Top Things to do in Montenegro | One Day Trip Itinerary + Guide

Top Things to do in Montenegro | One Day Trip Itinerary + Guide
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Are you considering a day trip to Montenegro? Look no further, as I’ve got you covered with everything you need to know about embarking on this unforgettable journey. A day trip to Montenegro is a dream come true for travellers seeking a taste of this beautiful Balkan gem. 

Whether you visit Montenegro on a boat trip from Dubrovnik or a bus tour with fellow adventurers, Montenegro offers a captivating blend of history, natural beauty, and cultural richness that makes it a must-visit place even on a short 3-day trip to Dubrovnik. 

In this article, I will take you through the essential details, including how to get to Montenegro, the must-visit attractions, best things to do in Montenegro and what to expect during your Montenegro day trip. Get ready for an extraordinary journey to a country that’s as beautiful as other Balkan countries but yet so different from them in terms of its people, culture, and infrastructure! 

–  Written by Vrushali Ketkar from Couple of Journeys


PS – Useful Travel Resources to use while heading to Montenegro to experience the Best of Montenegro in One Day – 


 

Montenegro Day Trip Itinerary

 

Pin this Montenegro Trip Planner featuring the Best Things to do in Montenegro

 

Most day trip journeys to Montenegro follow a fairly standard itinerary. The order of visit to the various places may change depending on the company, but the places covered remain fairly standard. 

Here are all the places that you will visit on your trip to Montenegro, and which are a part of the Top Rated Montenegro Day Trip Tours from Dubrovnik.

 

Kotor Bay

Kotor Bay | Photo by Faruk Kaymak on Unsplash

Nestled between towering mountains and the sparkling Adriatic Sea, Kotor Bay is a place of unparalleled natural beauty and historical significance. It keeps you company practically throughout your road journey through Montenegro. 

As you approach the bay, you’ll be greeted by the imposing mountains that seem to cradle the shimmering waters. The bay is renowned for its serenity and picture-perfect landscapes. It is also famous for being a vacation place for many celebrities. 

Handy Tips:

  • Wear comfortable shoes for walking along the waterfront.
  • Capture the stunning bay views with your camera.
  • Enjoy a leisurely meal at a local restaurant, savouring fresh seafood dishes. (if you’re visiting by yourself and can keep your schedule flexible) 

 

Perast

Perast | Photo by Vladan Raznatovic on Unsplash

Nestled on the shores of the mesmerizing Kotor Bay, Perast is a charming coastal town. This town is usually the first proper stop on your trip to Montenegro. 

Perast is renowned for its well-preserved Baroque architecture. As you wander its cobblestone streets, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time. One of the town’s standout attractions is the Church of St. Nicholas, a stunning example of Baroque architecture with a bell tower that offers panoramic views of the bay.

From here you can take a boat to visit the Our Lady of The Rocks Chapel. The chapel is just a short boat ride away but during touristy peak seasons can take longer to reach due to the wait times. The chapel itself is fairly simple and not quite worth the visit. 

You can hear about its legends, click pictures from the shore in front, and skip visiting it. 

Handy Tips:

  • Wear comfortable footwear for exploring the town’s charming streets.
  • Be sure to visit the Church of St. Nicholas to appreciate its historical significance and architecture.
  • If you decide to visit Our Lady of the Rocks, manage your time wisely. You are usually only allocated 30 minutes to explore. 
  • Don’t miss the opportunity to savour local cuisine at one of Perast’s waterfront (only if you have enough time and a flexible schedule) 

 

Kotor Old City

Photo by Joachim Lesne on Unsplash

The next stop on your daytime outing to Montenegro is the Kotor Old City. It’s a place where time seems to stand still amidst medieval walls and charming streets. 

The Old City of Kotor, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is a testament to centuries of history. Begin your journey at the Sea Gate, the main entrance to the city, and venture into the labyrinthine streets. Marvel at the old architecture, the churches, and the squares along the way. 

A must-visit is the Cathedral of Saint Tryphon, a Romanesque and Gothic masterpiece. Climb its bell tower for panoramic views of the Old City and the bay. The climb takes a bit of time and the road is not quite even throughout. But it’s worth it for the stunning views of the entire Kotor region. 

Handy Tips:

  • Be mindful of your stuff. Pickpocketing is common here. 
  • If you have limited time, start with a climb to the top of the Cathedral of Saint Tryphon. 
  • Once you’re back, spend time exploring the alleys. Have lunch at one of the restaurants in the Old City. The pizza served here is delicious. But the prices are hefty as tourism is the only source of earning.

 

 

Budva

Sveti Stefan Island, Budva | Photo by Mika Ruusunen on Unsplash

Budva is a vibrant and lively coastal town. Even though situated just about 40 minutes away from Kotor, it feels a lot lazier and slightly less touristy and is often the final stop on your outing to Montenegro. 

Budva is famous for its picturesque Old Town, enclosed by medieval walls. As you stroll through its ancient streets, you’ll encounter charming squares, centuries-old buildings, and bustling cafes. Be sure to explore the citadel and the famous Budva City Walls, which provide panoramic views of the town and the Adriatic Sea.

For beach enthusiasts, Budva boasts a string of beautiful beaches. Slovenska Plaza and Mogren Beach are popular choices for soaking up the sun and taking a refreshing dip in the clear waters.

Handy Tips:

  • Just like Kotor Old City, Budva is also a hub of pickpocketing. Be mindful of your stuff especially when at the beach. 
  • Carry aquashoes as the beach here, just like the many beaches in Dubrovnik is full of pebbles. Alternatively, walk along the even promenade. 
  • Since there isn’t much to see in Budva, it’s best to visit Budva post lunch for a lazy afternoon. 

 

Best Tours in Montenegro

Now that you are aware of what you’ll end up seeing if you sign up for a Full Day Montenegro Day Trip from Dubrovnik or a Full Day Montenegro Day Trip from Tirana, we’ve curated a lost of some of the best tours in Montenegro, which you could sign up for, if you want to design your own Montenegro Trip Itinerary, which can compliment this 10 Day Balkan Travel Itinerary perfectly.

Great Montenegro Tour – Lovcen NP,Mausoleum Lovcen,River of Crnojevic,Sveti Stefan

Montenegro: Black Lake and Tara Canyon Day Trip

The Great Montenegro Tour from Kotor

North Montenegro, Durmitor, Tara & Ostrog Tour

3 Hour Kotor Food Tour – Rick Steves’ Recommended

Lady of the Rocks and Blue Cave – Kotor Boat Tour

1-Hour Guided Lipa Cave Adventure in Montenegro

 

How to go on a day trip to Montenegro?

When it comes to reaching Montenegro for your day trip from Dubrovnik, there are various options – 

By Car

If you’re all about the freedom to explore at your own pace, hopping into a car is a fantastic choice. You can hire a car with a driver or rent a self-driven car

The scenic drive from Dubrovnik to Montenegro, which is one of the Most Scenic Road Trips in Europe, is a treat in itself, offering breathtaking views of the coastline. Just ensure you have the necessary documents, like your passport, valid driver’s license, and insurance to produce at the border crossing. 

Nationals of some countries even need a Montenegrin visa as well as a multi-entry Croatian visa to come back at the end of the day trip. 

 

By Bus

For those who prefer a more relaxed and cost-effective option, taking a bus is the way to go. Several bus companies operate routes between Dubrovnik and Montenegro, making it convenient to plan your day trip. 

Sit back, enjoy the journey, and let the driver handle the winding roads. A trip guide will also tell you the significance and history of the places you are visiting to help you maximize your day trip. 

 

By Boat

Some tour operators also provide an option of sailing to Montenegro. While this is not the best way to explore a new country as a first-timer, if you don’t want to visit the country for its touristy attractions, but more as a day outing to enjoy views and the drinks onboard – a boat trip to Montenegro makes sense.  

 

What to expect on a day trip to Montenegro?

Crazy Tourist Traffic

Dubrovnik has seen a massive boom in tourism thanks to the popularity of Game of Thrones. More and more companies are entering the Dubrovnik travel market and offering day trips from Dubrovnik. 

Montenegro has become one such popular outing and during peak travel season, lots of buses wade tourists to Montenegro. This results in major traffic congestion at the border causing delays. 

 

Dilapidated yet Charming Old Towns

The beauty of Kotor Old Town | Photo by Dragisa Braunovic on Unsplash

The two main areas you visit on your Montenegro day trip are the Old Town of Kotor and the walled city of Budva. If you want to enjoy your experience at Kotor and Budva, do not compare it with the Old Town of Dubrovnik. 

The Old Town at Kotor is much smaller with tiny lanes laced with souvenir shops and cafes. The steps leading to the bell tower at the top are broken at numerous places. Although not as beautifully maintained as the Old Town of Dubrovnik, the Old Town of Kotor and the walled city of Budva manage to charm tourists with their ‘raw’ vibe.

 

Mind-blowing scenic beauty

Montenegro’s strength lies in its scenic beauty. When you enter Montenegro, you will find lovely black mountains on your left which stand in perfect contrast against the stunning Adriatic sea on the right. 

A little while later, the vast Bay of Kotor will welcome you. The expanse and the color of the Bay of Kotor are so mesmerizing that even the dullest souls will fall in love with it. Similarly, views of the Adriatic Sea spread out around the chic city of Budva will be etched in your hearts forever. The landscape of Montenegro will not give you a chance to put down your camera.

Scenic Beauty of Montenegro | Photo by Radik Sitdikov on Unsplash

 

Peculiar Way of Living

As a traveler, I have always believed that one-day trips to a place provide almost no cultural insights. This belief was proved wrong on my Montenegro day trip. 

The moment you enter Montenegro, you will find yourself transported to a world drastically different from most European countries. You will find vehicles overspeeding and notice people smoking everywhere. 

The fact that the Montenegrins disregard the law will become obvious. 

It won’t take you much time to notice that Montenegrins hate hustle. They lead a slow, leisurely life. While most people are warm and hospitable, the sights of kids begging inside the Old Town of Kotor are heartbreaking and bitter reminders of the hardships the Montenegrins continue to go through.

 

Frequently asked questions about a day trip to Montenegro

Finally, here is a quick round-up for you in the form of a QnA about a day trip to Montenegro:

 

Should I take a Montenegro day trip when I visit Dubrovnik?

Yes, if you want to see a charming country that’s quite unlike the rest of Europe.

 

Is Montenegro as beautiful as Croatia?

Ideally, you shouldn’t compare two countries. Nevertheless, the Montenegrin landscape is absolutely breathtaking and worth a visit.

 

How should I visit Montenegro?

If possible, rent a private car and experience it at a leisurely pace. If not, go on a guided bus tour. 

 

Is just a one-day trip to Montenegro enough?

A day trip to any country is never enough if you want to experience its essence. If possible, stay longer and explore the country thoroughly. 

However, something is better than nothing, and experiencing Montenegro in a day will educate you a bit about the beautiful country and its people.

 

 

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