November 30, 2018 - The Maritime Museum of Montenegro in Kotor and the Boka Navy Kotor promulgated the capital work-History of Montenegrin Maritime in the Context of Adriatic, Mediterranean and World Maritime Affairs by Dr. Antun Sbutega.
The promotion of the book, which was organized at the Palace Grgurina Maritime Museum of Montenegro in Kotor, was addressed by the director of this institution, Andro Radolović, one of the most important scientists of today dealing with the history of Boka Bay – archaeologist M.Sc. Jovan J. Martinović, and the author, Doctor of Economics and Admiral of the Boka Navy Antun Sbutega. The lecture, by Ms. Jovica Martinović, was submitted by Slavko Dabinovic, a retired librarian.
"Composed chapters in the manuscript are assembled in a very well-organized chronological order, from the earliest to the recent phases of maritime development. Within each chapter, the author paid his attention to focusing on a wide area in the Mediterranean and the Adriatic Sea, and across the Montenegrin coast to Boka Bay as one of the priorities in studying the total matter," emphasized Mr. Martinović.
"The show of 2.5 million years of maritime development, with the abundance of data and well-used literature, was a demanding task whose successful solution was only capable of being personally connected to the sea through a long family and local tradition, but at the same time a person armed with erudite and encyclopedic knowledge in more scientific areas... This book represents the most significant scientific contribution to the study and popularization of our rich maritime past," wrote Mr. Jovan Martinović on the promotion of the book, which was held on Thursday in the Maritime Museum of Montenegro in Kotor.
Numerous visitors and acquaintances were welcomed on behalf of host Andro Radulović, director of the Montenegrin Maritime Museum of Montenegro, who pointed out that the publication of the book History of Montenegrin Maritime once again confirmed the fact that Boka Bay and Montenegro are an inexhaustible source for history and culture of the people who created it.
"I hope the book will serve as a great motive and a sign for more intensive and more dedicated engagement with the aim of studying our past," Radulovic said.
"I do not know how much I wrote; it was not short, I will tell you that the bibliography has 750 units and about 1140 footnotes... This book has been the fruit of my entire life since I entered the world of seafaring in the earliest childhood, surrounded by seafarers, historians, technical works and objects that testify to maritime history," said Admiral Sbutega visibly satisfied. "This book is not an encyclopedia, nor I have the pretense to elaborate all the aspects through the time fully, it is only the first comprehensive review that should inspire other authors to write on this subject," the author said.
"The history of our navy is very long and rich in events and interesting personalities, which was very difficult and demanding to critical in a book, so I had to miss much. The main, intimate motive to write this book is the sense of debt towards my family members who have been involved in maritime affairs for more than 400 years. I dedicated this book to them. But not only to them but also to all seafarers in the history of this area and to numerous naval historians of the previous generations, which I owe my life orientation, the culture of knowledge and identity. It is written from the feeling of debt to the present and future generations, as an attempt to bring them at least part of that knowledge and values. It was a complicated and long job, but also an exciting intellectual adventure," said Sbutega.
Sbutega emphasized that the coast is still today the most developed part of Montenegro, where the most important foreign investments are being developed. "And now Montenegro is breathing through its shore, although it is not always aware of it. There are at least 6,000 active seamen in Montenegro, but is an impressive number compared to the number of inhabitants. More than 95 percent of our seamen are sailing with foreign companies, and their revenue is estimated at over 200 million euros. It is the highest income Montenegro achieves. In Montenegro, tourism revenues of about one billion euros are expected, but this is total revenue, of which pure profit is between 100 and 150 million. The 200 million of the seafarers' income has no expense. In spite of schools and more seafaring training centers, Montenegro has no clear and long-term maritime policy."
"The most important goal of this book is not to increase awareness of the significance of maritime history, but to encourage state and social institutions and seafarers to create a development policy without which country cannot effectively develop maritime affairs and valorize the coastal state's position. Marine affairs are, once again, Montenegrin most important business branches," said Boka Navy Admiral Antun Sbutega.
The release of this capital work was realized thanks to the support of the Ministry of Culture of Montenegro, and the publishers are the Maritime Museum of Montenegro Kotor and the Boka Navy Kotor.
29 November 2018 - As announced from the exclusive marina and yachting paradise in the Mediterranean, the Porto Montenegro team will present the project of Tivat marina for “superyachts” and luxury nautical settlement at the Investment Immigration and Luxury Real Estate Fair in Moscow.
Porto Montenegro’s increased popularity has significantly affected Montenegrin tourism, but the owners of the marina still strive for additional worldwide acknowledgment. Forbes Magazine recently described the luxurious settlement as “the ultimate superyacht sanctuary along the Adriatic coast”. Even Dailymail has announced that “Monte Carlo should move over and make way for Porto Montenegro – the new hotspot for the European smart set”. One could conclude that this small city that features a nautical village, pool complex, yacht club, numerous restaurants, cafes, bars, and boutiques has many incentives to make a presentation at the Investment Immigration and Luxury Real Estate Fair in Moscow.
As the PR Office of Porto Montenegro reported, this presentation represents a strategically good activity for Montenegro, given that it might just be an introduction to the Citizenship by Investment Program, which will be organized next year. "Montenegro has a favourable economic framework for investors, first of all in terms of tax rates, as well as in terms of the most significant natural resource – beauty of nature, then the nautical history and potentials for the development of luxury yachting industry and tourism products. This kind of convenience is an important incentive for the owners of ships and yachts, who choose the marina and the settlement of Porto Montenegro as a destination for the purchase of real estate," said Senior Marketing and PR Manager Porto Montenegro, Danilo Kalezić.
The Moscow International Emigration & Luxury Property Expo, a large-scale conference and exhibition dedicated to immigration and high-end real estate, will be held 29-30 November 2018 at The Ritz-Carlton in Moscow. The event will include a discussion featuring government representatives, leaders of the world’s most prominent immigration companies, and significant property developers as well as an exhibition showcasing over 30 international companies.
The expo will combine two events: on the first day, there will be the Investment Immigration and Luxury Real Estate international conference, panel discussions and a press conference. On the second day, the agenda will include an exhibition, workshops, individual appointments, and network opportunities. Visitors will consist of private individuals interested in immigration, acquisition of upscale real estate and personal financial consulting services, as well as international entrepreneurs, home buyers, and prospective immigrants.
27 November 2018 - Tourist organization Kotor, accompanied by the National Tourism Organization of Montenegro, local tourism organizations and representatives of the tourist industry, participated at the tourism fair "TT Warsaw", which took place from November 22 to 24 in Warsaw, Poland. International Tourism Fair TT Warsaw was held for the 26th time, and it is one of the most important international events of the tourism industry in Poland. In addition to TO Kotor, the local tourist organizations of Ulcinj, Bar, Budva, Cetinje, Tivat, and Podgorica, as well as HG "Budva Riviera", "Montenegro Stars Hotel Group", HTP "Trend Korali" and "Karisma hotels Adriatic Montenegro" also participated.
The first day of the fair, the Montenegrin Stand was visited by Robert Markić, Counselor at the Embassy of Montenegro in Warsaw. At the same time, meetings were held with some of the most important Polish tour operators such as Itaka and Neckerman, as well as interviews with Polish media. During the fair, the organization "Montenegrin Evenings" in Warsaw was held - B2B / media gathering with representatives of the NTO Montenegro, the Montenegrin tourism industry and local tourist organizations. Poland's market for Montenegro is significant considering that according to the number of tourists that visited Montenegro, it is among the most present when it comes to European countries.
In the previous period, there was a steady increase in tourist traffic from this market. Compared to 2010, the number of Polish tourists in Montenegro almost tripled in 2017. Among the Polish tour operators who have represented Montenegro, the most important ones are Itaka, Rainbow tours, TUI, Neckermann, and others.
Also, specialized tour operators from this market have a package of arrangements for Montenegro, which means staying in Montenegro within the framework of the visit to the region. In the upcoming period, an increase in the number of tourists from the Polish market is expected, according to the announced flights and a more extended period of realization.
The national Polish airline LOT will carry out flights between Warsaw-Podgorica-Warsaw during the winter season with four rotations per week.
26 November 2018 - Breakfast – “the most important meal of the day,” is that one meal that you start your day with that gives you the energy you need to get things done and helps you focus and be more productive. Many studies have linked eating breakfast to good health, improved attainment and behaviour and improved productivity. During a busy morning, it is easy to let breakfast fall low in your list of priorities, so if you do not have time to prepare your breakfast while in Kotor, here are some of the best breakfast restaurants you should not miss!
Astoria is an excellent restaurant with a pleasant atmosphere, good service, and great food! This place is upscale cooking will definitely leave an impression on you, and you can dine while enjoying the fantastic view over the sea. The prices are reasonable, and the food is carefully prepared and decorated for your enjoyment and stay in Kotor. Astoria serves mostly Mediterranean cuisine, with vegan and gluten-free options. Our breakfast recommendations include Egg benedict breakfast, American pancakes, and their delicious pies!
The delicious menu at Gastro Pub 702 will most certainly have you craving for food at any time of the day, not just the morning! The Pub is famous for its welcoming ambience, helpful staff, and delicious food. Locals and foreigners are usually surprised by the size of the portions, even though Montenegro is famous for its “food plate generosity.” Club sandwich in the morning will make sure you have the energy to stroll through the streets of Kotor in no time!
Open all year round, Mademoiselle Dine & Wine Lounge is a perfect place to enjoy your meal. With delicious food and fantastic ambiance and location, you will not be disappointed. The staff is friendly, and they give great recommendations on the menu choices and the local landmarks. If it’s not too early to get a cheese board in the morning, that would be our first recommendation. The Lounge is also recognisable by delicious desserts – not something you want to miss on!
Đardin offers a gorgeous view over the bay and delicious food. The waiters are attentive and kind, and the prices are reasonable. They offer a lot of options for vegetarians and vegans, which is not very common with restaurants offering Italian, seafood and European cuisine. The restaurant is famous for its homemade traditional cake “Peraska cake”, so if you enjoy sweets in the morning, have the tastiest bite right next to the shore!
If you’re looking for a beautiful setting, high-class meal and professional service, visiting Conte Restaurant is a must! With a beautiful ocean-side view, you will be pampered by the attentive staff. Relaxing atmosphere is just what you need in the morning, as you enjoy a tasty meal prepared with fresh ingredients. Our breakfast recommendation would be a colorful Greek salad!
24 November 2018 - The Agency for the Development and Protection of Orjen at the exhibition "Nature Connects Us - Parks Dinarides" in Slovenia, presented the most beautiful landscapes from Nature Park "Orjen" in Herceg Novi. The exhibition was set up in Ljubljana's Tivoli Park on Plečnik's promenade in an attractive open space.
"Photographs of protected areas, members of the Association of Parks of Dinarides, as well as photographs of the members of the Community Parks Park were presented. The photographs show the natural and cultural sights of the area and the advantages of protecting these areas for the local and regional population. Nature park "Orjen" has a task of protection, but also valorization of this mountainous area in the immediate hinterland of the Adriatic Sea. The park is famous for the forests of the endemic species of Pinus heldreichii, an unusual and rough karst relief, as well as a cultural landscape based on centuries-old efforts to gather stone from the earth," as stated in the announcement of the Agency for the Development and Protection of Orjen.
The Agency also added that the park is gravitated by the inhabitants of Bay of Kotor: Herceg Novi, Tivat, and Kotor, as well as residents of Dubrovnik and Trebinje. Since this area is at the triple country-border, it is also a significant tourist area. Park will play an essential role as a destination for excursions to the hinterland.
The partners of the Tivoli Park and Parks Dinarides in the organization of the exhibition were the City of Ljubljana, Public Power Company which manages the Nature Park Tivoli, Rožnik and Šešenski hrib and WWF Adria.
24 November 2018 - In the northern coastal area of Montenegro, an annual Mimosa Festival has been conducted starting the first weekend of February since 1969. The Mimosa Festival is a traditional manifestation that celebrates the mimosa flower and the coming spring season. This is one of the most important tourist manifestations in the region that gathers hundreds of locals and numerous guests to the gorgeous port city of Herceg Novi to celebrate the sunny days that lie ahead.
Businessmen and the Municipality of Herceg Novi have a common interest in celebrating the 50th Mimosa Festival with high-quality content and by attracting the highest number of visitors to the city - it was concluded at today's meeting of representatives of local government and local companies in the Grand Hall of the Municipal Assembly. The new decade of this Holiday will be a sign of expansion to new European markets. The program was supported by the Ministry of Sustainable Development and Tourism of Montenegro and the National Tourism Organization of Montenegro.
At the invitation of the local administration, Herceg Novi’s businessmen took part in the meeting with the representatives of the Municipality and provided suggestions on how the traditional Festival should be improved in order to make its commercial effects more visible. Businessmen expressed their intention to keep their stores open during the celebration of the Festival and stressed that every event that creates demand for products and services aside from the main tourist season is important to them.
As concluded at the meeting, the Mimosa Festival significantly improved the offer of Herceg Novi as a tourist destination, but in recent years its economic and promotional effects are not at the level that this event deserves. In this regard, it is crucial to involve the city’s business people in activities and programs.
The framework of the program was created even before the summer, so the tourist season was used to share propaganda material. Package arrangements have been created and starting in December, intensive marketing campaigns will be launched in the cities of the region.
The participants of the meeting agreed that the Mimosa Festival should expand further over the regional borders. Starting with this year, the Festival growth will be achieved by the promotional Caravan of Mimoza which will reach Budapest and Vienna, by organizing dinners dedicated to the culture and gastronomy of European cities and countries, by the participation of foreign groups in the program, and by cooperation with the partner towns and embassies in Montenegro.
As concluded, the new decade of the Mimosa Festival will be in the wake of the expansion to new European markets, which is necessary to ensure the bright future of this event.
Traditionally, the Mimosa Festival will include many tourist, entertainment, cultural and sports programs. The most attractive programs are usually the costume ball for children and adults, “Mimosa, fish and wine festivals” along the Herceg Novi Riviera, International Flower Exhibition, concerts in town squares, various sports competitions, etc. The Mimosa Festival has grown into a complex tourist and cultural event with a multitude of visitors from all over the region. The executive producer and organizer of the Festival of Mimosa are Public Cultural Institution “Herceg Fest.”
18 November 2018 - The Montagna Travel Montenegro, a tourist agency from Nikšić, is organizing a climb to the First Via Ferrata in Montenegro, located in Kotor at the very exit of the Škurde canyon, on the occasion of the Day of Liberation of Kotor - November 21st.
The number of seats is limited to 50 participants who do not own their equipment for the Via Ferrata. Climbers with their own equipment, who want to participate in the celebration of this day significant for the city of Kotor, can also take part in the event. When applying, it is of great importance to inform the organizers whether you possess the necessary equipment.
Via Ferrata is a secured hiking trail that crosses inaccessible parts of mountain massifs with the help of cables and metal threads. Ferrata is suitable not only for professional alpinists but also for people with average physical fitness that are not engaged in active hiking and sports. Climbers can experience a real feeling of alpine climbing, which is completely safe. No advanced skills nor knowledge is required for using Via Ferrata.
Via Ferrata is located on the very outskirts of the Škurda canyon and at the entrance to the Old town of Kotor. It starts at 80 meters above sea level and ends at 205 m above sea level. Along Via Ferrata, there are two ‘take a break’ benches, which offer an attractive view of the Bay of Kotor, as well as the San Giovanni Fortress and the Old road that connected Montenegro of Old with the Bay of Kotor. Via Ferrata is available year-round and ideal for the tourist season, as it presents a challenge for tourists as well as training for mountaineers. It is also available for all ages.
Each participant is provided with alpine equipment - cable and ropes. All participants receive complete alpine and protective equipment (helmet, belt and ferrata system, which includes 2 carabineers, belt connector and safety system). All participants are tracked by the organizers’ experienced guides who are also mountain rescuers.
Each participant is provided by Montagna Travel Montenegro with safety alpine equipment, but it is important to bring your own shoes.
The gathering at Via Ferrate (80m from the waterfront building, towards the Škurde canyon) is planned for 11.00 - 12.00 hours.
The organizers invite all interested parties to join them and celebrate the day of liberation of the city of Kotor together. Participation is free for all participants!
17 November 2018 - The tourist organization of Budva represents the tourist offer of the Budva Riviera and Montenegro at the 22nd Fair of Tourism and Catering, called "Autumn Fair", which is being held from 15-18 November in Banja Luka.
In addition to the Tourism Organization of Budva as the carrier of the Montenegrin offer, the country's tourist offer is also presented by the local tourist organizations of Kotor, Tivat, and Herceg Novi.
The interest of Banja Luka for the tourist offer of Montenegro is traditionally high, while a considerable number of media companies are interested in the tourist offer Montenegro present.
Assistant Director of Tourist Organization of Budva, Vukoslav Rucović, met with the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Water Management of the Government of the Republika Srpska Stevo Mirjanić, and on that occasion discussed future cooperation in the field of tourism.
The number of guests from the market of Bosnia and Herzegovina is growing every year along the Budva Riviera, which is confirmed by the statistics. This year, for the January-November period, 37.566 guests from Bosnia and Herzegovina stayed on the Budva Riviera with total of 277.108 overnight stays, while in 2018 as total, this number was increased to 44.435 guests, or 316.076 overnight stays, which represents an increase of 18% compared to the same period of the previous year.
By direct communication with the visitors of the stand, representatives of local tourist organizations had the opportunity to promote both the tourist offer for the next season and the New Year's programmes. Tourist Organization of Budva took the opportunity and invited potential guests from Bosnia and Herzegovina to spend their first days of 2019 in Budva. Under the slogan "See you in Budva! Twentieth time!" with a rich and various programme, Budva will mark 20 years in a series of organized New Year's programmes on the square in front of the Old Town in Budva.
There are about 150 exhibitors at 60 booths at the fair in Banja Luka.
17 November 2018 - In the organization of NLP Network, an informative lecture "Why is it good to know NLP?" Was held last night at the Cultural Center "Nikola Đurković" in Kotor. More than 50 people from various industries, from the private and public sector, entrepreneurs, sales staff, marketing, health, and education workers, showed an interest in learning this course. This methodology primarily focuses on methods of neuro-linguistic programming.
Participants were introduced to NLP methodology by Danko Ćetković and Aleksandra Anđelić, the founders of NLP Network, who also presented NLP education, as well as a special way of working, characterized by their trainers. The lecture was interactive, the participants presented their experiences, asked questions related to the application of this methodology in business or private life. The interest in this form of education shows that students recognize the importance of this kind of non-formal education.
"On the one hand, more and more people have the need and desire to work on themselves, to learn new things, to improve their skills, but today's business environment, which is becoming increasingly demanding, requires it from us. The highest quality formal education is no longer required. All that matters is whether you are good or not in your job and the way how you build interpersonal relationships, how you communicate with your clients, colleagues, how you work in the team, how quickly you are adjusting to more and more frequent changes, how you amortize stressful situations, as well as how you plan and manage your work tasks, but also your career," as noted by the representatives of NLP Network.
"Also, we are all more and more seriously disturbed the balance between business and private life, and for that reason, we feel dissatisfaction, constant stress, worry, nervousness and so on. All of this, in the end, leads us to, in spite of the increased effort, to miss the desired results and not to realize all that we can for what we have potential. These are some of the reasons why it is necessary to work on improving the communication skills, flexibility, goal setting, as well as reconsidering their beliefs that can be supportive or even limiting to achieve the desired results, in which NLP can greatly help us with its methods," concluded members of NLP Network during their lecture about methods of neuro-linguistic programming.
Until now, NLP education was conducted only in Podgorica, however, due to the interest shown after the Info Lectures, for the first time in Kotor NLP Basic is being organized - a two-day training programme which will take place during December 8-9. Information and applications can be found here, and you can also follow NLP Network on their Facebook Page.
14 November 2018 - Washington Life Magazine, a premier lifestyle magazine and media outlet in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area, has recently posted an article about the “Dalmatian Dream” - a luxurious travel through Croatia and Montenegro. “It’s not hard to see why two small neighboring states on the eastern coast of the Adriatic Sea have become Europe’s hottest summer destinations. With over 1,200 islands, sky blue water, ancient walled cities, a rich cultural history that includes numerous UNESCO World Heritage sites, high quality local food, snow-capped peaks and pristine lakes, Croatia and Montenegro offer unsurpassed holiday experiences at generally reasonable prices," the writer Kevin Chaffee explains. He suggested to his readers to experience luxurious holidays in Montenegro, exploring the country’s nature and cultural heritage.
“Ferry transportation down the Dalmatian coast stops at Dubrovnik, which means renting a car (or hiring a car and driver) from Dubrovnik is the best option to explore the charms of neighboring Montenegro, now one of Europe’s hottest destinations. The journey can take two or more hours, much of it spent waiting in line to pass through both countries’ immigration controls, so be sure to allow plenty of time if you have a flight to catch on either side of the border at Dubrovnik or the Montenegrin international airports at Tivat or Podgorika. Well-heeled travelers also have the option of private helicopter service.
Porto Montenegro in the town of Tivat on the shore of the nearby UNESCO-protected Boka Bay, is a city unto itself offering every amenity international jet-setters could desire. Developed over the past dozen years and now owned by the Investment Corporation of Dubai, it has become “the new Monaco” with the world’s largest super yachts filling up every spot (up to 800 feet) in the 450-berth harbor in peak summer season. The adjacent “nautical village” teems with high-end bars and boutiques catering to the tastes of an international clientele for whom luxury is an absolute necessity.
The high-end Regent Porto Montenegro, loosely designed to reflect a refined Venetian Renaissance theme, offers highly personalized service and luxurious accommodations in its 87 expansive rooms and 62 suites and apartments, most with balconies overlooking the water. The stunning 10,000-square-foot pool complex encompasses a luxurious spa and hammam, three swimming pools and a gym. Guests also have access via private shuttle to a separate pool/nightclub facility with a Saint-Tropez vibe as well as a secluded private beach. A meal at the Mediterranean-inspired Murano Restaurant and a drink at the cozy Library Bar are recommended as well as a visit to the outstanding Gourmet Corner, which specializes in artisanal cakes and pastries. From $325. regenthotels.com.
After ogling the yachts, check out the marina’s pricey shops (don’t miss the amazing pharmacy) and watch teenage fashion victims parade about in $700 Dolce & Gabbana T-shirts and other designer duds as they amble to and from daddy’s boat. If you are in a more serious-minded mood, the nearby Naval Heritage Center maritime museum and submarine are worth a look.
You’ll also want to devote a day or more to explore the towns on Boka Bay, Europe’s southernmost fjord. The best way to accomplish this is via private motorboat with a captain/guide who can be hired through the Regent’s concierge (embarkation is immediately adjacent to the hotel). Along the way, Herceg Novi displays a fine combination of romantic, Byzantine and oriental architectural styles while Risan is known for the remnants of classical culture found there, dominated by the remains of a Roman patrician’s villa with beautiful mosaic floors. Kotor, a UNESCO-protected site, is the top attraction, an old Venetian city and cultural center that has withstood numerous invasions over the last thousand or so years and now attracts a lively crowd in summer that throngs its picturesque churches, museums and restaurants. It’s easy to experience daily life while meandering about the narrow lanes and small squares because it has not been totally overwhelmed by tourists except when cruise ship passengers disembark for a few hours of look & see. Finally there is Perast, another UNESCO Heritage-protected town where no cars are allowed, making it rather pleasant to explore its palaces and churches, some in ruins, set amid small hotels and family homes.
Your captain will surely disembark you at Our Lady of the Rocks (Croatian: Gospa od Škrpjela) off the coast of Perast, an artificial islet created by a sinking derelict and pirated ships loaded with rocks. The Roman Catholic Church of the same name was constructed by local seamen who kept an ancient oath after finding an icon of the Madonna and Child on the rock in the sea in 1452. The church, which was renovated in 1722, contains 68 works by Tripo Kokolja, a famous 17th-century Baroque painter from Perast.
At the foot of Porto Montenegro’s yacht-infested Jetty 1, One Restaurant’s spacious terrace beckons with “the most expensive view in the country.” Although the modern Adriatic menu featuring local ingredients competes with international favorites unavailable elsewhere, people watching will always be the main course here. The extensive wine list features many rosé labels as well as high-end champagnes. The Clubhouse, located a bit aft in the harbor, is a low-key nightspot that attracts an eclectic, younger crowd. Owned by a pair of Australian “best mates,” this casual watering hole is famed for oddly named drinks (“Boulevardier,” “Pink Pussy”), DJs and live music as well as great eavesdropping opportunities when off-duly crew from the super yachts dish about the owners’ various peculiarities and peccadilloes. It’s also the best place in town to watch major televised sports events like the World Cup.
It is best to rent a car to further explore Montenegro. Begin by driving from Tivat further down the coast to Budva, a summer party paradise boasting the best beaches in the country, ranging from the secluded and quiet to those with bustling party scenes and thunderous dance music that lasts until sunset (when scenesters continue their revelries back in the historic old town). Founded by the Greeks in the fourth century B.C. and fortified in the Middle Ages, it is now the center of the “Budva Riviera,” which runs 22 miles from Trsteno to Buljarica, and is dotted with sheltered coves and miles of sand and pebble beaches. Those with deep pockets but no super yacht can be spotted at Montenegro’s most expensive and exclusive hotel, the Aman Sveti Stefan, a complex of 15th-century stone buildings more like a medieval village than a hotel, housing 50 palatial suites and cottages with inspiring views of the coast. From $750. aman.com.
Head north to Cetinje, an odd combination of former capital city and quaint village that is the nation’s cultural heart. Get a 10-euro ticket to gain entry to six different museums, the most interesting and important of which is the King Nikola Museum Palace. The home of the ruling Petrovi-Njegoš dynasty until they fled in 1918, its somewhat musty rooms contain ornate furniture, Chinese vases, imposing portraits, taxidermied animals and a beautiful library that is closed to the public but can sometimes be accessed via a hired guide. Also visit Cetinje Monastery dating to 1786 and the History Museum, grandly housed in the city’s former parliament, that follows a timeline from prehistoric times to the mid-1950s.
Meander further northward enjoying the dramatic views through the mountainous region where the country’s vast national parks and pristine lakes are located. Check in at the Bianca Resort & Spa, a ski lodge in the town of Kolasin that is quiet, clean and features a huge pool, a whirlpool and an excellent sauna. Rooms are smallish and have no air conditioning or screens on the windows (although that is generally not a problem at this altitude). The cafeteria-style food is bland at best with the staff grumbling if they have to prepare anything off the limited à la carte menu — “communist-era hospitality” at its best! From $75, kolasin1450,com. (TIP: Ask for directions to a nearby restaurant run by the Damjanovica family that features hearty local specialties including local trout and kacamak, a tasty cheese and potato staple.)
From Kolasin it’s a two-hour drive to Biogradska Gora, the second oldest (1878) national park in the world, boasting one of the largest primeval forests in Europe. You’ll want to spend most of the day exploring its verdant landscapes, six pristine glacial lakes and 26 different habitats burgeoning with diverse flora, fauna and fish (including the grayling, which has disappeared from the rest of Europe). Historic heritage sites include sacral monuments and traditional architecture structures. Contact the The Explorer Tourist Agency explorer.co.me for top notch guided tours and be sure to ask about a visit to Eku Katun Vranjak, about 5,000 feet above sea level at the end of a bumpy, winding dirt road. The remote, family-run nomadic settlement of ten wooden chalets (some are available for overnight stays) sits amid breathtaking peaks and rolling pastures with herds of goats and cows feeding on grass as you enjoy a hearty lunch there. Reserve overnight stays and lunch-only visits at jelka.me.
Enjoy the drive south back to Tivat past rolling farmlands, creeks and the impressive Moraca Canyon to Podgorica (pronounced Pod-go-reet-sa), Montenegro’s “pocket-sized” capital known as “Titograd” in communist times. Stroll along the main street, the Slobode, as well as the side lanes to explore the Old Town (Stara Varos) and its shops, cafes and restaurants including Pod Volat for delicious pizzas and regional dishes that are ridiculously cheap.
Lake Skadar is not on the normal tourist route because it is neither on the coast nor anywhere near to the sprawling national parks. It is however a great place to stop if you enjoy the great outdoors and want to hike, bicycle, swim at freshwater beaches or explore nature preserves. Be sure to visit the Serbian Orthodox Vranjina Monastery, one of the country’s oldest religious sites located on the south-east part of Vranjina island and accessible by an access road from the shore.”
Read more information about the article and the luxurious travel through Montenegro and Croatia here.