Montenegro is a small country known for its untouched nature, cultural richness and a lot of adventures in offer, which makes it a perfect road trip destination. Despite the challenges that narrow mountain roads bring, travelling by car is a small price to pay for experiencing beauties of this Mediterranean gem.
Planning a road trip that covers everything you want to see in Montenegro can be an exhausting task, but here are some tips for making your holiday an unforgettable experience.
Summer months (Jun, July and August) are definitely the best time to visit Montenegro. You’ll feel the lively vibe of the country, enjoy perfect beaches and spend a relaxing vacation in a typical Mediterranean climate.
If you are explorer by nature pick spring and early fall for your road trip (April, May and September are the months to go). The temperatures will be a lot more pleasant and allow you to spend whole days sightseeing and exploring the nature. In this time of year, it’s generally less crowded with tourists so you’ll have almost all the places for yourself.
You’d be amazed by the number of beautiful places this small Balkan country has to offer.
If you are starting your adventure from the south, be ready - the coastline will take your breath away. Long beaches will captivate you, the UNESCO protected corners of Bay of Kotor will charm you, Lake Skadar will show you the nature and unique wildlife, and Ada Bojana (Ulcinj) packed with small fisherman villages will fill your hearth (and belly) with warmth.
The north is a whole new world – you’ll drive on safari-like roads of Durmitor with 18 glacial lakes and small shepherd villages (katuni) scattered all over the place. Rafting in river Tara with second largest canyon in the world will get your blood pumping, and Lake Biograd and hike in its virgin forest (one of last three of this kind in whole Europe) will exhaust you, but in a good way.
Don’t think there’s nothing left to do if you cross all of the above from your list. The proximity of Montenegro to the neighboring countries is a blessing that will enable you to take day trips in Albania, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Finding a place to stay in a small country like Montenegro comes with a benefit - you will be able to reach all the places on your to-visit list by car in a couple of hours wherever you stay. Our suggestion is to rent a flat in one of the seaside towns – Budva or Bar (Airbnb has some good offers) and move around from there.
In case you are staying longer and want to explore the north as well, find a place in one of the mountain villages (katuns) close to Kolasin or Zabljak for a glimpse of shepherds daily life and some home-made food. These cities are close to breathtaking natural parks, and undiscovered hiking trails which you’ll enjoy getting lost in. And if camping is your thing, you’ll find locations for camping and glamping all over the area.
In conclusion - you can find nice and affordable (20-30 euros pet night) accommodation in whole country, especially in low season, and there’s something suitable for every taste and pocket.
Visiting hidden Montenegrin places is what will make your road trip experience complete. Some of the destinations are not reachable by bus, and public transport is not the most comfortable option here, especially in summer months (no air conditioning, crowded busses and trains). If you are not coming by your own car, you can easily rent one. Car rental is an affordable option in Montenegro, so it won’t be a blow on your budget. You can check what suits your style and pick a car from our fleet, and we’ll make sure to bring you safely where you want to go.
Make sure to check the rental conditions online before renting a car, to insure you a flawless trip.
First of all, GPS is your friend. GPS systems and Google Maps work pretty well on the coast and main roads in the country.
Roads in Montenegro are narrow with a lot of steep curves, and signalization can be tricky at some places, so before you know it, you might find yourself in one of the hairpin curves. On top of that, local drivers have a habit of speeding, which doesn’t make it more pleasant. So, you shouldn’t rush anywhere, for your own safety. Traffic checkups are quite common for these reasons, and you will come across radar locations and police cars along your way. As long as you drive safely and respect the rules, this is nothing to worry about.
If you encounter some car troubles during your road trip, contact your travel agency or car rental company. Also, Montenegrins are known as hospitable and kind people so you can ask locals to help you with anything you need. Even though many of them struggle with English, it won’t stop them from helping a foreigner in need.
Rich cuisine is one of the things Montenegro is famous for. Most of it is local and fresh, and usually affordable.
Even though it’s small in size, Montenegro is proud to have three distinct regional cuisine styles: the food famous in old Montenegrin heartland, the heavy, meaty mountain food and coastal, Mediterranean cuisine.
In case you plan to stay on the road for long you’ll also have the chance to try local products – family bakeries with delicious pastries and small markets are open until late in the evening or even for the whole night.
The Montenegrin automotive association’s nationwide number is +382-20-234-999.
Towing numbers can be seen on rock and concrete along the roads, signaled with the word SLEP (towing in Montenegrin)
The emergency numbers are:
Police – 122
Fire department – 123
Ambulance – 124, but we hope you won’t need these
Even if you plan your road trip to a detail, you should know that things might go differently due to many reasons. In any time of the year you might come across the road constructions, bridge reparations and accidents caused by reckless drivers, which might alter your plans a bit. But equally possible, you might discover something completely new, meet interesting or just stay for a bit longer to relax at a place you especially love, so you should include free time in your road trip plan.
Now that you have the essentials planned, it’s time to pack and hit the road!
And don’t forget that we are here to answer all of your questions.