Best places to visit in Montenegro - what to see in Montenegro

Among the many attractions in Montenegro it’s hard to choose a favourite because Montenegro is full of beautiful places to visit. You’d think in a country the size of Montenegro that tourist attractions would be scarce, but far from it. In fact, Montenegro is packed with beautiful sights. From stunning cultural and historical sights dating back to the Middle Ages, to natural assets such as National Parks or secluded caves and canyons.

First, you’ll need an ideal spot from which you can explore some of the most beautiful places in Montenegro. That’s where the finest real estate in the country comes in. Once you’re settled in there, it’s time to make the most of Montenegro’s staggering landmarks. That’s where this definitive list comes in…

rocks near the sea

What to see in Montenegro - the natural delights of The Blue Cave

Montenegro’s sights are rarely affected by pollution or other kinds of human exploitation, with many of them included in ‘top things to do in Montenegro’ lists. And with good reason.

The Blue Cave is one of them. It’s one of those unique Montenegro sights capable of enchanting you forever. Known for its iridescent blue shade that reflects from the bottom of the sea back onto the surface, it’s only reachable by sea. There are organised boat tours from Kotor and Herceg Novi, but we recommend opting for a yacht charter from Porto Montenegro marina as these charters can be customised to your wishes.

There are plenty of activities waiting for you in The Blue Cave, especially if you are a fan of snorkelling and diving, as well as kayaking. Whatever you do, your visit will be memorable.

One of the best places to visit in Montenegro - San Giovanni Fortress

When it comes to showcasing its rich history, one of the most fascinating sights Montenegro has to offer is San Giovanni Fortress which is concealed in Kotor – a culturally significant town in Montenegro. San Giovanni Fortress, also known as the fortress of Kotor, is one of the most fascinating segments of the cultural heritage of Boka Bay

Besides being the ultimate masterpiece of defence architecture dating back to the Middle Ages, San Giovanni is the most gorgeous tourist spot in Montenegro, guarding the Old Town Kotor and the surrounding area. 

It’s a stunning trip should you decide to embark on it and, as well as being one of Kotor’s top attractions, it gives you the opportunity to immerse yourself in a hiking tour.

Town Cetinje

Another nature sight you should visit in Montenegro - Luštica peninsula

One of the top natural sights in Montenegro is without a doubt the Luštica peninsula, home to a simple and traditional lifestyle that hasn’t changed for centuries. Luštica is famous for being wild and hosting an endless summer season, with nature so bewitching you want to return time and time again. 

Luštica peninsula should be listed among Montenegro’s best places to visit but rarely is. That’s because it’s both private and adventurous and not fit for those looking for more serene activities.

The peninsula is partly located in the Bay of Kotor, with the other side situated directly on the Adriatic. Here you will come across villages that have barely changed in the last 100 years, and you can easily visit them if you choose to go on a tour of the entire peninsula.

The historical city you should visit in Montenegro - the former capital Cetinje

Cetinje is often listed as one of Budva’s top tourist attractions thanks to its close proximity to the coastal town. Cetinje used to be a royal capital of the country, and is now one of the most important sights in Montenegro given its royal past and cultural history. 

Cetinje is a small and compact town – somewhat of a prototype of a Montenegrin inland town – so there shouldn’t be any problems getting around it. The town possesses a unique old-world charm which is what makes it so enchanting. There are many historical sights you can see here such as The National Museum, King Nikola’s Court, and The Blue Palace.

A road trip to Cetinje is a great way to discover some of the most beautiful places in Montenegro. Places with a deep link to the tumultuous history of this area and country.

Fortress, sea and mountain

Nevidio canyon for adventure junkies

Not explored until 1965, Canyon Nevidio means “An Unseen Canyon” and is located on the road from Niksic towards Durmitor National Park. Today, Nevidio is one of the best places to visit in Montenegro when it comes to adrenaline tourism, offering you stunning scenery as you head to the starting point of the canyon.

Available tours cover about 2km of the canyon and include lots of swimming, climbing and jumping. The tour can last approximately three and a half hours, depending on the size and ability of the group, so brace yourself for some adventure if you decide to visit Nevidio this summer.

What to visit in Montenegro for archaeology lovers - Doclea ruins

Following on from those sights rich in cultural history, there are more than a few archaeological sights on the soil of Montenegro. Doclea, or Duklja, is by far the most famous tourist attraction. 

The ruins of Doclea are located near Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro, around 3km north of it. Doclea used to be the largest settlement of the Docleatae, the Illyrian tribe, dating from the first century AD. Its architecture is in line with the typical Roman style, with a central axis connecting representative structures. 

Doclea also includes a necropolis with more than 300 tombs excavated, containing many precious objects such as jewellery, perfume bottles, ceramic and glass dishes, fibulae etc. If you want to find out more about the ancient history of the country, Duklja is certainly a good place to start for archaeological sightseeing of Montenegro.

Island St Stefan

One of Montenegro’s most famous tourist attractions - Sveti Stefan

Sveti Stefan is a small islet and hotel resort located southeast of Budva, at the foot of the Lovcen mountain ridge. Despite being a famous luxury resort, what makes Sveti Stefan unique is its astounding history. 

As legend has it, a fort was built on this island in the middle of the 15th century. Its construction stemmed from a need for protection as many families from surrounding villages were desperate for shelter amidst Turkish and pirate attacks. Apart from the fort, the islet also contains three churches: the church of St. Stephen (after which the island was named) which is located at the highest point, the church of Alexander Nevski, and the smallest one – Preobrazenje church, dedicated to Transfiguration. 

Each building on the island has a story to tell, showcasing original details and an inimitable charm you’ll certainly appreciate.

A Montenegrin sight you have to see - Tara Canyon

Tara river rafting is by far one of the country’s most popular adrenaline-rush activities. Tara forms a canyon that is 1300m deep, making it one of the deepest canyons in the world. It slices through the mountain area of the National Park Durmitor, providing you with some of the best views directly from the water. 

If you’d like to admire the canyon from afar then you can climb to the top of Mount Ćurevac, but be aware that this view is also restricted by canyon walls. Either way, Tara Canyon is certainly one of those Montenegro sights that will leave a lasting impact on you.

Monastery Ostrog

A religious site you shouldn’t miss during Montenegro sightseeing - Ostrog Monastery

Ostrog Monastery is one of the most beautiful places to visit in Montenegro. A revered religious site that’s located in former Yugoslavia, it is equally visited by Roman Catholics and Muslims despite being an Orthodox Christian monastery.

The monastery is constructed against an almost vertical background, making it appear as if it’s defying gravity. Founded in 1671 by St Basil (Vasilije Ostroški), the Metropolitan Bishop of Herzegovina, it’s built right into the sheer cliff out of white stone, shining like a beacon from miles away.

The construction of the monastery represents an incredible dedication to faith and an appreciation of the natural serenity of this place. Whether you’re religious or not, this place is certainly worth a visit.

The ultimate hiking trail and one of Montenegro’s top tourist attractions - Black Lake in Žabljak

This is surely Montenegro’s most stunning natural tourist destination. The Black Lake is a stunning glacial lake surrounded by a pine forest casting a mirrored reflection of the lake. The scenery becomes even more spectacular with the Medjed mountain peak emerging in the background. 

The Black Lake is divided into two lakes, Great and Small Lake, and connected by a narrow straight. If you’re a hiker there is a 3.5km long foot trail encircling the lake, taking approximately 90 minutes to complete. There are some very steep sections that require some climbing, but nothing is too challenging so you should have a pleasant walk.

Old bridge

Historical place to visit in Montenegro - Bar Old Town

The Old Town Bar is located in the southeast of Montenegro and has its fair share of tumultuous stories to tell. Having been taken over multiple times in the course of its history, it was finally reclaimed by the Montenegrins in 1877 after the locals bombed the aqueduct and cut off the water supply. 

A little over a hundred years later the same aqueduct (since repaired) was destroyed by a major earthquake and so today the old town lies in ruins, with a new town sprung around it. We wholeheartedly recommend a visit to Bar as you will encounter remnants of history, mementos of centuries passed, and stories of lands won and lost.

Top tourist spot with a famous view of lake Skadar - Pavlova Strana

True surprises concerning Montenegro sights can also be found hidden inland, namely Horseshoe Bend, at Lake Skadar, which has a famous view of Pavlova Strana. This is where the Rijeka Crnojevića River flows into Lake Skadar National Park. 

The view alone is worth the visit, but this is a place where true adventure awaits. Here you can take a boat cruise, go on hiking excursions, and visit small fishermen towns and fortresses along the water.


A curious place you must visit in Montenegro - Risan and Roman Mosaics

When it comes to historical and archaeological Montenegro sights, another true gem are the Roman mosaics in the ancient town of Risan. A special museum in Risan represents the remains of a Roman villa built in the 2nd century AD, with the display mainly showcasing Roman mosaics. 

Among Montenegro’s historical tourist attractions, this is by far the oldest. The museum depicts various mosaic patterns on the floors of each room and the atrium in the middle. Mosaics are made of pebbles belonging to three different types of stone: white, grey-blue, and black. 

The atrium mosaic depicts the dream god Hypnos in a half-lying position with crossed legs, which is a unique representation altogether. The top of the villa represents the sun, the symbol of ancient Rome, with the rays of sunlight coming out in a circle. In the inner garden there is a swimming pool designed to collect water.

A natural wonder amid Montenegro sights - Lipa Cave

Lipa Cave is one of the largest cave monuments in Montenegro and a pitch-perfect place to visit for families. Its stunning and wild system of hallways and passages make you feel as if you have stepped onto another planet. 

The cave is located near Cetinje and is a must-see Montenegro sight. Nature performed her own art in Lipa Cave – creating complicated, playful and unique forms of cave ornaments. 

Lipa Cave offers a charming diversity of the underground world – the very opposite of what we encounter every single day – providing visitors with a unique experience of genuine wilderness. Brace yourself for a memorable adventure and enjoy an exhilarating cave expedition.

Whether natural or historic, sights in Montenegro cover it all

The above are some of the lesser-known sights in Montenegro, those that you come across either accidentally or through some form of recommendation. However, it’s safe to say that these sights uncover an old, traditional and unspoiled Montenegro. An authenticity that can’t be beaten.

If you’re looking for a way to spend holidays in a more active manner, these Montenegro sights will give you enjoyment and excitement in equal measure.