2016 ĆIRO projekt, sva prava zadržana