Excursija Travel Blog

Things to do in Montenegro

💢1. Lie on the beach: Budva or Krasici

✔ Budva is called Montenegrin Miami for a reason - there are plenty of restaurants, discos and casinos here. In the vicinity of the town there are as many as 35 kilometers of beaches - mostly rocky, but there are also sandy. In summer, the Budva Riviera is cramped but fun: music rattles on the beaches, mima scenes are played on promenades, and bars compete, whose evening program is more interesting and whose cocktails are tastier.

✔In the sleepy village of Krasici on the Lustica peninsula, you will not find any noisy entertainment or expensive hotels. But at the houses that are rented to visitors, there is direct access to the sea almost from the porch. It is worthwhile to exchange Budva for Krasici for those who go to Montenegro for a calm blue sea. In the Bay of Kotor, it is both warmer and cleaner.

💢2. Look at the holy places: Ostrog Monastery or Daibabe Monastery
✔ Ostrog Monastery is carved into a rock at an altitude of 900 meters above sea level. You will get to the main Orthodox shrine of Montenegro by a narrow mountain serpentine. If you are driving a rented car, start early in the morning to have time to enjoy the atmosphere before the tourists flood.

✔ Ostrog consists of the Lower Monastery with the Church of the Holy Trinity and the Upper Monastery with the Holy Cross and Vvedenskaya churches. Local monastery books are full of records of healed people and other miracles. During World War II, an air bomb hit the Upper Monastery, split in half, but did not explode - it still lies as living proof for those who do not believe in miracles.

✔ Four kilometers from Podgorica there is a men's monastery of Daibabe, which is rarely told to tourists. The monastery church appeared here only in 1897. It was founded by St. Simeon after the poor shepherd told him about a wonderful vision. Historians say that the place was prayed much earlier - back in the third century, Roman Christians held services in the local catacombs.

✔ Underground labyrinths are partially preserved: after passing through the Church of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, you will get into a cave in the form of a cross in which the holy spring beats. Mostly only pilgrims from Serbia and Montenegro get here - and it's good: the source of appeasement in Daibaba is still full.

💢3. Find yourself on an inhabited or uninhabited island: Sveti Stefan Island or Mamula Island

✔The Sveti Stefan Island is connected to a land isthmus, on both sides of which there are excellent beaches. The entrance to the right beach is paid, and on the left you will only be charged for renting a sunbed and an umbrella.

✔Previously, Sveti Stefan was a fishing village until he turned into an amazing island-hotel in 2009. Outside, the houses were left unchanged, and inside they were decorated with natural stone and wood. If you can't settle in Aman Sveti Stefan next door to celebrities, rent a cozy apartment on the shore and book a table in a restaurant on the island - strangers are not allowed here.

✔If you want privacy and freedom of movement, go to the tiny island of Mamula at the entrance to the Bay of Kotor while it is still uninhabited. Most of the island is occupied by a fortress built in 1853 by the Austro-Hungarian General Lazar Mamula. During World War II, Italian fascists set up a concentration camp here.

✔Now the government, despite the protests of Montenegrins, has given the green light to the reconstruction of the island. On the design project in the restored fortress, pools and palm trees shine in the sun, there are restaurants, beaches, yacht parking and everything that is due to a first-class resort. To have time to walk around the deserted island of Mamula, go here by boat from Janice beach.

💢4. Combine a beach holiday with fishing: Lake Skadar or the Adriatic Sea

✔Skadar Lake occupies 370 square kilometers in summer, and in winter, by the end of the rainy season, it is one and a half times more. Fishing villages are scattered around the lake, there are ancient monasteries on its islands, and virgin beaches are basking in the sun along the shores.

✔Mirror water in the arms of karst rocks and swampy shores have become home to 48 species of fish - it's a lot for a European lake. Come here to fish in a big way: you will get noble salmon and mullet on the hook. Even beginners will not leave empty-handed - there is a rudd and an interesting local type of roach - pachylon. To brag about the catch in Lake Skadar with full right, do not forget to buy a license.

✔Sea fishing in Montenegro is good because it does not take long to gather: they took fishing rods, bought shrimp or sardines in the nearest store and carry yourself a dorada right from the shore. Often in the Adriatic you come across mullet and sea bass, and it is convenient to catch flounder from sandy braids. You do not need to buy a license when fishing from the shore if your catch weighs no more than 3 kg. Plus, one trophy weighing more than 5 kg is allowed.

✔ It's even better to go to the Adriatic Sea by boat. A company that will help with the organization of fishing is easy to find on the coast. Fishing on the high seas is much more interesting, because the extraction is more serious: you come across tuna, marlin, sea eel and even swordfish. Fishing from a boat requires a license, which can be bought at a club that is part of the Union of Sports Fisheries of Montenegro, or in the local administration.

💢5. Conquer the mountains: Durmitor or Lovcen
✔ Durmitor shares with Biogradskaya Gora the title of the most popular national park in Montenegro. Nature has worked hard here. The mountain rivers Draga, Sushitsa and Tara broke through picturesque gorges in stone - including the deepest in Europe. There are 100 kilometers of hiking trails in the park - in summer it is good to walk along mountain trails among pines and swim in a glacial lake.

✔From August 1 to August 15, you can raft on Tara: at this time, the water level in the wayward river is safe even for unprepared tourists. And in winter, Durmitor turns into an excellent ski resort with a center in Zabljak.

✔Right at the foot of Mount Lovcen lies the ancient Montenegrin capital Cetinje, and locals come to the local national park for family picnics on weekends. The air here is healing, and this is not an exaggeration: Lovcen is on the border of climatic zones, so Montenegrins bring children here to strengthen their immunity.

It is good to start exploring Lovcen Park from the Ivanova Koryta Valley, where there is a tourist center, an adventure park and restaurants.

✔ Climb to the peak of Jezerski vrkh and walk 461 steps along the "stairs to the sky" to the mausoleum of the Montenegrin ruler, bishop and poet Peter II Negoš. From the local observation deck, the country can be seen in the palm of your hand. The Adriatic Sea in the southwest, Lake Skadar in the southeast, the black mountains of Durmitor in the north - the panorama is breathtaking.

💢6. Go to sea by water or underwater: iving in Kotor Bay or yachting in Montenegro

✔Divers come to Kotor Bay for the best underwater species in Montenegro. Dive into the Blue Cave and see how water shimmers in the sun with 50 shades of blue. And also swim through the labyrinth of the City of Poseidon, where lobsters and octopuses hide, and find an anchor covered with algae at the bottom.

✔The Bay of Kotor is full of wrecks: take a look at the Spanish wooden 32-meter sailboat of the XVI century, the torpedo boat Golesnica-76T, which participated in both world wars of the last century, and the Yugoslav warship PBR 512. It is flooded at a small depth of 24 meters by diving standards, and therefore popular with beginners. Here you can even dive to the plane: the remains of the Spitfire MK9 Supermarine, a World War II superfighter, scattered within a radius of 40 meters near Fort Kabala.

✔In order not to share the sea with others, go on a yacht cruise. Under sail, even the air smells different, and the water on the high seas is as clear as glass. On a yacht trip off the coast of Montenegro, you will admire seaside villages from the water and ride between picturesque islands.

✔Cypress groves turn green on St. Mark's Island, St. George's Island is famous for the church of the same name, Gospa od Shkrpela is a beautiful Church of Our Lady, and Gospa od Milo is a large monastery. And you will see all this beauty in a day! There are many companies where you can rent a yacht at a price of 200 euros per day in Montenegro.

💢7. Visit ancient cities: Perast or Svach

✔Similar to a piece of Venice that broke away and sailed here along the Adriatic Sea, Perast will tell you with quiet sadness about the old times of his greatness. There are 16 churches and 17 chic mansions that used to be palaces. Some of them turned into ruins overgrown with bougainvilleas and wild fig trees, others found a second life and became pretty hotels.

✔A tiny island with a church can be clearly visible from the shore of Perast -the boat will take you there in five minutes. This is the island of Gospa od Shkrpela - an artificial embankment on the reef, where a church with the famous icon of the Virgin and a museum of overseas curiosities mined by local sailors was built.

✔The ancient city of Svach grew on a hill near Shas Lake back in the VI century. Under the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I, their own coins depicting the then houses, towers and colonnades were minted here. And four hundred years later, the wife of King Ivan Vladimir, according to legend, built 365 churches in the Svacha - one for each day of the year. Under the onslaught of the Ottoman Empire in 1571, the city turned into ruins that archaeologists still explore.

✔ It will also be interesting for the traveler to go here - to climb an 85-meter hill, listen to birds and admire wild flowers, swim on a boat, swim in the lake and have a snack in the Šasi restaurant, the roof of which offers a divine view of the quiet and mysterious Svach.

💢8. Active rest: kitesurfing in Ulcinj or rafting on the Tara River

✔ Kitesurfing lovers flock from all over the world to the 13-kilometer Great Beach in the resort town of Ulcinj. If you've never ridden a snake before, they'll teach you here. A wide beach, a safe sandy bottom and a smooth southwest wind in the afternoon are the perfect combination for a novice kitesurfer.

✔On the Great Beach works with a dozen kite stations where you can rent equipment, there are showers and changing cabins. After conquering the wave, it is good to have a snack with a shop salad and grilled fish in the restaurant of Safari Beach, where Montenegrins like to celebrate weddings.

✔ The mountain river Tara, the wildest, most beautiful and clean in the country, accepts rafting lovers in the second half of summer. It is better for beginners to come in early August. The rest of the time, even two hours of rafting on a stormy river is enough for adrenaline to be enough for a whole vacation. However, some extremes go on 2-3-day tours and cover almost 100 kilometers.

✔The channel of the Tara River lies mainly in Durmitor National Park, and the most beautiful part of the route with emerald water, breathtaking rapids and picturesque landscapes awaits you between Brstanica and Bastasi. After the feats on the roller coaster of Tara, a hearty lunch in the village of Shchepan Pole with rich soup and baked lamb goes especially well.
💢9. Watch rural life: ethnic villages or abandoned village Mountain Swallow

✔When you want to go away from the crowded sea coast and get acquainted with authentic Montenegro, go to one of the ethnic villages. However, these are not real ancient villages, but settlements in several houses created specifically for ecotourism.

✔Ethnoses Grab, Sljeme, Vrelo and others are built in the traditional Balkan style in the most picturesque and environmentally friendly corners of Montenegro. Here you will be told about traditional rural life, fed lunch from products grown right in the garden, and offer authentic souvenirs. And if you want, they will give a guide with whom even a child will conquer the nearest mountains, walk around the canyons and raft along the rivers.

✔Landmallows of the village of Mountain Swallow near Tivat resemble footage from a film about the apocalypse. The village really soars like a swallow over the Adriatic Sea - once locals could admire postcard sunsets right from their own porch. But you won't be fed up with the same species, and people have slowly moved to the sea, where the tourism business is flourishing.

✔Today in the Mountain Swallow, abandoned houses look out of the thickets pavement and stone curbs are braided with moss, and grass grows from each slit. On the floor of the abandoned houses there are newspapers from the distant seventies and empty bottles, and in some places you can find a broken TV and even linen on clothespins. The place is really atmospheric.

💢10. Improve your health: Igalo resort or Palazzo Radomiri Spa Hotel

✔ Igalo has become a popular resort thanks to the subtropical climate, mineral water "Igalka" and therapeutic mud. The Simo Milosevic Institute of Physiotherapy and Prevention has developed comprehensive mud treatment programs for those who want to strengthen bones, joints and nerves.

✔You can stay at the Igalo resort at the hotel-sanatorium at the institute for about 70 euros per day with food and treatment. Another option is to rent an apartment or villa, which is plenty of here. In any case, you won't be bored: there are a lot of shops, souvenir shops, restaurants and bars on the famous Seven Danits promenade.

✔If the word "sanatorium" evokes melancholy measured in bed days, go to the Palazzo Radomiri Spa Hotel on the shores of the Bay of Kotor. This hotel in a XVIII century villa with antique furniture in the rooms and luxurious views from the windows is suitable for lovers not only to soak up, but also to "get around" by the sea.

✔The hotel has an outdoor swimming pool, a small fitness center and wellness spa. You will be offered programs for 3 and 8 days, including meditation and cleansing of the body. Lose extra pounds thanks to detox programs and do yoga, even if you haven't known a single asana before.