Every year Montenegro is becoming more and more popular as a road trip destination. Known as the country where the “mountains meet the sea”, Montenegro is truly a country that offers everything. If you want epic road trip views, lots of unique places to visit, and great camping spots, then Montenegro should be top of the list for your next road trip destination!
Below I take you through an epic 10 day Montenegro road trip itinerary that will allow you to see the highlights that this wonderful country has to offer.
10 day Montenegro road trip itinerary
Day 1: Herceg Novi
This Montenegro road trip itinerary starts in the beautiful, historic old town of Herceg Novi. This beautiful coastal town has lots to offer. Start your day by climbing up the Mare Fortress. In the summer months, you can climb to the top for a small fee and you’ll be greeted with a fantastic panorama of the entrance to the Bay of Kotor and the Adriatic Sea.
Afterward, make sure you visit the cobblestone streets of the Old Town, which feel much more authentic and quaint than the more popular Old towns of Kotor and Budva.
Due to limited parking within the center, it’s a good idea to park outside and hop on the bus into the town itself.
Days 2 & 3: The Bay of Kotor
This is probably the most famous site in all of Montenegro, and it’s no surprise why. The Bay of Kotor is every bit as beautiful in reality as you see in the photos. The famous old town is protected by a wall, so you can park outside at one of the various public parking lots and take a short walk on foot.
Once you enter you’ll be amazed by the beauty and charm the old town has to offer. Grab a bite to eat, or a coffee and ice cream, then get ready to climb the Kotor Fortress. This is a very steep climb upwards, which will take you around 1 hour, but the views are totally worth it.
If you wish, Kotor is a great base to grab a boat tour to other areas on the Adriatic coast such as The Lady of the Rocks and the Blue Cave.
Days 4 & 5: Lovcen National Park
After spending a couple of nights at Kotor, you can spend the next day exploring the beautiful Lovcen National Park. The drive up here isn’t for the faint of heart. This drive is known as the Serpentine road and is complete with 25 numbered switchbacks. But it’s truly one of the most beautiful drives in all of Europe. The views get better and better as you climb.
You should definitely stop at the Horizon Restaurant at the top for a drink with one of the most epic views in all of Montenegro.
Once at the top, don’t forget to explore the Njegos Mausoleum which sits on top of Mount Lovcen, Lovćen’s second-highest peak.
Day 5 & 6: It’s time to head to Montenegro’s Riviera – Budva
If you’re eager to see those beautiful famous blue waters Montenegro has to offer then the Budva Riviera will not disappoint. Budva itself is a charming town, which also has a special walled old town offering lots of great shops, restaurants, and cafes.
If you like to see fancy yachts and boats, then this is the place to do so, the water is lined with beautiful boats and it’s possible to take boat tours to nearby “Hawaii Island”. Other beautiful beaches in the area that are worth visiting include Jaz Beach and Mogren Beach.
Day 7: Visit a winery
Montenegro has fantastic wineries and high-quality wine. It’s also possible to stay at wineries for the night, and as you can imagine, the drive to them, and the surrounding views are spectacular. One highly recommend winery is Winery Masanovic which is close to the famous Skadar Lake.
Days 8 & 9: Visit Skadar Lake
There are lots of things to see and do on Skadar Lake and the surrounding areas. There is a wide range of various viewpoints of the lake, but one of the most popular is the Pavlova Strana Viewpoint. The views here are fantastic, but be careful when driving as the road can get very busy. It’s better to go earlier in the morning, or later in the evening to avoid a build-up of traffic.
Another highly recommended activity for your Montenegro road trip itinerary is to take a sunset cruise on the lake itself. You’ll find lots of people offering these cruises, or if you’re staying in accommodation near the lake, then your host will be able to organize it. The sunset views on this lake are breathtaking and it will be a lasting memory of your time in Montenegro.
It’s also possible to swim and kayak in the lake too, and lots of people like to relax at the beaches that surround the lake. Take a few days to immerse yourself in the nature and beauty of this part of Montenegro.
Day 10: Head to Bar or Podgorica
Depending on your preferences, on the last day of your Montenegro road trip itinerary, you can either head back to the coast and visit the beautiful coastal town of Bar to relax on the beach and grab a cocktail, or you can visit the capital of Montenegro, Podgorica for some shopping and great food!
Tips for driving in Montenegro
1. Most drivers will need to buy insurance at the border
If you’re renting from a car rental agency to enjoy your Montenegro road trip, then it’s likely that insurance will already be included. But, if you’re driving in from Croatia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, or Albania, then you’ll need to buy insurance at the border.
It’s very easy to do as there are insurance booths just after border control where you can buy temporary insurance for your time in Montenegro.
The cost varies, for example, the cost for 2 weeks in a campervan is €77, but a car would be cheaper.
2. Dipped headlights are required
Use dipped headlights during the daytime all year round and on all roads.
3. You can take a car ferry to avoid traffic
As mentioned above, Kotor is probably the most popular place in Montenegro. Therefore, in summer, the whole area becomes super busy with campers, buses, and cars. So between the villages of Kamenari and Lepetane, you can hop on the car ferry which will save you about 30km in driving (via Kotor, Perast, and Risan) if you drive from Herceg Novi to Budva or vice versa.
If you choose to drive (because this is a Montenegro road trip, after all!), the journey by road takes around 45 minutes, and it can be longer if there is a traffic buildup.
When is the best time to road trip Montenegro?
If you want to escape the crowds, then it’s better to plan a Montenegro road trip in the shoulder months of the peak season which runs from June to August. The next best option is going in the months of May and September, to enjoy very pleasant weather with fewer crowds.
Montenegro also makes a good choice for a winter road trip because the average winter temperatures on the Montenegro coast are around 10°C which is still a very pleasant temperature for sightseeing the old towns and beaches.
So there we have it, my 10 day Montenegro road trip itinerary! This Montenegro itinerary will definitely take you through all the highlights Montenegro has to offer, but I have a feeling that once you visit, you’ll definitely find yourself wanting to return in the future!
Tours to discover the best of Montenegro
Cazzy Magennis is a type 1 diabetic who has been traveling the world for the last 5 years, and now she is on a mission to drive around the world in her self-converted campervan with her partner Bradley!
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Planning your Montenegro road trip itinerary? Read these travel articles:
Travel to Montenegro’s seaside & see its hidden gems
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Balkans travel: The ultimate Balkans travel bucket list