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I'm planning a motorcycle trip around the Balkans/Southeastern Europe (former Yugoslavia/Greece/Albania/Romania/Bulgaria etc.) this year. We're planning on going in June, July, August or September for 4 weeks.

However we're not sure when to go. I've heard that some countries (e.g. France & Italy) traditionally go on holidays in August, so if you're in France in August, lots of shops and stuff will be closed, and lots of hotel & tourist accommodation will be booked up etc. This is not what I want to have happen.

So, do any of the Balkan countries I mentioned above do this? Does everyone in Serbia take August off? or do they all take July off? Or do they not do this at all?

And if so, what is that month?!

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

At least in Bulgaria -- hardly. July and August, and sometimes early September are traditionally reserved for summer holidays, but people rarely are away for more than a few weeks. Businesses continue to function as usual -- industry, banks, institutions, etc., even with reduced productivity, and of course all tourist attractions are in full swing.

The last year it was possible to find hotels and accommodation in Bulgaria on short notice, but I'm a native, so things might be different from your perspective. I'd avoid the end of July and beginning of August (most people tend to go to a vacation then, and it's also the hottest), and recommend going for a late August/early September trip. Basically all of the resorts will still be working, the weather is not so hot and the crowds are noticeably sparser. The prices could also be somewhat lower.

Your mileage may vary for other countries, though.

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For Serbia, these (two) months are july and august where you can expect such situation. People go away from their jobs mostly for two weeks during that time.

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