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Montenegro

Montenegro (Montenegrin: Crna Gora, ???? ????) is a country in the Balkans, on the Adriatic Sea. It borders Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina to the north, Serbia to the northeast, Kosovo to the east, and Albania to the south. To the west of Montenegro is the Adriatic Sea.

Montenegro's tourism suffered greatly from Yugoslavia's tragic civil war in the 1990s. In recent years, along with the stabilized situation in the region, tourism in Montenegro has begun to recover, and Montenegro is being re-discovered by tourists from around the globe.

Infrastructure greatly improved since independence as Montenegro became home to numerous five star hotels, glamorous new settlements and investments in roads, energy, water and sanitary pipelines.

Regions

Montenegro is officially divided into 21 municipalities, which can be grouped into five regions:

Cities

  • Podgorica — the capital, and administrative centre as well as biggest city in Montenegro, intensively developed in last decade
  • Bar — the major port of the country
  • Budva — fortified Old Town surrounded by high-rises, resorts and new developments is the most popular tourist spot with amazing beaches and wild nightlife
  • Cetinje — the old royal capital located beneath Lovcen mountain and its national park features numerous museums, monasteries and former embassies.
  • Herceg Novi — founded in 1382 and located in the entrance of the Bay of Kotor, bordering with Dubrovnik, Croatia
  • Kotor — an ancient fortified town located deep down the Boka Kotorska bay, UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is cruiser ships regular spot
  • Nikši? — the second largest city in Montenegro and economically important, home to infamous Montenegrin beer Niksicko
  • Tivat - a small town in the Bay of Kotor, quickly emerging into a major touristic, business and transport centre due to the 2nd international airport in the country
  • Žabljak — located beneath Durmitor mountain and its national park is one of key tourist destinations both in summer and winter activities
  • Ulcinj — an ancient fortified town once a pirate home surrounded by 12km long sandy beach which is kite-surfing hotspot, and naturist heaven

Other destinations

  • Be?i?i — with a 2 km long fine sandy beach, it is home to numerous resorts and hotels
  • Biogradska Gora National Park — some of the last remaining untouched forests in Europe, and beautiful small lake where You can fish Yourself
  • Durmitor National Park — rafting through the Tara Canyon, the deepest canyon in Europe, is one of the most popular activities in Montenegro
  • Lov?en National Park — beautiful mountain with natural, cultural and historical scenery
  • Mount Ostrog — the amazing monastery situated on the almost vertical cliff of Mount Ostrog
  • Perast — beautiful small village, a UNESCO World Natural and Historical Heritage Site
  • Prokletije National Park - hiking and mountain climbing are this park's main attraction
  • Skadar Lake National Park — the largest lake on the Balkans and the natural habitat of the very diverse flora and fauna
  • Sveti Stefan — picturesque town-hotel, a former fishermen town on the small peninsula near Budva (currently closed for renovation)

Understand

History

Montenegro was founded as a state under its present name in 15th century, continuing the tradition of the Slavic state of Duklja. It was able to maintain its independence during the reign of the Ottoman Empire in the Balkans, as its independence was formally acknowledged at the Congress of Berlin in 1878. After the World War I, fighting for the Allied powers, it was absorbed into the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats, and Slovenes, which later became the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1929. Montenegro was also later part of various incarnations of Yugoslavia, until it regained its full independence from the federation of Serbia-Montenegro on the May 2006 referendum. Montenegro was the only subsequent republic of the former Yugoslavia that supported Serbia during the wars of the Former Yugoslavia in the 1990s.

Climate

Montenegro's lower areas along the coast enjoy a Mediterranean climate, having dry summers and mild, rainy winters. Central and northern regions have Continental climate, where temperature varies greatly with elevation. Podgorica, lying near sea level in the valley of the central region, is noted for having the warmest July temperatures in Montenegro, averaging 35-40°C (95-104°F).

Cetinje, in the Karst at an elevation of 670m (2,200 ft), has a temperature 5°C (10°F) lower. January temperatures range from 8°C (46°F) from Bar on the southern coast to -3°C (27°F) in the northern region.

Montenegro's mountainous regions receive some of the highest amounts of rainfall in Europe. In the northern mountains, snow is present throughout the spring.

Terrain

The terrain of Montenegro ranges from high mountains through a segment of the Karst of the western Balkan Peninsula, to a narrow coastal plain that is only one to four miles wide. The coastal plain disappears completely in the north, where Mount Lovcen and other ranges plunge abruptly into the inlet of the Gulf of Kotor.

Montenegro's section of the Karst lies generally at elevations of just below 1,000 m (3,000 ft) above sea level-although some areas rise to 1800 m (6,000 ft). The lowest segment is in the valley of the Zeta River, which flows at an elevation of 460 m (1,500 ft).

The high mountains of Montenegro include some of the most rugged terrain in Europe. They average more than 2,100 m (7,000 ft) in elevation.

Get in

Most foreign tourists enter Montenegro directly by air, by road from Croatia or occasionally by sea from Italy. The land routes from Bosnia, Serbia, Kosovo and Albania are mainly used by tourists from those respective countries.

Holders of travel documents containing a valid Schengen visa, a valid visa of the United States of America or a permission to stay in these countries may enter and stay, i.e. pass through the territory of Montenegro up to seven days, and not longer than the expiry of visa if the period of validity of visa is less than seven days. Visit [1] for more details. However, border guards are not fully aware of this information, and they might tell you that you require a visa to enter Montenegro. Stay calm and politely ask them to recheck their information. They will fill a form with your passport and car registration information which can take up to 1 hour!

As of Nov 2010, nationals of the following states may enter, pass through the territory of and stay in Montenegro up to 90 days with a valid travel document without a visa: Andorra, Argentina, Aruba, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Bermuda, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Guatemala, Greece, Holy See, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxemburg, Macedonia, Malaysia, Malta, Mexico, Monaco, Nicaragua, Netherlands, Netherlands Antilles, New Zealand, Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, El Salvador, San Marino, Seychelles, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, United Kingdom, Uruguay, United States of America and Venezuela.

The exemption from the visa requirement also applies to the holders of valid travel documents issued by the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China and the Macao Special Administrative Region of the People's Republic of China.

By plane

Podgorica airport is Montenegro's main international airport. It is situated 12 km (7.5 miles) south of Podgorica. It is a hub for Montenegro's national airline carrier, Montenegro Airlines.

One can get from the airport to Podgorica centre by taking the minibus, which usually waits in front of the terminal. The taxi to the centre will be more expensive, usually at €15. From the city centre (Republic Place) to the Airport, metered Taxi costs €5-6.

One thing to notice about Podgorica airport is the lack of bus service to the coast. Hence, as soon as you exit the terminal, you will be surrounded by guys asking if you want a taxi. At this point, they are competing to see how much they can squeeze you for. Montenegro is most definitely not a cheap country, but still, keep your wits about you. Hotels in Kotor will offer airport transfer for approx 70-80 euros, so don't listen to guys quoting EUR120 or more for the drive to the coast. If you say "forget that", and take a taxi to the centre, they may try to bargain when you're in the car... at least here it's one-to-one.

Tivat airport is situated near the city of Tivat, on the Montenegin coast. It has regular flights to Belgrade throughout the year, and has charter flights to major European destinations during the summer. Tivat airport is 20km from Budva and Herceg-Novi and 60 km from Bar.

Destinations covered from these airports are listed in detail on the website of 'Airports of Montenegro'. Destinations covered by Montenegro Airlines, as well as booking information, can be found on the website of the carrier.

Dubrovnik airport in Croatia is a half hour drive from the Montenegro border and the coastal city of Herceg-Novi, and is served by many major airlines, so it might be a good option for tourists coming by plane.

  • Podgorica and Tivat Airport Bus Service, Car Rental and VIP Limo Transfers
  • Airport and City Transfer

By train

There are one daytime and one overnight train (two in summer) from Belgrade. Trains go through Bijelo Polje, Kolašin, Podgorica and ends in Bar, Montenegro's main seaport. The railway through the Dinaric Mountains is considered as one of the most scenic railways in Europe. Travel by train is the cheapest way to get to Montenegro, but the quality of service is not very good. Trip time is 10h from Belgrade to Podgorica (11h to Bar), but expect considerable delays.

Ticket from Belgrade to Podgorica costs €19.20, plus €3 compulsory seat reservation or €6 berth reservation. Tickets can be purchased at Serbian railway e-shop [2] .

By bus

Montenegro is well connected with neighbouring countries and ticket prices are all under €25. During the summer, more seasonal lines are being introduced.

By car

European routes E65, E80, E762, E763 and E851 pass through the country, connecting it to Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Kosovo and Albania.

There are no roads in Montenegro built to full motorway standard, as all roads are of single carriageway type. Almost all roads in Montenegro are curvy, mountainous roads, and speeds over 80km/h are not permitted. The general speed limit within a built-up area is 50km/h. Roads in the northern mountainous region require additional caution during the winter.

Driving with headlights is obligatory, even during the daytime; so is the use of seat belts. A €10 'ecological fee' for passenger cars used to be collected at the border posts when entering Montenegro, but it was scrapped in 2012.

By ship

There is a regular ferry line from Bar to Bari in Italy. The Bar-Bari line operates throughout the year, with service several times weekly during the summer. A trip to Bari takes around 8 hours. There is also ferry service from Bari, Italy, to Dubrovnik in Croatia. From there, bus service is available to Montenegro - the Dubrovnik bus station is adjacent to the port where the ferry docks.

Get around

By train

There is local train service, operating from Bar, through Podgorica and Kolasin and Mojkovac to Bijelo Polje. It is the cheapest way to travel from north to south and vice versa, the quality of service is not on the high level. Montenegro received new trains from Switzerland in the last months, replacing some of the older rolling stock that what used for local services. The level of quality should be up with European standards.

Montenegro Railways also reactivated the train route to Niksic, providing a scenic and pretty cheap journey, without being slower than the bus.

By bus

This may be the easiest way to get around Montenegro. Buses are frequent (especially during the summer), safe and are more or less on schedule. Ticket prices within Montenegro are all under €15. Examples of prices: Podgorica-Ulcinj €6, Podgorica-Cetinje €3,Cetinje-Kotor €5, etc. Local buses usually have no airconditioning.

Besides the buses, there are minibuses at bus stations that are usually slightly cheaper, but are actually a faster and more comfortable option.

By car

As there is no real highway in Montenegro; most roads are two-lane only, with frequent addition of a third overtaking lane, and generally are not up to European standards. Most roads are curvy and mountainous, so speeds over 80 km/h (50 mph) are rarely legal, and rarely safe.

The speed limit is 80km/h on the open road, unless signs specify otherwise. The speed limit inside the cities is 50km/h.

The use of safety belts and headlights during the day is compulsory, and the use of cellphones while driving is prohibited. Signposts used in Montenegro are almost identical to those used in EU countries.

Local drivers tend to drive fast, and to get involved into dangerous overtakings. Traffic jams are common during the peak of the summer season. Pedestrians are noutorious for jaywalking in every Montenegrin city.

Drivers tend to be extremely vocal, so don't take it personally if a driver yells at you.

By rent-a-car

Rent-a-car business are numerous and prices start from 20 EUR per day for Toyota Yaris.

By thumb

Hitchhiking works pretty great in Montenegro. See Hitchwiki for more details.

Specific roads

Roads from Podgorica to Bar and to Niksic are fairly good and easy to drive on.

The roads from Podgorica through Cetinje to Budva and to Petrovac are both in good condition, but are curvy mountainous roads which rarely permit speeds over 70km/h.

The road from Podgorica north to Kolasin, and then on to Zabljak or Serbia, is considered dangerous during the winter, especially the part through the Moraca canyon. It is recommended that one takes the bus to the north during the cold or rainy days, as bus drivers are experienced and know the road.

The old road from Cetinje to Kotor is mostly a narrow one-lane road offering stunning views of Kotor from above, but exercise extreme caution when passing on-coming traffic, over-taking and around corners.

Talk

See also: Montenegrin phrasebook

The official language is Montenegrin. It is essentially the same language as Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian. In some municipalities with an Albanian majority (Ulcinj) or large minority (Plav, Gusinje) and the Malesia district in Podgorica municipality, Albanian is commonly spoken. Slovenian and Macedonian are also understood. Even though their languages are virtually identical, people still distinguish between the Montenegrin, Serb, Croat and Bosniak ethnicities, Montenegrins forming a slight majority. Montenegrin is found written in both Cyrillic and Latin forms. Latin text is much more common in Montenegro than in neighboring Serbia and the Serbian portion of Bosnia.

In Podgorica and the coastal area, many people can speak some English, but that is not always the case in the north. Older people sometimes have a working knowledge of German. Italian also comes in very handy, especially along the coast. Russian, which belongs to the same family of Slavic languages and is spoken by many older people.

See

Montenegro may be small in terms of area, it boast 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. Nevertheless, if you can't visit at another time, don't let their popularity hold you back. Even the largest of cruise ship crowds will not stop you from enjoying this country's magnificent Riviera and Medieval coast towns, especially if you're willing to get up early and do your sightseeing ahead of the others.

Of the country's many churches and monasteries, the Serbian Orthodox Ostrog Monastery deserves special attention. It's spectacularly located against a practically vertical background, some 15 km from Nikši?. Founded in the 17th century, it's one of the most visited pilgrimage destinations on the Balkans and boasts a magnificent view over the Bjelopavli?i plain.

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. Don't miss the 12th century St. Tryphon Cathedral, the Church of St. Luke and the Orthodox St Nicholas Church. Kotor is locked between the blue sea on one side, and a dramatically steep cliff on the other. It's a heavy walk uphill, but climbing the 1500 steps will allow you to see the old fortifications on the top as well as provide some amazing views over the bay.

Budva is the country'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. Among the most interesting monuments here are the 7th century St. John's Church, the 8th century Santa Marija of Punta and the 12th century Church of St. Sava. The medieval town fortress is referred to as Citadela and right next to it is the colourful Church of the Holy Trinity, built in 1804. 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. A strip of hotels and restaurants separates it from the impressive mountain massifs of Lovcen. From Budva, it's an easy bus ride to the unique Sveti Stefan resort.

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. Although less spectacular than nearby KotorHerceg Novi (roughly translated as New Castle) is another charming Montenegrin town with a beautiful old centre and a good number of interesting churches, squares and fortresses.

Natural attractions

Although Montenegro's magnificent sea side scenery is best known among travellers, it's 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. Of the many friendly fishermen's towns around it, Virpazar is the most convenient one for travellers. 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.

Do

Festivals

Montenegro has a lot of local festivals that are worth going to and may range from typical music concerts to local festivities involving free food and drinks. Usually wine and seafood.

  • Bokeska Noc (3rd week of August) - Celebrations under masks by the iconic fortifications of Kotor where each year a hateful figure is burned, and celebrations out in the open continues till early morning.
  • Sun Dance Festival (end of July) - infamous Exit festival has found a new home for summer season and the biggest music happening in SE Europe is hosted on Jaz beach in Budva.
  • Days of Wine and Fish in Virpazar - worth experiencing. Gathering of wine and fish lovers in a scenic local village on the Skadar Lake. Very crowded, and smokey from fish frying.
  • Petrovacka noc (Petrovac ) - celebrating the local traditions it is great time to visit the city and enjoy the crowd, food and music.
  • Spring Break - typical music festival with plenty of DJs on Kamenovo beach
  • Blueberry Days - located in Plav in northern Montenegro this festival is attributed to blueberries which are infamous is important gathering of Montenegrin diaspora and its relatives as well as many tourists.
  • Pasticada Fest - 21.06
  • 'Suncane Skale
  • Dani Mimoze
  • Brodet Fest

Outdoor activities

  • Rafting. Rafting on archaic wooden or rubber boats down the 100km path of largest canyon in Europe is one-of-a-kind experience.
  • Hiking/Trekking/Biking. Considering the size and very late development of infrastructure Montenegro has relied on various pathways interconnecting villages, roads, churches and mountains which is nowadays maintained and ideal for all outdoor activities. Maps of routs may be obtained by tourist offices located in towns.
  • Cruise and dive in Boka Bay. Iconic scenery of Boka Bay may be only appreciated fully from the sea-level and various small islands with tremendous history can only be reached that way. Diving may be interesting on several spots along Lustica.
  • Paragliding over Budva Riviera. Iconic scenery of Boka Bay may be only appreciated fully from the sea-level and various small islands with tremendous history can only be reached that way. Diving may be interesting on several spots along Lustica.
  • Kite-surfing on the Ada Bojana. Experience iconic winds on southern-most tip of Montenegros 12km long sandy beach near Ulcinj
  • (summer) Skiing/Snowboarding. While during winter downhill skiing and snowboarding is usual activities within resorts in Žabljak and Kolašin throughout summer on many mountains specific regions remain under snow and are ideal for wild summer skiing/snowboarding experience

Buy

Money

Montenegro uses the euro. It is one of several European countries that uses this common currency. All euro banknotes and coins are legal tender within all the countries.

One euro is divided into 100 cents.

The official symbol for the euro is €, and its ISO code is EUR. There is no official symbol for the cent.

  • Banknotes: Euro banknotes have the same design in all the countries.
  • Normal coins: All eurozone countries have coins issued with a distinctive national design on one side, and a standard common design on the other side. Coins can be used in any eurozone country, regardless of the design used (e.g. a one-euro coin from Finland can be used in Portugal).
  • Commemorative two euro coins: These differ from normal two euro coins only in their "national" side and circulate freely as legal tender. Each country may produce a certain amount of them as part of their normal coin production and sometimes "Europe-wide" two euro coins are produced to commemorate special events (e.g. the anniversary of important treaties).
  • Other commemorative coins: Commemorative coins of other amounts (e.g. ten euros or more) are much rarer, and have entirely special designs and often contain non-negligible amounts of gold, silver or platinum. While they are technically legal tender at face value, their material or collector value is usually much higher and, as such, you will most likely not find them in actual circulation.
  • ATMs: Hundreds of new ATMs have been installed in most major cities. The ATMs accept most international VISA and MasterCard Credit/Debit cards. If you are from the Balkans, Central or Eastern Europe, look for an ATM of your bank. It is quite possible that the bank operates in Montenegro and that there will be no fees.
  • Credit Cards: although they are accepted in supermarkets, hotels, restaurants and many shops, always keep some cash with you for open-air markets, souvenir stalls, small bakeries, museums and public transport.
  • Exchange offices: Not very common, since nearly all tourists bring euros with them. In case you happen to arrive in Montenegro without any euros in cash, use an ATM (recommended) or find a bank to change US dollars, Swiss francs or British pounds.

Business Hours

Regular businesses and governmental agencies work from 8-9am to 4-5pm while convenience stores, pharmacies and shops usually work until 8-9pm. Bars, pubs and restaurants usually work until midnight or 1am while clubs may run until 3 or 4am.

Local Specialities

  • Cheese
  • Smoked ham
  • Traditional clothes
  • Souvenirs

Clothes and Shoes

City stores

  • City centre and Bulevar Džordža Vašingtona in Podgorica
  • Porto Montenegro
  • many shops in Old Towns of Kotor and Budva

Shopping malls

Convenience Shops & Supermarkets

  • Voli markets, HD Lakovi?, Maxi Markets and Roda are main retail supermarket chains and are found in almost all cities. There are also other convenience stores that stuff various goods. The prices of basic local food (baked goods, dairy products, fresh fruit and vegetables) are on the level of Bosnia and Serbia, i.e. generally cheaper than EU countries.

Eat

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.

Drink

Wine

Montenegrin vineyards and the production of quality wine is part of the tradition of southern and coastal wine makers.

The best known Montenegrin wines are the premium whites: "Krsta?", "Cabernet", "Chardonnay" and reds: "Vranac", "Pro Corde". All of them are produced by the famous company "Plantaže", but there's also some home-made wines of high quality, like Crmni?ko wine.

1L bottle of "Vranac" red wine will cost you from €8 to €15 in the bar or restaurant and it is well worth it! Also, you can buy a bottle of "Plantaze"'s wine for about €2-€4 in supermarkets.

Brandy

The continental region and north are more oriented towards the production of aromatic fruit flavoured brandy (plum brandy - šljivovica, apple brandy - jabukova?a). Grape brandy "Montenegrin loza", "Prvijenac", "Kruna" or home made grape brandy (lozova rakija, lozova?a) is a must-try, and a good choice to "warm up" before going out in the evening.

Beer

"Nikši?ko" beer is the best known beer in the Montenegro, and most common alcoholic beverage, which cost from €0.50 to €2.50. It is produced as a draught beer, or bottled, in both "Nik Gold" and lighter "Nik Cool" variant. The dark variant, "Nik tamno", is praised among beer lovers.

Other

Other alcoholic drinks can cost anywhere between €1 and €10.

Sleep

Stay safe

Montenegro is generally a safe country. There is, like all countries in the world, a number of criminal activities, but police forces are generally fast in their duties. The number is 122, as well as the international distress call 112. When travelling in the areas bordering Kosovo, it is recommended you keep to the main roads. Unexploded landmines may remain along the Kosovo border. You should also avoid areas where there is military activity.

In the resort towns such as KotorBudvaSveti Stefan and Herceg Novi, beggars and pickpockets are not uncommon. As in many other European locations, beggars are part of organized crime groups. Do not give them money. Doing so may also make you a target for more aggressive approaches. Always carry your bags in the safest way, slung around your shoulder with the pouch in front (with your money carried under your clothing) where you can keep your arm or hand across it.

Sea urchins are small, globular, spiny sea creatures that cover much of the sea floor off the coast of Montenegro. This isn't a bad thing being as they only gather in super clear water. It's a good idea to wear sea socks or something to cover your feet while walking through the water. Also, if you snorkel, be carefuil you dont brush up against the ones on the sides of the rocks.

Some roads are really narrow, so be careful while driving in the mountainous regions.

There are two species of viper snakes in Montenegro, sarka and poskok. Both are small but very viperous, so be careful when you hike around, watch your steps and remember that they never attack people if they are not disturbed.

Respect

Short pants are usually not permitted inside the public institutions (hospitals, etc.). Wear modest dress when visiting monasteries and churches.

At beaches, taking off the bottom piece of a swimsuit will likely create a stir, and is generally reserved for designated nude beaches.

When toasting and clinging glasses You have too look the opposite person in eyes otherwise its a sign of disrespect.

Being visibly drunk is a sign of bad taste and character in Montenegro: You may be invited to drink gallons, but are expected to be able to hold your drink. People also usually prefer to sip their liquor instead of emptying it in "bottoms-up" style. Be careful, "rakija", a plum spirit (usually about 53% alcohol content), is stronger than expected, and will make you drunk fast!

Connect

Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi points in bars and cafeterias are available to customers, and most hotels offer Wi-Fi connection in common areas for their guests. Some central tourist areas are also covered by wi-fi.

Be conscious of security when using a unsecured wifi networks.

Mobile phones and SIM cards

You can buy mobile phone sim cards already for € 1. With that amount of credit, and if you plan to stay a longer time in Montenegro, making local phone calls, it will be certainly worth the expense. As of 2011 you need to fill in short form and show ID or passport in order to activate prepaid number at local operator's store.

Kate at the Pyramid, Tirana Albania

The Balkans are my favorite region in the world. I’ve now visited four summers in a row: Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro in 2012; Macedonia and Kosovo in 2013, Croatia and Slovenia in 2014; and finally Albania, Montenegro, and Serbia in 2015.

Oh, Albania. This country is probably the most interesting place I visited in 2015. And Albania is chock full of my favorite things about the Balkans: astounding natural beauty, a less-developed tourism infrastructure with fewer foreigners, rich UNESCO World Heritage Sites, cheap prices, beautiful mountains, cafe culture, and a wacky capital city.

Tirana was my final destination in Albania, and I wasn’t quite as excited for it as I was for Saranda and the Riviera. But that quickly faded away when I realized what a cool place Tirana was! I wouldn’t quite call Tirana the weirdest city in the region — that honor belongs to Skopje — but I’ll gladly award it second place.

Laundry Tirana Albania

I arrived in Tirana from Berat on an aged bus that seemed to be held together with duct tape and prayers. Dropped off on a random street corner, I hopped into a cab with a driver who spoke about as much English as I spoke Albanian. We communicated entirely in Italian, him pointing out the landmarks as we entered the tree-lined streets of Blloku.

My heart began to beat fast. I had never seen a city like this before — elegant and riotous, drab and rainbow.

Tirana Albania

A City in Color

Like many Eastern European cities, Tirana is filled with ugly Communist-era architecture. These buildings are usually eyesores, and while many cities have charming old towns, central Tirana is instead full of cement block structures.

Unlike other Eastern European cities, though, you’ll find several of these buildings awash in color. Mayor Edi Rama, who was elected in 2000, began a campaign to bring color to Tirana. Some of the buildings have stripes across them; others are painted bright contrasting colors.

Rama did a TEDx talk about campaign to fill Tirana with color. You can view it here.

Yellow Building Tirana AlbaniaTirana AlbaniaTirana Albania

For the Love of Blloku

More than anything, it was Tirana’s ritziest neighborhood, Blloku, that made me fall in love with the city.

I walked around, whispering to myself, This is Tirana?! Not what I had pictured at all. It looked so…fancy.

Tirana AlbaniaTirana AlbaniaTirana AlbaniaLake Tirana Albania

For about 40 years, Blloku was restricted to the political elite of Albania. Ordinary people were not allowed in. When communism fell in 1991, Blloku began its transformation into a neighborhood for all.

Blloku is where you’ll find the fanciest bars, restaurants, and cafes in Tirana. And those CAFES! They’re piled on top of each other!

You might recall that Albanian food was very hit or miss for me, so I indulged in international food here, especially Italian food. A three-course meal with wine will set you back around $12!

Pyramid Tirana Albania

Climbing the Pyramid

In the middle of Tirana sits an enormous derelict pyramid. It was originally constructed in 1988 as a museum to honor dictator Enver Hoxha; by 1991, it had become a conference center, then it became a NATO command center during the war in Kosovo.

Today, it’s mostly abandoned, looking like something out of a horror movie.

And it begs to be climbed.

Pyramid Tirana Albania

So I did just that.

Pyramid Tirana AlbaniaView from the Pyramid Tirana AlbaniaPyramid Tirana AlbaniaKate at the Pyramid, Tirana Albania

I think climbing the pyramid was my favorite experience in Tirana! More than anything, it represented the city’s beauty and weird factor.

Kids Pyramid Tirana Albania

Local kids climbed and slid, climbed and slid. (My friend Erisa, a Tirana native, later told me that she used to do this as a kid as well, sliding down on cardboard!)

If you’re interested in climbing the pyramid, I have some advice:

1. Be okay with making a fool of yourself. Locals see this as an activity for kids; only occasional tourists join in.

2. Wear decent shoes. I wore flip flops and was sweating so much my feet kept sliding out of them as I neared the top.

3. Wear sunscreen. There is no protection from the sun up there.

4. Prepare to slide down on your butt. Unlike the kids, it took me about 15 minutes. I could have torn up my shorts if I hadn’t been so careful.

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Sunset Cocktails

In most places I visit, I like to climb a tall building to look over the landscape. One of the tallest building in Tirana, the Sky Tower, is home to the Panoramic Bar and Restaurant on top.

I’ll let the sunset views speak for themselves.

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I had a glass of prosecco, of course. You all know why! The cost? 350 lek. That’s a mere $2.83.

I so love this country.

Tirana Albania

Shopping Galore

I’m usually not much of a shopper, but I went absolutely crazy in Albania. First of all, everything was so cute and cheap and funky. Secondly, I was about to attend a music festival for the first time ever and had NOTHING TO WEAR.

Balkan women tend to be very thin, so keep that in mind while shopping. Sizes above 10 more or less do not exist, and sometimes you’ll struggle to find anything larger than an 8.

Some of the items I bought included:

Kate at Sea Dance

How festival-y is this outfit? I basically lived in this at Sea Dance in Montenegro.

Kate in Castanea, Sicily

This dress, worn in Sicily, is now referred to as my Albania Dress. It works just as well with leggings, boots, and a blazer as it does with flip-flops.

Kate at Albanian Victoria's Secret

This I definitely did not buy — a business shirt attached to a lacy thong! (I thought this was hilarious. It was one of the most popular photos I shared on Facebook all summer.)

But seriously, the Albanian version of Victoria’s Secret is insane. It’s basically all of the brightest, wildest, trashiest lingerie that they couldn’t sell elsewhere. I had to buy myself a crazy bra — a melange of neon purple satin and black lace, with the power to push your boobs up into the stratosphere.

Best souvenir ever.

Lake Tirana Albania

Endless Quirks

It seemed like everywhere I turned in Tirana, I would find something that made me smile.

Bunker Tirana Albania

There was a bunker on display in central Blloku. (There are thousands of these spaceship-like structures dotting the Albanian countryside.) Behind it is a chunk of the Berlin Wall.

Red Bull Ice Cream Tirana Albania

Red Bull-flavored ice cream. Be still, my heart.

Rottweiler Dog in Tirana Albania

A Rottweiler roughly the size of a horse.

Tirana Opera House Flag

And, of course, the blood-red Albanian flag proudly displayed everywhere.

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The Takeaway

I really want to return to Tirana! Albania is such a cool emerging country, and still feel like I’ve only scratched the surface.

While at the rooftop bar, I chatted with a few Swiss girls who were in Tirana for their second trip. Like me, they had come on a whim and had been unexpectedly blown away. I feel that other frequent travelers would feel the same way.

When I return, one other aspect of Tirana that I want to explore more is the nightlife. I only saw a tiny part of the scene, and I can tell there is a lot more to discover.

Essential Info: I stayed at Propaganda Hostel, which is ideally located in the Blloku neighborhood. I had a private ensuite room for 25 euros ($28) per night. (Some places in Albania charge in euros instead of lek, but you can usually pay in lek.) This was a terrific hostel and I recommend it, especially for its location. That weird Victoria’s Secret is on the block.

For shopping, I recommend perusing the streets of Blloku and the TEG mall just outside the city. (Take a cab from anywhere or a bus from the Skanderbeg Square, the central square in Tirana.)

Tirana is one of few world capitals without a central bus station. Plan on getting dropped off on a random street corner and grabbing a cab! If departing by bus, ask your accommodation where and when to get a bus to your next destination.

If you’re coming to or from Montenegro, I highly recommend the Montenegro Hostel shuttle which runs back and forth between Tirana and KotorBudva, and Podgorica. It cost me 40 euros ($45) for a one-way ride to Budva and took five hours. It was a comfortable, air-conditioned journey and I highly recommend it, as the alternative is taking several public buses of dubious quality. They also stop for a photo op at beautiful Sveti Stefan.

What’s your favorite weird city?The Funk Factor of Tirana, Albania

Hear about hiking the Peaks of the Balkans trail in Albania, Kosovo, and Montenegro as the Amateur Traveler talks to Dan and Audrey from uncorneredmarket.com about this off the beaten track route in Europe.

Photo by author

I drop myself into cities and countries where I know no one on a regular basis. I enjoy the challenge and the freedom, but I also forget that this is a practice like any other, and may seem somewhat inaccessible at first. I want to demystify it.

The following suggestions stem from my years of solo traveling. I don’t necessarily follow them all for every trip, but one could, in theory. I believe each one has a deep potential to cushion the fall into unknown territory.

1. Reach out to friends and acquaintances.

A simple “Do I know anyone in _____?” on Facebook can yield unexpected results. This method has found me friends (and often couches) in otherwise totally anonymous destinations from Prague and Montenegro to Berlin, Sicily and more.

2. Mine for connections.

Social media is a multifaceted beast, but it really comes in handy for certain kinds of travel. Asking my Facebook friends (and sometimes blog followers), “Does anyone have any connections in ___?” in the past has found me a house to rent in Cape Town, a Shabbat dinner in Paris, a yoga teaching gig in Zanzibar and so much more. The more I travel, the more this network grows — exponentially, it would seem. Apps like travelstoke allow you to connect with locals willing to share info or even host travelers a la couchsurfing.

3. Be bold — ask questions.

Every piece of information we could possibly need is available on the ground. No need to read travel forums, or even look up directions (although by all means do both if it sets your mind at ease). Depending on where I am in the world, there are metro maps, info centers, or throngs of aggressive taxi drivers at every possible port of arrival. Barring that, the local person sitting next to me on the bus/plane/train/ferry is usually an excellent resource.

4. Get lost and like it.

I have developed an impressive habit of always going the wrong way first. If it’s straight, I go left. If it’s left, I go right. I then employ method #3, ad infinitum, to take the longest route possible to my intended destination (thank you, legs). Getting lost is a common consequence of going in blind; even if we don’t like it, we can bring our sense of humor along for the walk.

5. Set up a work trade.

While it is 100% possible (and yes, fun and exciting) to just go explore a new place and find your way upon arrival, I have often found more depth and connection through work exchanges. Websites like wwoofing, workaway and helpx are just a few of many platforms for finding interesting, short-term placements abroad. Working or volunteering is, in my experience, one of the most effective ways to integrate into a community and create my place in the formerly unfamiliar. It is also an incredibly practical resource for information.

6. Set up an Airbnb.

If, like me, you need to work while you wander (or, also like me, you don’t want to commit to too much socializing), but still want an entree into local community, Airbnb is unparalleled. Set your price, browse your options, and choose a host who seems interesting. I’m still in contact with several of my Airbnb hosts, and owe unique memories (like tasting the best chocolate gelato in the whole world) to them.

7. Keep up with hobbies.

I always carry two extra pairs of shoes with me: dance and climbing. Dancing tango in Kenya, salsa-ing in Berlin, and climbing in Cape Town, I’ve connected with people I never would have met otherwise. Same goes for surfing in Morocco and hiking in Spain. Those are my passions; follow yours, and you’ll find your people — anywhere.

8. Become a regular.

There is something uniquely grounding in being a regular customer (in a cafe, restaurant or even corner store) — in simply being recognized. When our default mode is anonymity, feeling seen, known, familiar offers a powerful sense of place. Especially when I have a few weeks or months somewhere, I find myself accumulating these “regular” spots. Though utterly departing from all known routine is a key — even necessary — element of travel for me, glimpses of familiarity within the unknown provide welcome — even necessary — moments of respite.

9. Let go of should’s.

I believe having a mile-long checklist of “must sees” and “must dos” limits potential for spontaneous discovery. I tend to get a decent amount of touristing in when I visit a new place, but I try not to force it. Excursions happen organically — often with new friends — when I genuinely want to do them, and not because I feel like I’ll be failing at travel if I don’t.

10. Cook.

My experience of travel altered hugely when I started to prepare a lot of my own meals (just as I used to when I lived in one place). Not all, of course, since tasting local cuisines is hands down the best part of traveling, but many. Wandering local markets, I’ve honed new language skills, felt rooted in my home-of-the-moment, and saved serious money. Choosing an Airbnb with a kitchen facilitates this, as does staying with friends. Cooking a beautiful meal has long been my favorite way to thank my hosts for their hospitality.

11. Talk to strangers.

They’re not scary — usually. When they are creepy, it’s usually pretty clear to my intuition. Strangers are typically one of three things: treasure troves of insider information, friends you haven’t met yet, or an excellent story for later. Instructions for talking to strangers: eyes up, shoulders down, words out.

12. When all else fails, fail.

I have days — sometimes weeks — where my social self goes into hibernation, my patience drops to zero, and the challenge of the unknown shifts from exhilarating to tiresome. When that happens, I take time to write, read, call friends and family, and simply be. No one can be “on” all the time. This lifestyle of exploration and discovery has curves and cycles, just like any other. These moments of pause make the adventure all the richer.

May your journeys be—yours. More like this: Why traveling solo is better than traveling with friends

Photo: The Digital Way

Travelers often opt for the same paths of Europe; France, Spain, and Italy. If you’re looking for an great nightlife, quieter beaches and dramatic scenery combined with fascinating history, arts and culture, Eastern Europe has it all. Travelsupermarket has put together an infographic of 5 road trips around the region. We’ve selected 3 of the routes here to inspire you.

Editor’s note: These spots are all taken directly from travelstoke®, a new app from Matador that connects you with fellow travelers and locals, and helps you build trip itineraries with spots that integrate seamlessly into Google Maps and Uber. Download the app to add any of the spots below directly to your future trips.

Vienna – Vienna

Vienna — Ljubljana — Zagreb — Budapest — Krakow — Wroclaw — Prague — Vienna

Total days: 12 Distance: 2,370 KM Best time to go: From May to September

Highlights

  • Explore the Sigmund Fraud Museum in Vienna
  • Enjoy the scenery around Lake Blend
  • Visit Museum of Broken Relationships Zagreb
  • Relax in Budapest’s thermal baths
  • Step back in time at the 900-year-old Spis Castle
  • Taste Vodka in Kazimierz at night
  • Fish in the Labska Dam in the Kroknose Moutain Range
  • Tour the prestigious wineries of Krasna Hora

Vienna, Austria

 AlbertinaVienna, AustriaMuseum browsing with my favourites, from Picasso to Monet

Ljubljana, Slovenia

 Kavarna TromostovjeLjubljana, Slovenia#coffee

Zagreb, Croatia

 Hostel Swanky MintZagreb, CroatiaBest hostel in Zagreb! Fabulous place to meet people. Happy hour at the sweet bar downstairs is fairly lively every night. Superb breakfast and well-designed hostel. So clean with friendly staff! Would most definitely stay here again as I wish I could have stayed longer before. #hostels #zagreb #croatia #food #casual #free-wifi

Budapest, Hungary

 Castle HillBudapest, HungaryBudapest’s Castle Hill is a traveler’s dream, an architectural mecca, a cultural hub. It’s truly a one-stop-shop that perfectly bundles up the city’s historical essence into one lovely stroll. Start at the Buda Castle and enter from its less-visited southern side. Walk its historical grounds and soak in the city views before sauntering towards Matthias Church and Fisherman’s Bastion, where the ‘ooh’s’ and ‘ahh’s’ won’t stop. Polish your promenade off with a loop around the residential area for even more expansive views into the Buda side of the city. #budapest #europe #travel #history #architecture #churches #viewpoints #free

Kraków, Poland

 plac NowyKraków, PolandIt’s nighttime, you’re hungry, you’re in Kraków. Remedy: street food at plac Nowy. This area will be buzzing with young energy, each patron attempting to satisfy the same late-night craving. The zapiekanka is its best seller: a long toasted baguette topped with mushrooms, cheese, sauce, and your choice of meats or other veggies. Nearly all the stands feature the famous snack, so pick the longest line (the locals know best) and enjoy. #krakow #poland #streetfood #kazimierz #food #travel #casual #cheap-eats #europe

Prague, Czech Republic

 John Lennon WallPrague, Czech RepublicIf you’re looking to leave your “tag” in Prague, the John Lennon wall is probably the best place to do it. The mural-turned-graffiti wall is a gorgeous site to see and makes for some really great selfies too. Wear black to stand out.

PolandEstonia

Warsaw — Krutynia River — Vilnius — Riga — Parnu — Tallinn

Total days: 8 Distance: 1,130 KM Best time to go: From May to July

Highlights

  • Taste traditional Polish food in Warsaw’s Old Town
  • Kayak down the Krutynua River
  • Experience interrogration by retired KGB agents in Vilnius
  • Enjoy traditional drinks and Lativian folk music in Riga
  • Take a romantic stroll along the Sea Wall at Parnu
  • Sing Estonian songs with a choir of 30,000 in Tallinn

Warsaw, Poland

 Supreme Court of PolandWarszawa, PolandSurprise photo opportunity

Olsztyn, Poland

 Marii Curie-SkłodowskiejOlsztyn, Poland#narrowstreet #walk #architecture #history

Vilnius, Lithuania

 Gediminas TowerVilnius, LithuaniaFantastic views, especially at sunset, from the hill above Cathedral Square in Vilnius old town. You can pay to go up the tower when it’s open, but the hilltop is free. The views reward the steep walk up there.

Riga, Lativa

 Āgenskalns free tour RigaRīga, Latvia#free #walkingtour An inspiring walk through the non-touristic areas of Riga with a local guide. Awesome

Soomaa National Park, Parnu, Estonia

 Soomaa.comPärnu maakond, EstoniaCanoe trips on the rivers of Soomaa National Park #estonia #canoe #canoeing #soomaa #kayaking #kayak

Tallinn, Estonia

 Kadriorg PalaceTallinn, EstoniaNice museum in a beautiful palace. Good collection

Old town Tallinn, Estonia

 Von Krahli AedTallinn, EstoniaA beautiful, cosy restaurant in the heart of old town Tallinn. Amazing fresh, local ingredients. Artful and quirky preparations of traditional Estonian fare. This was one of the best meals we had during our year of travel. #fine-dining #food

Montenegro — Slovenia

Bay of Kotor — Dubrovnik — Split — Zadar — Ljubljana

Total days: 7 Distance: 820 KM Best time to go: From May to August

Highlights

  • Relax beside the idyllic Bay of Kotor in Montenegro
  • Enjoy incredible views from Dubrovnik’s City Walls
  • Swim in the Adriatic Sea at Bacvice Beach in Split
  • Explore the waterfalls in Krka National Park
  • Listen to the waves play the Sea Organ at Zadar
  • See a concert in Ljubljana

Kotor, Montenegro

 Kampana TowerKotor, Montenegro#hiking

Dubrovnik, Croatia

 Dubrovnik City WallsDubrovnik, CroatiaAmazing view of Dubrovnik from the city walls

Split, Croatia

 Park Šuma MarjanSplit, CroatiaFor a breathtaking panorama of Split and the neighboring islands, as well as inland mountain ranges, make the trek up Marjan. A mere ten minutes gets you to your first viewpoint, but keep going. This park is a forest and trail-filled peninsula with ruins, vistas, and beaches, and with nearly no crowds. You could easily spend hours meandering, so bring a snack and make a morning or afternoon out of it! #hiking #croatia #split #sea #europe

Ljubljana, Slovenia

 Kavarna TromostovjeLjubljana, Slovenia#coffee

Ljubljana, Slovenia

 Koseze PondLjubljana, SloveniaAmazing sunset over Koseze pond in Ljubljana, Slovenia. #ljubljana #slovenia #adventureslovenia

Photo: skeeze

Going on a cruise is a culture in itself. Some cruisers make it their goal to experience every ship and port out there. Cruising provides a diverse itinerary and smaller coastal towns offer local culture and charm but without the crowds. Here’s a list of ports and nearby destinations that are worth visiting before they become too popular.

Editor’s note: These spots are all taken directly from travelstoke®, a new app from Matador that connects you with fellow travelers and locals, and helps you build trip itineraries with spots that integrate seamlessly into Google Maps and Uber. Download the app to add any of the spots below directly to your future trips.

1. Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada

The oldest city in North America, St. John’s is the kind of place where you can stand on Signal Hill watching icebergs drift past The Narrows. Houses of every color line almost every street, centuries-old buildings of brick sit on the waterfront, and the funky urban exterior of The Rooms Art Gallery & Museum dominates the skyline. Just like the province it belongs to, St. John’s is where old world meets new in a wonderful clash.

St Martins Sea Caves

 St Martins Sea CavesBay View, CanadaAt low tide you can explore these sea caves, but watch the tide! There’s also some yummy seafood chowder to be eaten here…

2. Haines, Alaska

Haines is arguably the adventure capital of Alaska. It is in the northern part of the Alaska Panhandle, near Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve. The fishing town has mountain energy and vibrancy and is one of the best places in the world for heli-skiing.

 Southeast Alaska Backcountry AdventuresHaines, United StatesBest Heli Skiing in SE Alaska!

3. Kuşadasi, Turkey

Kuşadasi is a popular destination and, as the coastal gateway to Ephesus, Turkey’s busiest cruise port. That said, is it a jumping-off point for visiting the classical ruins at nearby Ephesus, an ancient city with remains that reflect centuries of history, from classical Greece to the Roman Empire.

Acarlar Köyü

 EphesusAcarlar Köyü, TurkeyWent to Turkey this October and I couldn’t believe my eyes! This is a photo of the Grand Theater at Ephesus and during the whole tour, I was imagining what it would’ve been like living back then. I mean, this theater is pretty awesome!

4. Santos Tomas de Castilla, Guatemala

Also known as Matías de Gálvez, Santos Tomas de Castilla is a port in Izabal Department, Guatemala. Escape the busy port and take a short bus ride to the UNESCO World Heritage Site the Mayan ruins of Quiriguá.

Alta Verapaz

 Monumento Natural Semuc ChampeyAlta Verapaz, GuatemalaThe definition of a hidden gem: Semuc Champey pools in #Guatemala. 🏅

Santa Cruz on Lake Atitlan

 Santa Cruz la Laguna, Lake AtitlanGuatemala, GuatemalaThe village of Santa Cruz on Lake Atitlan is one of the most naturally serene and enchanting places I’ve been to. You need to catch a “lancha”, or local boat, to get to most of the villages on the lake. There are lots of little paths to explore and get lost on. #lagoatitlán #serenity

5. Kralendijk, Bonaire

Kralendijk is the chief town of Bonaire in the Netherlands Antilles. The island is known for its beaches, golfing, snorkeling, skin diving, and pink flamingos.

 Old Slave HutsKralendijk, Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and SabaI did a little circuit around the island and made a stop here. The buildings look colorful and cheery until you remember they housed slaves. They were built in the 1850s to house men who worked in the salt ponds nearby.

 Treasure By The Sea BonaireKralendijk, Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and SabaBeautiful walk along the water every night! #kaiventures

 Bachelor’s BeachKralendijk, Bonaire, Saint Eustatius and SabaBest beach in Bonaire. More people under the water than above! #kaiventures

6. Kotor, Montenegro

Montenegro has the beauty of Croatia, minus the crowds. The waters are cleaner, the beaches less crowded, and it is significantly cheaper. Kotor is a fortified medieval town on the Adriatic Coast, Sveti Stefan, a small islet surrounded by crystalline waters, as well as some of the villages in the south near Ulcinj.

 Kampana TowerKotor, Montenegro#hiking

 Entrance of Old Town KotorKotor, MontenegroThis is the city center of Kotor. Far less crowded than Dubrovnik but this could change fast. Get lost in its narrow cobblestone streets! #free #history #balkans #montenegro

 Kotor FortressOpština Kotor, MontenegroKotor’s perfectly preserved medieval Old Town is situated at the base of a breathtaking trek along historic brick walls. 1000+ steps will switchback past churches, jaw dropping mountain peaks, and panoramic vistas of the dazzling bay below until you reach St. John’s Fortress. The higher you climb, the better the view. Start your hike early to beat the summer heat and the crowds. Let your curiosity lead you, and perhaps you too will find the local farmer selling fresh cheese and pomegranate juice behind the fortress walls. #kotor #montenegro #castles #oldtown #medieval #europe #balkans #churches #hiking #history

7. Progreso, Mexico

Progreso is a port city in the Mexican state of Yucatán, located on the Gulf of Mexico, is a 30-minute drive from the state capital Mérida. Generally, Progreso has a very relaxed beach-town vibe. It has the longest pier (6.5km) in Mexico. It’s a super place to be based if you want to explore Yucatán.

Santa Clara

 La LagunitaSanta Clara, MexicoSanta Clara is a tiny beach town, mostly used as a vacation spot for folks from the nearby pueblo of Dzidzantun. Other than during vacations, the beach is abandoned by everything except the boats of the past. The place is excellent for photography & strolling along the raw beach in search for big conch shells. #photography #beach #yucatan

Mérida

 EL CARDENAL CANTINAMérida, Mexico#cantina #cheap-eats #botanas #bar #beer #cerveza #music

Chuburná

 Chuburna PuertoChuburná, Mexico#playa #beachtown #beach #travelphotography #Yucatan

Late last year I flew into Paris with a backpack, a rail pass and only a vague inclination of where I’d be heading. Two months, 3,300 miles, several dozen train rides and 23 cities later, I chugged into a dimly lit Belgrade station aboard a train from Montenegro with just one day to spare before my visa expired. I took more than 4,000 photographs over the course of the trip — here are 10 of my favorite. 1

Paris, France

The Parisian summer was brutal. I’d been warned of a lingering heat wave before my arrival, but nothing could prepare me for those 100-degree evenings -- not even a lifetime of South African summers. After an ill-advised afternoon walk through Montmartre, the cool interior of the Sacré-Cœur provided the only respite from the simmering sidewalks outside.

2

Rhone Alps, France

The beautiful canalized town of Annecy, set on the shores of a glistening lake and beneath soaring mountains, did not disappoint me. This photo captures a quiet moment, somewhere high up in the Rhone Alps when I witnessed a father valiantly attempting to fly a kite for his young daughter. That scene will always stand out to me when I think back on this trip.

3

Zermatt, Switzerland

I’d been in Zermatt for three days and had yet to have a clear view of the Matterhorn. The hotel receptionist assured me the famous mountain was hiding somewhere behind the clouds. On my final morning, just minutes before a cross-country train ride, I found a few minutes to sit on the balcony in the cool morning air to wait for this precise moment -- when the Alpine sun turned the iconic peak several shades of orange, before eventually illuminating the sleepy resort town at its base.

Intermission

How to travel the world for free (seriously)

10 perfect Instagram shots of Paris

Solo travel in Myanmar: My experience in 15 beautiful images

4

Lucerne, Switzerland

Golden hour in Switzerland is unlike golden hour anywhere else in the world. These swans, sailing quietly beneath the famous covered bridge, seemed to appreciate it just as much as the greedy photographers lapping up Lucerne’s last light.

5

Bohinj, Slovenia

The footpath surrounding Lake Bohinj was eerily quiet. Save for the occasional whoops from paragliders above, the only other constant sound audible from beneath the trees was the quiet whooshing of canoe paddles cutting through the shimmering surface.

6

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Unless you’re aware that the heart of Ljubljana is totally car free, it’s quite possible you’ll stand in this location, atop one of the famous three bridges, wondering just how the middle of a European capital city could be so peaceful.

7

Rovinj, Croatia

I’d been tipped off about the best sunset spot in Rovinj earlier that day. When I made my way down to the water’s edge the sky was already starting to shift shades, but it was as the sun slipped beneath the last of the clouds that an explosion of color had me conflicted between reaching for my camera, and putting it away to absorb the spectacle that was unfolding before me.

8

Split, Croatia

I followed the sound of harmonizing male voices from a bustling Split courtyard beside the Cathedral of Saint Domnius. I soon found the source of the singing in the acoustically perfect Vestibule and stood there enraptured. It was only by good fortune that I decided to look up, which was when I noticed the bell tower of the cathedral peering back down at me.

9

Fort Vrmac, Montenegro

I reached Fort Vrmac after a steep two-hour hike and peered through the iron bars of the abandoned Austro-Hungarian military base. A persistent drip echoed deep in the darkness, and my heart beat a bit faster. No good story comes from almost doing something, so I found an open window, powered up the torch on my cell phone, and stepped gingerly into the abandoned building. I found this room somewhere on the second floor.

10

Somewhere between Bar, Montenegro and Belgrade, Serbia

The rickety old train had been chugging inland for several hours up to a terrifying height on the side of a sheer Montenegrin cliff when the landscape burst to life. I stepped over the outstretched legs of my fellow travelers and made my way to the window. I pushed it down and stood there with my face in the cool autumn wind alternating between soaking up the experience and trying, usually in vain, to capture in photographs what was without a doubt the most dramatic railroad experience of my life.

Unwind in luxury on this five-star holiday in Montenegro

WE LIVE in a time of potential instant photographic gratification. We check the screens on our digital devices often before we’ve even looked at a scene with our own eyes.

When we travel, it’s easy to get caught in a spiral of constant photo-taking, photo-checking, photo-retaking, photo-filtering, and then photo-sharing. But what if we only had one chance to take the photograph, and we’d only find out how good it was after it was too late to do anything about it?

I decided to try the experiment on a recent two-month trip through Europe. I bought two cheap disposable cameras from a French supermarket and set one rule for myself: I couldn’t take a digital photograph of a scene I had shot with a disposable.

A few weeks after I returned, I took the two cameras to a local photographic shop for developing. While none of these pictures will win any awards, my experiment reminded me that sometimes the rewards of delayed gratification are greater than instant. 1

Annecy, France

Shortly after purchasing the two cameras I took a slow walk to the edge of Lake Annecy where I sat with my feet in the water watching ducks, swimmers, and boats until the sun disappeared behind the Rhone Alps.

2

Vercelli, Italy

I opened the blinds in my small Vercelli bed and breakfast to this perfectly clichéd Italian scene.

3

Innsbruck, Austria

The view from my budget hotel room in the heart of old Innsbruck.

More like this: Follow a wildlife photographer on the hunt for the perfect shot 4

Zermatt, Switzerland

The woman who showed me to my hotel room in Zermatt assured me that the famous Matterhorn was hiding somewhere behind the clouds. It eventually made an appearance on the last morning just minutes before I was due to catch a train to St. Moritz.

5

Lucerne, Switzerland

Lucerne’s covered bridges in the late afternoon sunlight.

6

Hallstatt, Austria

The small ferry linking the Hallstatt train station to the town didn’t take credit cards, and I had no cash. But a kind woman making the same journey across the lake held out a fistful of Euro coins, smiled, and said: “Here you go.”

7

Hallstatt, Austria

I felt satisfaction pulling out my disposable camera in the sea of iPads and iPhones capturing Hallstatt’s most photographed attraction.

8

Ljubljana, Slovenia

After a week in Ljubljana, I’d grown attached to the city. On my rain-drenched walk to the train station on my last morning in town, I took this photograph of an abandoned town square.

9

Lake Bohinj, Slovenia

I walked several hours around the lake to this vantage point looking out over the treetops.

Intermission

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10

Rovinj, Croatia

There's authentic coastal charm to Rovinj worth stopping to appreciate.

11

Budapest, Hungary

On my last afternoon in the Hungarian capital, I walked to the top of Gellért Hill to appreciate my visit.

12

Dubrovnik, Croatia

I woke up early to avoid the crowds of Dubrovnik and was rewarded with these views from the city walls.

13

Kotor, Montenegro

On my last morning in Kotor, I spent two hours hiking to an abandoned military base. On the way up, I turned around to find this scene, with Kotor old town, its ancient fortresses, and a large cruise ship docked and waiting, spread out behind me.

14

Belgrade, Serbia

The Serbian capital has had a turbulent past.

15

Belgrade, Serbia

In spite of the troubled history, Belgrade is a city on the rise. Vibrant bars, restaurants, and cafés have popped up across the capital. Deli 57 was where I had my last meal, and took my last photograph of the experiment.

Ever dreamed of chucking it all and traveling around Europe for a month or three? If the sidewalk cafes of Paris, the snowy peaks of the Swiss Alps and the bustling beer halls of Germany are all on your must-visit list, you might be a good candidate for a Europe rail pass. Several types of Eurail passes are available for unlimited rail travel in up to 28 countries. Which one is best for you? Read on.

europe train man woman wave

Eurail Global Pass

The Eurail Global Pass is the most comprehensive Eurail pass, available for first-class train travel over periods ranging from 15 days to three months. The pass is valid in the following 28 countries: Austria, Belgium, Bosnia Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Montenegro, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.

You can purchase a "continuous" pass, which is good for unlimited travel over 15 days, 21 days, one month, two months or three months of travel. Or opt for a "flexipass," which entitles you to five or seven days of travel over a one-month period, or 10 or 15 travel days over a two-month period. With the flexipass option, you'll want to choose your travel days wisely; if you're taking a brief hop between two nearby cities, it may be more cost-effective to simply buy a point-to-point ticket for that day and save the travel days on your pass for longer, more expensive trips.

Eurail Select Pass

While Eurail Global Passes are ideal for extensive multi-nation train travel, tourists who are visiting only a small handful of countries may be better off purchasing a Eurail Select Pass. With this flexible "designer" pass, you may choose to travel within two, three or four bordering European countries for a duration of four to 10 days within a two-month period.

You may choose from the following destinations: Austria, Benelux (includes Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands), Bulgaria, Croatia/Slovenia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Montenegro/Serbia, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and Turkey.

Saver Passes

Traveling with at least one buddy? Try a Saver Pass, which grants a 10 to 15 percent discount to two to five people traveling together. To take advantage of this pass, you and your companion(s) must be present at the start of your trip to validate your passes, and travel together throughout your itinerary.

Get Our Best Travel Deals and Tips!

Passes for Youths and Children

Many Eurail passes offer discounted prices for travelers between the ages of 12 and 27 (on the first day of use). These essentially provide the same benefits as the regular adult passes, except that you travel in second class rather than first class and save up to 35 percent off the normal price. Passes are free for children 11 and under.

Other Eurail Pass Tips

If you're visiting only one or two countries, or if your itinerary is limited to a specific region (such as the British Isles), you should consider a European Country Rail Pass.

Rail passes can be purchased in non-E.U. countries through travel agents or from sites such as RailEurope.com, Eurail.com and ACPRail.com. In most cases, they cannot be purchased after you arrive in Europe. Be sure to compare all of your options carefully before you buy, and weigh the price of the passes against the cost of individual point-to-point tickets.

For help purchasing your pass, see Buying a European Rail Pass.

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Lonely Planet Montenegro (Travel Guide)

Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher

Lonely Planet Montenegro is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Enjoy the view of Sveti Stefan while lazing on the beach, visit Njegos' tomb on top of Black Mountain, or experience ancient history in Kotor; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Montenegro and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet Montenegro Travel Guide:

Colour maps and images throughout Highlights and itineraries show you the simplest way to tailor your trip to your own personal needs and interests Insider tips save you time and money and help you get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots Essential info at your fingertips - including hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, and prices Honest reviews for all budgets - including eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, and hidden gems that most guidebooks miss Cultural insights give you a richer and more rewarding travel experience - including customs, history, art, literature, cinema, architecture, politics, wildlife, and cuisine Over 23 local maps Useful features - including What's New, Month-by-Month (annual festival calendar), and Outdoor Activities Coverage of Dubrovnik, PodgoricaKotorHerceg NoviTivatBudva,  PetrovacNiksicPlavSveti Stefan, Przno, PerastUlcinjBudva, Rijeka Crnojevica, and more

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Montenegro, our most comprehensive guide to Montenegro, is perfect for those planning to both explore the top sights and take the road less travelled.

About Lonely Planet: Started in 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel guide publisher with guidebooks to every destination on the planet, as well as an award-winning website, a suite of mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveller community. Lonely Planet's mission is to enable curious travellers to experience the world and to truly get to the heart of the places they find themselves in.

'Lonely Planet guides are, quite simply, like no other.' - New York Times

'Lonely Planet. It's on everyone's bookshelves; it's in every traveller's hands. It's on mobile phones. It's on the Internet. It's everywhere, and it's telling entire generations of people how to travel the world.' - Fairfax Media (Australia)

Lonely Planet Montenegro (Travel Guide)

Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher

Lonely Planet Montenegro is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Enjoy the view of Sveti Stefan while lazing on the beach, visit Njegos' tomb on top of Black Mountain, or experience ancient history in Kotor; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Montenegro and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet Montenegro Travel Guide:

Colour maps and images throughout Highlights and itineraries show you the simplest way to tailor your trip to your own personal needs and interests Insider tips save you time and money and help you get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots Essential info at your fingertips - including hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, and prices Honest reviews for all budgets - including eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, and hidden gems that most guidebooks miss Cultural insights give you a richer and more rewarding travel experience - including customs, history, art, literature, cinema, architecture, politics, wildlife, and cuisine Over 23 local maps Useful features - including What's New, Month-by-Month (annual festival calendar), and Outdoor Activities Coverage of Dubrovnik, PodgoricaKotorHerceg NoviTivatBudva,  PetrovacNiksicPlavSveti Stefan, Przno, PerastUlcinjBudva, Rijeka Crnojevica, and more

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Montenegro, our most comprehensive guide to Montenegro, is perfect for those planning to both explore the top sights and take the road less travelled.

Looking for more extensive coverage? Check out Lonely Planet's Mediterranean Europe guide, Eastern Europe guide, or Southeastern Europe guide for a comprehensive look at all that each region has to offer.

Authors: Written and researched by Lonely Planet, Peter Dragicevic, and Vesna Maric.

About Lonely Planet: Started in 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel guide publisher with guidebooks to every destination on the planet, as well as an award-winning website, a suite of mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveller community. Lonely Planet's mission is to enable curious travellers to experience the world and to truly get to the heart of the places they find themselves in.

TripAdvisor Travelers' Choice Awards 2012 and 2013 winner in Favorite Travel Guide category

'Lonely Planet guides are, quite simply, like no other.' - New York Times

'Lonely Planet. It's on everyone's bookshelves; it's in every traveller's hands. It's on mobile phones. It's on the Internet. It's everywhere, and it's telling entire generations of people how to travel the world.' - Fairfax Media (Australia)

Montenegro (Bradt Travel Guide)

Annalisa Rellie

This thoroughly updated new edition of the much praised Bradt guide to Montenegro includes information on bird watching, national parks, and cycling, including the new European Bed and Bike Network. Montenegro is one of the hidden corners of Eastern Europe, with a people who are almost overwhelmingly friendly to visitors who express an interest in exploring and learning about their country. No surprise then that the country is one of the top destinations in Europe. So struck was the author by Montenegro when she first visited in 2000 that instead of writing the commissioned 1,000-word article for a magazine, she wrote the Bradt guide instead!

Montenegro in 3 Days (Travel Guide 2017).Best Things to Do in Montenegro as a First Time Visitor: Where to Go,Stay and Eat, What to See,3-Day Itinerary,Useful ... Tips to Save Time and Money in Montenegro

Guidora Team

We have been in your shoes! We wanted to visit Montenegro and got lost into spending tens of hours looking for valid information at Lonely Planet, TripAdvisor and on the Internet. And then, we couldn't put it all together, to create a perfect plan for visiting Montenegro in 3 Days.Guidora is the only publishing house building Travel Guides for you, like no other does.We provide exact 72 hour plans with only one and best choice on where to stay, what to eat, what to see. It's an easy travel path that you just follow and spend the 3 best days of your life in Montenegro! If you are wondering What to Do in 3 Days in Montenegro and What are the Best Things to See, look no further!We have built an excellent 72 hours plan for Montenegro, with information on what to do every hour of the day. All the information provided is by local experts and travel bloggers. Since they live in Montenegro, or travel there often, they know the best that the city has to offer to you.By getting this travel guide to Montenegro, you will get:- Exact information on which are the best hotels to stay in Montenegro, so that you will be in the best areas of Montenegro for all activities, without breaking the bank.- Exact information on what to do every hour of the day. - Information on: How to Arrive in Montenegro, The Bay of Boka Kotorska, Where to Stay in Kotor, Things to See in Kotor, Our Recommended Dining Places in Boka Bay, Useful tips on Boka Kotorska, Detailed Cetinje Itinerary with best things to see, best places to eat and useful tips, Detailed itinerary about Zabljak with all sightseeing information and many useful tips.- Where to Eat: What are the best restaurants that locals go to. - What dishes to try. A simple culinary guide with the top 10 dishes and drinks.- Where to go out in the evening. Only the top suggestion for each day for one bar or a club.- How to move from the airport to the hotel with the most budget friendly way.- What museums and sights to see. What tourist traps to avoid.- Where to Book Everything Online, to save time and money.- Best things to do in each one of the 3 days. By getting this guide, you will feel like having your best friend in Montenegro, showing you around. It will save you time and money in a stress-free way. It will help you to enjoy the best days of your life in the magnificent town of Montenegro!Guidora's Montenegro in 3 Days Travel Guide, is your entry ticket to the most accurate advice on what are the best things to do in Montenegro in 72 hours. It includes a detailed 72-hour plan from the first moment you will arrive in the airport of Montenegro, until the moment you leave this amazing town.Inside Guidora's Montenegro in 3 Days Travel Guide: A 72 hours plan starting every day at 08:00 until late in the evening, with details on what to do every hourFull-color maps and images throughoutAll the Maps are available in Google Maps, to help you navigate Montenegro easy, through your smartphone. Best-kept secrets on shopping, dining, going out in the eveningInsider tips to save time and money and get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spotsEssential info at your fingertips - hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, pricesInformation in this Montenegro travel guide is up-to-date as of 2016.Get this Guide Now and enjoy your trip to Montenegro!Authors: Written and researched by Guidora's team of travel bloggers and local experts in Montenegro\

Montenegro Coast in 7 Days (Travel Guide 2017):Best Things to Do in the Montenegro Coast: What to See&Do,Where to Stay&Eat,Online Maps,7-Day Itinerary,Best Tips for First Time Visitors to Montenegro

Guidora Team

Enjoy the best things to Do in Montenegro Coast in 7 Days as a First-Time Visitor**Free Bonus Included at the end of this ebook**We have been in your shoes! We wanted to visit Montenegro Coast and got lost into spending tens of hours looking for valid information at Lonely Planet, TripAdvisor and on the Internet. And then, we couldn't put it all together, to create a perfect plan for visiting Montenegro Coast in 7 Days.Guidora is the only publishing house building Travel Guides for you like no other does.We provide specific 72-hour plans with only one and best choice on where to stay, what to eat, what to see. It's an easy travel path that you just follow and spend the 7 best days of your life in Montenegro Coast! If you are wondering What to Do in 7 Days in Montenegro Coast and What are the Best Things to See, look no further!We have built an excellent 7-days plan for Montenegro Coast, with information on what to do every time of the day. All the information is provided by local experts and travel bloggers. Since they live in Montenegro Coast or visit there often, they know the best that the city can offer to you.By getting this travel guide to Montenegro Coast, you will get:- Exact information on what is the best hotels to stay in Montenegro Coast, so that you will be in the best area of Montenegro Coast for all activities, without breaking the bank.- Exact information on what to do every hour of the day.- The Best Hotels: Discover the best places to stay in Montenegro Coast without breaking the bank.- Where to Eat: What are the best restaurants that locals go to. - What dishes to try. A simple culinary guide with the top 10 dishes and drinks.- Where to go out in the evening. Only the top suggestion for each day for one bar or a club.- How to move from the airport to the hotel with the most budget friendly way.- What sights and sights to see. What tourist traps to avoid.- Where to Book Everything Online, to save time and money.- Best things to do in each one of the 7 day. By getting this guide, you will feel like having your best friend in Montenegro Coast, showing you around. It will save you time and money in a stress-free way. It will help you to enjoy the best days of your life in the great town of Montenegro Coast!Contents:•How to arrive in Montenegro•Tips for traveling to Montenegro•1st day in Montenegrin Coast: Herceg Novi, the city of stairs: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•2nd Day in Montenegrin Coast: Perast, the eternal beauty: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•3rd Day in Montenegrin Coast: Budva, the Adriatic Queen: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•4th Day in Montenegrin Coast: Petrovac, smooth and beautiful: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•5th Day in Montenegrin Coast: Bar, a modern port of sun and olives: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•6th Day in Montenegrin Coast: Ulcinj, a chest full of stories: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•7th Day in Montenegrin Coast: Ada Bojana, the oasis of peace: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining Places•7th Day in Montenegrin Coast: What to do and see in Ada Bojana: Itinerary, Where to Stay, What to See, Our Favorite Dining PlacesGet this Guide Now and enjoy your trip to Montenegro Coast!Authors: Written and researched by Guidora's team of travel bloggers and local experts in Montenegro Coast

Fodor's Croatia: with a Side Trip to Montenegro (Travel Guide)

Fodor's Travel Guides

Written by locals, Fodor's travel guides have been offering expert advice for all tastes and budgets for 80 years. Cypress-lined beaches, sunny islands, perfectly-preserved medieval towns--there are so many reasons to visit Croatia, the European hot spot for beach lovers, cultural explorers, and yachting revelers. From outstandingly well-preserved ancient structures like Hvar's Franjevački Samostan to the rolling vineyards of Istria, Croatia teems with interesting things to see and do, and this new edition covers the best of them.This travel guide includes:· Dozens of maps · An 8-page color insert with a brief introduction and spectacular photos that capture the top experiences and attractions throughout Croatia· Hundreds of hotel and restaurant recommendations, with Fodor's Choice designating our top picks· Multiple itineraries to explore the top attractions and what’s off the beaten path· Coverage of Zagreb, Slavonia, Istria, Kvarner, Zadar and Northern Dalmatia, Split and Central Dalmatia, Dubrovnik and Southern Dalmatia, and Montenegro

Montenegro (English, Spanish, French and German Edition)

Freytag-Berndt und Artaria

A clear and accurate travel map for Montenegro from the reliable publishing house of Freytag & Berndt

Top 12 Places to Visit in Montenegro - Top 12 Montenegro Travel Guide

Atsons

Are You Ready to Discover & Explore Montenegro?

“Top 12 Places to Visit in Montenegro” is an easy to use, no-nonsense travel guide showing you the 12 best destinations Montenegro has to offer. Packed full of interesting and useful information for each place, this Montenegro travel guide is the ultimate travel accessory for discovering this magnificent country!

Inside Atsons “Top 12 Places to Visit in Montenegro”: Montenegro’s top 12 best places to visit listed in order of importance.High quality photos of the top 12 places. Easy to digest descriptions of every place. Essential historical information to provide you with a better understanding of each destination.Recommendations of attractions and activities to give you a better visiting experience. The best places to visit include KotorBudva, Durmitor National Park, Herceg-Novi, and Ostrog Monastery. “Top 12 Places to Visit in Montenegro” Travel Guide features:Easy Navigation: Effortlessly jump from one attraction to another using the interactive contents. Add notes to the guide for a more personal guidebook. Use bookmarks to save your favourite pages. A Map of Montenegro showing the location of every destination. FAQsThere are lots of travel guides for Montenegro, why should I get this one?If you are looking for an easy-to-read and straight-to-the-point Montenegro travel guide, then this is for you. All the destinations listed contain high quality pictures, historical and background information, attractions and activities, and are listed in order of importance ensuring you’ll know exactly which place you want to visit when discovering Montenegro!I’ve never been to Montenegro, will this guide help me?If you’ve never visited Montenegro or plan on visiting but don’t know where to go then this Montenegro travel guide is the perfect starting point. Montenegro has so many interesting and unique places that it can often be difficult to decide where you want to go. This guide is here to help you with that decision by giving you 12 breathtaking destinations to choose from, with the added bonus of the guide being a top 12 list so you'll know exactly where to start your journey.

Exercise normal security precautions

The decision to travel is your responsibility. You are also responsible for your personal safety abroad. The purpose of this Travel Advice is to provide up-to-date information to enable you to make well-informed decisions.

Area bordering Kosovo and southern border

You should exercise caution in the border area with Kosovo and avoid all areas of security force activities along the southern border. The only official entry/exit point into Kosovo is the Kula pass (Rozaje-Pec road).

Crime

The incidence of street crime is similar to that elsewhere in Europe, particularly in large urban centres. Pickpocketing may occur on public transportation and in other public places.

Four-wheel-drive and luxury vehicles are targeted by car thieves more than other models. Use common sense in determining the need to drive with car windows closed and doors locked.

Demonstrations

Demonstrations occur from time to time, especially in the vicinity of official buildings. Avoid all demonstrations and large gatherings, follow the advice of local authorities and monitor local and international media.

Road travel

Most roads are poorly maintained and secondary roads are narrow. The Moraca Canyon road is dangerous due to poor road conditions and traffic congestion. Expect delays due to road construction.

Public transportation

Public transportation is congested. Railway equipment is old. Trains are slow and often subject to delays.  A number of companies offer domestic and international bus services.  The larger firms have modern, well-maintained fleets.

Use only officially marked taxis and negotiate fares in advance.

Consult our Transportation Safety page in order to verify if national airlines meet safety standards.

General safety information

 Ensure that your personal belongings, passports and other travel documents are secure at all times, particularly on public transportation and in large crowds or public markets. Do not show signs of affluence or carry large sums of money.

Emergency services

Dial 122 for police, 123 for fire fighters and 124 for ambulance.

Roadside assistance is available by calling 19807.

Health

Related Travel Health Notices
Consult a health care provider or visit a travel health clinic preferably six weeks before you travel.
Vaccines

Routine Vaccines

Be sure that your routine vaccines are up-to-date regardless of your travel destination.

Vaccines to Consider

You may be at risk for these vaccine-preventable diseases while travelling in this country. Talk to your travel health provider about which ones are right for you.

Hepatitis A

Hepatitis A is a disease of the liver spread by contaminated food or water. All those travelling to regions with a risk of hepatitis A infection should get vaccinated.

Hepatitis B

Hepatitis B is a disease of the liver spread through blood or other bodily fluids. Travellers who may be exposed (e.g., through sexual contact, medical treatment or occupational exposure) should get vaccinated.

Influenza

Seasonal influenza occurs worldwide. The flu season usually runs from November to April in the northern hemisphere, between April and October in the southern hemisphere and year round in the tropics. Influenza (flu) is caused by a virus spread from person to person when they cough or sneeze or through personal contact with unwashed hands. Get the flu shot.

Measles

Measles occurs worldwide but is a common disease in developing countries, particularly in parts of Africa and Asia. Measles is a highly contagious disease. Be sure your vaccination against measles is up-to-date regardless of the travel destination.
 

Yellow Fever Vaccination

Yellow fever is a disease caused by the bite of an infected mosquito.

Travellers get vaccinated either because it is required to enter a country or because it is recommended for their protection.

* It is important to note that country entry requirements may not reflect your risk of yellow fever at your destination. It is recommended that you contact the nearest diplomatic or consular office of the destination(s) you will be visiting to verify any additional entry requirements.
Risk
  • There is no risk of yellow fever in this country.
Country Entry Requirement*
  • Proof of vaccination is not required to enter this country.
Recommendation
  • Vaccination is not recommended.
Food/Water

Food and Water-borne Diseases

Travellers to any destination in the world can develop travellers' diarrhea from consuming contaminated water or food.

In some areas in Southern Europe, food and water can also carry diseases like hepatitis A. Practise safe food and water precautions while travelling in Southern Europe. When in doubt, remember…boil it, cook it, peel it, or leave it!

Travellers' diarrhea
  • Travellers' diarrhea is the most common illness affecting travellers. It is spread from eating or drinking contaminated food or water.
  • Risk of developing travellers’ diarrhea increases when travelling in regions with poor sanitation. Practise safe food and water precautions.
  • The most important treatment for travellers' diarrhea is rehydration (drinking lots of fluids). Carry oral rehydration salts when travelling.

Insects

Insects and Illness

In some areas in Southern Europe, certain insects carry and spread diseases like Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever, leishmaniasis, Lyme disease, tick-borne encephalitis and West Nile virus.

Travellers are advised to take precautions against bites.


Malaria

Malaria

There is no risk of malaria in this country.


Animals

Animals and Illness

Travellers are cautioned to avoid contact with animals, including dogs, snakes, rodents, birds, and bats. Some infections found in Southern Europe, like rabies, can be shared between humans and animals.


Person-to-Person

Person-to-Person Infections

Crowded conditions can increase your risk of certain illnesses. Remember to wash your hands often and practice proper cough and sneeze etiquette to avoid colds, the flu and other illnesses.

Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV are spread through blood and bodily fluids; practise safer sex.


Medical services and facilities

Medical services and facilities

Medical care is not up to Western standards. Doctors and hospitals often expect immediate cash payment for health services.

 

Keep in Mind...

The decision to travel is the sole responsibility of the traveller. The traveller is also responsible for his or her own personal safety.

Be prepared. Do not expect medical services to be the same as in Canada. Pack a travel health kit, especially if you will be travelling away from major city centres.

You are subject to local laws. Consult our Arrest and Detention page for more information.

Identification

Carry adequate identification at all times such as your passport. Keep a photocopy of your passport in case of loss or seizure.

Illegal drugs

Penalties for possession, use or trafficking of illegal drugs are strict. Convicted offenders can expect long jail sentences and heavy fines.

Illegal activities

Photography of military or police installations, vehicles and personnel is prohibited, unless authorized by Ministry of Defence.

Driving laws

An International Driving Permit is recommended. Always carry identification and vehicle registration papers.

Drivers of vehicles bearing foreign licence plates must pay insurance. Road tolls must be paid in local currency. Montenegrin Government introduced an eco-tax for using road vehicles. Foreign nationals must pay the tax when entering Montenegro by car. The fee is determined according to the make and size of the vehicle.  The eco-sticker obtained upon payment of the tax is valid for one year and must be displayed on the inside of the front windscreen in the upper right hand corner.  

Posted speed limits are strictly enforced. There have been incidents where police target vehicles with foreign plates, often demanding immediate cash payment for alleged traffic violations. If you are stopped, request a full explanation and, if an explanation is not forthcoming, ask permission to speak to the Embassy of Canada in Belgrade.

The use of headlights and seatbelts is mandatory at all times, and the use of a cellular telephone while driving is prohibited.

Penalties for drinking and driving are strict. The legal blood alcohol limit is 0.05 percent.

Homosexuality

While Montenegrin law forbids discrimination based on sexual orientation, homosexuality is not widely accepted by Montenegrin society.  Visitors are advised to exercise discretion.

 

Money

The currency of Montenegro is the euro (EUR).

The economy is largely cash-based. Banking facilities are limited, but automated banking machines (ABMs) are spreading rapidly throughout the country and provide the easiest access to local currency. More and more hotels, restaurants and shops accept credit cards.

When crossing one of the external border control points of the European Union (EU), you must make a declaration to customs upon entry or exit if you have at least €10,000 or the equivalent in other currencies. For Montenegro, this amount is restricted to €2,000. The sum can be in cash, cheques, money orders, traveller’s cheques or any other convertible assets. This does not apply if you are travelling within the EU or in transit to a non-EU country. For more information on the EU legislation and links to EU countries’ sites, visit the web page of the European Commission on cash controls.

Climate

Montenegro is located in an active seismic zone.