If you’ve decided to visit Belgrade, the capital of Serbia, this summer – you have made the
right decision! Belgrade is an up-and-coming city, filled with vibrant nightclubs and an atmosphere that attract people from all over the world. Both
Belgrade and its surroundings have been attracted more and more tourists every year since the beginning of 2000s, and new, cool cafes are popping up at
every corner. Still, thanks to its original mix of eastern and western culture, it has something to offer to its every guest.
When you arrive to Belgrade, one of the first things you are going to notice is the hospitality of its residents. Our friendliness and warm approach to
foreigners has become one of the most recognizable symbols of Belgrade, and one of the most impressive things to the tourists. You should know that the
smiles and the politeness are genuine – we honestly enjoy hosting people from other countries, and especially so if you are willing to find out more about
our culture, history, and, of course – the Serbian language!
We love teaching tourists some words and useful phrases in Serbian! Well, they may not all be completely useful, but we will introduce you to them anyways.
Of course, among the first words you are probably going to learn from your hosts (or your new Serbian friends) will be swear words and curses (we find it
hilarious when foreigners mispronounce Serbian swears).
However, if you go out (and you will – a lot), you need to know how to order drinks. Pivo is beer in Serbian, viski and votka
you can probably recognize, and rakija is our traditional brandy, made from various types of
fruit. Dunja or dunjevača is quince brandy; the one made from pears is called kruška, while the most
traditional version is šljivovica – that made from plums. Some people (mostly girls/women to be honest) prefer rakija made from or mixed
with honey. This one is called medovača. If you want to fit in and your hosts to love you instantly, try ordering one of these in Serbian. Before
drinking, you should say živeli (cheers) and toast like a local!
Everyday phrases that can also be helpful, especially with breaking the ice when meeting someone for the first time, include: zdravo/ćao (hello or hi), kako si? (how are you?) and drago mi je (nice to meet you). It is customary to shake hands and kiss three times when greeting someone, and you shold not be surpsrised by this. We like to kiss and hug every chance we get.
Molim, izvinite and hvala mean please, sorry and thank you, and these simply cannot be misused. If you can’t really pronounce much of Serbian, at least learn
these two words. Your hosts will surely appreciate it.
Don’t be surprised if you fall in love with Belgrade and the rest of this beautiful country. With its fun-loving people, great nightlife, aboundant history
and stunning culture, what’s not to love?