Getting Locked in My Hotel Room in Sarajevo

“So…being locked IN my room is something I’ll laugh about later, right?” I said to myself as I twisted the key every way I could and pulled at the door handle. I had just arrived at my hotel in Sarajevo a couple hours earlier, the start of a solo two week trip through Bosnia & Herzegovina and Montenegro, and I was ready to go back out and explore the old town a little before finding dinner.

But the door to my room had other plans.

where to stay in Sarajevo - Old Town Sarajevo
Old Town Sarajevo

Locked in my hotel room

I heard the lock clicking and turning, and I was turning the key as far as it would go, but the door would not open. After awhile I decided I might actually be stuck. I tried the phone on the desk, but there was no dial tone, and anyway, I had no idea what number to call to get the front desk. Instead I called from my cell phone, but it never seemed to connect. No ringing, nothing.

At this point I almost cried. Almost. But I told myself, I can’t really be stuck in here, right?

After more struggles with the lock, I sent an email to the hotel. “This is Ali in room 2, and I seem to have locked myself in my room. Help?” Then I went back to the lock, trying the key again and again.

My great escape

Finally, about 20 minutes after my first attempt to leave my room, the lock opened and I was free. I grabbed my stuff and started walking downstairs.

Halfway down the stairs, as I turned at the landing, I saw the guy from reception frantically coming through the door at the bottom and jogging up the first few stairs.

Then he looked up, saw me coming down, and we both started laughing hysterically. He reached over and gave me a big hug as we kept laughing about the ridiculous situation.

Back up to my room, he used his key to unlock my door from the outside and lock it again from the inside. He told me it was a new lock, and as he turned the key to unlock it again, I knew I just hadn’t turned it hard enough.

Later that evening, as I headed back to my room, I told the guy at reception if no one sees me in the morning, come looking!

I had no further issues with the door lock during my three night stay.

Still a wonderful place to stay

where to stay in Sarajevo - Sarajevo hotel room
My simple but cozy hotel room

Despite this mishap, this was actually a wonderful hotel. The bed was really comfortable, and the location was perfect – right in the old town. They picked me up at the airport for free. (Being dropped back at the airport was a small fee, 10 euros I believe.) A simple breakfast was included, but when I mentioned my dietary restrictions, they offered to pick up some gluten free bread for me.

The hotel was run by three different guys who were also super friendly and helpful. I regularly stopped to chat with whoever was working when I came in from sightseeing, and they were lots of fun. I also booked a tour with them to see Sarajevo from above from lots of different places…more on that later.

The hotel was simple, but just what I needed. I paid about 60 euros per night, and if I ever find myself in Sarajevo again, I will definitely stay here. Overall, Garni Hotel Konak in Sarajevo was fantastic. And hey, I got a good story out of it!

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