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Odyssey travels by coach and occasionally uses local transport, including trains and ferries. Specifics are always outlined in your tour itinerary. Buses and taxis are cheap and commonplace in Montenegro and are a fairly convenient way to get around.
Odyssey always engages local guides with regional knowledge to ensure an authentic experience during which you can learn as much as possible about the history and culture of places you visit.
Geography, Environment, & Weather
Montenegro lies on the Adriatic Sea between Croatia and Albania, also borders with Serbia, Kosovo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Montenegro is a small country with its 13,938 square km, with a coastline of 293 km, 73 km of which are beaches. It is a beautiful country with towering mountain ranges, deep canyons and many lakes.
World heritage sites
Montenegro has 4 UNESCO World Heritage Sites. You can view them here: http://whc.unesco.org/en/statesparties/ME
Historical Region of Kotor – natural harbour, was an important artistic and commercial centremasonry and iconography. Stećci
Medieval Tombstone Graveyards – 28 sites of cemeteries with medieval tombstones, also called stećci, mostly carved from limestone.
Durmitor National Park – A breathtaking national park, formed by glaciers and is traversed by rivers and underground streams. Along the Tara river canyon, which has the deepest gorges in Europe, the dense pine forests are interspersed with clear lakes and harbour a wide range of endemic flora.
Festivals & Events
Montenegro has many festivals and events to choose from. Holidays and events here are based on religious occasions, beloved folk traditions of music and dance and the changing of the seasons. Two of the favorites are the Kotor Carnival and the Mimosa Festival. Kotor Carnival is one of the liveliest festivals in Montenegro, kicking off every February with masked balls for adults and children. The Mimosa Festival, held all over Montenegro in February/March, celebrates the coming of spring with the appearance of the first fragrant, yellow mimosa blossoms. The event lasts for several weeks with fine art exhibitions, traditional and modern theater, music and dance, and street fun.
The Balkans; A Short History by Mark Mazower
Montenegro: Its People and Their History. [London-1877] by W. Denton
Montenegro : a land of warriors by Roy Trevor
Montenegro: and the Slavonians of Turkey by Walerjan Skorobohaty Krasinski
Eating & Drinking
In Montenegro, most of the food is local, fresh and organic, and hence very seasonal. Th ecuisine also varies a lot from one region to another. Fresh fish and seafood along the coast and meat and cheese is popular inland. Traditional restaurants are known as konoba, look out for grilled kebabs (čevapčići), cabbage leaves stuffed with mincemeat (sarma), bean soup with flecks of meat (pasulj), goulash (gulaš), and the artery-clogging karađorđe vasnicla, a breaded veal cutlet roll stuffed with cheese. Montenegro drinks, especially alcoholic ones, are a part of our diverse cuisine, and extremely popular one at that – especially with visitors – in fact, so much so, they are often bought like souvenirs. Aside from wine that Montenegro is famous for, rakija is rather popular traditional alcoholic drink Montenegrins boast with, along with beer and mead.
Health & Safety
Generally speaking, Albania is safe to travel in, though always exercise common sense while travelling.
Whenever you travel overseas, it’s always wise to take an appropriate travel adaptor. The electricity supply runs at 230V, 50Hz. Montenegron plugs, types C and F. C is the common plug with two round pins and plug type F is the plug which has two round pins with two earth clips on the side.
Montenegro has a single time zone, Central European Standard Time (UTC+2). Daylight savings in Montenegro commence on the last Sunday of March, and conclude on the last Sunday of October.
If you’re on an Odyssey tour, we take care of tipping so you don’t need to give it a second thought. However, in your free time, or if travelling independently, it’s essential that you make sure you tip an appropriate amount for services, as is the case throughout much of Europe. It’s customary to tip 10-15% of the bill at restaurants. It’s polite to round a bill up to the nearest whole figure or leave the change when buying drinks.
Internet access is easily accessible, and most hotels and many cafes will be able to offer it.
Check with your cell phone provider to see whether you’re able to make calls and use data while in Montenegro. Many providers will offer a daily fee that allows you to make calls and check the internet while only being charged your regular rates. However, be certain to inform your provider that you’re heading overseas, because just like a bank they can turn off your service as a result of unusual activity.
Responsible travel tips for Montenegro
- Learn at least the local greetings to break the ice. Although some locals speak English, the more you know of the native language, the greater your experience of the country will be.
- Carry a business card in your wallet or purse from your local hotel, to assist you with the return journey if you do become lost.
- Always ensure that you are covered by travel insurance. If you need advice on this feel free to contact Odyssey and we’ll be able to help.
- Before departing, make sure you have a number of Euros in a range of denominations. You don’t want to be carrying around enormous amounts of cash, but take enough to make it easy to pay in locations that might not accept credit card. It will also help you avoid card transaction fees, and it makes tipping a breeze.
- When travelling independently, make sure you check the opening hours of shops and museums so that you don’t miss out! Also be certain to check whether your trip coincides with any public holidays, so you can plan accordingly.
- Before departing on your trip, contact your bank to inform them that you may be making purchases overseas. Otherwise, they may flag any activity on your account as suspicious. Also, check which ATMs and banks are compatible with your cards, to ensure you can withdraw cash with minimal fees.