Zemun is a city of its own, not just part of Belgrade, its natives would say. It has its own small-town feel, city center, as well as prominent local bars.
When it opened in the end of ’90s, “Balkan Express” was immediately a hip place to go to in Zemun. Situated in an old Yugoslav Railways wagon (a type which is actually still used in Serbian Railways), on a hilltop more than 50 meters above Danube, it’s worth visiting just for the view over the river (accompanied with coffee), stretching to Belgrade and over Banat steeps.
For those who like to walk, I suggest going straight to the end of Zemun Quay (towards Uptown), passing Radecki and climbing the old stairway (which dates to World War I), and straight up to the hilltop where “Balkan Express” awaits. It’s perfect as an end to a walk, or a break before further exploring Gardoš. That part of Zemun is nice and calm, pretty much like any Vojvodinian village.
The view is perfect in spring and summer, and it’s a warm hideout in the winter. You can sit inside the actual wagon or a spacier part, more suitable for dining.
And it’s not just the view and location, the food is actually good. The menu is meant to suit all tastes – from pasta and pizzas to fish and beefsteaks. If desired, soups can be served inside homemade bread. The pancakes are so huge and delicious you won’t need sweets for another couple of days.