Diving in Montenegro - top locations for diving in the Adriatic sea

While the Adriatic coast is certainly beautiful, it does not have the global appeal or the colourful marine life like the Red Sea or certain parts of the Mediterranean do. People all over the world are attracted to the Adriatic coast because of its rich cultural heritage and the fantastic historical sites dotted all over the coast of Montenegro.

Scuba diving in Montenegro is a fast-growing trend because it allows people to experience the fantastic Montenegrin marine life with the added bonus of discovering the fascinating shipwrecks that have been lying on the seabed of the Adriatic for centuries.

Nestled along the serene waters of the Adriatic, diving in Montenegro is becoming a catchphrase among diving aficionados. The Adriatic Sea, with its pristine waters and abundant marine life, has long been a hotspot for diving enthusiasts. Combining the allure of both, let’s dive into the top locations for Adriatic Sea diving in Montenegro.

Whether you’re a seasoned diver, looking to plunge into the Adriatic’s deeper mysteries, or a beach lover seeking the joy of snorkelling in Montenegro amidst the vibrant shallows, this Balkan gem has something for everyone.

Throughout this text, we will point out some of the best spots for swimming and scuba diving in Montenegro and the Adriatic Sea, so stay tuned until the end of this article to find out the best locations in Montenegro for diving.

Exploring the shipwrecks – diving in Montenegro’s Adriatic waters

With warm, calm and clear Adriatic waters and amazing marine life, Montenegro is a country filled with numerous historic sites and destinations perfect for diving expeditions. Throughout its rich history, Montenegro experienced numerous disturbances and the memories of the past still live on – both on land and under the sea through the shipwrecks that lie on the bed of the Adriatic.

Over the years, these shipwrecks have transformed into sought-after attractions for divers. For those who relish the thrill of shipwreck diving, these submerged relics of history are indispensable stops on any Adriatic Sea diving itinerary in Montenegro. If you’re a fan of shipwreck diving, these shipwrecks are a “must-see” diving destination in Montenegro.

scuba diver under the sea

Mamula Island - dive site Tihany Shipwreck

Mamula Island, guarding the entrance of the Bay of Kotor, provides a blend of marine diversity and history. The dive sites around the island vary in depth, with some plunging to 30 meters.

Tihany shipwreck, which is located near the islet of Mamula, 6.3 km away from Herceg Novi is one the most popular sites for scuba divers in all of Montenegro.

The Tihany steamboat was built in 1908 in Trieste and was primarily used as a transportation ship for workers. Unfortunately, the Tihany steamship didn’t have a long lifetime, in 1917 the ship was stranded due to bad weather and poor navigation, which led to it’s sinking just off the coast of Mamula island.

The Tihany shipwreck today is located at a depth of 40 meters and to experience this unique site you will need a diving certification. Wreckage exploration is also available; however, this is only allowed for Wreck Speciality certified divers.

Obtaining a basic Open Water Certificate is acquired after only two days of training and can be obtained in every certified diving club in Montenegro.

While the vibrant marine life, including octopuses and moray eels, captures the attention, the historical remnants of shipwrecks lying silently on the sea bed add an additional layer of fascination. Furthermore, the looming fortress on Mamula above the surface provides a backdrop that complements the underwater mysteries.

Oreste wreck – explore the Italian shipwreck from the beginning of the 20th century

Whether you’re an experienced diver or just beginning your Adriatic Sea diving adventure, the Oreste wreck is an essential addition to your Montenegrin diving itinerary.

“Oreste” used to be the name of an Italian ship that sank off the coast of Budva, Montenegro close to the Jaz beach back in 1942. Diving in Montenegro offers many attractions, but the Oreste stands out, inviting divers to weave through its submerged structures, each corner unveiling a story from the past.

Oreste was sunk when it stumbled across a naval mine near the bay of Trsteno just a few miles off the coast of Budva’s Jaz beach. Today, Oreste found its peace on the Adriatic seabed, at a depth of 32 meters.

The ship itself is divided into two parts and is one of the most exciting tours for divers in Montenegro. However, to dive and explore the Oreste shipwreck, divers must hold one of the following diving certificates:

  • Open Water Diver Certificate
  • Advanced Open Water Diver Certificate
  • Deep Diver Certificate

For enthusiasts of Adriatic Sea diving, the Oreste is a must-visit site, offering a blend of historical intrigue and natural splendor.

Fisherman’s wreck – a unique diving experience off the coast of St. Stephen island

Fisherman’s wreck is located at the depth of 21 meters, just off the coast of St. Stefan island in Budva, Montenegro. Diving into the heart of the Adriatic brings forth the essence of maritime adventure, and the Fisherman’s wreck stands as a testament to this spirit.

Diving on this site requires possession of the Open Water Diver Certificate.

Legend has it that upon returning home from a fishing trip, the small ship was submerged following a sea storm, hence the name Fisherman’s wreck.

This diving in the Adriatic sea is an absolute favourite to numerous divers because of the clear waters with favourable visibility, the sea life that surrounds the wreck and its proximity to the public beach of Jaz.

Patrol wreck – following the naval footprint of Yugoslavia

A bit further north in Kotor’s bay just off the coast of the historic town of Herceg Novi, lies the vastly popular Patrol shipwreck, one of the most attractive and famous shipwrecks in Montenegro. Renowned as a highlight of Adriatic diving, this sunken sentinel offers a rich tapestry of history, nature, and exploration to those who dare to dive deep

The ship itself was built in 1952 in Marshal Tito’s shipyard “Kraljevica” and it served for surveying the coast of Montenegro for potential naval threats, ensuring the security of the Yugoslavi coast from 1972 until it was sunk in 1983.

In 1983, the ship was used as a part of military protection training where it served as a moving practice target and was eventually hit. After this operation, the ship was dragged to the bay of Zanjic where it still lies to this day.

Divining near the island of St. Nicholas, Budva, Montenegro

With a depth of only 9 meters diving near the island of St. Nikola, off the coast of Budva, Montenegro is an excellent choice for beginners looking to experience the beauties of the underwater world through diving for the first time.

This Adriatic sea diving site requires no diving certification and is available to all categories of divers.

scuba divers underwater

St. Nikola Island, or as the locals call the Hawaii of Montenegro, is only accessible by boat and is one of the most popular natural sites of Budva. It is the biggest island in the southern part of the Adriatic sea with a total length of coastline of 840 meters.

Numerous divers in the region state that they’ve fallen in love with diving after exploring the underwater tunnels around St. Nikola Island, Budva.

These underwater tunnels are 5 – 9 meters deep and from 15 – 30 meters long, divers are always accompanied by a diving instructor to ensure maximum safety. The tunnels are pretty wide and offer a comfortable diving experience.

Blue Cave - Top diving spot in Montenegro and whole Adriatic sea

Located on the Lustica peninsula in the Bay of Kotor, off the coast of Tivat, Montenegro is Blue Cave (also known as Plava spilja ) one of the most fascinating natural swimming and diving spots in Montenegro.

Revered as one of the crown jewels of Adriatic diving, this natural wonder beckons divers with its ethereal beauty and tranquil ambiance.

Lustica peninsula is a culturally and historically diverse area with up to twenty Christian churches. The population of the peninsula is relatively small; however, the villagers nurture their centuries old traditions and produce their own olive oil prosciutto, cheese, wine and rakija.

Apart from the cultural heritage, the Lustica peninsula is amazing both on land and at sea. The prime example of its luscious nature is the Blue Cave located on the southwest coast of the peninsula.

Navigating the serene waters of the Blue Cave offers divers an experience unparalleled in the realm of scuba diving Adriatic Sea adventures.

Blue Cave’s locality is only accessible via ship, yacht or boat, making it one of the best diving spots to visit with your yacht.

The sandy sea bottom reflects the sunlight, projecting the rays through the surface of water onto the roof of the cave – colouring the entire cave with an iridescent and enchanting tone of blue.

Plava spilja, also known as the Blue Cave or Blue Grotto is one of the most popular tourist destinations for swimmers, divers and admirers of nature. If you’re searching for a unique diving experience this spot will certainly not disappoint.

Other top locations for diving in the Adriatic sea

The Baron Gautsch Wreck

Located off the coast of Rovinj, Croatia, the Baron Gautsch is a renowned wreck dive. Sunk in 1914, this Austro-Hungarian passenger ship now rests 40 meters below the surface. Encrusted with marine life and surrounded by schools of fish, it provides divers with a blend of history and natural beauty.

The Vis Island

Located in the central Adriatic, Vis Island in Croatia is home to several renowned dive sites. The island’s waters hide multiple shipwrecks, underwater caves, and reefs. The Stiniva Cove, in particular, is celebrated for its unique underwater topography and clear waters.

The Koločep Island Caves

Near Dubrovnik, Croatia, the Koločep Island boasts numerous underwater caves and tunnels. These geological formations are teeming with marine life, making them a favorite among divers seeking the thrill of cave diving in the Adriatic.

The Telašćica Nature Park

Situated on the Dugi Otok island in Croatia, the Telašćica Bay is known for its rich biodiversity. The underwater cliffs and caves in this protected area offer divers a chance to encounter various species of fish, sea sponges, and corals in their natural habitat.

Diving with PADI in Montenegro

PADI Montenegro ensures that every dive is an adventure to remember. With their vast knowledge of the local dive spots and conditions, PADI-certified instructors and dive shops offer divers unique experiences that showcase the best of the Adriatic. From the haunting beauty of submerged shipwrecks to the serene landscapes of underwater caves, PADI Montenegro offers it all.

Moreover, being a part of the global PADI community means that divers in Montenegro get to partake in various diving events, workshops, and conservation initiatives. It’s not just about the dive; it’s about being a part of a movement that cherishes and conserves our oceans.

In conclusion, for anyone looking to experience the wonders of diving in Montenegro, PADI offers the ideal gateway. Dive in, get certified, and be a part of a global community that celebrates the magic of the underwater world.

Diving in Montenegro and the Adriatic sea is an experience you will cherish for a lifetime

The diving season in Montenegro starts in early May and ends at the beginning of October. Since the popularity of scuba diving in Montenegro is growing, there are a lot of professional scuba diving clubs that will make sure that you are fully prepared for your diving experience in compliance with the highest safety standards.

Apart from training services, diving clubs in Montenegro also offer guided tours to groups and individuals as well. These tours include the observation of marine life in Montenegro as well as the exploration of historic shipwrecks that rest on the bottom of the Adriatic sea.

When you choose to stay in Porto Montenegro, you are enjoying the benefits of our spectacular location in the heart of the Bay of Kotor, allowing you to experience some of the best diving sites across the Adriatic.

In addition to an exceptional stay in Porto Montenegro, our charming marina village is host to a wide variety of restaurants, shopping spots that guarantee the best way to experience the charming and untamed beauty of Montenegro as well as the refined sense of luxury that comes with staying in Porto Montenegro.

How to block cookies?

You can change your cookie preferences at any time by clicking on the ‘Cookie preferences’ icon. You can then adjust the available sliders/checkboxes to ‘On’ or ‘Off’, then clicking ‘Save and close’. You may need to refresh your page for your settings to take effect.

Essential Cookies
Preference Cookies
Statistic Cookies
Marketing Cookies
Read more about these cookies