Montenegro - the Adriatic's last undiscovered secret...

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Montenegro - Tourism

Montenegro is a small Mediterranean country with rich architectural and cultural heritage, diversity of landscapes and climates, and well-preserved natural environment. Naturally well-suited for development of all kinds of tourism, Montenegro is focused on becoming an elite tourist destination. Montenegro is considered one of the fastest-growing tourist destinations.

Almost all economic activities in Montenegro are directed towards facilitating the development of tourism. The Government aims to attract greenfield investments, which should make best use of undeveloped parts of the coast, such as Jaz Beach, Velika Plaža, Ada Bojana and Buljarica. Such investments could potentially reshape the appeal of Montenegro to tourists, making it a highly competitive destination for sustainable quality tourism.

Montenegro can be presented as a destination offering a variety of attractions and all-year tourism is possible by publicising its varied features. Therefore, the Tourism Masterplan of Montenegro is also paving the way for a national development program for nature based tourism, especially hiking and biking, with new infrastructure and services.

Montenegro may be small in terms of area, but it boasts stunning mountainous landscapes, dramatic coast lines, historic monuments and truly beautiful walled towns. The Montenegro coast is just as gorgeous as that of its better known neighbour, Croatia, and it is for good reason that its main tourist destinations can get crowded in summer.

Montenegro is considered one of the fastest-growing tourist destinations

  • The Riviera

The Bay of Kotor is probably one of the prettiest bays in the world. On its deepest point lies the equally stunning town of Kotor, a beautifully preserved fortified, Medieval town with a vibrant history. Wandering through its labyrinth of narrow and cobblestoned streets, you’ll come across lively piazzas, many ancient churches and lots of pleasant bars and restaurants.

Budva is Montenegro’s most popular tourist destination and boast some great beaches as well as a lovely, walled town centre. The old town centre is picturesquely located on a rather small peninsula, and its narrow, winding lanes hide a multitude of historic buildings, churches and small squares. Budva’s over 30 km long Riviera has been called “The Riviera of Sandy Beaches” and is dotted with lovely hamlets and a wealth of historic monuments.

The small but gorgeous town of Perast saw some of its best architecture arise in the 17th and 18th century, when it belonged to the Republic of Venice. That typically Venetian, baroque architecture has been wonderfully preserved, with highlights including the Bujovic, Zmajevic, Badovic and Smekja Palaces which were once owned by wealthy maritime captains.

All the way in the south, Ulcinj is one of the Adriatic’s oldest towns, with a delightful centre and lots of natural beauty around. It also makes a good base from where to explore the old centre of nearby Bar, Lake Skadar or even a cross border visit to Albania.

  • Natural Attractions

Although Montenegro’s magnificent sea side scenery is best known among travellers, its mountainous inland has some grand panoramic views to offer too. The country shares the large freshwater Lake Skadar with neighbouring Albania. It has National Park status and offers great opportunities for hiking, bird watching and wildlife spotting.

A real must-see is the splendid Tara River Canyon, with its steep banks rising up to 1300 meters above the River Tara waters. It’s the second longest canyon in the world and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The canyon is located in Durmitor National Park, which is a World Heritage Site of its own and boasts a rich flora and fauna as well as snow-covered high peaks, several canyons and many glacier lakes.

The most visited one is Black Lake, at walking distance of the town of Žabljak, which serves as a traveller’s hub for mountain and winter tourism.

See the Nature & Landscape page for more information

  • Activities

Montenegro has really developed as an ‘Adventure Tourism’ destination in recent years. A number of companies have invested in training and equipment to provide: White Water Rafting (along Europe’s deepest canyon), Kayaking, Mountain Biking, Climbing, Scuba, Sailing, Wind and Kitesurfing, Horse Riding, Hiking and Paragliding.

Montenegro makes a fantastic location for all Mountain activities, much of the interior is uninhabited mountain and forest wilderness, with dramatic scenery and some of Europe’s last bears, wolves and occasionally lynx.

Diving is also very attractive; Montenegro may not have the underwater coral gardens of Sharm El Sheik, but there are quite a few semi-exotic species, incredible visibility, impressive underwater topography and a profusion of diveable historic wrecks (7 in the Bay of Kotor alone).

  • Winter Tourism

The fact that the deepest canyon in Europe is in Montenegro is not accidental at all.

This whole area of high mountains is intersected by canyons whose grandeur is breathtaking. Roads pass through some of these and their verticals are well known (Morača, Cijevna, Piva and Ibar). You can discover others like the Tara River Canyon and canyon of the river Lim if you give yourself up to the wild waters, roaring rapids and waterfalls and emerald whirlpools while rafting or kayaking. A little more courage is needed for canyoning.

Synonym for canyoning in Montenegro is the canyon Nevidio, but even more difficult (the coldest and darkest) challenge is the canyon Grlje (Prokletije). Attractive are the canyons Škudre (Kotor) and Trebješice and Bogutovski potok (flows into the river Morača). However, these are only parts of the manuscript of water in the rocks and many have not been seen yet.

  • National Cusine

Apart from the hotels located in towns and summer resorts offering half-board and full-board accommodation, and those along the roads and communication lines such as restaurants, pizza places, taverns, fast food restaurants and cafes, there is a choice of national restaurants offering traditional Montenegrin cuisine.

In addition to the standard European and Mediterranean cuisine, Montenegro offers a variety of healthy food products and local specialities.

Cold hors-d’oeuvres include the famous njeguški pršut (smoked ham) and njeguški cheese, pljevaljski cheese, mushrooms, donuts and dried bleak. The main courses specific for the northern mountainous region are boiled lamb, lamb cooked in milk, cicvara in fresh milk cream (buttered corn porridge), boiled potatoes with cheese and fresh cream. A selection of traditional recipes of the central and coastal parts will include the kastradina (dried mutton), smoked and fresh carp (from Skadar lake) and a variety of fresh sea fish and seafood dishes. Donuts served with honey and dried figs are traditional desserts in these parts of Montenegro.

Products of animal origin are supervised and approved by veterinary and health authorities according to EU standards.

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