Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo – Combining History & Adventure

Eastern Europe ski slopes in Jahorina ski resort, Sarajevo

Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo

It has been over 3 decades since the Eastern European city of Sarajevo hosted the Winter Olympics in 1984, but what was once preened pistes of Jahorina Ski Resort were damaged during the Bosnia war of the 1990’s. Now rebuilt and with 20 million spent in the last 5 years on chairlifts and facilities, Jahorina Ski resort Sarajevo has definitely come a long way.

Now it is a prime destination to ski in Eastern Europe and due to the value for money a popular place for cheap skiing.

Snowboarder launches off jump in Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo Bosnia

On the slopes of Jahorina Photo provided by Olympic Center Jahorina

I was not sure what to expect when I was invited along to Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo with  Ski Sarajevo for 5 days to explore the resort. Lots of things ran through my mind, will I get bored with a small resort, what is it like compared to the capital city that I have visited. 

Termag Hotel Jahorina, a gem in Eastern Europe ski resort

Termag Hotel Jahorina on the ski slopes – Jarhonia Ski Resort Sarajevo

What I got though was an appreciation for the Sarajevo Ski Resorts and an unexpected pleasant surprise of the quality of ski slopes and how modern the resort had become. I was definitely impressed how the slopes are spread out too across the mountains, so it never felt like a small resort and the friendliness of the people made me feel very welcome. 


Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo is the perfect place for you if you are into winter sports or you want to learn how to ski or you just want to enjoy a winter landscape.  With it only being a 45 minute drive from the capital city Sarajevo,  you can combine adventure and history together creating an unforgettable skiing holiday.

Skiers riding the chairlift in Jahorina ski resort

On the chairlifts Photo provided by Olympic Center Jahorina

About Jahorina Ski Resort

Though often overlooked to other ski destinations in Europe, Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo is definitely a resort coming into its own and one to watch out for in the future. Surrounded by mountains, the area offers some amazing outdoor adventure activities. What was appealing to me was the fewer crowds and the value for money compared to other better known resorts.

Whether you are an expert or a complete beginner, Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo has slopes to accommodate any level.  Small slopes, long slopes, short slopes, steep slopes, they have you covered. Making a great place for all skier types and levels.

A solitary cabin on the ski slope

A cabin on the slopes of Jarhonia Ski Resort Sarajevo

Ski Runs & Pass

With ski passes at Jahorina Ski Resort costing around £18.00 a day and around £72 for a week, skiing in Sarajevo is very affordable for everyone and undoubtedly great value for money. Granted that there are not hundreds of klms of runs but in comparison, this will cost you around quarter than what you’d pay at resorts in the Alps for the week and there is plenty to do other than skiing.

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 If you don’t have your own equipment, no worries, you can rent equipment for around 10 euro a day, depending on what you get.

Head ski's and poles

My own head ski equipment – Jahorina Ski Resort

Overview of the Jahorina Ski Area

  • Despite it only being 35klms of runs they are long and wide in most parts
  • 35 klms of groomed slopes (pistes) (Was recently remeasured)
  • Two children’s Ski Kindergarten areas with conveyor belts based at Poljica and Bistrica area
  • 7 Ski Lifts (3 six-seated, 1 two-seated and 3 lifts)
  • Night skiing available in the Poljica area
Map of the ski runs in Jahorina

A copy of the piste map on the slopes of Jahorina Sarajevo

An Ideal Place for Children and Beginners

Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo is a fantastic place for beginners and children to learn how to ski. The slopes are wide enough and spread out that any beginner or child would be comfortable learning on them and any parent would feel safe knowing this. Not only this but ski school like the lift pass are undoubtedly great value for money.  Beginner slopes are available at both Jahorina and Bjelasnica where you’ll also find professional and encouraging ski instructors. 

Children enjoying the beginner ski runs

Conveyor belt for kids – Photo provided by Olympic Center Jahorina

Ski Sarajevo Ski School

One of the things I love about being on a work ski trip is that you get the opportunity to ski with some top local ski instructors. They show you some of the hidden gems and the best ski slopes that the resort has to offer. If you are anything like me, you also get to learn new techniques and make some new friends at the same time, making it an added bonus.

Whether you are an experienced skier, a complete beginner, a group or a family, getting a guide can be a great idea for everyone.  They can help you improve your skills, make you feel more confident and generally enhance your skiing or boarding experience. 

Freshly groomed ski runs in Jahorina

One such ski school in the Jahorina Ski Resort is the Ski Sarajevo Ski School, which aims to understand the needs of clients so they are able to get the best out of their winter holiday. The ski instructors love of winter sports, use of foreign languages (especially English) and sense of humour is what makes them stand out from the crowd. Nothing is too much trouble for them and everything is done with a smile.

My guide from Ski Sarajevo Ski School was Nikola, we had a great time together, he showed me some of the best ski slopes in the resort, took me night skiing and generally helped me polish my skiing skills. Overall he made me an even more confident skier and enhanced my Ski Sarajevo experience.

You can book your lesson, group lessons or guided ski tours through Ski Sarajevo website and see the team.  

Mel B and her guide at he top of the ski run

A selfie with Nikola my guide from Ski Sarajevo

Night Skiing in Pale

It goes without saying skiing under the stars can be amazing, especially when the sky is clear and the ski runs are perfectly prepared. If you wanting to do something different with your friends or kids then night skiing is Pale is a great idea. Yes, Jahorina has its own night ski run but if you want something different and want to check out a different ski area, then Pale will be ideal.

Looking down the night ski run

At the top of the night run in Pale – Sarajevo

The custom-made ski slope with state of the art snow machines in Pale is definitely one of a kind and one that I enjoyed skiing. I loved the additional ramps on the slopes and the apres ski bar at the end of the slope. It was a lot of fun skiing down and popping into the bar at the end of the slope, while watching the other skiers.

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Additional Information

  • 20 Euros per person, which includes – Return transfer and Ski-lift pass
  • Pick up is at 6.30pm, with night-skiing from 7pm to 9.30pm
  • Usually held on a Thursday night
View of the night ski run from the bottom of the slope

At the bottom of the night run in Pale Photo Provided By – Ski Sarajevo

Non-Ski Activities

The capital city of Sarajevo is around 21miles drive from the Jahorina Ski Resort. Whether you stay there throughout your holiday or take a few day trips as a break from skiing, the area has so much to offer. From taking a guided tour of Sarajevo city and War Tunnel to a day trip to the village of Mostar. There is so much to learn about the country’s rich history and culture and plenty of great photo opportunities. 

Overlooking Sarajevo from the surrounding mountains

Overlooking the Capital city of Sarajevo

Here are a couple of activities that you can do off the mountain:

Sarajevo City Walking Tour

A trip to Jahonia Ski Sarajevo is not complete without doing a stopover in the vibrant and intriguing city of Sarajevo or taking a day off from skiing or snowboarding. 

Sarajevo the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a compact city on the Miljacka River and surrounded by the Dinaric Alps. It has a unique, dark and interesting history and in the 1990s Sarajevo was besieged and on the edge of annihilation.  Step forward to today, the city is an exciting place to wander around in and explore its restored historic centre. 

It is also a great place to take in the local culture and enjoy the welcoming cafes and restaurants that are great value for money.

Additional Information

  • Organised by Ski Sarajevo
  • 12 Euros per person if staying in Sarajevo City
  • 20 Euros per person if staying the Jahonia Ski Resort (transfer included from the Mountain).
  • Tour Duration roughly 2.5 hours
  • Price includes – Local guide, Tour of main sights of Sarajevo with focus on 90s seige (experienced by guide)
Sarajevo's Latin Bridge

Latin Bridge in Sarajevo – Bosnia and Herzegovina

Add on – Sarajevo War Tunnel (Combo Tour)

If you love history and want to know more about this unique city, then I highly suggest the War Tunnel add-on. This is considered to be a popular all day tour that you can either do the City walking tour in the morning and the Tunnel Tour in the afternoon or vice versa.

I visited the War Tunnel on my first trip to Sarajevo over 6 years ago now and I have to say I thought it was such an interesting place to visit and learn about. The 25m section of the 1m wide, 1.6m high hand-dug tunnel under the airport runway is definitely claustrophobic when you enter the entrance of the tunnel. It is a great way to understand what they were feeling every day when they travelled through this tunnel underneath the airport.

War tunnel museum

The house over the Tunnel of Life – Sarajevo Bosnia and Herzegovina

It is interesting to learn how this tunnel acted as the city’s lifeline to the outside world during the 1992–95 siege, when Sarajevo was virtually surrounded by hostile Serb forces. Alongside the tunnel are a museum, a minefield garden and the house that hid the entrance to the tunnel.

Additional Information

  • 30 Euros per person which includes Local guide, Entrance to War Tunnel Museum, Tour of Museum and Transfers
  • Minimum 2 people. Lunch in Sarajevo City not included (this is a natural break between the 2 parts of the tour).
  • This is a full day tour and must be requested beforehand
inside the wooden tunnel museum

Inside the museum of the Tunnel of Life

A cheeky break on the Mountain

Whether you need to take a break or warm up a little, you will find several cafes and restaurants along the slopes in the Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo to choose from.  My favourite was Mountain House Rajska Vrata where I would stop of for a coffee in front of the opened fireplace.

Do you know that there is an Italian Side of the Matterhorn, where you can ski?

It is located in one of the most beautiful parts of Jahorina, Rajska Dolina(Paradise Valley), which you can get to using the Ogorjelica ll chairlift or via the road behind the San Hotel if via foot.

Circular fire pit inside the restaurant

House Rajska Vrata enjoying a coffee – Jahornia Ski Resort

Accommodation

There are loads of accommodation available in Jahorina and since the war, the resort has made a big effort in revamping old hotels and building new ones.  You can find luxury hotels, chalets, apartments or B&B style accommodation, there certainly isn’t a shortage of options to choose from. There is also the option of staying in the capital city of Sarajevo which is only a short drive away.


Hotel San

I stayed at the Hotel San in the Jahorina Ski Resort, which was conveniently located 5mins downhill from the Ogorjelica I chairlift and around the corner from the Jahorina Olympic Centre. The hotel had everything that I needed from a ski hotel, like ski storage, strong Wifi, a hot shower and good friendly service.

Outside view of Hotel San

Hotel San – Jahornia Ski Resort Sarajevo

The half board food was pretty good too and if there was anything else you required then the staff were happy to help. It definitely was value for money and you can’t go wrong when you basically step out your door and straight onto the slopes.

Ski Sarajevo also offer 4-star chalets and apartments under their Gold medal category, which are worth checking out as well.

Jahorina village buildings

Location & How to Jahorina Ski Resort

Airport

The closest international airport is Sarajevo International Airport (Also known as Butmir Airportand is only 13.5miles away from Jahorina Ski Resort. Making it one of the quickest and most accessible resorts to get to in Europe.


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Transfer

There are numerous ways of getting to Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo from buses, private transfer or shared transfer. All vary in price but to be honest it is so affordable that a cab would be just as cheap.

Snow covered ski fields of Jahorina

Top Tips

  • You can use credit/debit card at most places but best to get some Bosnian marks from the ATM at the airport.
  • Depends on where you are eating or drinking, most places will accept both Euro and Bosnian Marks. If, you use Euro’s they will give you Bosnian marks for change.
  • It is mandatory for children under the age of 14 to wear a protective helmet

  • If you are driving, there is a car park that is situated near the Poljice chairlift or 5 minutes walk
  • My favourite ski run was from the top of the Ogorjelica 1 chairlift down and along slop 6 to the Skocine chairlift.
  • If you have the time, you can also take a day trip to beautiful city of Mostar

Stari Most bridge in the city of Mostar

 

Thank you for reading this post ‘Jahorina Ski Resort Sarajevo – Combining History & Adventure’  I hope that it helped you in deciding where to ski this season and gave you some inspiration to hit the slopes. I definitely know that I will be going back to Sarajevo to ski.

For more information, please visit the Ski Sarajevo website or you can email me directly.

Snow covered trees and chairlift on a sunny day in Jahorina

Fresh Snow on the slopes at Jahornia – Photo Provided By – Ski Sarajevo

Have you been to Jahorina Ski Resort before? I would love to hear your experiences in the comments below.

If you want to try skiing and are not keen going for a week or you simply want to go for a weekend then check out my post 6 Top Tips for Saving Money for a Ski Weekend

Happy Skiing and enjoy your adventure!!!!!!

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Jahorina Ski Resort, Sarajevo

 

 

Disclaimer: Even though I was invited by Ski Sarajevo All views are my own and based on my own experience.

Remember that you always need a good Ski Coat before your next adventure.

 

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58 Comments

  1. WOw these photos are fantastic! I have heard wonderful things about Sarajevo but never about the skiing! this makes me want to hit the slopes! great piece!

  2. Ah, I didn’t think of Sarajevo is a skiing place but its good to know. I am not a skier myself but I do love the snow and I love trying other snow related activities such as tubing, sledging, etc. Do they have other such activities as well or is it mostly for skiing? I think it might be time I got myself to learn how to ski!

  3. Jahorina ski resort in Sarajevo sounds like a hidden gem for ski lovers with a low budget! It might not be the most wow ski resort but for that price it looks impressive enough! And I am sure it must much less crowded so you must feel like having the slope for yourself! I am not a skier…not even a beginner but I can definitely see myself learn to ski at Jahorina ski resort! If I, lets say give up after a day of skiing, I can always explore Sarajevo and the Mostar! It sound very childfriendly too so it would be perfect for my daughter! I will pin it to my wish list board!

  4. This looks like a great, and very affordable place to ski! I think some of the resorts around Europe can be so expensive, and less about the skiing sometimes. Jahorina looks incredible, and I like that it’s in Sarajevo too. These places are lesser known, and for true skiing fans, they should try these slopes out too!

  5. I did not know that ski is such a common activity in Bosnia, but it is a nice surprise to see how well organized and welcoming is the Jahorina Ski Resort. I haven’t been skiing in a while, due to a bad knee, so I would most likely need the help of an instructor 🙂 It is also nice that there are so many activities around the ski resort, for those hours where you manage to get off your skis 🙂 I would like to do a tour of the tunnels, as I heard that it played an important role in the history. Very interesting article!

    1. This is such an interesting place and I really enjoyed it. The slopes were fun and the people were super nice. The fact you can do a tour as well as skiing is definitely uniquie

  6. I don’t ski but it looks like an awesome place to learn. I think here in the US many people still picture Sarajevo as being a war-torn place, which helps keep the tourist out 😉 I would really love to give snowtubing a shot, so I’m telling hubby that we have to go!

  7. Sarajevo’s ski resort looks perfect for budget travelers and also a beautiful option in winters. Sarajevo city itself is beautiful with rich history and culture for not ski lovers. As they provide instructors at pocket friendly prices, I would learn skiing here. Loved your pictures specially snow clad pine trees ones.

  8. Wow, this looks amazing! Never thought of skiing in Sarajevo but it looks gorgeous and of course really affordable too. I *nearly* went to Sarajevo, but had trouble getting across the border from Croatia (our car needed some special insurance) and it took a couple of extra days before we could cross and then we only had time to visit Mostar. Maybe I need to return to Sarajevo in winter instead.

    1. I did a road trip from Croatia through Bosnia and Montenegro and loved it. It was one of my favourite trips ever. You should definitely head back and see Sarajevo and take a trip up to the ski fields for a least a few days.

  9. I never knew you could ski in Sarajevo. How cool does this resort look. I would definitely be keen to head there for a long weekend.

  10. Oh my, 20 Euros per person is quite great price! Never thought Sarajevo as a Ski spot at all and would love to try it out. In saying that we snowboard and have no idea how to ski, would be great to learn it there considering it won’t be extremely crowded!

  11. I had no idea you could ski near Sarajevo! I enjoyed reading about your experience there. I’m not a huge fan of skiing so I’d be very keen to do a ski trip in a region where there are other things to explore rather than staying in ski resorts all week. And you mention it’s cheap. It sounds perfect and I’ll keep it in mind if I have the opportunity to travel to Europe during winter. Thank you for sharing!

  12. We’ve travelled to Eastern Europe a couple of times and never realised that Sarajevo was good for skiing! It sounds like a great place to learn as it seems a lot cheaper than all the places in France and Switzerland. Will bear this in mind as a winter trip sounds like a cool idea!

  13. The infrastructure looks great with really well designed facilities and plenty to do. I loved the conveyor belt for the children’s ski school. The night run sounds beautiful! I’ve never been to the Tunnel, but that must be a really evocative experience and scary at the same time thinking back to all that prompted its creation.

    1. This is truly a lovely ski resort and I was super impressed with the newer chairlifts and places to go. I also like the fact that you don’t just have to ski that you can do other things as well.

  14. This looks so much fun. Going to ski-resorts are very common in Norway (my home country) I have never been a fan really but I am sure it is fun going with a group of friends. Jahorina ski resort looks amazing and so luxurious. I haven’t thought about Sarajevo being a good place for that. Learnt something new today 😀 Would love to check ito ut 😀

    1. This is a great place if you want to ski or want to just enjoy nature. The best bit is that you are not stuck on the mountain that you can also visit the captial too. Btw Norway is such a beautiful place.

  15. I broke my wrist snowboarding and have been afraid to try winter activities again, but this resort is making me want to give it another try. I also love learning about history and the Sarajevo War Tunnel sounds so interesting!

    1. This is a great place for you to build back up your confidence, as the slopes are wide and easier today and don’t have to worry about other people. When you have enough you can pop into one of the many bars and enjoy the very good cheap wine or beer 🙂

  16. Sarajevo looks like a white wonderland. Great to know that the tragic war memories are a thing of the past. The Jahorina resort looks like a perfect winter getaway for families. What I really like is the facilities available for children and beginners to Skiing.

  17. Never heard about this ski resort. Actually, you rarely associate Bornia-Herzegovina with winter sports…Good to know, as I want to visit Sarajevo soon, and all I have in mind is a bridge and some historical spots.

  18. Sarajevo looks like a great place to go skiing . Good that you have highlighted the things other than skiing as well. I loved the wlaking tour, would defnitely love to take it

  19. Sarajevo looks beyond stunning – amazing pictures!! Serious travel goals right now. Love the idea of that walking tour – and anything that doesn’t involve me being a disaster on skis… hahahaha

  20. Wow. There are so many awesome things to do in Jahorina, Sarajevo. I’ve never been to Bosnia and Herzegovina, but this inspires me to return to Eastern Europe. Skiing at night sounds so thrilling and scary at the same time. Thanks for sharing, and happy travels!

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