Fun

Here you can find the list of some of the most popular ways to have fun in Serbia. Our country is known as a place where people party hard and chill even harder. There is a large number of nightclubs, concert halls, cultural institutions, festivals, coffee shops, and taverns, or any other kind of entertainment facilities.

Traditionally thought as the border between “east” and the “west”, Serbia’s culture mixes the best of the two worlds. That’s why you can find here some of the best alt music and jazz concerts and festivals, but also pure adrenaline-inducing folk music or sports events with a really fanatic crowd. We have a large number of festivals throughout the year, whether they are music, cinema, art, folk or food type because Serbs will use every opportunity to have fun or spend some nice time with their friends or family.

We have divided this section into the Regular and Annual lists, so you have the idea what fun you can have any time you are here and what should you visit if you find yourself here in particular time of the year.

1. Regular

Just jump to the section with kind of fun you want to have, look up the city you plan to visit and see the description of some of the best-known places.

Music

This is the list of clubs and halls that regularly organize concerts – of any kind of music. There are several hubs, but the good news is that usually, they organize similar types of concerts. Some of them are electronic, some alternative or rock, some pop, and folk.

Belgrade

Savamala
Savamala is one of the oldest permanently settled areas in Belgrade, outside of the fortress. Today, it is a cultural hub where you can find great alternative music, stand up comedians, relaxed coffee shops, but also some really fancy clubs. Some of the famous ones are Ben Akiba, Mladost/Ludost/Radost, KC Grad, Tranzit Bar...

Rafts
Belgrade is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and there are several “hubs” for rafts and boats. They are a very popular choice for summer parties because of their unique atmosphere. The good thing about them is that you can walk by the river, listen to the music, “analyze” the look of the party going on and decide which one you want to enter.

There are all kinds of music playing – from electronic and trap to rock and Serbian folk. Some of the best known places are 20/44, Zappa Barka, Freestyler, Shake `n` Shake, Club 94, River, Blaywatch, Sindikat, Lasta... They are usually open in summer, but some work all year around.

Cetinjska
The lot in Cetinjska 15 street is famous for its many coffee shops and clubs which are frequented by Serbian and international hipsters. During the day, this is a place to spend some chill time, but in the evening many coffee shops organize some kind of event – DJ, live music, poetry nights, art exhibitions… Some of the more famous places here are Polet, Zaokret, Elektropionir and Kenozoik.

Sava Centar
This enormous congress, cultural and business center was conceived and built in only three years. It is 100.000 square meters big, it has 15 conference halls, a theatre hall with 4,000 seats, an exhibition area and a number of other facilities. Almost every major event is held here.

Belgrade (Štark) Arena
Built for The 2005 European Basketball Championship this multi-purpose indoor arena is designed as a universal hall for sports, cultural events, and other programs. It is reserved for the biggest sports events and an alternative choice for Sava Centar.

Šećer (Sugar)
In 1967. only European cities with discotheques were Paris, London and Milan. Šećer was the first club of that kind opened in the Balkans and it’s still working today. Of course, there were several renovations in the meantime.

Dom Omladine (Belgrade Youth Center)
This cultural center is directed primarily to the youth, with the accent on the cultural and educational programs. They organize events in the area of contemporary art and culture, It aims to encompass all art forms: prose, poetry, music, theatre, film, visual arts, new media and others.

Novi Sad

Chinese Quarter
Club Fabrika is located here and its most famous one. In addition to Fabrika the most famous clubs are The Quarter, Firchie, Think Tank Studio. At any time you can find a lot of concerts, performances, festivals and educational events organized here.

Republic Square
Republic Square is where young people gather. High school students and college students gather in large groups and drink, play guitars and stay all night (that’s what you do when you don’t have enough money to go to some club or kafana).

Laza Telečki street
The street was once urban, but it is now very colorful in its offering. You can find kafanas and folk clubs, but still some of the more urban places. Some of the best-known music venues are Cactus Bar, Cuba Libre Club and Puberaj. When you go hungry there are many fast food restaurants around.

Studio M
Its history is closely tied to the Radio Novi Sad. It serves as the concert hall and broadcast location. Many famous local rock bands recorded or organized concerts here.

Niš

Cineplexx Niš
This is a part of the famous multiplex chains that can be found throughout Serbia. The biggest movie hits in the cinema equipped with the latest technology.

National Theatre in Niš
This is the biggest and most important theater in the region. If you like to watch the best plays from modern and classical authors, this will become your favorite place.

The gallery of contemporary fine arts
The gallery of contemporary fine arts organizes collective and independent exhibitions of international and local artists. They also present the works of Serbian contemporary artists that live abroad. It has three exhibition locations in Niš.

Coffee Shops & Kafanas

There are several chains of coffee shops, all with their unique style. In the end, you’ll probably find a cozy small place near the place you stay and visit it every morning or in the afternoon with friends. In addition to all types of coffees you can find around the world, you should try black coffee that is unique to this part of the world. Some call it Turkish, some call it Domestic, some call it Serbian, but it is a rich coffee made from freshly ground coffee beans, boiled in a small pot called džezva. It is not filtered, so you are left with the residue on the bottom of the cup (which you don’t drink), that makes it one of the fullest, perfect experiences you’ll have drinking coffee in your life.

Kafana is completely another thing. Even though it contains the word “coffee” in its name, it is much more than that. Kafana used to be a main meeting point of the community. People come here to hang out, have lunch, listen to the music, drink coffee or alcohol, writers come to write, businessmen to do business… It is everything you want it to be. That’s why it is not uncommon to have, at the same table, an old silent coffee drinker in the morning, husband and wife eating lunch at noon and group of friends heavily drinking and passionately listening to the kafana’s band playing folk melancholic folk songs in the evening.

Belgrade

Knez Mihailova
Central pedestrian zone in Belgrade, formed by the Knez Mihailova street and bunch of smaller streets that flow into it. This is the area with many coffee shops, restaurants, boutiques, stores, ice cream and pastry shops, street entertainers – really, the central part of the city.

Strahinjića Bana
The street in the Belgrade’s old neighborhood of Dorćol was formerly known as “silicon valley”. This wasn’t because it was a tech hub of Belgrade, but because of the type of girls that visited coffee shops and restaurants here. Now, the situation is completely different – the street is still filled with many nice coffee shops and restaurants, but now it is known as a nice, relaxing place to spend time, drink great coffee and eat nice food.

Beton Hala
Beton Hala is located on the Belgrade dock and it originally was intended to serve as a storage facility. Instead, it was renovated and turned into one of the most prestigious gastronomy and nightlife corners of Belgrade. Majority of objects that turn into nightclubs at night are actually nice places to spend a relaxing daytime with your friends drinking coffee.

Rafts
Belgrade is located at the confluence of the Sava and Danube rivers and there are several “hubs” for rafts and boats. Most of these places are coffee shops by day and clubs by night. You can just walk around and see which one looks the most pleasant to you. They are usually open in summer, but some work all year around.

Coffee Shop Chains
Coffee drinking culture is big in Serbia. That’s why it’s not a surprise that you can find a number of coffee shop chains here. All of them offer something unique, whether it is a special kind of coffee or an atmosphere. When you find your favorite chain, you can find a shop nearby probably wherever you find yourself in the city. Some of the famous chains are Greenet, Koffein, Aviator Coffee Explorer and Coffee Dream.

Black Turtle
This chain is famous for the number of their own house beers that, in addition with a standard menu, you can order.

Mornar
Located in the city center across the Dom Omladine culture center, this is the place where you can meet a very eclectic group of people. From young artists and people waiting for the concerts to begin, to love couples, big groups of friends and lonely old people sipping on rakija – everybody is here drinking, eating and talking loudly.

Zlatna Moruna
This place is pretty basic in the things they offer – they serve alcohol and have billiard – nothing fancy. But Zlatna Moruna has a really interesting history because this was the place Gavrilo Princip and other members of Young Bosnia met and planned to assassinate Franz Ferdinand, which in the end started the WWI.

Blaznavac cafe-bar (Kneginje Ljubice)
For the people that love camp aesthetics, Blaznavac is a great place. Their yard was organized with very eclectic influences and you can enjoy it while drinking one of their cocktails.

Dudurudu
Located in the Savamala hub of coffee shops, restaurants and clubs, this place is a wine bar/restaurant that serves over 150 wines in a pleasant atmosphere.

Cetinjska
The lot in Cetinjska 15 street is famous for its many coffee shops and clubs which are frequented by Serbian and international hipsters. During the day, this is a place to spend some chill time, but in the evening many coffee shops organize some kind of event – DJ, live music, poetry nights, art exhibitions… Some of the more famous places here are Polet, Zaokret, Elektropionir and Kenozoik.

Novi Sad

Laza Telečki street
The street was once urban, but it is now very colorful in its offering. You can find kafanas and folk clubs, but still some of the more urban places. Some of the best known are Lazin Salaš, Dva galeba, Cactus Bar and Cuba Libre Club. If you like more urban places, Puberaj or pub Shamrock are for you. There are also fast food restaurants, pastry shops, bakeries...

Caffe bar Trčika
A coffee place that is named after the first tram of Novi Sad and it is built around the original tram. In the unique interior, you can find a vast choice of beverages and great music.

Horus
Egypt inside Novi Sad - that’s what this place is all about. You can enjoy Egyptian coffee, love tea or sobia - Egyptian coconut drink. In the evening, there are belly dancers, hookahs and interior built in the spirit of Egypt.

Nublu
Nublu is the mix between a coffee shop and book shop. Here you can find new and used books, dictionaries, maps, guides and enjoy them while drinking coffee. There’s a section with foreign languages books, so this place is very popular with tourists.

Café Frida
Café Frida is dedicated to a Mexican painter and is located in the city center. This small café stands out because of its interesting, different and alternative parties and exhibitions. You can come to the artistic mirrors exhibitions, 60’s themed parties, jazz evenings, film music evenings and many more interesting events.

Niš

Kazandžijsko sokače
Similarly to the Belgrade’s Cetinjska street or Novi Sad’s Laza Telečki street, Kazandžijsko sokače (coppersmiths’ street) has many coffee shops, kafanas and restaurants. It would be hard for you to not find any place you want to enter.

Tramvaj (Tram)
Pastry shop and coffee shop at the same time. The quirk is that it is built in the style of the old train wagons, so it is a very interesting experience to spend time there.

Truba (Trumpet)
It is more akin to a coffee shop than to the nightclub, but nevertheless, it has some great jazz concerts. If there is no band that evening, DJ plays music from vinyl records.

Gnezdo & Hedonist
These places are the most popular among local young adults. They serve great, interesting cocktails, coffee and everything else, with decent prices.

Nemir
If you like beer, it’s just a matter of time when you will end up here. They have over 40 different kinds of domestic and foreign beers and also serve some great snacks that go well with the beer.

Sports

People in Serbia really like sport. We are particularly good at water polo, basketball, volleyball and tennis, but that’s not where passion for sport ends. Everyone - from young people watching football and basketball games to grandmas watching tennis – can really be fanatical about the club or person they cheer for. That’s why visiting a game in Serbia is a unique experience and is something everybody should treat themselves at least once.

Belgrade

Red Star vs Partizan football derby
Red Star and Partizan are the two largest sports organizations in the country. The match between the two of them, whichever is the sport they play, is automatically the biggest sporting event of the week or even month. The football (soccer, if you like) derby is regarded as one of the five biggest and most ardent derbies in the world. The incredible atmosphere, choreography, the whole madness hours before and after, is something that not one sports fan should miss. The northern stands are reserved for Red Star’s, and southern for Partizan fans. If you are neutral, go east or west and enjoy everything happening around you.

Stadium Rajko Mitić and Partizan’s stadium
Even when there is no derby, the fans of both clubs make an incredible atmosphere. For some purists, these games are even better, because there are only real fans on the stands.

Aleksandar Nikolić Hall
Formerly known as “Pionir”, this indoor sports arena is famous for its basketball games. Similar to the football stadiums, Pionir is something no basketball fan should miss. The atmosphere is much more raw and crazy than probably anything you had a chance to experience.

Belgrade (Štark) Arena
Built for The 2005 European Basketball Championship this multi-purpose indoor arena is designed as a universal hall for sports, cultural events, and other programs. In addition to the basketball, this place is reserved for the biggest volleyball, tennis and other sports events and as an alternative choice for Sava Centar.

Tašmajdan
Serbia is the most successful water polo nation in the world. This sport is very popular in the region and Tašmajdan is the place where many of the best water polo players in the world started playing. Every time Serbia is playing, you can enjoy great matches at this pool.

Novi Sad

SPENS
The largest sports hall in Novi Sad, where all kinds of sports and other events are held. Basketball club Vojvodina plays their games here.

Stadion Karađorđe
When sports fans in Serbia think about Novi Sad, their minds immediately jump to Vojvodina football club. Karađođe stadium is their “home” and it is the must-visit place if you are football, or just any sport, fan.

Niš

Čair
The stadium of football club Radnički Niš is just a part of the huge complex. Swimming pool and other sports arenas make this the center for sports activities in Niš.

2. Annual

You should know that Serbs really like holidays and jump to every opportunity to have a good time. That’s why it’s not so unusual that probably every week you can find some big festival held in Serbia. Just choose the type of festival you want to visit, read the description and, if you like it, plan a visit so you don’t miss it :)

Music

If you ask anybody in Serbia, they will tell you about the two most popular festivals – Exit and Guča. In addition to those two, we have a lot of festivals that are based on different genres of music – from classical and jazz to rock, electronic or folk.

Belgrade

Belgrade Jazz festival (October)
Some of the best jazzers from Serbia and around the world come here every year. For more than thirty years, Belgrade Jazz festival organizes the best that contemporary jazz has to offer.

BEMUS (October)
The Belgrade Music Festival – BEMUS is the oldest and the most prominent music festival in Serbia and one of the most distinguished classical music festivals in South-Eastern Europe, enjoying the position of a cultural event of special importance for the City of Belgrade. Although special attention has always been devoted to the promotion of local artists and their creativity, BEMUS has established its reputation mostly presenting the most attractive international programmes. Thanks to BEMUS, only over the last decade, Belgrade has hosted some of the most prominent ensembles and soloists of our time.

Belgrade Beer Fest (August)
This is the biggest festival of beer in Belgrade. Various beer producers, big and small, domestic and foreign, showcase their beers here. In addition to that, the festival features live music performances, ranging from traditional rock to more contemporary genres. The entrance is free for everybody.

Guitar Art Festival (March)
Most important classical guitar festival. It has grown pretty big, so now it features classical, jazz, flamenco, fado… Everything you think of when you imagine classical and acoustic guitar.

Ulica otvorenog srca (January)
Every January the “Open heart street” program is organized in the streets of Belgrade. At the start of the new year, this event of a humanitarian character exists in order to help those who need it most. Musicians, street entertainers, jugglers, acrobats, magicians, theater artists, and numerous attractions entertain everybody who decides to join.

Novi Sad

Exit (July)
The most famous music festival in Serbia, probably the most famous in Southeast Europe, consistently proclaimed as one of the best festivals in the world. Every year Exit gathers some of the world’s and domestic biggest stars. There is a lot of stages with music for everyone - alternative, rock, rap, electronic... It is also famous for its location on the beautiful Petrovaradin Fortress. A couple of years ago the festival started organizing accompanying events at the seaside in Montenegro, so a lot of people just continue partying there.

NOMUS (April)
International festival of music art presents the most successful works by domestic interpreters and composers. Thanks to the music youth of Novi Sad, festival today mainly focuses on concerts of chamber music. This means that at this manifestation the performances are smaller, but the various compositions in terms of different instrument combinations.

Gradić fest - Festival of the Street Artists (August and September)
Starting at the beginning of the new millennium, Novi Sad became home to street artists. It is visited by all the most famous street musicians of the world, who perform at other prestigious festivals in Europe and beyond.

Niš

Nisville Jazz Festival (August)
The International Jazz Festival is the largest one in Southeast Europe. In addition to the more traditional jazz genres, it also features a specific fusion of jazz with Balkan elements.

Nisomnia (June)
In the Niš Fortress, every June, you can listen to some of the best domestic and foreign DJs and bands.

Constantinus (September)
Festival of classical music, named after the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great, who was born in present-day Niš. The festival is conceived as an elite, intensive, multi-day musical event, a meeting of top-class musicians from the country and abroad with a niche audience, eager for significant artistic events.

Other cities

Guča Trumpet Festival (August)
If you don’t visit Guča, you will never know true Serbia. This unique event gathers the best Serbian brass orchestras. There is a 24-hour insane atmosphere, with music on every corner, food, and lots of rakija. There is a story about Miles Davis who once visited Guča. He heard the music and said: "I didn’t know that you can play trumpet this way".

Festival of classical music in Vrnjci (July)
In addition to the concerts of top masters, visitors will also experience music films, promotions of music books, meeting the instrument makers, and exhibitions dedicated to the promotion of music and cultural heritage.

LoveFest (August)
Lovefest is a unique cultural platform from Vrnjačka Banja, which promotes music, art and urban youth culture in Serbia. In just a few years it has grown from a citywide party to one of Serbia’s biggest festivals, nominated for the best European festival. The music is mostly based on electronic genres.

Zaječarska gitarijada (June)
The legendary, long-lasting rock guitar festival. Zaječarska gitarijada served as the place where many, now famous, bands of all rock styles started their careers.

Film, Theater & Art

Every major type of art has a big festival in Serbia. Usually, they are hosted in Belgrade and have decades-long traditions, starting in former Yugoslavia. In the meantime, dozens of festivals were formed, targeting the more specific approaches to the art.

Belgrade

Bitef (September)
Belgrade International Theatre Festival is one of the biggest and the most important European theatre festivals, that has continually followed and supported the latest theatre trends. Spectators can see some of the most courageous stage experiments pursuing the destruction of dramatic forms, but also some significant classical achievements, as well as the examples of the traditional Asian theatre.

October Salon
October Salon is a representative manifestation of accomplishments in the field of visual art in Serbia, found and. It started as an exhibition of the best works of fine arts and went on to become an important review of current tendencies in applied arts, as well. With the tradition of half a century, it represents a significant segment in the study of contemporary Serbian art.

Festival of Author Film (November)
As the name suggests it, this festival features the best “author” movies of the past year. If you are sick of generic blockbusters and want to watch something original, this event is perfect for you.

FEST (march)
This is the biggest and most important film festival in Serbia. Started in 1971, it was envisioned as the annual review of the best films of the season. Belgrade International Film Festival evolved to become one of the most important festivals on the continent and a pillar event of the cultural life in Belgrade, as well as an indispensable element in the coming of age of many generations of film fans.

BELEF (June/July)
In the summer, all across Belgrade, there is a program from three art areas: theater (theater and artistic), visual arts (video, art, installations, performances, and prints) and music. Belgrade Summer Festival aims to produce and present top artistic achievements in those fields.

Novi Sad

Sterijino pozorje (May and June)
The most prestigious theater festival in Serbia, named after one of the most famous playwrights in Serbia - Jovan Sterija Popović. It is held in Serbian National Theater every year and winning an award there is the highest achievement that theater artists in Serbia can get.

Infant (June and July)
The only international festival of alternative and new theater in Serbia. It has become the point of meeting of the creators who look at the theater art in a new and different way.

Brazil’s Days (August)
Workshops for capoeira, samba, samba percussions, exhibitions, projections of films, concerts, parties, and a recognizable carnival procession are the main part of the program that makes this festival attractive to visitors from all over the world.

Novi Sad Jazz Festival (November)
The unique character of this international festival is reflected in the presentation of primarily author's music. The main program includes the most successful domestic jazz ensembles and the most prestigious names of the world jazz scene.

Euro-in Film (December)
This festival of European and independent film promotes current culture and art affairs in a European and independent professional film. It is a festival of an open form and content.

Niš

Filmski susreti (August)
Filmski susreti is a unique manifestation of film art that values acting achievements. Every year, during the last week of August, the city of Niš hosts the entire acting elite of Serbia.

Teatar na raskršću (march)
“Theater on the Crossroads” is drama and theater festival which is organized by the Niš National Theater.

Urban Fest (September)
Urban Fest is the international festival of students of the youth theaters. It aims to affirm an alternative theater scene and present theater art in the region.

Other cities

Kustendorf (January)
The most famous director from former Yugoslavia - Emir Kusturica - organizes this film and music festival. In addition to the great programme, you can enjoy amazing ethno village that he built - Drvengrad (Wooden City) in the beautiful mountain location.

Bašta fest (July)
In just a couple of years, this short film festival grew from local to an important international event. Driven by young enthusiasts, there is a lot of great events taking place in the amazing locations that surround the city of Bajina Bašta.

Other culture, traditional, food & drink festivals

Museum Night (may)
The most visited culture manifestation in Serbia, which promotes museums and cultural heritage in a popular way. The Museum Night is a part of the European Night of the Museum, whose initiative it joined in 2006.

Rakijada Pranjani (May)
Rakija is a Serbian traditional alcoholic drink, and this is the biggest festival dedicated to it, organized every year in Gornji Milanovac. There is also a competition in drinking, after which the participants compete in walking on a plank and trying not to fall off. Of course, besides rakija, there is also a traditional grill.

Župska berba (September)
Župa is a famous wine region and this festival, in Aleksandrovac, is one of the most important wine festivals in Serbia. Wine, food, music... and for the entire duration of the festival, wine flows from the city fountain.

Leskovačka roštiljijada (August, September)
Leskovac is famous in Balkan for its way of preparing the grill. This festival is the largest event of its kind in the whole region. Various competitions are organized - making of the biggest burger in the world, the competition of grilling masters ... all with different folk, ethno and brass music.

Just Out festival (August)
The largest knightly festival, held in the Monastery of Manasija. Listen to medieval music, eat medieval food and enjoy battles between knights.

Belgrade New Year’s festival (December)
200 000 visitors every year go to Belgrade Fair to enjoy Christmas holidays. Amusement park, music, winter food, shopping… One of the fondest memories for every kid that grew up in Belgrade.

The Olympics of Lika (June)
Competition in traditional disciplines such as pulling hooks, pulling of a rope, running on a log… It is organized by the city of Apatin to strengthen its bonds with people of Lika (hence the name)

The race for the Epiphany Cross (19th January)
A traditional event in many towns of Serbia for the holiday of Epiphany. A group, mostly men, swim in icy waters to get to the cross first.

Mowing on Rajac (July)
Something that is a rare sight nowadays. The traditional manifestations related to the end of the mowing season are organized. Participants wear folk costumes, traditional food is served and traditional music played. There are also various competitions.

Regatta on Drina (July)
Tens of thousands of visitors from Serbia and abroad sail each year on rafts and boats along the famous Drina river. Of course, there is food, music and a lot of fun to be had.

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