25 August 2019 - The Bella Boka project has had a good start this week. The idea to revive the tradition of using waterways in Boka Kotorska for the transportation of citizens and tourists, which has been almost forgotten during the past decades has received a warm welcome in the bay, both from guests and natives.
The solar vessel Elettra and hybrid Graziana as part of the Bella Boka project started their trips on the routes Herceg Novi-Tivat-Perast and Perast-Kotor this Tuesday and the first impressions are more than satisfactory, says the owner and general manager of Bella Boka, Riccardo Bonetti for TMN:
“I am very satisfied how it has started and the people who are using our boats are very happy, especially with the route Tivat – Herceg Novi and Herceg Novi-Tivat. We have very good feedback from the people, who have very good comments about their impressions of the connection between the two municipalities. Every day we have more people and in the following days, we will make better promotion, especially to the local people. We use our two boats to test how to connect Boka Kotorska in the best way. At the moment we are using the bigger boat, Graciana, also for the ride to Kotor, but it will be used to connect only Herceg Novi, Tivat and Perast in the final project, but at the moment we have included two boats and one boat is working with the small boat, full electric working in the area of Kotor municipality. With the bigger, Graciana we sail on a longer distance. I will check the best way to connect Herceg Novi, Tivat, Perast and Kotor. We will make the best solution, advised by the comments of our passengers.”
Graciana and Elletra will also be available to connect Bokelian municipalities and the lovers of sea routes during the winter: ”We intend to work during the winter also, but we will reduce our time-table and adapt it, for example, to transport students to school, people to work.
At the moment we are not planning to do any private agreement, such as excursions for tourist agencies, this is a public line. We are only doing public transport with very low prices for all people, so the trip from Tivat to Herceg Novi costs four euros and Graciana can take up to sixty passengers. Since we have just started, there have been some situations with the times and routes. We also have to adjust the time table. This is a theoretical time table, because we have traffic in every port. We have reservations for our place, but especially in Kotor, for example,, it is very, very hard to have the place, because there are so many boats. Then you have to wait, and it’s not a good situation, it practically happens every day.”
The Bella Boka project - Sustainable water transport by solar trimarans in Boka Kotorska has been established to positively influence the problem of congestion in road traffic, especially during the summer season.
The total value of this project, unique in the Mediterranean, has been €4,259,000, while co-financing through the UNDP project for Low carbon tourism in Montenegro amounts to 150,000 euros.
The project is very significant, because it helps reduce the level of harmful gas emissions, including CO2, and offers passengers a truly exciting and inspirational experience. It was important to have a good idea like this, but as Ricardo says, it needed people to make it come true.
20 August 2019 - This summer, guests of Aman Sveti Stefan in Montenegro will be able to enjoy an unforgettable experience – a holiday with a view of the Adriatic Sea and the artwork of three famous worldwide known artists publicly displayed on the walls of the hotel rooms and restaurants.
This one-of-a-kind art exhibition is running until 8 September thus making this luxury resort even more interesting. So instead of having the one-month event – as initially planned – art lovers will be able to see the artwork by the end of the first week of September, reported Cafe del Montenegro.
But, if you wish to see the artworks at Sveti Stefan, you need to be lucky enough to be the guest of this charming resort comprising of 58 rooms, apartments and villas, built as a former fisherman’s village in the 15th century.
After years of exhaustive renovation, finally completed in 2010, many celebs, such as Brad Pitt, Angelina Jolie, David and Victoria Beckham, as well as Novak Đoković swept through the airy corridors of the Sveti Stefan hotel.
Aman Sveti Stefan’s ‘Art on the Island: Les Ateliers, Picasso, Chagall, Miro’ exhibition features more than 60 lithographs of Picasso, Miro and Chagall, displayed in Villa Miločer, the hotel’s restaurants, bars and certain apartments on the island.
"Imagine waking up in the Louvre or walking through the Tate on your way to dinner. Luxury hotels are themselves an artwork, and by providing a unique setting for the right pieces of art, they can deliver a truly unforgettable guest experience. Few hotels can match the unique setting of Aman Sveti Stefan," the owner of this high-end resort Petros Stathis stated.
"This is a unique opportunity for guests to experience the super-slick service and stay in the resort alongside some of the most beautiful artwork of the last century. We are honored to be hosting the exhibition of such quality and to offer our guests something truly special. This exhibition marks the journey of Montenegro and the Balkans to the high-end tourism destination," Stathis concluded.
Read more about traveling through Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
17 August 2019 - More than 75.000 tourists visited Podgorica in the first six months of 2019. There have been around 130.000 overnight stays, which is a 15% rise in comparison to the same period last year, said the representatives of Tourist Organization Podgorica, as CdM reports. In July and August, this trend is expected to be on an upward trajectory.
According to the Statistical Office of Montenegro, around 18.623 tourists visited Capital city in June this year, and there were 31.273 overnights stays.
The increase in the number of overnight stays means tourists decide to stay longer in Podgorica and that it’s becoming more attractive to tourists.
"As the capital of a country whose main economic power lies in tourism, Podgorica is becoming more and more attractive to tourists. Podgorica has no seasonal character; it is dynamic throughout the year, open and hospitable for visitors. Dominant visitors are business tourists," said the representatives of Tourist Organization Podgorica.
Thanks to membership in European Cities Marketing, Podgorica found its place among European cities and famous tourist regions, which contributes to its image and the promotion of Montenegro. Representatives of Tourist Organization are satisfied with the tourist progress recorded in the past years.
"All segments of our offer chain are assuming synergy, we tend to form new amenities in our offer, to meet the demand of tourists and follow the trends of the tourist market," said the representatives of Tourist Organization Podgorica.
Despite high temperatures, Podgorica attracts attention even during summer, thanks to numerous events.
"The cultural summer in Podgorica stands out. It encompasses segments of music, theater, film, literature and art. Visitors can enjoy shows, exhibitions, promotions and concerts in our Capital until 21 September. Another attractive event in Podgorica is "Ajmo na Moraču". The objective of the event is to promote Morača and its potential for the development of selective forms of tourism and sports. The Kayak regatta will be held on 29 August. It will bring together a great number of the fans of this type of sport," pointed out representatives of Tourist Organization Podgorica.
Representatives of the Tourist Organization Podgorica said that they need a more innovative and creative approach to the development of visit programs, both for individuals and groups. Podgorica can add more value to its offer by organizing excursions aimed at seeing the attractions of the city through experiencing local culture, tradition and gastronomic and wine offers.
"In order to develop Podgorica as congress destination, we need a congress center for hosting trade fairs and events. It would also be an incentive to the development of business tourism," pointed out representatives of this tourist organization.
They also added that tourists choose Skadar Lake as the most attractive destination.
"Visitors want to enjoy numerous amenities, such as hiking, bird-watching, cruising," stressed out the representatives of Tourist Organization Podgorica.
Vineyard Plantaže, the biggest in Europe, wine cellar Šipčanik and archeological sites Medun and Duklja are also very attractive to tourists.
"Tourists take an interest in religious tourism too. Tourists would also like to feel the spirit of Podgorica and thus they visit Stara Varoš, Petrović Castle, museums and galleries," concluded the representatives of Tourist Organization Podgorica.
Read more about traveling through Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
15 August 2019 - Ulcinj, a city in Montenegro located at the very south of the country, is recognisable by its gorgeous long, sandy beaches. Enchanting waters of the Adriatic in Montenegro offer breathtaking sunsets, crystal clear blue water, stunning landscapes and the nicest sunny days ideal for swimming and sunbathing. TMN brings you some of the best beaches in the city of Ulcinj that prove that Ulcinj is truly a sandy beach paradise, and it is up to you, the readers, to visit the city and have the best summer holiday.
Ada Bojana Beach
Ada Bojana has got a 3-km long sandy beach, and the hotel swimming area can offer you a rich content for an active day: from water sports through sand volleyball, mini football, to just sunbathing and relaxing under the parasol, or having a cocktail or some domestic-made wine at a beach bar or a restaurant…
Most of the people first think about nudists once Ada gets mentioned; however, years backward Ada has been a synonym for extreme water sports. Due to its openness and wind flow, Ada Bojana has been the leading place for the surfers on the Adriatic and it can stand next to the Canarias, Portugal or Egypt, where this sport is most popular. Ada Bojana is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Montenegro due to its beautiful sandy beach, the most beautiful sunsets and a lot of fish restaurants which catch the fish and prepare it according to traditional recipes.
Far away from the city noise and the bustling streets, decorated by the Mediterranean growth, the beach Ada Bojana continues to charm all its visitors, from the country and abroad.
The Miami Beach
The Miami Beach is 2 km away from the complex Velika Plaža, and it is 240 m long. It has a restaurant, a beach bar and a service place. In the restaurant, you can find specialties of the national and international cuisine and at the service place, you can get refreshments and ice cream.
The sports facilities consist of 4 volleyball grounds, a mini football pitch, small children playground, canoes and pedal boats area and other facilities. There is the possibility to make an excursion to the river Bojana, the Valdanos bay and Old Ulcinj.
The beach has been awarded the blue flag for many years, and in 2006 it was chosen as the best beach in Montenegro by the Ministry of Tourism of Montenegro and the National Tourist Organization.
The Kite Surf Beach
The Kite Surf Club Dolcinium is located ten kilometres away from the complex Velika Plaža. This club received the recognition as “the most attractive tourist offer” in 2011 in Montenegro by the Ministry of Tourism of Montenegro and the National Tourist Organization WILD BEATUY AWARD. The club Dolcinium is the first Montenegrin kite club, and it was founded in 2008. It gives service in kite surfing training, which lasts from 12 to 15 hours.
The kite surfing training is only available on days when the wind called “Maestral” blows. If you do not enjoy kite surfing, then you can rest on one of the sunbeds where you can relax tasting different summer cocktails and listen to the sounds of Lounge, Deep, House, Funky and Latino music coming from the bar where there is a party organized every day. New York Times (January 13, 2010) described Velika Plaža – Long Beach as one of the 30 destinations in the world which should be visited by kite surfers. The wind Maestral blows from the sea towards the land for 90 days in a year, making this sandy beach one of the safest and most attractive kite surfing destinations in Europe.
The MCM Beach
The MCM Beach was opened six years ago. Due to its professional and kind staff, quality and all the new beach equipment, it succeeded in raising its offer to a very high level and in becoming one of the most known beaches not only in Ulcinj, Montenegro but also in the region and further. In 2009 the Beach MCM received the prestigious award entitled WILD BEAUTY AWARD as the best beach in Montenegro. It is situated on Velika Plaža on the third kilometre of the road which is taking you to Ada Bojana.
Read more about places you should visit during your holiday in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
14 August 2019 - Since the beginning of 2019, tourists from more than 170 countries have visited Budva.
As representatives of the Tourist Organization Budva report, most arrivals and overnight stays were made by guests from Russia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Germany and Ukraine. The fact that guests from Germany were dominant is encouraging, as Germany is considered the most important emitting market, as CdM reported.
“According to the official data provided by the Statistical Office of Montenegro, tourists from European countries usually opt for hotel accommodation in the city. The greatest emitting markets are Germany, Russia, Serbia, Albania, China and France,” stated the representatives of Tourist Organization Budva.
This year, Budva welcomed many tourists from distant destinations, such as Japan, India, Indonesia, South African Republic, Cuba, Malaysia or Taiwan. There are also tourists who come from less expected, interesting destinations like Papua New Guinea, Mauritius, Cambodia, Nigeria, Venezuela, Peru, Uruguay, Seychelles and many others.
“In the middle of August, the streets of the city are featuring the diversity and richness of different world languages,” pointed out the representatives of Tourist Organization Budva.
According to the latest report by the European Travel Commission, Montenegro is the 'Star of the Mediterranean' in the first quarter of this year.
Read more news about traveling through Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
The Municipal Committee of the Social Democratic Party of Kotor has come out in favour of introducing excursion fees for Perast, starting next tourist season. They pointed out that particular attention needs to be given to the area, using sustainable regulations to ensure infrastructure and living conditions can be improved.
“In 2018, Kotor Tourism Organisation, in consultation with representatives of the National Tourism Organisation of Montenegro and the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism, considered the introduction of an excursion fee for Perast. In spite of this, for unknown reasons, the former authorities in Kotor did not understand the severity of the situation and therefore did not seek the agreement of the Government of Montenegro. This issue particularly came to the fore due to the unfolding chaos in Perast, a situation from which the town reaps absolutely no benefit,” Kotor SDP stated.
On the other hand, they add that current information from the global tourist market warns that our country is being threatened by so-called overtourism, meaning that there are so many visitors in one location that there is a negative impact on local life and the environment.
“Perast is, after the Old Town, the most visited part of Kotor Municipality, with more than one-third of cruise tourists visiting the town. All visitors from Dubrovnik arrive by bus, along with over half the hotel guests from Budva, Tivat and Herceg Novi Municipalities, where agencies organise excursions,” they state.
The SDP notes that the number of visitors in the Old Town last year was over half a million, whereas in the first seven months of this year alone the figure was 305,000.
“On this basis, by the end of this year, at least 550,000 tourists are expected. This means, calculated for one euro per person for groups of more than five tourists, an income of 550,000 euros. Using these indicators, the income from an excursion fee for Perast would be at least 250,000 euros, which would, on the basis of a specially-designed plan, be allocated solely for the development of local infrastructure and to improve the living standards of locals in Perast,” concluded Kotor SDP.
13 August 2019 - As part of the second call for proposals through the Adriatic-Ionian Transnational Program, the Tourist Organization of Herceg Novi has been granted 122.840 EUR for the implementation of the project WONDER - Child-friendly destinations.
The principal objective of the Project is to increase the attractiveness and competitiveness of destinations from the Adriatic-Ionian Region thanks to a child-friendly approach, aimed at improving the liveability of cities and the touristic offer (governance, environment and services) through the development of new participatory methods. The Project WONDER will tackle: the collaboration between tourism and other related sectors, the development of participative models through greater involvement of children, the private sector and civil society, the support towards sustainable tourism and raising awareness campaigns.
WONDER supports new touristic offers addressed to children and families through the creation of a transnational network of child-friendly destinations, aimed at the sustainability of the tourism sector based on new and innovative participatory methods.
The leading partner of the project is the Municipality of Fano - Italy, and the partners in the project, except the Tourist Organization of Herceg Novi are: Municipality of Cervia - Italy; Velenje Municipality and Novo Mesto Development Centre - Slovenia; Municipality of Western Achaia and Municipality of Preveza - Greece; Observatory for Children and Youth Rights - Albania; City of Novigrad and the Development Agency of the City of Dubrovnik - Croatia.
The project will last for 24 months and will be funded under the second priority of the program (2.1) "Sustainable Region". On the second call of the Adriatic-Ionian Transnational Program, within the priorities of 2.1, for which TOHN applied, support was requested for 125 projects, from which 13 was approved for funding.
Read more about the reasons you should visit the coastline of Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
13 August 2019 - Bar's tourist offer is richer thanks to another four-star hotel, the Pearl Beach Hotel, located on the famous sandy beach in Čanj Bay, between Sutomore and Buljarica.
"We are convinced that the Pearl Beach Hotel Resort will be a strong impetus for the rapid development and revival of the Čanj area," said the representatives of the company that owns the new hotel, Šajo Group.
The hotel operates as part of Podgorica based company Šajo Group, which also became the majority owner of Joint Stock Company Recreatours Belgrade earlier this year, reports Vijesti daily. The JSC Recreatours owns the tourist settlement Biserna obala (English: Pearl Beach), Hotel Šumadija in Rafailovići and various hotels located at Kopaonik and near Srebrno jezero (English: Silver Lake) in Serbia.
Located in Čanj, Pearl Beach Hotel features a gorgeous garden, fitness centre, restaurant and bar, a 24-hour front desk, room service and free WiFi service. "With the aid of our business partners, in a relatively short timeframe and with extraordinary efforts, we were able to raise the level of services and accommodation significantly and put into operation 444 accommodation units of the once-neglected tourist resort Biserna obala," the representatives of Šajo Group highlighted.
In an interview for Vijesti daily, Director of Tourism at the Šajo Group, Petar Rakčević said that since the takeover of Pearl Coast to date, the renovation has cost two and a half million euros, and that the company plans to invest another three million by next summer.
"Together with the largest tour operators in the world, above all TUI, we are on the path of rapid rebranding and repositioning of the tourist resort Pearl Beach, into one of the best tourist complexes and clubs in Montenegro and beyond," the company representatives highlighted.
They added that the first guests of the hotel are very satisfied with the resort’s offer. “The room was very clean and spacious. Communication with staff was easy going, and everything was as I expected. Food in the hotel is absolutely delicious and I highly recommend Pearl Beach Hotel as a perfect location if you want to stay on the Montenegrin coast,” says a recent review of one of the hotel’s guests posted at the Booking.com website.
Read more about luxurious must-visit resorts in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
12 August 2019 - Ulcinj Municipality will host a handmade products fair entitled Fair Fest – Ulcinj 2019 from 16-18 of August. The grand opening of the fair, with a rich cultural and artistic program, will be held on August 16 at 8:00 pm, reports PR service of Ulcinj Municipality. Members of the local Association of Female Domestic Products Manufacturers from Ulcinj (Montenegrin: Udruženje žena proizvođača domaćih proizvoda iz Ulcinja) will exhibit their products at the fair. The slogan of the Fair Fest 2019 is “Try Local, Buy Local and Feel the Tradition”.
The fair is of great significance for the whole Ulcinj Municipality because it aims to present unique, domestic and traditional products which will appeal to all visitors and tourists. The organisers want people to gather and socialize in order to improve the tourist offer in the city.
“We invite all those interested in coming to take a look at our handmade products and have fun at our festival," states the official invitation of the PR service of Ulcinj Municipality.
Fair Fest - Ulcinj 2019 Fair is an activity implemented under the project "The Feminine Side of Quality", implemented by Ulcinj Municipality in partnership with NGO MogUL, Municipality of Mirdita - Albania and UET (European University of Tirana) Centre from Tirana. The project, which is aimed at the promotion of cross border cooperation on the enhancement of employability through the empowerment of women as wage earners and job creators, is funded by the European Union through the Montenegro-Albania Cross-Border Fund 2014-2020.
Read more about events that take place in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
12 August 2019 - The Kumbor Hotel located in the Kumbor settlement near Herceg Novi recently welcomed its first group of 250 guests from Germany, the United Kingdom, France, and Poland.
The owner of the hotel, Čedo Popović, said that the Kumbor Hotel was built to the highest standards and with the best materials. "The construction of the hotel is not yet fully complete, but the total investment will amount to around 30 million EUR. In terms of content, this hotel could have five stars, "Popović said in an interview for Infobiro.
He also stated that the hotel has signed contracts with tourist organisations so more guests should arrive at the hotel soon, and that and that he expects the hotel to be operational until October or November, until the end of the tourist season.
"This is the first year of operation, but we reckon that because of its location, the hotel can still operate and have guests even after the end of the tourist season," Popović added.
He said labour shortages were a key problem. "I wish that we could find quality employees whose salary would be satisfying for everyone. Still, this is not the case and we have to manage with our former employees that we transfer from the other company," Popović said.
The Kumbor Hotel is a four-star luxurious hotel located right by the sea, in the beautiful town of Kumbor which is known as a charming, peaceful seaside settlement. The hotel has 230 rooms and suites overlooking the sea, a private beach, private parking, SPA centre, outdoor pool, indoor pool, conference room and a-la-carte restaurant. The congress hall can accommodate up to 300 people in a theatre setting.
The interior of the hotel is clean, peaceful, airy and full of light. The designers aimed at modern minimalism with natural materials (wood, stone and cotton), and they made an effort that the colours of the interior reflect the hotel’s surroundings (blue, green - pastel colours). In this way, they enabled Kumbor’s guests to be welcomed with visual and functional comfort upon their entry.
Hotel Kumbor is located less than 5 km from the old town of Herceg Novi; UNESCO World Heritage as the town of Kotor is only 30-minute drive away. Three international airports are just 30-60 minutes away by car.
Read more about places to visit while travelling through Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
12 August 2019 - According to the latest report by the European Travel Commission, Montenegro is the 'Star of the Mediterranean' in the first quarter of this year. Cafe del Montenegro reported that Croatian Jutarnji list states that according to the European statistical data, in the first three months of 2019, Montenegro recorded increase by 29% in overnight stays and increase by 49% in tourists.
Experts are warning that Montenegro has serious comparative advantages. Interlocutors of Jutarnji list point out that Montenegro is strong thanks to investment packages.
“Licenses for investors are provided in only several months, as well as a waiver from duties. Besides, fuel for boaters is cheap,” writes Jutarnji.
State Secretary in the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism Damir Davidović said in a statement for Croatian media that in the past 15 years Montenegro has been recording continuous turnover growth.
“In 2019, we opened 27 new hotels, 24 of which are four or five-star hotels. Three projects worth 3 billion euros are currently underway – Luštica Bay, the resort town with a marina near Kotor, Marina Porto Montenegro, and Portonovi project,” pointed out Davidović.
He also said that Montenegro had 43.000 overnight stays in collective accommodation facilities. Investors are offered favorable tax conditions. The VAT on hotel accommodation is 7%.
Davidović stated that Aman group was operating in Montenegro. Aman group is managing hotels on Sveti Stefan and the same investors are planning construction of another five-star hotel, as well as the highest-category hotel in Žabljak.
Read more news about traveling through Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.