National Geographic Poland: Discover Montenegro, the pearl of the Balkans, with us

The Balkans delight with their diversity. The beauty of this country lies in its sandy beaches, still untrodden mountains, wild parks and medieval cities and towns. Importantly, all these attractions can be seen in one day!

They call it "the undiscovered jewel of the Adriatic". Montenegro, a small country in the Balkans, offers much more than beaches (although these are some of the most beautiful in Europe, just to mention Velika Plaža, Petrovac, Ada Bojana or Jaz) and popular resorts. To experience the extraordinary hospitality of the locals, delicious cuisine and wild nature, it is worth going to, among others: to the north of the country.

Wild nature and a medieval city

Montenegro delights with its untamed nature and spectacular landscapes. While there, you cannot miss the fjord-like Bay of Kotor, which is considered one of the most picturesque places in the Balkans. And no wonder, because the turquoise water looks like something out of a fairy tale.

Thanks to the recently opened Kotor Cable Car, we will get to know the panorama of the area from a completely new, fascinating perspective. It takes only 11 minutes to reach the very top of Kuk, which is located in the heart of Lovćen National Park. The lower station of the cable car can be found in the village of Dub, approximately eight km from the historic center of Kotor.

– This new tourist attraction, which can be used from April 1 to October 31, allows tourists to move to the mountains in a comfortable way and encourages them to discover this part of Montenegro. Thanks to the investment, traffic on the old road from Njeguši to Kotor will also be reduced, which will reduce CO2 emissions and have a positive impact on coastal and inland areas, encourages Ana Tripković Marković, managing director of the National Tourist Organization of Montenegro.

Something tells us that we won't have to encourage you to visit Kotor for long. It is one of the best-preserved medieval cities in the Mediterranean, inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List. It's easy to fall in love with its winding streets, numerous squares and markets. The spectacularly situated city can be admired not only from the gondola lift, but also from the serpentine road running 1,000 m down a steep slope.

Five national parks are absolute "must-sees"

Not everyone knows, but there are five national parks in Montenegro. Four of them: Durmitor, Lovćen, Prokletje and Biogradska Gora are located in the mountainous part of the country (which is not surprising considering the fact that majestic mountains cover as much as 60% of the country's area!).

The largest of them - Durmitor - is known for its conical peaks. It boasts a network of marked tourist trails with a length of up to 150 km, as many as 50 peaks higher than 2000 m, 18 glacial lakes (including the Black Lake, the deepest in all of Southeastern Europe), karst caves and river canyons. The most impressive is the Tara River valley, 1,300 m deep. It is not only the deepest canyon in Europe, but also one of the deepest in the world. Tara is the longest river in Montenegro (158 km) and is ideal for rafting. Rafting on the river is so popular here that even several special camps have been established there.

Turn, the Prokletije reserve (literally translated as "cursed mountains") is worth visiting due to the wildest and most inaccessible mountain range in Europe, the highest peak in Montenegro - Zla Kolata (2,534 m above sea level) and Hridsko lake, the highest lake in Montenegro.

In the Biogradska Gora national park you will find the only primeval beech forest in Europe and one of the oldest glacial lakes in Europe - Lake Biogradsko.

I guess no one will be surprised by the fact that Durmitor is included on the UNESCO World Heritage List, and the Tara River that runs through it has the status of a biosphere reserve. 

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Tuesday, 16 July 2024

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