DON’T SLEEP ON MONTENEGRO
Before starting a roadtrip up the coast of Croatia, we drove down into Montenegro for a day (didn’t even spend a night there) and it ended up being one of the best days ever. Here’s why:
- Underrated beauty. To this day I believe it to be one of Europe’s top hidden gems
- Not overcrowded. It’s not a super well known tourist destination
- Insane views. And they can all be accessed by car (this is a big one for me since I’m not a huge fan of hiking for my views ?)
- Yummy food. Cheap too
If I’ve sold you on visiting, keep reading for my day trip itinerary…
(keep in mind this itinerary is based of starting and ending in Dubrovnik, Croatia. Feel free to add to it and/or use if you’re spending multiple days in Montenegro)
Dubrovnik ? Sveti Stefan
2h 30m drive (taking ferry) or 4h drive (around the water)
We left around 7:30am and took the scenic route along the water, which I highly recommend. This initial drive was some of the prettiest scenery and a great way to see more of the landscape/towns. If you take this route you’ll drive through Kotor which is one of the main cities.
Note: Crossing the border was very easy both ways, just need your passport. It could have been the time of day we crossed but both morning and night barely had any line.
We arrived in Sveti Stefan around 11:30am and had lunch before going down to the beach. Lunch recommendations:
- Restaurant Adrovic This is where we ate, it was right off the highway and had an awesome view
- Villa Geba Boutique hotel, their restaurant looks yummy and has a great view
- Aman Sveti Stefan If you’re looking for a luxury, upscale experience they have three different restaurants
Note: If you plan on staying overnight in Montenegro, Villa Geba and Aman are both great accommodation options.
After lunch we walked down to the beach – there is free public access, Aman’s private beach if you want to purchase a day bed, and you can also pay to go out to the island but it’s mainly residential so there’s not much to see out there.
Sveti Stefan ? Lov?en
2h drive total
We drove over the town of Budva, which is about 15 minutes from Sveti Stefan
Then we headed towards Kotor with our GPS set to Lov?en National Park
THIS WAS THE COOLEST PART OF THE WHOLE DAY
- Lov?en is about a two hour drive up the winding coast of a mountain (which is why the drive takes so long) and the views are simply breathtaking
- There are plenty of places to stop and take photos along the way if you don’t want to drive all the way up
- If you are driving all the way up, stop at Nevjesta Jadrana for a drink or some food. It’s pretty much along the way, you won’t miss it. Between the wine, the music and the view, I never wanted to leave
- At the top you can see the view of the sea on one side, the mountains and then the bay of Kotor on the other side, it’s incredible
Hot take: I did not like Kotor. It seemed very tourist and definitely had the most people (it’s a port for cruise ships). We did not stop to spend time in Kotor but before going I had done some research so here are some things to do if you end up stopping:
- St John’s Fortress Hike the city walls for a great view
- Plenty of restaurants
- Walk through the Old Town/Main Square
- Wine tastings
Lov?en ? Perast
We arrived around sunset which could not have been timed better if we tried. This town was a hidden gem in itself and it was magical at golden hour. Quick overview:
- Very small town along the water lined with bed & breakfasts and restaurants
- Our Lady of the Rocks Island – you can take taxi boats out from the mainland to but honestly, it is very anticlimactic so we didn’t feel the need to go. I did however do research prior and apparently the going rate isn’t more than €3-5 for a boat ride, so don’t let them scam you ?
- Restaurant recommendations You really can’t go wrong when picking a restaurant, they are all similar vibes alone the water so just pick a menu that sounds appealing
Perast ? Dubrovnik
1h 30m drive
After dinner we headed back to Croatia. The end.
I hope I sold you on spending at least a day in Montenegro, I promise you won’t regret it. If you have any questions or want to hear more details about Montenegro, leave a comment or send me a DM on Instagram! I also have some more Montenegro content on IG and Pinterest… HAPPY TRAVELING ?