Best Things To Do In Novi Sad For Every Type Of Traveler
Written by travel writer Sam Ross of The Hammock Hombre.
How could you miss out on the “Athens of Serbia,” the 2019 European Youth Capital, and the 2021 European Capital of Culture? With its grandiose architecture, vibrant art and music scene, and welcoming locals, it’s a no-brainer to rent a car, pack your travel essentials and come to Novi Sad. I think it’s an absolute must-visit city in Serbia.
Best Time To Visit
Novi Sad experiences warm summers and relatively cold winters like the rest of Serbia. In July and August, temperatures reach up to 81°F, while January and February can get as cold as 27°F. Because of this, we recommend visiting in the spring and fall.
How To Get To Novi Sad
Novi Sad is connected to all other major Serbian cities, and the fastest way to get to Novi Sad is to take a bus. The most common route is from Belgrade, which is only an hour away and can cost as low as €3.50.
You can also opt to take the train from Belgrade, which takes about an hour and a half since you can find tickets for as low as €2.86 at busradar.com.
Best Active Things To Do In Novi Sad
Join A Free Walking Tour
If you’ve only got a day to visit Nova Sad, this is the best way to go. Free walking tours in Novi Sad let you see all the essential attractions while hearing all kinds of insider stories from your tour guide.
Visit The Cathedral
Though not technically a cathedral, all Novi Sad locals fondly refer to it as “the Cathedral.” Decorated with bright, colorful tiles on its roof, the Cathedral is a sight that’s impossible to miss, especially under the Novi Sad sun.
Wander Liberty Square afterward to snap some unique shots and see other interesting Novi Sad attractions:
- The Neo-Renaissance style Town Hall
- Tanurdžić palace
- The Monument to Svetozar Miletić
Stroll Through Dunavska Street And Danube Park
In the heart of the city is Dunavska Street, a quaint and charming street that’s nostalgic and romantic. This vibrant street is filled with unique facades, old-fashioned craft shops, a bustling marketplace, and gorgeous architecture, all of which feels very much like the 19th century.
Not far from this magical street is Danube Park, a green haven within the city. Covered with endless greenery, Danube Park is the perfect spot to breathe some fresh air and enjoy the serenity nature offers. With more than a hundred benches, a peaceful lake with swans and ducks, and beautiful monuments, this is undoubtedly the place to be.
Varadinska Duga Bridge & The Petrovaradin Fortress
After enjoying the beauty of Danube Park, make your way to the Varadinska Duga Bridge connected to the famed Petrovaradin Fortress, the number one tourist spot in Novi Sad. This bridge can be crossed by foot and is a worthy activity on its own! If you cross at night, it will be illuminated in rainbow colors.
The Petrovaradin Fortress is famous for never being infiltrated by an enemy army. To appreciate the fortress’s history best, go with a tour guide who can explain the story behind it. If you’re lucky, they’ll also take you through the underground tunnels used during the war.
If you’re a music fan, this is also where Serbia’s most popular music festival, Exit Fest, takes place every year.
Climb To The Drunken Clock Tower
Located at the top of the Petrovaradin Fortress, you will find the “Drunken Clock,” named as such because its shorthand shows the minutes and its longhand the hours, which made telling time easier for sailors on the Danube back in the day. Additionally, the clock is known to speed up in warm weather and slow down in the cold.
You can access the clock via stairs outside the fortress, and the climb is totally worth the panoramic view of Novi Sad from the top! Local artists often sell and display their works near the clock tower.
Climb The Fruska Gora Mountain
The Fruska Gora Mountain promises a pleasant hike for hiking enthusiasts and a chance to enjoy nature fully.
Take A Monastery And Wine Tour Just Outside Novi Sad
Just a fifteen-minute drive away, you’ll find countless monasteries and local wineries. Krušedol is a particularly well-loved winery as it sells homemade honey, the famous Balkans moonshine named rajika, and wine made by the monks themselves.
While in Novi Sad, visit some of these places and indulge in some shopping to pick up a souvenir or two:
- Zlatara As Or The Shops Along Zeleznička: Cheaper, high-quality jewelry
- The Manual Company Or Zmaj Jovina 18: Top-notch luxury leather goods
- Mercator: A shopping mall for all your needs
- Futoška Pijaca And Riblja Pijaca: Open public markets with cheap clothes, fresh produce, and Hungarian groceries
- Limanska Market: Fresh produce, smoked sausages, dried meat, cheese, and kajmak
Walk Along The Strand
The Best Arts & Culture In Novi Sad
Appreciate Art At The Foreign Art Collection
Found in the City Museum, the Foreign Art Collection houses the largest international art collection in Serbia. You could spend a whole day here simply immersed in the art and culture for art lovers.
Visit The Museum Of Vojvodina
This art and natural history museum is perfect for those looking to gain a deeper understanding of Serbia.
Museum Of Contemporary Art
Within walking distance of the Museum of Vojvodina, you will find the Museum of Contemporary Art. This museum celebrates the modern works of art and culture in the region with a mission to preserve these unique contributions to the art community.
Experience Jazz And Blues At The Foxtrot Club
Novi Sad has a long history of jazz and blues music and is the most iconic place to enjoy a drink and listen to the smooth tunes of the Foxtrot Club. It’s an experience that should be on every itinerary in the city!
Attend The Festival Of Street Musicians
If you find yourself in the city in early September, enjoy the performers who bring acrobatics, dances, and street shows featuring all types of unique instruments to the streets. This annual festival is free, and the colorful performances can be viewed at the base of the Petrovaradin Fortress.
Kill Some Time At Bulevar Books
Bulevar Books is a fun shop for avid readers, making it an excellent stop for music lovers. Live bands often play on the weekends in the shop, making the atmosphere quite chill.
Catch A Concert At The Old Synagogue
While a cool piece of history in its own right, the old Synagogue in town has the best acoustics around and hosts many concerts. If you enjoy listening to music in a historic venue, this is the place!
Where To Stay In Novi Sad
Novi Sad offers some of the best hostels you’ll ever find for backpackers and budget travelers. Many apartment-sized hotel rooms come at very affordable prices.
Best Hostels In Novi Sad
This is an ideal choice for high-quality, low-cost accommodation. Located in a baroque-style building close to the fortress, the Varad Inn has a lovely garden, communal café, and rooms with private bathrooms.
Close to some of the best bars in town, shops, and restaurants, this hostel is a great place to meet other like-minded travelers in Novi Sad.
Downtown Hostel Novi Sad
Located in the pedestrian zone in the city’s heart, Downtown Hostel is one of the best cheap places to stay in Novi Sad. All major attractions lie a stone’s throw away, including the Cathedral, the Danube River, and Danube Park.
The Petrovaradin Fortress, famously home to the EXIT Festival, lies only 15 minutes away on foot. Dorms and rooms come with cabinets, while bathrooms with showers are shared. Free WiFi is available.
Best Hotels In Novi Sad
ARTA Boutique Hotel
With spacious rooms and affordable rates, including buffet breakfast, the ARTA hotel is close to the center and suitable for accessing all the main attractions the city has to offer.
With the choice of both rooms and apartments, this hotel offers excellent breakfasts and is only three blocks away from the main pedestrian street.
This hotel offers affordable luxury with indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a spa, gym, lounge bar, and an international restaurant.
Hotel Leopold I
Great views of the Danube, a fitness and wellness center, and friendly staff are just a few of the things that make Hotel Leopold I one of the top places to stay in Novi Sad.
Hotel Sheraton Novi Sad
A trusted name in the accommodation industry, Sheraton also has one of its sophisticated hotels in Novi Sad. This four-star hotel features a spa center, sauna, fitness center, restaurant, and business center.
Garni Hotel Centar
As its name might suggest, Garni Hotel Centar is in the center of Novi Sad. You’ll be near points of interest like the Serbian National Theater, the Cathedral, and the Danube River while staying there. Amenities at this stylish hotel are modern and include everything you can expect from a four-star hotel.
You can grab breakfast at the morning buffet and wind down in the evening with an aperitif at the bar. Additionally, there’s free WiFi available and even a 24-hour guarded underground parking garage, which is a huge bonus.
Where & What To Eat In Novi Sad
- Savoca Picerijia: The best pizza in town
- Fish & Zelenis: Mediterranean fine dining
- Aqua Doria: A great restaurant to discover local cuisine
- Ananda: Cheap and delicious European food
- Toster Bar: Great burgers that will satisfy your stomach and your wallet
- Bistronomija: Have a taste of French and European food
While you’re in Novi Sad, be sure to find some ćevapčići, which are Balkan sausages. You can easily find this in any barbecue restaurant across Serbia.
Also, don’t miss trying a famous Index Sandwich, a popular street food you can find at Vanessa’s or Maja’s.
Novi Sad’s Nightlife
As mentioned earlier, the Strand is where the party’s at, but Novi Sad has a few other bars that will also guarantee a good time:
- Pub Two Dogs
- Skripba Pub
- Gerila Bar
- Pub Lazino Tele
- Martha’s Pub
- The Quarter
Best Nightlife Experiences
Tamburitza and Wine
The Tamburitza is the national instrument of Vojvodina (an autonomous province that occupies the northernmost part of Serbia), and a night out in Novi Sad wouldn’t be complete without listening to lovely this stringed instrument while sipping on wine. Truly one of a kind experience!
Night Life of Laze Telečkog
Laze Telečkog is the place to be for nightlife in the heart of the city! This narrow street is lined with bars, pubs, clubs, and cafes and favorite of the younger crowd.
Whether you visit for a day or a week, or a month, Novi Sad has a way of never entirely leaving you. With its thriving art, music, and culture scene and colorful architecture, Novi Sad is a city you can keep coming back to again and again and still find something new to fascinate and amaze you.Share