Dennis and Dionne Newton

Dennis and Dionne Newton
Dennis & Dionne Newton

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Jajce to Banjaluka:  One of My Favorite Drives of All-Time

This week we drove around Bosnia going to Tuzla on Tuesday and Banjaluka on Thursday. While the topography of the entire country is amazing, I was quite smitten by a 1-hour stretch between the small town of Jayce and Banjaluka. As we drove my jaw remained ajar due to the sheer beauty of the scenery. As I reflected on what we had just driven through, I realized that this is one of the five most beautiful short-drives I have ever personally driven. (My other favorite drives are Maui, Yukon in Alaska, playing "taxi driver" in New York City, and Durango to Silverton in Colorado).

Along the famous "Road to Hana" in Maui
We do not have a real camera yet so our pictures will not do this drive justice. We also did not have that much time to stop and enjoy the scenery. So you will just have to take my word for how cool this drive is. And, if you ever get to Bosnia, make sure you seek this drive out.  

Here's the Google Map directions.  Banjaluka is one of the largest cities in Bosnia.
My first thought when I looked at how the country boundaries were drawn between Croatia and Bosnia was that Croatia had gotten all of the good parts (e.g., the entire Adriatic shoreline). But the Rocky Mountain boy in me now feels quite differently. The mountains here in Bosnia is gorgeous, powerful, and has an untamed feel to it. And this drive highlights all of these qualities.

Jayce is a quant little city that is known for one little feature; a massive waterfall right in the center of town. We decided to look for it along the side of the road and once we saw a glimpse we simply had to stop. We were transporting two sisters. We walked down to the bottom of the falls and enjoyed a nice mist on a hot day.

Enjoying Bosnia

The road runs through deep canyons, climbs mountains, passes old churches, and follows a ranging river. And did I mention that it is a small, likely dangerous two-lane highway on which I was being passed by bus drivers flying along? There are points on the road where the two trucks cannot pass each other because of the way the cliff face overhangs (they would have to let one pass holding back all traffic). And every time I looked up there were mountains like this one looking back at me.
My iPhone did not do this mountain justice!
Dionne took some video while we were driving. These tunnels were just cut out of the mountain and are not really reinforced. 

We only got out a few times to look around. There really were not too many places where you could get out and safely look around!  Here's a few pictures from when we did get out.  Cheers!

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