Navigating Coffee Culture An Expats Guide to Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Welcome expatriates to the vibrant coffee culture of Bosnia and Herzegovina! Whether you're a passionate coffee drinker, or just yearning to explore new flavors and traditions, our guide has got you covered.

Understanding Coffee Origins and Production in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina is a major coffee producer in Europe. From the southern town of Ljubuški to the eastern region of Goražde, coffee plantations and farms dot the landscape, producing organic and locally grown beans. The indigenous coffee variety, Arabica, is prized for its rich flavor and aroma.

  • Specialty Coffees: Bosnia and Herzegovina's unique geography and climate offer unique varieties, such as Orientalis and Herzegovinian Blend, which are prized for their distinct flavors.
  • Kopar: Traditionally, coffee beans in Bosnia and Herzegovina are dried on rooftops, a unique method known as kopar. This method both preserve the natural flavors and enhance the aroma of the coffee beans.
  • Peculiarities in Growing Region: The coffee plantations thrive in the soils rich in iron and magnesium found in the eastern and south-eastern parts of the country.

Expatriates interested in coffee plantations and tours can explore locations such as Blagaj Coffee Plantation and Farm in the south-eastern part of the country or Kamengrad Coffee Farm in southern Bosnia.

Embracing Favorite Coffee Style Drinks in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina's rich coffee culture delights expats with popular beverages such as:

  • Turkish Coffee: Thick sludge and sweetened with sugar, Turkish coffee, also known as Tureški Kahve, is typically prepared in copper or bronze pots. Expats in Bosnia and Herzegovina will recognize this as ozujsko kavica, the traditional beverage served at the famous Dayton Peace Conference.
  • Cappuccino: This popular European drink can be found in coffee shops throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina's cities and towns. Cappuccino is a favorite for morning coffee drinkers and is typically served with artistic decor when poured.
  • Espresso: While Bosniaks prefer rich, flavorsome coffee, Italians, and Austrians who have traveled to Bosnia and Herzegovina have introduced espresso, however, their preference is for Turkish coffee.
  • Herzegovinian Blend: A local specialty, Herzegovinian Blend is a popular choice among locals in the south-eastern part of the country. This blend comprises Arabica, Robusta, and Orientalis, which offers an optimal balance between bitterness and sweetness.

Embracing Coffee Drinking Customs and Traditions in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnian coffees are enjoyed in social settings, and in Bosnia and Herzegovina's world-renowned coffee culture, it pays to understand local customs and traditions. Here are some tips:

  • Coffee Preparation: As a guest, you should not help prepare coffee, as it is a responsibility assumed by the host. The host will serve you fresh coffee, and even enjoying a second round is customary.
  • Coffee Serving: Božićni kahve (Christmas coffee), traditional to the Christmas season, is served with an assortment of sweet treats such as slices of cakes, cookies, or Turkish delight.
  • Coffee Business: Coffee is an integral part of conducting business in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and you will be delighted to receive a cup of coffee after successful business meetings as an appreciation gesture.
  • Coffee Socializing: Friends and family get-togethers include coffee as part of the socializing experience. Bosniak hospitality calls for constant refillings of your coffee cup to ensure that your experience is unmatched.

Additional Recommendations for Expats in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Expats in Bosnia and Herzegovina should visit the coffee shops listed below to taste the authentic coffee culture.

  • Capito Cafe: Located in Sarajevo's Baščaršija neighborhood, this converted historical building, is a perfect dip into Bosnia and Herzegovina's coffee culture, serving locally grown and roasted blends.
  • Café Berlin: A cozy cafe located in Ilidža, northeast Sarajevo, featuring locally made pastries, cakes, and rich expat-friendly varieties native to South America & Australia.
  • Kavana Art Cafe: Located in the heart of Banja Luka, the vibey atmosphere empowers expats to explore coffee traditions and customs, such as the traditional Bosnian coffee offered here.
  • Cafè Bureau: Located on Bosna Avenue, downtown Sarajevo, overlooking the stunning Old Bridge. Offering Bosnian beetroot schnapps and serving Arabica and Robusta blends.

Expatriates in Bosnia and Herzegovina should enjoy the cultural experiences the coffee scene offers, including traditional coffee festivals like Sarajevo's famous Coffee & Vanilla fair which should not be missed.


Immerse yourself in the rich coffee culture of Bosnia and Herzegovina and join the community's exotic coffee scene. Our guide equipped you with the necessary recommendations for coffee shops, farms, customs, and traditions that will empower expats in Bosnia and Herzegovina to thrive in the dynamic coffee scene while respecting cultural traditions.