Montenegro – a low cost destination (part 1)

Montenegro, or Crna Gora (“Black Mountain”) as the Montenegrins call it, is a small country in Eastern Europe. Although it us not a European Union member yet, Montenegro uses the EURO as the official currency. The country has a 294 km-long coast on the Adriatic sea (including a 13 km-long sandy beach), which makes it a very good destination for the summer holidays. Below you can read our Montenegro trip journal.

Montenegro has four airports with paved runways, but only two of them are currently used for international flights: Podgorica and Tivat Airport. The only low cost airline that operates flights to Montenegro is Thomas Cook Belgium, with 2 cheap flights from Brussels and Düsseldorf to Tivat. Bearing this in mind, it’s easy to understand why many tourists who are visiting Montenegro choose to fly to Dubrovnik, an airport in neighbouring Croatia that is only 30 km away from Herceg Novi – the most Northern city on the Montenegrin Adriatic coast.

The clock square in old town DubrovnikThanks to its large airport, Dubrovnik is connected to 93 cities in 24 countries by 14 low cost airlines. The main cheap airlines flying to Dubrovnik are Vueling (20 cheap flights), EasyJet (7 flights), Germanwings (11 flights), AirBerlin, Jet2 and TUIfly with 4 low cost flights each. Therefore, Dubrovnik is well connected to Spain, UK and Germany.

In 1979, the city of Dubrovnik was placed on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites. The Old City of Dubrovnik was partly destroyed in 1991 during the Yugoslavian war, but it was almost entirely rebuilt, maintaining the original architecture.

The old city is small and well organized. The main street (which is entirely pedestrian, just like the entire old town) runs from the main entrance to the city (the Pile Gate) to the Bell Tower (in the picture above). Narrow perpendicular streets take the visitors to nice little restaurants, where they can taste the local fish dishes and enjoy nice local wines.

A restaurant that we particularly enjoyed was Lokanda Peskarija, which lays just outside the city walls, behind the Bell Tower. This restaurant located in the square where the old fish market used to be, offers traditional Dalmatian fish dishes and meals in very large black pots, at decent prices.

Dubrovnik Old City walls

An activity that we particularly enjoyed in Dubrovnik was the walking tour of the old city walls. The walls are open to the public every day from 8 a.m to 7 p.m and offer very nice views of the Old City from above. The complete tour takes approximately 2 hours and during July and August it’s advisable to avoid the afternoon hours because it can get really hot and apart from a couple of shops and terraces there is no shade up on the walls.

From Dubrovnik, we embarked on a 3-hour bus trip to Budva, the main seaside resort in Montenegro. Make sure you return to, to find out if Budva really deserves its fame!

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