The capital of Montenegro - Podgorica - does not at all look like the most important city in the country. Located in a valley between five rivers, it resembles a quiet suburb, where they usually run away from city noise to enjoy the silence and the measured rhythm of life. In Podgorica you will not find skyscrapers, large shopping centers and bars that do not fall silent all night. Instead, you will find picturesque parks, quiet alleys and restaurants, which are most often styled in antique style. It is worth spending 2 days in Podgorica, and then rent a car and, at the same time stopping by in small cozy settlements, go somewhere on the coast.
Podgorica International Airport ( Podgorica Airport ) - download the scheme
IATA code: TGD
Location: 11 km from Podgorica
Official website: www.montenegroairports.com/
Information: +382 2044 4244
If you want to rent a car at the airport of Podgorica, you can contact the representatives The following rental companies: Sixt, Ideal, Avis, Meridian, Budget, Europcar, Renault, Kompas and Rokšped. Rental desks are located in the arrivals area. Directly opposite the passenger terminal there is a parking lot with 213 seats, the first 15 minutes of parking are free.
The oldest church in the city, built between the IX-XI centuries. The church is very small, has a rather modest appearance, which, however, does not detract from its historical value. She was a witness to the events important for Montenegro and repeatedly changed her external and internal appearance, as evidenced by the frescoes and murals preserved here that belong to different historical periods. Near the church there is an old cemetery where you can see ancient crypts and tombstones overgrown with flowers.
The district of Stara Varoš originated during the Ottoman rule. At the end of the 15th century, the first buildings appeared here: residential buildings, shops, a mosque and the residence of Turkish officials. In the XVII century, the quarter was turned into a powerful stone fortress, which was defended by about 700 soldiers. In memory of past times, two mosques remained in the Old Town (Starodoganskaya and Osmanagicha), the clock tower Sahat-Kula (similar towers were built in every city captured by the Turks), the ruins of the Depedogen fortress and the stone bridge over the Rybnitsa River, located in a quiet and romantic corner quarter. You will get great pleasure from a walk along the narrow streets of the Old Town, filled with cozy restaurants and souvenir shops.
The Art Gallery occupies the residence of the King of Montenegro, Nikola I Petrovich Negosh (1910-1918). Most of the exposition is dedicated to the work of local artists and sculptors, as well as masters from the countries that were part of Yugoslavia. You can also see a small collection of African, Asian, Latin American and European art. During the tourist season, concerts and performances, film screenings and book fairs are held in one of the gallery's buildings. After a tour of the museum, be sure to take a walk in the Krusevac park, which locals consider one of the most beautiful in the city.
Marka Miljanova 4
You can learn about the history of Podgorica and trace the change of eras in the city museum, divided into four thematic sections: historical, ethnographic, cultural and architectural. Among the exhibits of the museum you will find books printed by the first Serbian book publisher Bozidar Vukovic, ceramics dating from the III century BC, jewelry and national costumes from the Middle Ages. On the ground floor are the works of contemporary artists of Montenegro.
The peculiarity of this Orthodox male monastery in its location. The halls of the monastery are hidden underground, the walls are painted with images that appeared here before the construction of the monastery in 1897. According to legend, the monastery arose on the very spot where the shepherd Petko was a man in golden robes, who claimed that he was not an evil spirit, but a saint whom the monks hid from the Turks. He asked the shepherd to build a monastery for him. The frightened shepherd told about his vision to the Monk Simeon, and he immediately recognized in a mysterious man one of the disciples of St. Sava Serbsky, whose relics were hidden from the Turkish soldiers so that they would not defile them.
About half an hour away by rented car - and you will find yourself at the ruins of the fortress Medun, one of the oldest in Montenegro. Presumably, it was built in the III century BC. and belonged to the Illyrians, the peoples who inhabited the northwestern part of the Balkan Peninsula. The fortress had a typical structure for that time: at the top there was an acropolis, and behind the walls of the fortress was the lower city. During the excavation, shelters were found where local residents performed their ritual rites. In different historical eras, new buildings appeared on the territory of the fortress, only fragments of walls and military fortifications have survived, as well as a small Orthodox church, next to which is the grave of Marko Milyanov, a famous Montenegrin writer and military figure.
Undoubtedly, the Ostrog monastery is the most unusual and impressive monastery of Montenegro. It is carved into the rock and looks as if it appeared simultaneously with the rock and is its natural, natural extension. It is named after its founder - the miracle worker Vasily Ostrozhsky, one of the most revered saints of the Serbian Orthodox Church. Ostrog consists of two parts - the Upper and Lower Monastery, separated from each other by a road about 5 kilometers long. The upper part of the monastery includes two churches, in one of which - the Vvedensky church - the relics of Vasily Ostrozhsky are stored, as well as a prayer book and candlesticks dating from the 18th century. The monastery can be reached by rental car, but keep in mind that the road is mountainous, so be careful when cornering.
Having rented a car, be sure to go to Virpazar - a small settlement on the banks of the picturesque Skadar Lake. The town is small, but very cozy and pleasant. Having left the car in the parking lot, go to the central bridge, from where you can go on a boat trip along the lake. Here you can go fishing directly from the bridge (local fishermen do this) or order a whole tour to the most fishing places. For lunch, we advise you to drop into a konoba - a small home restaurant that focuses on traditional Montenegrin cuisine and local wine.
Cetinje is considered the second capital of Montenegro, its historical and cultural center. In the XV century, during the Turkish expansion in the Balkans, Ivan Chernoevich (the ruler of the Principality of Zeta, which occupied the territory of modern Montenegro) decided to transfer the capital of the principality from the city of Obod to the sparsely populated and impregnable Cetinje. From this moment, the history of Cetinje as an important political center of Montenegro began. In 1484, Chernoyevich founded the monastery of the Nativity of the Virgin, which became the residence of the Zeta metropolitan - since then, Cetinje has also turned into the spiritual center of the country. It was here that the printing house where the first book in the Balkans was printed in Cyrillic - “The Book of Eight Voices”, which, by the way, can be seen in the museum at the monastery. Another important place in Cetinje is the National Museum, including the Museum of King Nikola, the Art Museum, Ethnographic and Historical Galleries, as well as the House of Nyegos (ruler of Montenegro in 1830-1851) and Billiards - the residence of Montenegrin rulers in the middle of the XIX century. Cetinje is located near Podgorica, so we recommend that you use the car rental service to quickly get to the city.
Another city where you can drop by a rented car is the picturesque Kotor, located on the banks of the beautiful Bay of Kotor. First of all, take a walk through the Old Maze City, whose charming streets in the spirit of the Middle Ages look exactly like the scenery for historical films. In order not to get lost in the labyrinths of streets, grab a map of the city and do not lose sight of the towers of St. Tryphon Cathedral. In the old part of Kotor, there are many cozy restaurants where you can have an inexpensive and tasty lunch (pay attention to fish dishes).
You have to come to Hemera very, very hungry, because the food here is so delicious that to try one dish is akin to a crime. Unobtrusive, nice decor, pleasant twilight, which is appropriate for both breakfast and a romantic dinner, a rich menu, a good wine list and prices that you don’t want to escape to a cheap eatery. Visitors especially praise tomato soup, grilled meat, tagliatelle with porcini mushrooms and a sponge cake with caramel sauce.
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One of those restaurants in Podgorica, where locals come with their whole families and arrange long and noisy feasts with toasts and national songs. Serving exclusively Montenegrin cuisine and homemade wines. Be sure to try tsitsvara (melted young cheese mixed with cornmeal), negushsky prosciutto with melon (dried pork) and veal under sachet (sach - a cast-iron frying pan in which meat and vegetables are put, then cover and buried in coals). If you still have strength and appetite, then try the tufahiya dessert - apples baked with nuts and decorated with cream.
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For seafood, it is best to go to Lupo Di Mare, where they excellently cook fish and other marine life and serve them along with fresh vegetables. In addition to the main course, we advise you to order a Greek salad (a free but tasty interpretation of the original salad) and a glass of local wine, and tiramisu is perfect as a dessert. The restaurant has a terrace overlooking a busy street.
Ivana Crnojevica 59
Locals say that in Calabria they cook the best pizza in Podgorica: from a wood-fired oven, on thin pastry and with a lot of toppings. The menu also has salads, meat and fish dishes, but everyone praises pizza exactly. The restaurant is small, only a couple of tables, a modest, but nice interior with many interesting trinkets.
Oktobarske Revolucije 23
Beer lovers should definitely appreciate this bar with more than 50 types of beer, ale and cider. If you are not used to it, you can get confused when you see long shelves with slender rows of beautiful bottles, so ask for help from a bartender who will quickly pick up the same taste for you. There is no way to eat here, as the establishment is focused only on drinks, but in Majstor Za Pivo you can play board games, hear songs with a guitar and spend an evening of soul.
+382 2023 0690 www.hotelziya.me/crnagora/ double room - from € 129
Boutique hotel near the Church of St. George. Comfortable rooms with a classic design and incredibly comfortable dark wood furniture (the bed is so soft that you don’t want to get out of it). Large windows and wrought-iron balconies overlooking the picturesque courtyard are another reason to say yes to Ziya Hotel. It features a spa with swimming pool, steam bath and hot tub. Free parking is available on site, which can be used by those who rent a car.
Svetlane Kane Radevic 1
+382 2040 2500 www.hotelpodgorica.co.me/ double room - from € 112
This four-star hotel in the very center of Podgorica is worth choosing because of the gorgeous view that opens from the windows of your rooms - the Moraca River in the thickets of trees looks great. Each room has a coffee machine that will delight lovers of a pleasant ritual - drink coffee in bed in the morning. The hotel has a restaurant Three Centuries, where you can try excellent pasta, fish dishes or something typical of Montenegrin. For those traveling by car, free parking is available.
Josip Broz Tito Boulevard nn
+382 7811 3333
double room - from € 90
Nice minimalist style hotel near the city center. Spacious and bright rooms in pleasant coffee tones. Some rooms have a balcony overlooking a quiet street. It offers a spa with hot tub and sauna, and a restaurant with a large wine list and a rich selection of local dishes. Paid parking is available on site, which is useful to those who rent a car.
+382 2087 2570
double room - from € 82
If you have an early arrival or departure planned and you want to stay somewhere near the airport, then it is advisable to choose the Hotel Aria, located about a kilometer from Podgorica Airport. Small rooms with balconies and good soundproofing, a cozy garden where you can have breakfast in clear weather, and a fitness center with an outdoor pool are a good combination of amenities for reasonable money. If you plan to rent a car, we will gladly deliver the car directly to the hotel.
Kralja Nikole 10
+382 2062 3349 www.bojatours.me/ double room - from € 77
BojaTours Hotel is located in the historical part of Podgorica, close to many cafes, bars and restaurants. Lovely rooms with home furnishings are perfect for a measured rest. The hotel has a gym. Another plus is free parking for rented cars (a place must be reserved in advance).
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© Ellina Rudenko, 2016