What is attracting you to Montenegro? Obviouslly and first of all, the fact that, like probablly no other country in Europe, this country, invaded, travelled all over and adjusted to meet the needs of modern civilization, Montenegro succeeded to preserve magnificent and untouched nature. In 1991 Montenegro was taken under the protection of UNESCO and pronounced as ecologically clean country with unique and natural virtues. Merged into the greenery of exotic plants, which in ancient times sailors brought from various sides of the world, surrounded with the mountains and sea, washed with the freshness of the soothing air, Montenegro is a country – picture painted by the very Nature. Pure and transparent Adriatic Sea, high mountainous massifs covered with centuries old pine and olive tree forests, shore disjointed with various bays and coves, protected from the strong winds and high waves – all of this will create unforgettable impressions from the vacation in Montenegro.
Montenegro is located in the central part of Mediterranean, on the South-Western part of the Balkan peninsula. Land borders: Croatia on the West, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina on the North-West, Serbia on the North-East and Albania on the South-East. Montenegro covers the area of 13812 km2. The Republic of Montenegro has 290 km of the sea coast, with the water transparency of 56 m, 117 beaches, 240 sunny days during the year, ancient towns which are small and very make a framework for bays, coves and small inlets of the Montenegrin coast of the Adriatic Sea. Gardens and parks, magnificent monasteries, Byzantine mosaics, piers planted with the palms, numerous small shops, bars, restaurants, delicious and healthy food, variety of fruits and vegetables – all this fulfills the picture of the country in which literally everything is filled with positive energy.
In Montenegro, which occupies merely 0,14% of the European territory there are 40 lakes. The biggest lake at the whole Balkans is the Lake of Skadar which covers the surface of 391 km2 and makes natural border between Montenegro and Albania. Territory, which belongs to the lake, has been proclaimed as National Park. The well known lakes are: Crno Lake at Durmitor, Biogradsko Lake at Bjelasica, Plavsko Lake and Šasko Lake which is located near Ulcinj.
Picturesque rivers like Tara (“The Tear of Europe”). Piva (with river Komarnica), Morača, Lim, Zeta, Ćehotina and river Bojana flow through fabulous canyons and valleys. The canyon of the river Tara (1300 m deep) is the largest canyon in Europe and the second one in the world, after the canyon of the river Colorado. They are ideal for rafting, paddling, swimming, fishing and cayak.
80% of the overall territory of the country is occupied with the forests, natural pastures and meadows. Forests occupy almost half of this surface. Thanks to the diversity of relief, variety of altitudes, climatic conditions and composition of the ground, Montenegro has 2880 (almost 25% of the overall European flora) species and subspecies of the different kind of plants (out of which 212 is characteristic for the Balkan peninsula, and 22 of them are typically Montenegrin).
Fauna is rather heterogenous. In the forests on the North you can find bears, wolves and foxes. You can also find number of various types of birds, especially in the Skadar Lake due to which it is called: “the birds’ airport”.
Montenegrin climate is very much influenced with the diversity of its relief: Mediterranean climate prevails at the sea, and in the mountains, near the shore, the climate is continental. Under the influence of the Adriatic, autumns are warmer than springs, and winters are mild (average temperature in January is around +5°С, and the lowest one is -10°С), which is the characteristic for the Mediterranean climate. Snow falls in mountainous region, and in the coastal region there is almost no snow. Summer is usually warm and mostly without rainfall. In the coastal region the average temperature in Jully ranges between 23,4 and 25,6°С. In the central part of Montenegro, in the Zeta and Bjelopavlići plains temperature in Jully goes to 26,4°С (in Podgorica) and 25,4°С (in Danilovgrad). Maximum temperature can sometimes go up to 40°С.
Adriatic coast is one of the most sunny coasts in Europe. Number of sunny hours in the coastal region is: in Ulcinj (hotel “Albatros”) – 2700, in Herceg Novi – 2386. In other words, in Ulcinj sun shines about seven hours every day, in Podgorica 6,6 hours, and in Kolašin and Žabljak – 5 hours.
Population in the country: 662.000 inhabitants, of which: Montenegrins – 62%, Bosnians – 13%, Serbs – 9% and Albanians – 7%.
The biggest town in Montenegro is Podgorica (152.000 citizens) which is, pursuant to the Article 7 of the Constitution – the capital town – modern Europian town, economic center, city of science, education, culture. International airport (from which you can get to the hotel “Albatros” in an hour and a half) is situated 12 km from Podgorica.
Article 8 of the Constitution stipulates that the old capital town of Montenegro is Cetinje, which was the capital town untill the World War II. Diplomatic missions of numerous states were located there. When Government moved and main public institutions were transfered to Podgorica, museums found their place in the picturesque embassy buildings. Therefore, Cetinje is now considered to be historical and cultural capital.
Probably nowhere in the world there is such piece of sea shore, which would demonstrate so many interwoven layers of history and civilization. It is possible that the reason should be looked after right here between Budva and Bar, where the most important border in European history passed – the border between Roman empire in the east and the west part of it. That is the reason why on the Montenegrin coast you can find towns built in the spirit of the Middle East, east Mediterranean, which are more like coastal towns in Greece or in the Middle East.
Herceg Novi (125 km from Podgorica) – “the youngest” town in Boka Kotorska bay, which is more than six centuries old (1382). City walls are in poor condition, although the gorgeous center of the old town with two squares, temples and galeries is in good condition. This is the genuine town – garden. Every year, by the end of the February, citizens of this town, saying goodbay to winter, keep the Mimose festival.
Perast (29 km North from Herceg Novi). The town of churches and castles, and next to it, in the see, like two pearls, two little islands are situated: Gospa od Škrpjela (Lady on the Rocks) and Sv.Đorđe (Saint George). In 18th century Petar I sent his best students to Perast in order to learn maritime seafaring from the famous captain Marko Martinović.
Kotor (81 km from Podgorica) – behind its town walls it keeps enormous richness of spiritual and material cultural monuments. In 1979 UNESCO was enlisted into the List of the objects of world cultural heritage.
Tivat (84 km from Podgorica) – international airport (less than 2 hours to hotel “Albatros”). Park is the main attraction of this town. You can find rose-bays, palms, mimoses and different kinds of bugenvilia.
Budva (60 km from Podgorica). Tourist Meka, where large number of hotels, villas, apartmants is concentrated. It is the town in which noice from the disco clubs overpower birds song, where the river of cars competes on roads with thousands of tourists – pedestrians.
Bar (76 km South from Podgorica). The biggest port in Montenegro, passenger terminal (everyday ship departures to Bari / Italy), port for yachts. Town symbol is the old olive tree which is over 2000 years old (the oldest tree in Europe). It bears fruit even today.
Ulcinj – the southest town in Montenegro. The Montenegrin climate is characterized by mild and short winter (the average tempetrature in January is 12,5°С ) and long warm summer. Hot water (more than +26°С) guarantees the swimming season in hotel “Albatros” from April to November.
Montenegro keeps christian holy objects, relics and rituals. Ortodox monasteries have always been like hives in which eloquent God-loving bees in their aspiration towards celestial values, worked hard their on the Earth, finding sparkle of divine in their work.
Monastery in Cetinje was founded in 15th century. It is considered as spiritual link between Montenegro and Russia. Many sacred objects have been kept in Cetinje Monastery. Three of those objects were painted by apostle Luka who painted with his brush – particle of the Holy cross, on which Jesus Christ was crucified, right hand of saint John the Baptist, which baptized the Lord in the river Jordan and the icon of the blessed lady Filermosa.
Monastery Ostrog – carved into the rocks on the 1000 meters hight – the most important Montenegrin sacred object and the place for pilgrims of many thousands people of all nationalities and religions. In 17th century Monastery Ostrog was founded by saint Vasilije Zahumski (Ostroški), miracle worker, healer of all sick. His relics are kept in the Church of the Ascension of the Saint Mother of Good.
There is probably no geographically smaller territory than Montenegro, which at the same time has more cultural and historical monuments. In Montenegro there are 50 archeological sites, 50 large architechtural complexes, large number of objects of sacral importance and numerous memorial monuments dedicated to the wars for liberation.
Montenegro – sea rock, snow dust, caleidoscope of sharp rocks and high waterfalls. This is the land of hope, dreams and reality. Here are all roads of peace and tranquility. Love at first sight leaves deep trace, so that the second one becomes inevitable.
Come to Montenegro! And at the same moment you will wish to come back again!