The International Steam Pages
Steam in Bosnia 2014
It looks like several other people have been to Bosnia this Spring, although i only saw 2 other enthusiasts. It really is the only place to go (except for the rapidly diminishing numbers in China), so I have also included extensive information for the cheap d.i.y. traveller. The big news (if true) is the imminent end of steam at Zenica mine in June/July.
I flew Amsterdam-Belgrade. There is a direct bus from Belgrade - Tuzla at 09.00 (1770 dinars=16€), otherwise take a bus to Bijelina 9Bosnia) then another onwards to Tuzla (roughly every hour).
I stayed in Tuzla for 5 days at Pansion Nargalac (10€ if you are lucky!) just 300m east of the town centre. Other options are Pansion Kipova (20/28€ s/d) or Rooms Centar (30€).
Buses to the 4 locations run westwards along the main south road (roughly every hour from 05.30). Although the friendly, tourist office printed off a timetable, it didn't seem to fit actual times.
Dubrave: Smokebox first west full departures from Dubrave; tender first empties from Lubace. Security at the mine entrance but possible to enter from the football field (east) for shuntings or the overhead conveyor belt (west) for departures. Lubace interchange ok for photos (beer requested!)
Sikulje: Tender first southward full departures from Sikulje; smokebox first empties from Lukavac. Security at the mine but they can't stop 50 gypsies climbing on the departing train! Station staff at Lukavac are friendly and will phone to check rough departure times for you.
Oskowa (Banovici) Narrow gauge steam on the upper workings, visible from the road. Permit (from Banovici) may or may not be asked for. Friendly train drivers give cab rides on the short workings and appreciate a beer! am best for photography.
Durdevik: Irregular, infrequent workings, but very friendly (=cab rides!) crew. Tender first, northwards, full departures are downhill to Zivince station. Working Saturday 8th March, dep 13.00.
Zenica: Smokey workings in an antique setting make this the best location in my opinion. Shuntings and 1 trip per day (around 10.00) to the Mittal interchange sidings through an industrial wasteland. a.m is best for photography. Friendly staff appreciate being bought beers/cokes. Security doesn't! (I entered the back/railway way) Unfortunately, according to the fitter/repairman, the loco is due to be replaced in June/July 2014 by a diesel (with a 5 year guarantee!) which means the end. Now or never time.
I hope this helps/inspires others to visit a very interesting and welcoming land, still steaming!
33.504 at Sikulje
33503 at Lubace