Hold your horses, folks! We know that when you think of a dream vacation, Podgorica may not be the first place that springs to mind. But let us tell you, this hidden gem is definitely worth a visit! With a delightful combination of modern architecture and historical landmarks, it’s sure to charm even the pickiest of travelers. So, let’s take a look at the top attractions that are part of our one-day itinerary for Podgorica, guaranteed to make your trip unforgettable!
Traditional breakfast to start off the day
The first spot we would take you to has to be a breakfast spot. Head over to Stara Varoš (Old Varoš) where you can find restaurant “Pod Volat”. The restaurant is located in the city’s heart, just a short walk from many cultural and historical landmarks, making it a perfect spot to start your daily trip to Podgorica.
In the restaurant, you can try out many different local and national dishes. This place is exceptional as it offers food cooked in a traditional manner. I highly recommend trying the Montenegrin breakfast, which includes eggs, various cheeses, and meats sourced from Montenegro. In addition to the delicious food, the restaurant boasts an extensive collection of wines from various Montenegrin wineries. So, why not try one of the Montenegrin wines offered at Pod Volat? As the saying goes, a glass of wine a day keeps the doctor away! I would recommend Krstač – Krstač green grapes are exclusively grown in the region of Montenegro, producing a solid and dry white wine.
Clock Tower – the most famous historical landmark in Podgorica
Leaving the restaurant you will find yourself at a small square where the Clock Tower is located – which is next on the Podgorica itinerary.
The Clock Tower, located in the heart of the city, is our first landmark on this itinerary. This iconic landmark dates back to the Ottoman period and is the only structure that has survived. A great starting point for your exploration of Podgorica is the Clock Tower, which offers stunning views of the city
Initially, the Clock Tower was a component of a mosque complex constructed in the 17th century. It operated as the mosque’s main entryway, with the clock added later in the 19th century. The mosque was destroyed during WWII, and the clock tower was the only part of the complex that survived. Visitors can climb to the top of the clock tower for panoramic views of Podgorica. The climb is fairly steep, but the payoff is well worth it. Visitors can see many of the city’s other landmarks from the top, including the Millennium Bridge, the National Theatre, and the Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ.
Ribnica bridge – connecting point of the city
For the next part of our Podgorica itinerary, simply continue to the Ribnica Bridge, one of Podgorica’s oldest bridges. This historic bridge, built during the Ottoman period, provides a beautiful view of the Morača River. It is a popular spot for both locals and tourists, and it is a great place to take photos and soak in the city’s atmosphere.
Ribnica Bridge is a historic stone bridge in the center of Podgorica, Montenegro’s capital city. The bridge spans the Ribnica River, which runs through the city’s heart.
One of the oldest bridges in the city, the Ottoman Empire constructed the bridge in the 18th century to connect both sides of the river. During its time, the bridge played a vital role in the city’s infrastructure.
The bridge has a one-of-a-kind architectural design, with three large arches and two smaller arches at each end. It is approximately 107 meters long and 6 meters wide and was built from large stone blocks.
The Ribnica Bridge has undergone several restorations and renovations over the years in order to preserve its historic value. It now serves as a reminder of the city’s rich history and cultural heritage.
The Ribnica Bridge is not only a popular tourist attraction, but it is also a popular gathering place for locals. Visitors can walk across the bridge and enjoy the stunning views of the Ribnica River and the surrounding cityscape. Many cafes and restaurants are nearby, making it an ideal spot to relax and take in the sights and sounds of this historic landmark.
Where modernism takes a place – Millennium bridge
After exploring the bridge, stroll through the city center and see the Millennium Bridge, one of Podgorica’s most recognizable landmarks. This modern bridge, completed in 2005, represents the city’s transformation into a modern and dynamic capital. It’s a great place for a photo op and has stunning views of the city.
Here on the shores of Morača, stands a statue built to honor the famous Russian poet, theatre and film actor and writer Vladimir Visotsky, who stayed in Podgorica while working on a film for the former Titograd TV station. His love for Montenegro, his only monument outside the former Soviet Union, is expressed in “For the Montenegrins.” For more information on this monument, take a moment and take a look into our blog The Vladimir Visotsky monument.
The Morača River offers a variety of outdoor activities, including white-water rafting and kayaking, for those seeking outdoor adventure. The river is surrounded by beautiful natural scenery and is a popular destination for both locals and tourists.
Historical landmarks of Podgorica
Moving from the Millenium bridge, head over to the Petrović Palace, a stunning example of traditional Montenegrin architecture, yet another must-see in Podgorica. Built in the 19th century as a royal residence, the palace now operates as a museum.Visitors can explore the palace’s ornate rooms and learn about Montenegro’s monarchy’s history.
The castle was once King Nikola’s residence and is now a museum showcasing Montenegro’s history and culture. Visitors can explore the ornate rooms of the castle and learn about the country’s rich history.
It’s lunchtime on the Podgorica itinerary! Podgorica’s diverse culinary scene offers foodies a blend of local Montenegrin specialties and international cuisine. With a variety of cafes and restaurants to choose from, there’s something to suit every palate and budget.
As you have had a walk through the city I recommend taking a taxi and going to the restaurant Mayka. This is another traditional Montenegrin food restaurant where you will be able to try out meals from different regions of the country. The staff is very friendly and will gladly help you choose something to your liking. My personal recommendation is “Kačamak” one of the most traditional Montenegrin dishes you can try. For a quick and unconventional option, check out small fast-food restaurants in the city center. In our blog The five best budget places to eat in Podgorica you can find affordable places to eat in Podgorica
After the lunch break, head over to the Natural history museum, which is located close to the city center as well.
The Natural History Museum, which is a fascinating destination for visitors of all ages, is another must-see in Podgorica. The museum houses an impressive collection of fossils, minerals, and other natural wonders and is an excellent place to learn about Montenegro’s biodiversity.
A glimpse into the Orthodox religion
Starting in 1993 and concluding in 2013, the cathedral was constructed in modern times. The purpose of building the cathedral was to honor the birth of Jesus Christ’s 2,000th anniversary and to establish it as the primary cathedral of the Montenegrin Orthodox Church.
With its grand dome, ornate exterior façade, and intricate interior décor, the cathedral’s architectural style is inspired by traditional Orthodox Christian churches. The bell tower, which stands more than 50 meters tall, is also a notable feature of the cathedral’s design.
The cathedral interior is stunning with vibrant frescoes, intricate mosaics, and a grand altar. The cathedral also houses significant religious artifacts such as a fragment of the cross on which Jesus was crucified and a piece of the shroud that wrapped his body.
No itinerary for Podgorica could be without a visit. The Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ is a popular tourist and local destination as one of the largest religious buildings in the Balkans. It is an important cultural and religious center in Montenegro, and its impressive architecture and rich history make it a must-see for anyone visiting Podgorica. For more information take a look into our blog The Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ.
Get lost in nature
An itinerary to Podgorica would be incomplete without a stop at Gorica Hill, a natural park in the city’s heart. This beautiful park provides breathtaking views of the city and is ideal for a picnic or a relaxing stroll. Visitors can also hike through the park’s trails and discover its many hidden treasures.
Gorica Hill has a rich history in addition to its natural beauty. It was once a strategic location for the Ottoman Empire, and it served as a vital military stronghold during World War II. The remains of the old fortifications and bunkers that once lined the hill can still be seen by visitors today.
The hill provides beautiful views of the city and is a great place to watch the sunset. Featuring walking paths, picnic areas, and benches, the park is perfect for leisurely strolls or family outings. My suggestion is to visit Gorica Hill during sunset for an incredible view of Podgorica. The stunning sunset is definitely worth experiencing!
For the shopping lovers
Finally, for those who enjoy shopping, the Big fashion (former Delta City) shopping center is a must-see. The shopping center houses a variety of high-end fashion and lifestyle brands, as well as a cinema and a variety of dining options. For information on the events and shops available in the shopping mall, refer to their website that is constantly being updated. Here you can grab a bite after you’re done with your shopping at an indoor restaurant “Voda u Kršu”.
Hey there, adventurers! If you’re planning a trip to Montenegro, don’t forget to include Podgorica in your travel plans. While some other destinations in the country may have more fame, Podgorica is a hidden gem that travelers can explore and discover. In just one day, you can see the city’s essential sights and learn about Montenegro’s fascinating history and culture. So, why not take a chance and discover this underrated city for yourself?