Medjugorje Travel Guide: Notes for Traveling to Medjugorje
Medjugorje is a town in Bosnia-Herzegovina that has become known as a popular destination for Catholic pilgrims from all over the world. The town is famous for the reported apparitions of the Virgin Mary that began in 1981 and have continued ever since. Here we share you a travel guide to some of the top attractions and experiences you will find in this city.
General Information about Medjugorje
Medjugorje is a magical place that has captivated people from all over the world for decades. This small town in Bosnia and Herzegovina is a sanctuary visited by pilgrims in search of peace and spirituality.
The main reason for Medjugorje's attraction is the series of apparitions of the Virgin Mary that have been reported since 1981. Since then, there have been many testimonies of miracles and healings, leaving many visitors with a sense of renewal and hope.
But Medjugorje is not only a place of religious pilgrimage, it is also a fascinating tourist destination. The mountainous landscape of the area is breathtaking and there are many outdoor activities, such as hiking and cycling, which are very popular with visitors.
In addition, the village itself is charming, with its stone streets and traditional houses. There are many restaurants and stores offering local products and handicrafts where you can buy the perfect souvenir of your family vacation.
In case you’re wondering what Medjugorje means, you should know that the name "Medjugorje" can be translated as "between mountains" in the local language, since the town is situated in a valley between two mountains.
Location of Medjugorje
Below you’ll find where Medjugorje is located.
Map of Medjugorje on Google Maps
What to See and Do in Medjugorje
The town has become a major pilgrimage site for Catholics and attracts millions of visitors from around the world each year.
In addition to its spiritual significance, Medjugorje is also known for its beautiful natural surroundings, including the nearby Kravice Waterfalls and the stunning views from the top of Apparition Hill.
Here we tell you about the most important attractions and activities in Medjugorje.
Pilgrimage to Medjugorje
The pilgrimage to Medjugorje is the main reason why many people visit this town. This includes visits to several sacred sites. Some of the most important Medjugorje pilgrimage sites are the Apparition Hill and St. James Church. Here we tell you the information you need to know about the Medjugorje holy sites.
Apparition Hill is one of the most important sites in Medjugorje. This is where the Virgin Mary first appeared to a group of local children in 1981. The site is now a popular destination for pilgrims, who climb the hill to pray and reflect. At the top of the hill, there is a statue of the Virgin Mary, and many visitors leave flowers and other offerings as a sign of their devotion.
Our Lady of Medjugorje
Our Lady of Medjugorje is the title given to the Virgin Mary in Medjugorje. According to the local children who first saw her, she has been appearing in the town since 1981. Many pilgrims come to Medjugorje to seek the blessings of Our Lady of Medjugorje, and they often bring pictures or other items to be blessed at St. James Church.
St. James Church
St. James Church is the main church in Medjugorje. It's where many of the pilgrims attend Mass during their visit. The church is dedicated to St. James the Apostle, and it's a beautiful example of the local architecture. Inside the church, there are many religious artifacts and paintings, including a large painting of the Virgin Mary.
Krizevac Hill is another important site in Medjugorje. The hill is also known as Cross Mountain, and it's where a large cross was erected in 1933 to mark the 1900th anniversary of Jesus' crucifixion. The site is now a popular destination for pilgrims, who climb the hill to pray and reflect.
Cross Mountain is a popular destination for pilgrims who come to Medjugorje. The hill is a challenging climb, but it offers breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside. Along the way, visitors will find small chapels and shrines where they can stop to pray or meditate. At the top of the hill, there is a large cross that serves as a reminder of the sacrifice that Jesus made on the cross.
Mirjana Dragicevic is one of the visionaries who claims to have seen the Virgin Mary in Medjugorje. She is one of the most well-known visionaries and has written several books about her experiences. Many visitors to Medjugorje hope to meet her or attend one of her talks.
The Blue Cross is a small shrine located near Apparition Hill. It's called the Blue Cross because it's painted blue and it marks the spot where the Virgin Mary is said to have appeared to the visionaries in 1981. The Blue Cross is a popular spot for pilgrims to pray and leave offerings.
Photo by Mateusz Suski on Unsplash
Cultural Aspects about Medjugorje
Medjugorje is a place rich in culture and history. For the most part, the inhabitants of Medjugorje are devout Catholics and it is reflected in their traditions and customs.
One of the cultural highlights is the celebration of the feast of St. Jacob every July 25, which attracts thousands of pilgrims every year. During the festivity, a special mass is held and processions are organized in honor of St. Jacob. In addition, music and dance are an important part of the local culture, especially during religious celebrations and festivities.
Gastronomy is also an essential part of Medjugorje's culture, with traditional dishes such as cevapi (meat sausages), burek (a puff pastry filled with meat or cheese), and ajvar (a roasted red bell pepper sauce).
Finally, arts and crafts are also important in the culture of Medjugorje. The local people are known for their skills in pottery, weaving and woodcarving, and many tourists come to Medjugorje to buy these crafts as souvenirs of their visit.
Mladifest is an annual youth festival that takes place in Medjugorje. The festival attracts young Catholics from all over the world and includes Mass, confession, and other spiritual activities. The festival usually takes place in August, and it's a great opportunity for young people to deepen their faith and connect with others.
Medjugorje Church History
The history of the Catholic Church in Medjugorje can be traced back to the 1890s, when the first church, dedicated to St. James the Greater, was built in the town. The original church was a simple structure, but it was expanded and renovated over the years as the town grew and the number of parishioners increased.
During World War II, the church was severely damaged and had to be rebuilt in the years following the war. In 1961, the church was expanded again to accommodate the growing number of pilgrims visiting Medjugorje.
The reported apparitions of the Virgin Mary began in 1981, and the church played a central role in the early days of the apparitions. The visionaries, the six children who claimed to have seen the Virgin Mary, would often gather in the church to pray and share their experiences with each other.
As the number of pilgrims visiting Medjugorje increased, the church became too small to accommodate everyone, and a larger church, known as the "new church," was built adjacent to the original church. The new church was consecrated in 1969 and can accommodate up to 5,000 people.
Today, Medjugorje remains an important pilgrimage site for Catholics, and the church of St. James is a central gathering place for pilgrims visiting the town.
Traditional Medjugorje Food
Medjugorje's gastronomy is influenced by Mediterranean cuisine and Balkan flavors. Typical dishes of the region include cevapi, a grilled minced meat dish served with bread, onion and ajvar (a red bell pepper sauce), as well as burek, a meat or cheese pie made with filo dough.
Another popular dish in Medjugorje is grah, a bean and meat stew served with bread or rice.
It is also common to find fresh fish dishes, such as branzino or sea bass, which can be grilled or baked.
As for desserts, the region is famous for its baklava, a cake made with layers of filo dough filled with walnuts and dipped in honey syrup. You can also find delicious ice creams and fresh seasonal fruits.
Photo by Nancy Hann on Unsplash
There are many restaurants in Medjugorje that serve traditional Bosnian cuisine as well as international dishes. Some of the most popular restaurants include Restoran Vrilo and Restoran Mimoza. Many of the restaurants in Medjugorje offer vegetarian and gluten-free options.
Accommodation in Medjugorje
There are many Medjugorje accommodation options, including hotels, guesthouses, and private apartments. Some of the most popular hotels include Hotel Luna and Hotel Grace. There are also many guesthouses run by local families that offer a more personal experience.
Medjugorje Tours and Activities
Many visitors in Medjugorje choose to take a guided tour of the town and its sacred sites. There are many tour operators that offer guided tours, and they can be a great way to learn more about the history and significance of Medjugorje. You can click here to know more about excursions to Medjugorje that Greca offers!
Medjugorje Pilgrimage Season
Medjugorje is a year-round pilgrimage destination, but there are certain times of the year when the number of pilgrims is higher. The most popular times to visit Medjugorje are during the summer months (June to August) and during religious holidays such as Easter and Christmas.
During the summer months, the weather is warm and sunny, which makes it an ideal time for outdoor activities and exploring the natural beauty of the area. Many pilgrims choose to combine their visit to Medjugorje with a beach vacation on the nearby Adriatic coast.
Easter and Christmas are also popular times to visit Medjugorje as these holidays hold special significance for Catholics. The town is beautifully decorated during these times and there are many religious celebrations and events held in the church and throughout the town.
However, some pilgrims prefer to visit Medjugorje during the quieter months of the year, such as November and February. During these times, the town is less crowded and it is easier to find accommodation and make reservations for tours and activities.
Ultimately, the best time to visit Medjugorje depends on individual preferences and schedules. Regardless of the time of year, Medjugorje is a special place that offers a unique spiritual experience for pilgrims from around the world.
If you are wondering what to buy in Medujorge, there are many souvenir shops in Medjugorje that sell religious items such as rosaries, statues, and holy water. Some of the most popular souvenirs include medals and other items that have been blessed by the priests in Medjugorje.
This city has a Mediterranean climate with hot summers and mild winters. The best time to visit Medjugorje is during the spring and fall when the weather is mild and the crowds are smaller. In the summer months, temperatures can reach up to 40 degrees Celsius, so visitors should be prepared for hot weather.
There are several ways to get to Medjugorje, including by car, bus, and plane. The nearest airport is Dubrovnik Airport in Croatia, which is about 30 kilometers from Medjugorje.
Visitors can also take a bus from Dubrovnik to Medjugorje or hire a private driver. Once in Medjugorje, it's easy to get around on foot as the town is small and compact. Taxis and local buses are also available.
How to Move around Medjugorje
The most common way to get around Medjugorje is walking, as the city is small and you can easily reach all places of interest on foot. Moreover, this way you will enjoy the scenery and nature of the area.
Another popular option is public transportation, such as buses, which connect Medjugorje with the surrounding towns and villages. You will be able to find cabs with which you can move more easily to more distant places.
If you decide to move around with your own vehicle, you can find several car and motorcycle rental companies in the area.
In short, getting around Medjugorje is easy and walking is the most common and pleasant way, and public transport and cabs can be useful to reach further places.
Private Transfer in Medjugorje
If you are looking for the most comfortable and safe option, here you will find the information you need to book your private transfer with Greca.
Safety in Medjugorje
Medjugorje is generally a safe place to visit, and crime is not a significant problem. However, visitors should still take precautions to ensure their safety, such as avoiding walking alone at night and being aware of their surroundings. It's also important to note that Medjugorje is a hilly town, and visitors should wear comfortable shoes and be prepared for steep inclines.
In short, Medjugorje is a unique and special place that attracts visitors from all over the world. Whether you're looking to deepen your faith or simply experience the natural beauty of the area, Medjugorje has something to offer. From the sacred sites to the local cuisine, there's plenty options to see and do in this magical destination!
More Travel Guides
If you have been interested in our Medjugorje travel guide and you want to continue learning about this and other wonderful destinations, we invite you to look at the section of all our travel guides. Plan your next adventure with Greca!
From Greca, we recommend a minimum stay of two days to be able to visit the sacred sites and the surroundings of the city.
The climate of Medjugorje is typically Mediterranean with mild and humid winters and hot and dry summers. Average summer temperatures are around 25 degrees, and in winter around 10 degrees.
To enter Medjugorje, you will need a passport valid for at least 6 months, and depending on your country of origin, you may need a visa. Greca recommends that you consult with your embassy for relevant questions and doubts.
Medjugorje is a religious site, so it is important to dress appropriately. Women should cover their shoulders and wear skirts or pants that cover the knees. Men should wear pants and shirts with sleeves.
Some of the must-see sights in Medjugorje include the Apparition Hill, the Church of St. James, the Blue Cross, and the Krizevac Hill.
The surrounding area of Medjugorje is rich in history and natural beauty, with several attractions worth visiting. These include the historic town of Mostar, the Kravice Waterfalls, the Blidinje Nature Park, and the Vjetrenica Cave.
Yes, the Church of St. James in Medjugorje holds daily Masses and offers the sacraments of confession and Eucharist. Visitors are welcome to attend Mass and receive the sacraments.
Yes, visitors to Medjugorje should be respectful of the religious customs and practices of the town. This includes dressing modestly, refraining from smoking and drinking alcohol in public, and being mindful of the solemnity of the pilgrimage experience.
While it can be helpful to know some basic phrases in Bosnian or Croatian, many people in Medjugorje speak English, especially those in the tourism industry.
The cost of visiting Medjugorje varies depending on factors such as the time of year, mode of transportation, and choice of accommodation. However, as a general guideline, a budget of around €50-€100 per day should be sufficient to cover basic expenses such as food, lodging, and transportation.