March 18, 2016Amy Trumpeter
Belgrade is definitely the party capital of Eastern Europe. With beers at around €1 (less than £1!) and several up and coming party districts, you simply cannot miss this city. Here’s my outline of the exciting Belgrade nightlife.
Belgrade Nightlife: Winter and Summer Clubs
Because Belgrade is very seasonal, there are specific clubs for winter and summer. The winter clubs and bars are generally in Savamala District and Downtown. Some popular winter clubs include Parliament, Soho Republic, Tilt and Teatro.
Summer clubs tend to be based on and around the river Sava and Danube. Some popular summer clubs include Club 94 and Amsterdam. In summertime in Belgrade, many club boats or barges go up and down the Danube, called “splavs” or “splavovi”. There is even a summer nightclub outside in the Kalemegdan Fortress (club Terrassa)! Club Terrassa opens for the summer season at the end of May.
Belgrade Nightlife – What you need to Know
In Belgrade, there is no cover charge for night clubs, but reservation is necessary. If you just turn up without a reservation, don’t expect to get in. If you need help with reservation and VIP rooms in Belgrade night clubs, you can go to http://belgradeatnight.com. They specialise in helping foreigners to get the most out of Belgrade nightlife.
There is often a charge for the cloakroom. Many bartenders in the pubs and clubs of Belgrade do speak English. However, be aware that many try to rip you off by not giving you change. Always ask for your change if you don’t get it (on principle unless it’s a tiny amount) and then you can tip them if you wish. Tips are usually 10% in restaurants and bars in Belgrade. You tend to get better service in busy bars and clubs if you tip generously, of course.
Something else that you should be aware of is that smoking is not banned in pubs, clubs or restaurants in Belgrade. When you are experiencing Belgrade nightlife, you will realise that they literally smoke everywhere. This could be problematic if you are travelling with asthma. Make sure that you take your inhalers and get fresh air when you need to.
Belgrade night clubs often have ‘face control’ and dress codes. Make sure that you read the policies before you go to the club, to avoid disappointment. Most Belgrade clubs go on until at least 5am.
Skadarlija is commonly known as bar street, and is located just off Republic Square past the theatre. It is a cobbled pedestrianised street full of quirky bars, pubs and clubs. Many bars and clubs have live music and DJ’s that go on until the early hours of the morning.
Skadarlija is a little pricey and somewhat a tourist trap, so make sure that you investigate the side streets for cheaper and more authentic places.
Savamala is the new up and coming artsy district of Belgrade. In the day time, it is full of artists, musicians, young entrepreneurs and students sipping coffee in cafes. By night, it becomes a collection of quirky warehouses that turn into nightclubs – the best of Belgrade nightlife is found in this district.
Belgrade Night Life – My Favourite Bars
Just of Knez Mihailova and round the corner from Trip and Sleep Hostel is the Witch bar. This themed pre club bar has broomsticks on the ceiling and the bartender will cook you up and exciting witches brew! We saw some great live music in there on a Friday night. It was a duo called The Party Animals. The did a great Red Hot Chilli Peppers cover of Californication. As we were leaving they asked us where we were from, and proceeded to do a hilarious cover of ‘Only Fools and Horses!’
I loved Kafana SFJR because of it’s Yugoslavian communist history theme – we nicknamed it the Tito bar! It’s located on Kraljevića Marka 5, on the route from Knez Mihailova down to Savamala, about half way.
The bar is full of Tito-related artefacts including flags, maps of Yugoslavia and 1970’s radios! It is quiet early on, but get bustling around midnight onwards, especially on a weekend.
Belgrade is a totally amazing party city, and whether you go in the summer or winter season, you will have an amazing time!