Established as an independent country in 2006, the small Balkan nation of Montenegro has swiftly risen to prominence as a sought-after travel destination. Its allure lies in its stunning beaches, verdant mountains, and picturesque historic towns that attract an increasing number of visitors each year.
Montenegro offers an array of activities, from leisurely seaside strolls to mountain biking and whitewater rafting excursions. Despite its diminutive size—smaller even than Wales—the country’s compactness only serves to amplify its appeal.
For travelers seeking an authentic experience, Montenegro is a compelling choice. With tourism emerging as a key driver of the country’s economy, now is the ideal time to visit before it becomes too crowded. In this article, you’ll get to know five top places to visit in Montenegro. Let’s dive right in!
Budva is one of Montenegro’s most popular tourist destinations. It is known for its sandy beaches, vibrant nightlife, and ancient old town. The old town of Budva is enclosed by medieval walls. Here, you’ll find narrow streets lined with shops, restaurants, and historical buildings. Exploring Budva is a delightful experience, and entrance to the old town is typically free, allowing visitors to soak in its atmosphere without any additional cost.
When it comes to activities in Budva, spending a day at one of its renowned beaches is a must. Many of these beaches offer facilities such as sunbeds and umbrellas for rent, as well as water sports opportunities. Prices for beach amenities vary depending on the location and time of year, but they are generally affordable, with sunbed rentals typically costing around €5-€10 per day.
To make the most of your time in Budva, consider renting a car to explore the surrounding areas conveniently. With car rental in Montenegro, you can venture beyond the city limits and discover hidden gems along the coast or in the nearby mountains. Having the flexibility of a rental car allows you to create your itinerary and travel at your own pace, ensuring a memorable and personalized experience in Budva and beyond.
Budva is bustling with activity during the summer months when the weather is warm and the beaches are in full swing. However, this also means larger crowds and higher prices for accommodation and activities. Traveling during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn offers a more relaxed atmosphere, with pleasant weather and fewer tourists.
Durmitor National Park, nestled in the northwestern part of Montenegro, is a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts. The park is characterized by rugged mountains, deep river canyons, glacial lakes, and dense forests, offering a stunning natural landscape to explore.
Entrance to Durmitor National Park is typically affordable, with fees ranging from €3-€7 per person, depending on the season and specific areas of the park you wish to visit. These fees help support the park’s conservation efforts and maintenance of its facilities.
One of the best ways to experience Durmitor National Park is through hiking, with a network of well-marked trails leading to various points of interest. It doesn’t matter if you’re an experienced trekker or a casual hiker. There are routes suited to all skill levels, offering opportunities to explore the park’s diverse flora and fauna.
For those interested in water activities, the park’s glacial lakes, such as Black Lake (Crno Jezero), are perfect for swimming, kayaking, and fishing. Boat rentals and guided tours are available at affordable rates, allowing visitors to explore the crystal-clear waters and surrounding landscapes.
During the winter months, Durmitor National Park is a winter sports haven, with opportunities for skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing. The park’s ski resorts offer affordable lift tickets and equipment rentals, making it accessible to both beginners and experienced skiers alike.
When planning your visit to Durmitor National Park, consider the best time to go based on your interests. The summer months are ideal for hiking, camping, and water activities, with warm weather and longer daylight hours. The winter season is perfect for skiing and snow sports, with powdery snow all over the landscape.
Kotor is one of Montenegro’s most renowned cities, recognized for its Old Town-Stari Grad. The well-preserved walls surrounding the Old Town stand offer visitors an experience of its rich history. Entrance to the Old Town itself is free, allowing you to wander through its charming streets and admire its ancient architecture at no cost. However, for those interested in climbing the city walls for panoramic views, there is a small fee, typically around €3-€5.
A convenient side trip from Kotor is a visit to the neighboring town of Perast, easily accessible via the local Blue Line Bus. This short journey provides scenic views of the Bay of Kotor. It also grants access to the islets of St. George and Our Lady of the Rocks, reachable by boat from Perast. Tickets for the Blue Line Bus are priced at approximately €2-€3 each way, making it a budget-friendly option for exploration.
Timing-wise, Kotor and Perast are enjoyable to visit year-round, but the optimal time is during the shoulder seasons of spring and autumn. During these months, the weather is pleasant, the crowds are thinner, and accommodation prices are more reasonable compared to the peak summer season. However, if you prefer warmer weather and don’t mind larger crowds, visiting during the summer months offers the advantage of longer daylight hours and the opportunity to enjoy the coastal activities and events in full swing.
Sveti Stefan is a small islet and luxury resort located on the Adriatic coast near Budva. It is a unique destination in Montenegro. This picturesque island is Connected to the mainland by a narrow isthmus and is famous for its adorable stone houses, pristine beaches, and stunning views.
While access to the island itself is restricted to guests of the resort, visitors can still enjoy the scenic view of Sveti Stefan from the mainland or nearby beaches. There are public access points along the coastline where you can take in panoramic views of the island and its ancient architecture.
Exploring the coastal area around Sveti Stefan is a delightful experience, with plenty of opportunities for swimming, sunbathing, and relaxation. The beaches in this region are known for their clear turquoise waters and soft sandy shores, making them perfect for a day of seaside enjoyment.
For those interested in history and culture, a visit to the nearby town of Budva offers a chance to explore its ancient old town and learn about Montenegro’s rich heritage. Budva is just a short drive or bus ride away from Sveti Stefan, making it easy to combine both destinations in a single trip.
When planning your visit to Sveti Stefan, keep in mind that the island’s peak season is during the summer months, when the weather is warmest and the beaches are busiest. If you prefer a quieter atmosphere, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons of spring or autumn, when the crowds are thinner and accommodation prices are even more affordable.
Lake Skadar is the largest lake in the Balkans. It is nestled between Montenegro and Albania. This sprawling freshwater lake is renowned for its stunning scenery, diverse wildlife, and rich cultural heritage. It is a must-visit destination for nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.
Exploring Lake Skadar is an affordable and rewarding experience, with several entry points and activities to choose from. Entrance fees to the national park surrounding the lake are typically minimal, ranging from €2-€5 per person, depending on the season and specific areas you wish to visit.
One of the best ways to experience Lake Skadar is by taking a boat tour, which allows you to explore its tranquil waters, hidden coves, and picturesque islands. Boat tours are available at various price points, with options ranging from guided group excursions to private charters. Prices typically start at around €15-€20 per person for a basic group tour, making it an accessible and budget-friendly activity.
For those interested in birdwatching, Lake Skadar is a paradise, home to over 270 species of birds, including herons, pelicans, and eagles. Several birdwatching tours and observation points are available around the lake, offering opportunities to spot rare and endemic species in their natural habitat.
Hiking and cycling are also popular activities around Lake Skadar, with numerous trails and paths winding through the surrounding mountains, wetlands, and vineyards. When planning your visit to Lake Skadar, consider the best time to go based on your interests. The spring and autumn months are ideal for birdwatching and hiking, with mild weather and fewer tourists. Summer is perfect for boat tours and water activities, but keep in mind that it can be crowded during this time.
Montenegro may be small, but it’s packed with diversity, a rich history, and breathtaking scenery. From enchanting old towns to majestic mountains and pristine beaches, there’s something for every traveler to discover in this destination. Montenegro promises an equally enjoyable experience, making it an ideal choice for your next adventure.