Passing through Montenegro, from north to south, at every step, there is a place, settlement, village, river, lake, or street with its own story. Natural resources, five national parks, and numerous cultural and historical monuments make Montenegro a country that is a real lure for tourists for a reason. Besides popular sites and locations, Montenegro is full of countless hidden places and gems that are the trademark of Montenegrin’s wild beauty.
The following text will present the top 9 hidden gems in Montenegro, which must be on your to-visit list. These hidden, lesser-known attractions will take your breath away and make you want to come back and visit them again.
Grebaje Valley – the Paradise of the Balkans
Grebaje Valley is a beautiful and remote region located in the northern part of Montenegro, near the border with Albania. It lies below the peaks of mountain Prokletije and stretches for 10 kilometers from Gusinje. This picturesque place is a popular destination for adventurists who want to explore the rugged mountains, pristine lakes, and stunning vistas the area offers.
The Grebaje Valley is the center of mountaineering and alpinism in Montenegro and the entire region. From the Valley of Grebaje, hiking trails lead to the challenging peaks of Prokletije. Numerous hiking trails lead to panoramic peaks which extend above two thousand meters above sea level.
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When hiking in Grebaje Valley, it is important to go well-prepared and equipped for the journey. The weather can be unpredictable and change quickly, so bring appropriate clothing, food, and water. It is also a good idea to hire a local guide, as you can easily get lost in the remote wilderness of the area.
The Valley is located at the entrance of the NP Prokletije. You can reach it either by foot or car from the direction of Gusinje or Plav. From Podgorica or Kotor, the best option is to take a bus to Plav or Gusinje.
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“The Korita Circuit” – Panoramic Route
The Korita Circuit scenic route is a beautiful drive through Montenegro’s raw beauty.
This is a circular route that starts and ends in Podgorica. The route is approximately 65 km long and takes around 4 hours, including stops for sightseeing and taking photos. The route goes Podgorica – Medun – Ubli – Kučka Korita – Zatrijebač – Fundina – Podgorica.
Korita Circuit ascends to an altitude of up to 1,400 meters, and the whole route is signposted. During spring and autumn, the weather conditions in the mountains can vary significantly. Therefore, you should ensure that you are wearing appropriate clothing and sunscreen. The best time to do the route is from May to September.
Đalovića Cave – a Miracle of Nature
One of the pearls of Montenegrin nature is the famous Đalovića cave. Around 40 kilometers from Bijelo Polje, in the canyon of the river Bistrica, Đalovića Cave is located.
The length of the cave is about 17.5 kilometers, with significant potential for further speleological research. This is the biggest and the longest cave in Montenegro. One can find almost all the cave decorations here: stalagmites, stalactites, coralloids, saliva, helictites, biguine tubs, and crystals. It takes at least 5 hours to visit the cave.
The construction of the cable car that will lead from the Podvrh monastery to the entrance to the cave is underway. The ride will last 6 minutes. It is estimated that the highest point of the cable car gondola will be 220 meters above the ground.
A large number of hiking tours organize group visits to this magnificent cave.
Crvena Stijena – one of the most beautiful hidden beaches
This is the place to come when you want to escape from the crowds on the larger Montenegrin beaches. Crvena stijena beach is located behind Volujica hill near Bar. Due to the very inaccessible terrain, access to the beach is almost impossible from the land. So it is recommended to reach it from the sea. About 50 meters long, this beach is the most beautiful on the Adriatic. It is bordered by a natural wall of red rocks about 40 meters high. White pebbles and transparent water simply beckon.
This is a relatively secluded and peaceful beach. The laid-back atmosphere attracts visitors looking for a quieter alternative to some of the more popular beaches in Montenegro. It is also a great spot for snorkeling, as the clear water provides excellent visibility to observe marine life.
There are no restaurants or bars on the beach, so you should bring food and drinks.
Kayak Tour from Skadar Lake – Virpazar to Grmožur Island and Lesendro Fort
A kayak tour from Skadar Lake to Grmožur Island and Lesendro Fort is a great way to explore the natural beauty and cultural heritage of Montenegro.
The tour typically starts from Virpazar, a small town on Skadar Lake’s shore, the Balkans’ largest lake. From there, you will paddle through the lake’s calm waters, surrounded by stunning scenery and diverse wildlife.
Grmožur Island is one of the main attractions of the tour. It is a small island, home to the ruins of an ancient fortress. The island is surrounded by crystal-clear water and is a popular spot for swimming and snorkeling.
Grmožur Island is also called Montenegrin Alcatraz because King Nicholas used the remains of the fortress as a prison for political opponents and exclusively non-swimmers.
Lesendro Fort is another highlight of the tour. It is a well-preserved fortress located on the shore of Skadar Lake near Rijeka Crnojevica. The fort was built in the 18th century to defend against the Ottoman Empire. It offers stunning views of the lake and surrounding mountains.
The kayak tours suit all experience levels, and the guides will provide you with all the necessary equipment and safety gear. Tours are led by experienced guides who are knowledgeable about the history and ecology of the area and will provide interesting commentary.
Several kayak tours are available to schedule from Skadar Lake, with diverse agendas and offers.
Horseback Riding in Mount Bjelasica
A great way to explore the area and enjoy the views of the mountains, valleys, and forests is horseback riding in Mount Bjelasica.
Several horseback riding tours are available in Mount Bjelasica, ranging from half-day to multi-day trips. The tours are led by experienced guides familiar with the terrain and the horses. They will also provide instructions on riding and handling the horses, making it a safe and enjoyable experience.
During the tour, you will ride through the forests and meadows of Mount Bjelasica, taking in the fresh air and stunning views of the surrounding landscape. One of the highlights of such a tour is the chance to experience the traditional way of life in the region. The tour may include stops at local villages, where you can meet the locals, learn about their way of life, and sample traditional food and drink.
The Traditional Manifestation ‘Bokeljska Noć.’
Bokeljska Noć is a traditional manifestation in the town of Kotor. The event is held annually in August and is a celebration of the town’s rich cultural heritage and maritime history.
During Bokeljska Noć, the streets of Kotor transform into a lively festival. The residents dress in traditional costumes, and live music and dancing fill the air. The festival also includes a procession of boats in the Bay of Kotor, with colorfully decorated boats full of musicians and dancers.
One of the festival’s highlights is the traditional parade, which includes a procession of locals dressed in traditional costumes and carrying flags and banners. The parade also features marching bands as a lively spectacle.
Visiting Bokeljska Noć is a great way to experience Montenegrin culture and traditions and enjoy Kotor’s festive atmosphere.
Wine Tour at one of the famous Montenegrin Wineries
Montenegro has a long history of winemaking, with vineyards dating back to ancient times. Today, the country produces various wines, ranging from reds and whites to rosés and dessert wines. Some of the most famous wineries in Montenegro include Plantaže “13 Jul”, Plantaže “Šipčanik,” Buk Winery, Mola Wines, etc.
During a wine tour, you can explore the vineyards, learn about winemaking, and taste various wines. The tours are led by experienced guides who will provide interesting commentary about the local wine culture throughout the tour.
The tastings may accompany local snacks or meals, such as cheese and cured meats, often paired with wines. In addition to wine tastings, some tours may include visiting the winery’s cellar, where you can see the aging process and learn more about the winery’s history.
The War Memorial in Ulcinj
The War Memorial in Ulcinj is an important historical site in Montenegro. This tall, imposing structure commemorates the sacrifice of the soldiers who fought and died during the Second World War. The monument is made of concrete and has a unique architectural design that represents the strength and resilience of the Montenegrin people.
Visitors to the War Memorial can explore the monument and learn about its history and significance through plaques and wall inscriptions. The monument also provides a panoramic view of the town and the surrounding area.
In addition to the War Memorial, you can explore Ulcinj, known for its stunning beaches, historic landmarks, and cultural attractions.
Montenegro is a country full of surprising sights at every step. These are just some of our suggestions, while many others await discovery. We are eager to know about your experience and recommendations for some of the hidden treasures of Montenegro.