Serbia is a small, landlocked country at the center of the Balkan peninsula. It is considered part of Central Europe and Southeastern Europe. Covering 88,361 sq km (34,116 sq mi), Serbia is bordered by Hungary to the north, Romania to the northeast, Bulgaria to the southeast, Macedonia to the south, Albania to the southwest, Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina to the west, and Croatia to the northeast. On the southern part of Serbia is the partially recognized Republic of Kosovo, which is within Serbia and is not recognized by it as an independent state.
Kalemegdan Fortress Park overlooking Belgrade at night
Serbia has a population of 7.3 million people, of which 83% are ethnic Serbs. The capital and biggest city is Belgrade. Its official language is Serbian. The official currency is the Serbian dinar (RSD). The electricity is 230V/50Hz using European plug.
Serbia observes the Central European Time, which is an hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time (UTC+1) and two hours in summer. Its phone IDD code is +381. The country had an estimated nominal GDP of $38.921 billion in 2010, and a per capita nominal GDP of $5,262. Its per capita GDP at purchasing power parity stood at $10,808.
The land of present-day serbia has been inhabited for over 8,500 years. Archaeologists have found prehistoric signs created between 6,000 and 4,000 BC which can be claimed as the earliest form of writing.
Golubac Fortress, Serbia
Serbia was conqured by the Romans in the 2nd century BC. It was even the birthplace of Constantine I, the Roman Emperor who spread Christianity throughout the empire. During the medieval era, a Serbian Empire was founded by Tsar Stefan Duşan in 1346. That was when Serbia reached its biggest size. Over the century, it gradually declined in power with the rise of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the Ottoman Empire.
After the First World War, the State of Slovenes, Croats and Serbs, and the Kingdom of Serbia merged to form the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes on 1 December, 1918. It was later renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, and monarchy headed by Peter I from 1918 to 1921, Alexander I from 1921 tgo 1934 and Peter II from 1934 to 1945.
Stopića Cave in Zlatibor, Serbia
The monarchy was deposed in 1945 with the communist takeover of Yugoslavia, and it was renamed the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, with Serbia within a constituent republic within it, called the Socialist Republic of Serbia.
The rise of Slobodan Milošević to power in 1989 caused tension with the other republics of Yugoslavia, resulting the breaking away of Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Macedonia, leaving only Serbia and Montenegro which created a new Yugoslav federation, once again called the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. On 21 May 2006, Montenegro held a referendum which shows that a slim majority favored breaking away.
Since 5 June 2006, Serbia was a separate state and successor of the former federal republic. It is today a member of the United Nations and the Council of Europe, and in the process of seeking membership into the European Union.
Saint Nicolas Monastery in Kuršumlija, Serbia
Planning your visit to Serbia
Visitors the European Union and Bosnia and Herzegovina only need an approved ID to enter Serbia, although citizens of European Union should bring along a passport to avoid hassles. Visitors from Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, Singapore and the United States do not need a visa for staying in Serbia for up to 90 days.
The Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport (BEG) is the busiest airport in Serbia. It is the hub of the national flag carrier Jat Airways. It receives flights from Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Moscow, Munich, Oslo, Paris, Stockholm,
Amsterdam, Cologne, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Istanbul, London-Heathrow, Milan, Moscow and Paris, among others.
Major Cities in Serbia
- Belgrade – capital
- Novi Sad
- Sremska Mitrovica
Places of Interest in Serbia
- Kopaonik National Park
- Soko Banja
- Staro Selo