If you are planning to visit Belgrad for the first time, I've prepared a list of 12 essential facts about Belgrade, Serbia.
I do hope these facts will be important to help you decide when to visit White City. starting from where is Belgrade, which season will be the best to set up your travel.
Table of Contents
Facts about Belgrade - Location
Belgrade is located in the Central European Pannonian plain, whose terrain is slightly hilly or completely flat (like in the Zemun district).
The coordinates and altitude of Belgrade are:
The official language in Belgrade and Serbia is the Serbian language. It's actually a Southern Slavic language similar to Serbo-Croatian or Slovenian, Macedonian and Bulgarian.
The official alphabets are Cyrillic and Latin. Most people use both alphabets. Tourists will notice that most of the younger people speak very good English but many also speak Spanish, German and Italian.
Belgrade has a moderate continental climate, with four seasons. Autumn is longer than spring, with longer sunny and warm periods – the so-called Indian summer.
Winter is not so severe, with an average of 21 days with temperatures below zero. January is the coldest month, with an average temperature of 0.10C. Spring is short and rainy. Summer arrives abruptly.
The average annual rainfall in Belgrade and its surroundings is 669,5 mm. The rainiest months are May and June. The average annual insolation is 2.096 hours.
Facts about Belgrade - Local Currency
When entering the country, have some cash with you. My advice is to bring few small Euro, USA $ or GBP notes. It can be practical for first expenses like taxi, especially if you coming by night and cannot find immediately exchange office or bank.
Postal and area codes
The postal code of Belgrade is 11000 and the Area calling code is (+381) 011).
However, each city municipality has its own special zip code, which should be used due to the accuracy of delivery, because the same street names appear in several municipalities. For example, the postal code for New Belgrade is 11070 and Zemun has 11080.
Like in most European countries, electricity in Belgrade and Serbia is 220V. Electrical outlets are standard European. If you are coming from the USA, you should bring a 220v/110 converter with you.
Tap water in Belgrade is safe to drink. However, the amount of limescale is a bit high. There are also plenty of bottled water brands offering regular, mildly carbonated, or highly carbonated water.
There are many fountains around Belgrade and in the most of city parks. The drinking water there is safe to drink.
The urban area officially has 1,154,589 inhabitants, and the metropolitan area has 1,639,121. Unofficially it is estimated that there are over 2 million inhabitants.
Belgrade is one of the oldest capitals in the world, with over 7000 years of continuity. Due to its extraordinary location, it has attracted people since the neolithic times, and several neolithic settlements have been found throughout the city territory.
Celts have settled the city around the 4th century B.C. and named it Singidunum. Then came the Romans, developing a luxurious city over the centuries.
In the 5th century A.D., it was destroyed by the Huns and later conquered and reconquered by Goths, Byzantines, Slavs, Bulgarians, Hungarians, Serbs, Turks, Austrians until it finally becomes Serbian again in the nineteenth century.
Facts about Belgrade Time Zone
Belgrade and Serbia are in the CET (Central European Time) zone, same as most of Europe (Excluding Britain, Portugal, Romania, and Greece) – UTC+1.
In summer the Daylight Saving Time (DST) moves it to CEST – UTC+2.
Most shops work from 8 AM to 8 PM during business days and 8 or 9 AM to 3 PM on Saturdays (and Sundays). In the large shopping malls, this period is usually longer, until 10 PM for business days, and in some cases, weekends too.
Grocery stores work usually from 8 AM to 9 or 10 PM, but others work 24h. Greenmarkets work from 8 AM to 5 PM, though many vendors leave around 3 (Sundays even earlier).
Offices usually have standard 9 AM to 5 PM working hours. Smaller banks’ offices tend to have very weird working hours, eg. from 9:30 AM to 1:30 PM one day, to 4:30 PM other days, non-working Fridays… However, most of them have ATMs (cash machines).
- New Year (1-2 January)
- Orthodox Christmas (7-8 January)
- Serbian Statehood Day (15-16 February)
- Orthodox Easter from Good Friday to the second day of Easter (Shifting dates in April)
- Labor Day (1-2 May)
12 Fascinating Facts about Belgrade, Serbia
Capital City: Belgrade is the capital and largest city of Serbia. It serves as the country's political, economic, and cultural center.
Historical Significance: Belgrade is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities in Europe, with a history dating back over 7,000 years. It has been a strategic location throughout history, witnessing various empires and conflicts.
Geographical Belgrade Location: Belgrade is situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. This strategic location has made it an important trading hub and a key transportation link between Central and Southeast Europe.
- Belgrade Architecture: The city boasts a diverse architectural mix due to its turbulent history. It features a blend of Ottoman, Austro-Hungarian, and modernist architectural styles, showcasing different periods and influences.
Kalemegdan Fortress: One of Belgrade's most famous landmarks is the Kalemegdan Fortress, situated at the confluence of the Danube and Sava Rivers. It offers stunning views, houses several museums, and serves as a central park for locals and tourists.
Nightlife and Entertainment: Belgrade is known for its vibrant nightlife and entertainment scene. The city offers numerous clubs, bars, and live music venues, making it a popular destination for partygoers.
Belgrade Parks and Green Spaces: Belgrade boasts many parks and green areas, providing residents and visitors with spaces for relaxation and recreation. The Ada Ciganlija island and park, located on the Sava River, is a popular spot for outdoor activities.
Belgrade Culture and Arts: Belgrade has a thriving cultural scene, with numerous theaters, galleries, and museums. The National Museum, Museum of Contemporary Art, and Belgrade Philharmonic Orchestra are among its prominent cultural institutions.
Sports: Belgrade has a strong sporting tradition. Belgrade Football (soccer) is particularly popular, with two major football clubs, Red Star Belgrade and Partizan Belgrade, enjoying a passionate following. The city also hosts various international sports events.
Belgrade Fortress: In addition to the Kalemegdan Fortress, Belgrade is home to the Belgrade Fortress, located on the hill of the same name. It offers historical sites, and beautiful viewpoints, and serves as a venue for cultural events.
Riverside Areas: Belgrade's riverbanks are lively and vibrant areas, with floating restaurants, clubs, and promenades. The Ada Medjica island, along the Sava River, is a popular recreational spot, offering sandy beaches and water sports activities.
Rakia and Culinary Delights: Belgrade is renowned for its culinary scene. Traditional Serbian dishes, such as grilled meats, ćevapi, and pljeskavica, are popular. Rakia, a fruit brandy, is a beloved local spirit and an integral part of Serbian hospitality.
These facts provide an overview of some key aspects of Belgrade's history, culture, landmarks, and lifestyle, showcasing its rich heritage and vibrant atmosphere.