Montenegro is a small country in Europe, located between the Croatia andAlbania. Although in recent years it has been developing enormously in terms of tourism, it still remains authentic. There are so many beautiful places to see in Montenegro: from the beautiful Bay of Kotor to the incredible Durmitor National Park.
In this post we list the essential places to visit in Montenegro, the ones that cannot be missing in your itinerary.
What to see in Montenegro
Perast, the Venezia del Montenegro
Perast is one of the most magical places to see in Montenegro. Its historic center is a real delight. During the Venetian domination, from 1420 to 1797, it experienced its maximum splendor. It went from being a simple fishing village to becoming a strong city where warriors, captains of the Venetian navy and merchants who were willing not to give in to the Ottoman Empire lived.
And today you can still appreciate his Venetian architecture. You can admire its 17 palaces, as beautiful as the ones you can see at Venezia, or its 16 churches. Enjoy this pearl of the Adriatic declared a World Heritage Site.Find a Perast hotel
The mystical shrine of Our Lady of the Chisel (Gospa od Škrpjela)
Perast is beautiful but at the same time it is a mystical place. In part, thanks to the Church of the Madonna Dello Scalpello. During the Venetian domination, particularly in 1452, two brothers found a painting of the Madonna and Child set in a rock that protruded from the sea. The two promised to build a church in the very place where the painting was found.
If you are lucky enough to be in Perast on July 22, you will see that it is a very special day. People commemorate the construction of the artificial island and the church by throwing stones into the water. Without doubt, one of the best things to see in Montenegro.
Kotor, the most beautiful place to see in Montenegro
Without a doubt, Kotor and its bay are the most famous places to see in Montenegro. Located at the end of the Strait of Kotor, the city UNESCO World Heritage Site it is probably the first stop you will make if you land at Tivat Airport.
Formerly part of the Republic of Venice, Kotor is one fortified city, surrounded by the sea and mountains, which thanks to its wonderful landscapes and its proximity to Dubrovnik has become a famous tourist attraction.
We can compare its bay with a fjord, because the sea goes several kilometers into the land.
It's beautiful get lost in its historic center. Developed between the XNUMXth and XNUMXth centuries, today it is very well preserved and houses several beautiful churches.
Make a walk to the top of the fortress built to defend against the Ottomans. It will take 1500 steps to reach the top, but it's worth it, the views of the Bay of Kotor are stunning.
- Discover the best tours to visit Kotor
Cettigne, a city with a lot of history
Cettigne is a much more interesting city. Located at the foot of the Lovćen National Park, until the First World War it was the capital of the Kingdom of Montenegro, while now it is the official residence of the president of Montenegro.
The city hasn't grown in a particular way since it lost its political status and the population is now only around 20.000. But has retained its charm and many of the buildings and monuments of its former glory are still here.
Cettigne may not be the type of town to stay overnight, but it's easy to visit with one day trip: it is only about 30 minutes by bus from Budva. Undoubtedly, it is one of the places to see in Montenegro to learn about the historical evolution of the country.
Blue Grotto, a magical place to see in Montenegro
Besides having coastal towns and beautiful beaches, Montenegro also has some spectacular caves. Many of them are concentrated in the Lustica peninsula, where there are hidden beaches that can only be accessed through these caves.
The most famous is the Blue Grotto, so named for the impressive color of the water. The light penetrates in such a way that the entire cave is colored a deep blue color.
- Discover all the tours for the Blue Grotto
Lovćen National Park e Mausoleo in Njegos
Created in 1952, Lovćen National Park incorporates a part of the mountain of the same name and connects the city of Kotor with the ancient royal capital of Cettigne.
If you love nature, dedicate half a day to discovering this park. Although it is not immense, 62 km2, it offers one of the best views in the country! The numerous paths allow you to discover the park on foot but several points can also be reached by car.
On top of this mountain there is also the Mausoleo in Njegos, which houses the tomb of the Prince Bishop Peter II, and whose building offers, once again, a breathtaking view of the surrounding landscape.
Getting there is challenging: the road is narrow, winding and in the end you have to climb 462 steps. Perhaps the mausoleum is not of great interest to those who are not Montenegrins, but the views from there are amazing.
Budva, ideal for enjoying a beach holiday
È the most famous seaside resort on the Montenegrin coast. It is a holiday lover's delight, with its beaches where music plays throughout the day, its tourist restaurants and its lively bars and clubs.
Do not fail to do a walk in the old town with its narrow and quiet streets, stone houses adorned with orange tiled roofs and trees climbing the facades. Not to mention the magnificent ramparts of the city, from where you can admire the coast and the sea with emerald shades, typical of the country.
Lovers of calm and walks can walk for about 2 km on a path that leads from Budva to Podmaine orthodox monastery.Find a hotel in Budva
Sveti Stefan, the most exclusive village to see in Montenegro
The island of Sveti Stefan, just ten kilometers south of Budva, is a small fortified village, the most picturesque and fascinating of Montenegro.
Today, the small island has been taken over by a luxury resort. In order to enter Sveti Stefan you must be a guest of the resort or have a reservation in the restaurant. This second option is the cheapest, but even so the prices on the menu are much higher than in any restaurant in the area.
But you still can walk the beautiful path that runs along the coast to Budvto. You will discover sublime beaches, beautiful Mediterranean villas and olive groves. This island is, without a doubt, the most exclusive place to see in Montenegro.
Durmitor National Park
The great national park of Durmitor, UNESCO World Heritage Site, encompasses the entire mountainous area in the north of the country. It is a very popular place for those who want to enjoy nature in both summer and winter. The colder months you can practice sports such as skiing or snowboarding.
During the summer, the Durmitor National Park is a hiking paradise and the discovery of beautiful landscapes. There is a forest of black pines over 400 years old, glacial caves, the imposing Tara River Canyon and 18 lakes of glacial origin. The most famous lake is the Black Lake (Crno Jezero), characteristic for its dark waters.
In summer, the Black Lake quickly fills up with tourists. If you prefer a wilder place, visit the lago Vrazje Jezero. The water is a little warmer for swimming, and there is hardly anyone there.
Tara Canyon, for the most daring
Natural border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, the River Tara offers some of the most rugged and wild landscapes in the country, starting with its own beautiful canyon located in the Durmitor National Park. With its 1.900 meters of depth it is the deepest canyon in Europe.
The best way to exploring the river is rafting. Rafting is one of the most popular tourist activities in Montenegro. The descent of Tara has many rapids, more or less strong depending on the season. April and May are the best months for thrill seekers. During the summer the current is quite calm, but the beauty of the landscape remains the same.
Skadar lake and the horseshoe bend of Montenegro
One of the most spectacular places to see in Montenegro is Lake Skadar. AND the largest lake in the Balkans but not all the surface belongs to Montenegro, a part belongs to Albania.
The national park that occupies Lake Skadar is one of the best areas in Europe to spot numerous bird species. But beyond the birds, the landscape itself is incredible. Taking a trip on the lake you will see islets with ruins of ancient monasteries, small fishing villages overlooking the shore and many water lilies.
But the flagship of Lake Scutari is called "Paul's Side" and it is the most popular viewpoint of the Lake Skadar National Park. Here the lake traces a marked curve resembling theHorseshoe Bend in Arizona. Of course, the landscape has nothing to do with that of Arizona, the surroundings of Lake Skadar are very green.
Ostrog Monastery, a spectacular construction to see in Montenegro
The location of this monastery inside a cave makes it a unique place. It's hard not to take your breath away in front of this sublime Orthodox monastery built in the seventeenth century and literally embedded in the mountain ocher of Mount Ostrog. The entire monastery consists of churches, chapels and houses for monks and pilgrims.
There are actually two monasteries, the lower one has one source to which healing properties are attributed. Many pilgrims walk barefoot about two kilometers from there to the upper monastery, which is located in the cave.
Remember that to enter the monastery you need to cover your legs and shoulders. It's a very important pilgrimage site in Montenegro, since it attracts one million Orthodox Christians every year.
Biogradska Gora National Park, a natural paradise
Another natural area that is very useful is the Biogradska Gora National Park. It is in the center of Montenegro and it is the smallest national park in the country. But being small doesn't mean there are few interesting things.
In fact, it is one of the most biodiverse areas in the country. Its main attraction is the lake Biograd, at 1900 meters and of glacial origin. If you wish, you can rent a boat to visit this lake for € 8 per hour. Entrance to the park costs € 3.
Ulcinj (Ulcinj), a piece of Albania in Montenegro
For a taste of Albania without actually crossing the border, head to lively, beautiful Ulcinj.
Located in southern Montenegro, near the border with Albania, Ulcinj is one of the oldest cities on the Adriatic coast. Born about 2000 years ago according to historians, the city pleasantly mixes Eastern and Western influences.
Strolling you will find yourself among the typical alleys of Mediterranean villages, with some minarets adorning the landscape. This is also the charm and the richness of Montenegro and this part of Europe!
Ulcinj it hosts the largest beach on the Adriatic coast, Velika Plaža with 13 km of fine sand. In high season, it is possible to take shelter in the shade in one of the many huts that decorate the sea.Find a hotel in Ulcinj