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Montengro is one of the youngest states in Europe and has only been independent from Serbia since 2006. Unlike many other countries in the region, this process took place almost silently and without the secessionist wars that unfortunately characterize the Balkans. The country, which is not even as large as Connecticut and counts only about as many inhabitants as Louisville or Las Vegas, is a very peaceful place.
The nature here is above all very calming. Gently the mountains seem to rise up to the middle of the sea or the lakes, here and there you can find an Orthodox church on a small island. So Montenegro is definitely one of the most relaxing countries in our list. The beautiful nature is joined by many small coastal towns where time seems to have stood still a little.
Speaking of time, Montenegro can look back on a long history and was one of the few countries in the region to be a separate state even before World War I. The country’s capital at the time was Cetinje. The then capital between Podgorica and the Adriatic Sea has only 14,000 inhabitants, but is still the seat of the president.
But not only the coast and its hinterland have their charm, there is also much to discover inland. The capital Podgorica is for many only a transit station and is with its 150,000 inhabitants by no means a European metropolis, but has its charm and many buildings from the socialist era to offer.
Most of those who do not spend their vacations on the coast are drawn to the mountains. And Montenegro has a lot to offer, especially in the Serbian-dominated west and north of the country. As you can see, there are plenty of reasons to pay a visit to the small Balkan state. On the following pages, we would like to introduce you to Montenegro and its regions in more detail and give you practical tips for your visit to Montenegro.
Podgorica is often called the most boring capital of Europe. Of course, this is not true, you just have to have the right interests! Fans of socialist architecture definetely came to the right place. And even in recent times, spectacular buildings such as the Toranj na Dajbabskoj Gori and the Resurrection Cathedral have been built. And there is also much to discover in the surrounding countryside, for example an idyllic canyon on the Morača River or the famous Ostrog Monastery, which looks as if it has been carved into a rock.
The north and west of the country have only a few tourists on the note. This is a pity, but good for you, since you can hike undisturbed by others here. In the predominantly Serbian region north and west of Nikšić, the country’s second largest city, you can experience the magic of the Orjen Mountains, hike in the Durmitor National Park, or admire medieval tombstones on the Bosnian border.
When people think of Montenegro, the beautiful Adriatic coast usually comes to mind. And indeed, the landscape here resembles a fairy tale. If you have had enough of beach vacations, you can experience a lot here from a cultural point of view. Bar, for example, is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. The city looks like a picture book, where Illyrians, Serbs, Venetians and Ottomans have left their traces over the course of time.
Actually, the Bay of Kotor could also be counted among the Adriatic coast, but we want to highlight it separately here. The landscape around Kotor is one of the most beautiful in Europe. Here the mountains fall directly into the bay, where salty and fresh water mix. In the middle of the water, small islands stand out, sometimes even with small churches on them. And the small towns on the shore have almost continuous historic buildings and are festively illuminated in the evening. What more could you want?
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