lördag 6 november 2010

Divčibare - Daytripping in Serbia

In the middle of September the whole family went on holiday to Serbia to visit family and friends and to have some needed rest at Hotel Maljen in Divčibare west of Belgrade. This time no serious trekking activities were planned as our youngest was now only 6 months old and would accompany us on all walks. Nevertheless we had an excellent time and it was nice to spend a lot of time all together outdoors in a pleasant climate. The temperature during the day was around 20C and quite optimal for leisurely walks up to the mountains ridges of the mountain Maljen ( around 1100m above Sea level).

Divćibare is an old mountain resort that has seen better days, but my impression is that the small village is now slowly recovering from the economic crisis and many hotels and villas have been renovated in the last 5 years since I was there the last time. The natural beauties of the location are still very well preserved and there are well marked footpaths to nice vistas of the Serbian countryside.

F and S safely escorted by "čika Milan" (uncle Milan) on his trusty horses Klara and Sara

To me, the traditional agricultural landscape and society are among the things that attracts me the most in Serbia. It may not be the most efficient, but free-ranging sheep and cattle as well as manually mowed meadows sure create beautiful scenery.

Each day during the week we went on shorter walks for about 1-2 hours. The hiking was very easy with only about 130m climbs which suited us fine since we were also carrying our baby in a BabyBjörn-carrier. The Baby-Björn works, but I must say that it's quite uncomfortable for my back. My wife however seems to be better trained after all the time spent with the baby and doesn't complain at all. The advantage of short day-trips is also that you really do not need to carry anything more than your rain clothes and some snacks and water. 

S was able to carry all our gear with ease

The kids really enjoyed the walks and it was nice to not worry about bad weather and wet clothes. I don't know if it is just my imagination, but my impression is that the children really start to enjoy a nice scenic view as well.

The view east from Crni Vrh (Black ridge)

Look! He's barefoot and it's only 25C. He will catch pneumonia in no-time!

Having lots of practice by now we don't see any difficulties in bringing babies for a walk. Diapers can be changed virtually everywhere and it's even easier to find a nice secluded place for nursing outdoors. A tree works well as a back support. With our first child we used to bring a dedicated nursing chair! If there is a chance of rain the children can also sleep under my Gatewood Cape.

Little M slept comfortably on the Gossamer Gear Nightlight torso-length

F finds the perfect spot to take in the scenery in peace alone

Oh no, here comes little brother and disturbs

Look a lizard! It's not so bad with company after all

Not so easy to catch a good picture of this beauty

Not all days brought good weather, but the fog has it's charm too.

The Gossamer Gear Murmur pack traveled to Serbia as cabin baggage and still shows no signs of wear

Back in Belgrade to enjoy the vibrant atmosphere of the bohemian quarter Skadarlija

All in all we really enjoyed our holiday in Divćibare and we will most probably return again. Serbia and especially the capital Belgrade, is starting to become a tourist destination and if you are an outdoor enthusiast it is nice to know that only about 1-2 hours from the capital you also have nice hiking areas. If you go further away south there are also other really interesting areas, such as Zlatibor, Kopaonik, Mokra Gora and Stara Planina.