How to Find the Giant David Bowie Mural in Sarajevo

David Bowie is well-regarded in Sarajevo, in part because he attempted to schedule a concert in Sarajevo during the siege. While the concert never happened, in response to David Bowie’s passing a local artist did his best to honor Bowie with a giant mural on a hollowed-out building:


Fashion changes but you’ll always be my heroes.

I found out about this but couldn’t find good directions, so hopefully this post will show up on searches and help visitors find it. The mural is on the University of Sarajevo campus, near the eastern end of the campus, on a wall facing west. The University campus is just east of the United States Embassy. This is south of the train/bus station, with the mural itself southeast of the station. If you enter the campus near the United States Embassy and wander generally toward the east, you will probably get there.

There is a 360 degree view on Google Maps, but a search won’t find it. You can look up that 360 degree view here (this starts with you facing away from the mural, but you can spin around).

Alternatively, you can find it by landmarks. There is a residential tower with a giant coffee advertisement on the western side.

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You can see this even from the train station:


Look for the red building in the middle (partially behind a tree).

The David Bowie mural is just to the northeast of that building.

Further north on the campus is this pilgrimage mural:


Peregrino? Si.

And here is more Bowie:


The rest of the building (ruin) is not painted.


David Bowie with Elizabeth — you can see the scale.

Happy hunting!  For more about our trip to Sarajevo and surrounds, check out our posts on Border Crossings and SarajevoMostar and Konjic, and Relaxing and Exercising at Vukov Konak.

Relaxing and Exercising at Vukov Konak

by Michael

In Slovenia, our friend Nika had suggested we look into Vukov Konak, a traditional mountain house near Sarajevo where a Finnish-Bosnian couple host guests, prepare meals, and lead hikes. It sounded like the perfect solution to our difficulty getting out beyond tour group routes in Bosnia.


Vokov Konak: the building is over a hundred years old and was beautifully rustic on the inside!

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Mostar and Konjic

by Michael

Our initial plan after visiting Sarajevo was to head into the mountains for some hiking and cooler temperatures.  On recommendation from our Slovenian friend, we looked into a mountain house near Sarajevo called Vukov Konak, but it was booked for the next few days. To pass the time, we turned further south to Mostar.  You may be familiar with Mostar from the news in the mid-1990s, when, during the Bosnian war, the Croatian militia destroyed the centuries-old bridge, often referred to as a symbol of the pointlessness of the war. Today the bridge and old town are rebuilt, though some buildings just blocks away remain hollow shells.


The famous Stari Most (literally “old bridge”) of Mostar.


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Border Crossings and Sarajevo

by Elizabeth

Getting from Ljubljana to Sarajevo turned out to be an all day journey.  We had considered whether there was any way to break it up, but ultimately there was nothing along the way that we were particularly interested in stopping to do.  We’ve visited Zagreb on a prior trip (2011) and  stopping to raft in northern Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) was still a non-starter for my shoulder/elbow.  We opted to take the train instead of the bus, since I get car sick and can’t read or use the laptop on a bus.  In theory, the train and bus take more or less the same amount of time.

Our early morning train from Ljubljana to Zagreb, Croatia was uneventful.  The highlight was the fact that, upon crossing into Croatia, we had finally exited the Schengen zone.  We still have a couple weeks of eligibility left in the Schengen zone in case we need to return for any reason.  On our second train from Zagreb to Sarajevo we shared our 6-person compartment with one other person for the first hour and then had it to ourselves for the rest of the trip. 

We joked that in crossing over from Croatia to BiH, we would be making our own Brexit from the EU (or in our case more appropriately known as Dorsit).  As with Britain’s vote, our Dorsit did not go exactly as planned.  When our train got to the Croatian/BiH border, the Croatian engine detached from the train and left us waiting for the BiH engine to show up.  To further complicate matters, BiH has two separate political/geographic territories following the Dayton Peace Accords, so we needed a Republika Srpska engine (to be later replaced by a Bosnian engine).  We waited three hours for the new engine.  Our train had no food/beverage car.  The station that we waited at had a coffee machine and nothing else.  Not helpful on a hot day. 


Waiting for a new engine on the Croatian side of the Croatia/BiH border.


Stuck in Volinja.  Our passports had already been stamped by Croatian immigration officials, so for the three hours that we hung out in Volinja we were in a bit of an immigration limbo.

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