Bosnia and Herzegovina is a small, heart-shaped country in southeastern Europe, with a history that covers everything from Roman annexation and Slav invasion to around 500 years of Ottoman rule. It gained independence from socialist Yugoslavia in the 1990s and is, today, a culturally diverse country of refreshingly hospitable people.

If anything, the destination is made for romantic backpackers, who can explore its craggily beautiful landscape and medieval castle ruins, or enjoy its cities for their vibrant art scenes, magnificent Turkish-era architecture, and traditional barbecue restaurants. Major drawcards include the reincarnated historical centres of Sarajevo and Mostar, the resort town of Neum on the Adriatic coast, the Kravica Waterfalls near Ljubuski, and Medugorje, the Catholic pilgrimage site where the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared in the 1980s. Sports enthusiasts will relish the bargain-value skiing and raftable rivers.

Adventures in the wilderness and marvellous city breaks are the order of the day in Bosnia and Herzegovina, all at prices that make it one of Europe's best-value destinations.

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