As suggested by its brooding name Crna Gora, which means Black Mountain, Montenegro is a high, rugged place. The scree-covered mountains plummet to the coast, where flaming pomegranate trees and the impossibly blue waters of the Adriatic Sea have an equally fierce beauty. Relatively undiscovered, Montenegro is a spectacular hidden gem in the heart of the Balkans. Possibly the most famous region of the country, the Bay of Kotor is a spectacular sight. Just an hour and a half drive from Dubrovnik, small Venetian towns hug the waterfront with a stark mountainous backdrop. The towns of Perast, Budva and Lustica Bay that surround the bay and on the Adriatic coast are an ideal base for exploring this compact country.

The capital Podgorica is a laid-back melting pot of cultures. Having once been part of the Roman, Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires, there is a fascinating mix of architecture and cultures. Nearby Skadar Lake is an emerald beauty, with floating meadows and fields of water lilies home to a wealth of birdlife.

Top Recommendations

  • Take in the breath-taking views over Kotor & the Cyan Sea from St Johns Hill
  • Durmitor National Park – home to eagles, bears, wolves and hospitable highlanders
  • The tiny yet tremendously photogenic island of Sveti Stefan
  • Feel the rush of a rafting trip down the Tara River
  • Cool off in the tepid waters of the Adriatic at the beaches around Budva
  • Birdwatch at Lake Skadar

When to Visit

The best time to visit the country is between the months of April to September. The days are at their longest, temperatures rise and sit between warmly pleasant and hot depending on exactly when you visit and the chance of rain diminishes. This makes for ideal conditions when exploring the coastal towns or hiking in the vast mountains.

Average monthly high and low temperatures, plus average monthly rainfall and days with rain can be seen below for Podgorica.