Our fourth trip outside Belgrade. Sremski Karlovci, Monkey island, and Zivanovic winery were on our itinerary. Our idea was to visit the historical town of Sremski Karlovci, grab a few glasses of wine and discover a well-hidden river island called “Monkey” island or Ko Chang.

The first stop on our short trip was the Zivanovic winery and honey museum that stands in close proximity to Sremski Karlovci. Members of the Zivanovic family are the heirs of the more than century-old wine cellar and among the first honey growers in this part of the world. In this tiny and peculiar museum, you can hear the story about the family history and get insights into the science of beekeeping. Learn about the Americana hives and the very first beekeeper from the Zivanovic family who was a professor and strong supporter of the Serbian language reformer Vuk Karadzic. In fact, even if you don’t know anything about beekeeping the story will intrigue you since the hosts are really vivid storytellers and they will elaborate on each of the artifacts in a manner that catches your attention and enhance your desire for more information.

After the visit to the museum, we took a look at the ancient wine cellar and enjoyed wine and honey tasting in the garden. Wines are produced in small quantities and you can purchase bottles at the spot. My favorites were white wine and super delicious dark honey with sesame.

The finest fact about this place is that Zivanovics are true Serbian hosts. They will make you feel great and you will have a desire to come again with more people. The entire atmosphere is very family-like, and unlike many wineries that attempt to be genuine, this one actually is.

Afterward, we decided to find this hidden river island, called the Monkey Island or Ko Chang. We came to the banks of the Danube River where three restaurants are situated and took a boat ride to the hidden island. Not so polite boat driver explained that this is an island with many names, charged us 200 RSD, and told us that he will come back in 2 hours. Finally, we have arrived at a beautiful sand river beach where the water is clean and actually great for swimming. There wasn’t a bunch of people there. And it turned out to be a great place to refresh, grab a “zidarsko” 0,5 l local beer from an island bar and enjoy the nature and fresh air outside the city bustle. The ride back to the coast was also very refreshing.

We went to lunch in one of those three restaurants on the riverfront. We opt for the most appealing one, but I guess that was a mistake since the prices were Belgrade standard, however, the food was anything but delicious. The finest thing we ate there was a local dessert krempita. Then, we heard that the finest food is served in the open-air restaurant just next to this one where the folks regularly eat riblja corba (like a fish potage).

Our final destination was a town of Sremski Karlovci-historical, cultural, and well-known for its art and architecture that ranges from neoclassical to baroque styles. The true architectural masterpieces are Patriarchate, the Cathedral church, Catholic church dedicated to the Holy Trinity, Magistrate building where is now situated municipality headquarter and Palace of church funds. Also, don’t forget to see the famous gymnasium of Karlovci – the first gymnasium ever to be founded in Serbia.

We recommend a slow walk around the city. After the sightseeing, you could grab a glass of a famous Karlovac wine – bermet, a dry dessert aromatized wine that includes thirty herbs, spices, and fruits. The legend says that sommeliers from Italy, Germany, and France tried to steal the secret of this recipe. It is said that it was on the wine list of the Titanic and that documents were found in the wreckage proving that the deliveries also went to English ports.

Anyways, don’t forget to taste Kuglof-a dry cake brought around 1700s from Germany and grab a coffee before you go back to the city.

If you prefer to take a guided tour of Sremski Karlovci, Wine tasting, and Novi Sad please contact us via email stillinbelgradetours@gmail.com