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Sarajevo War Tunnel Museum visit between Sarajevo airport and hotel

We are scheduled to arrive at the Sarajevo airport at 14:30 PM in March. Rick Steves suggests visiting the War Tunnel Museum (closes at 18:00) on the way to the old town. Taking a taxi to the museum and then to the hotel shouldn't be a problem, but what do we do with our luggage while at the museum? We will have two small carry-on suitcases and two handbags. Is there a safe place to store them at the museum?

Posted by
867 posts

I was at the War Tunnel Museum in June, 2018. I went with a guide and three other people on a small group tour, with "Insider City Tours" from downtown Sarajevo. To my recollection, there really isn't a good place to leave baggage. There is a small gift shop, but I didn't get a vibe from the guy there that you could leave your baggage in the shop... guess you could ask. Given the history of Sarajevo, and the on-going tensions, I would wonder if they would be as uncomfortable as TSA is in our airports about random "left luggage." Another possibility might be asking the taxi driver to wait for you. It's not a large museum area: several large signs and posters outside about the war, some five smallish rooms with artifacts from the war, a video (approx. 6 minutes long), and an opportunity to walk through about a hundred feet of the tunnel. Altogether could be done in half an hour, or so. The museum is actually a bit farther from town than is the airport, I believe. If this doesn't work out for you, then a half day tour from the old city, with a guide who could tell you all about it, might be another option. Our guide had been a policeman in Sarajevo during the war, and had made many many trips through the tunnel during the war, helping to bring in food and medical supplies to the starving city, so had a lot to share about that experience. It was an EXCELLENT tour, as was our "Free Walking Tour" for a couple of hours, with the same company. Editing to ad: When googling "Sarajevo Tunnel of Hope Museum" I see that there are numerous private guides who could likely pick you up at the airport, take you to the Tunnel Museum, then take you to your hotel. (You can read some reviews on tripadvisor.) This is one museum where a local person really makes a difference in helping you understanding what went on there.

Posted by
5 posts

Thank you for the extensive reply. If the taxi driver will not wait for us, do you think it would be feasible to carry our luggage through the museum? We will have two small carry-on suitcases and two handbags. I'm thinking the museum would not be crowded at the end of March so we wouldn't be bumping other people with our baggage.

Posted by
867 posts

You could probably do so. However, you would need to take turns going down into the tunnel; the stairs are steep and walkway narrow.

Posted by
867 posts

Also, I experienced prices as quite low in BiH compared to Croatia and Slovenia. It might well be that arranging with a private guide to pick you up at the airport and take you to and through the museum, and then on to your hotel, might not be much more expensive than hiring two separate taxis. (I haven't used them but Sarajevo Bosnia Tours has many positive reviews on tripadvisor and it looks like one of their young drivers/tour guides might well be able to do that. The price on their website is 15 euros pp, for 3 persons, which includes pick up and drop off at your hotel and museum entrance fees.) The museum is somewhat out of the city, and not an area where taxis are very available. If you do choose to take a taxi from the airport to the museum, you might want to arrange with THAT taxi driver to return for you in an hour. Also: In case you are interested, I wrote an extensive trip report on this forum, posted 7-7-18, with a lot of info about Sarajevo. If you scroll through my posting history, you can find it.

Posted by
5 posts

Thank you again for the information. I found your trip report and read it with much enjoyment. I admire your generosity in sharing your experiences. It takes quite a bit of time to write a coherent, factual report. So, thank you.

Back to my question, taking a tour to see the Tunnel Museum seems like a good idea. (Usually we avoid tours since I have the attention span of a gnat, but it is probably worthwhile in Sarajevo.) We should have enough time to see other sights, since we have three full days and four nights in Sarajevo. We can go directly from the airport to our hotel and visit the Tunnel Museum a different day. The Sarajevo Insider "Times of Misfortune" tour and the Sarajevo Bosnia "Sarajevo War Tour" seem similar. I'll need to research the two to determine which one to take.

Posted by
867 posts

I also usually avoid tours, but found that the two that I took in Sarajevo (both very small groups, and both extremely inexpensive) were very very useful for helping me to understand the history and cultures of that complex city. Both were led by Sarajevo citizens who spoke excellent English and were patient, kind and thoughtful in their explanations. Be aware that the weather can change quickly there; I was glad to have a collapsible umbrella in my purse.

Posted by
1893 posts

When in Sarajevo, we took the "Time of Troubles Tour", which was great. We went high above Sarajevo to the Serb gun emplacements near the bobsled run from the 1984 Olympics. He drove us to the Jewish Cemetery, and we also saw the grave of Isabegavich, the first president of current B-H. He took us to the Tunnel Museum. I really think that this is the way to go. BTW, driving in the streets of Sarajevo is not for the faint-of-heart. A local is at home, and knows what to do. I was constantly amazed at the number of cars in these miniscule roads.

Posted by
5 posts

Thanks for the information. We've abandoned the plan of visiting the War Tunnel Museum immediately after landing since it doesn't look like a particularly easy thing to do. The "Time of Troubles Tour", or one of the other tours that include the War Tunnel look like the way to go.