Come along with Hiking the Balkans for an amazing trip to Montenegro, a small European country with stunning mountains, a beautiful coast on the Adriatic Sea which belongs to the Mediterranean region. The daytime temperatures at this time of the year are between 10 and 20 centigrade thus ideal for hiking.
All of the photos used in this preview are made by members who joined us on this trip in 2016.
Even though it covers solely around[masked] km2, thus being one of the smallest European countries and it only has about[masked] citizens, its contribution to the world cultural heritage is impressive compared to its size. To see some of the places we will be visiting please click on the video below:
Alternatively if you think that this video is "unreal" you can scroll through photos of our previous trips to Montenegro organized in
September 2014 http://www.meetup.com/London-European-Club/photos/21690692/
During centuries of its rich history Montenegro has survived many invasions which made an imprint on its cultural heritage. Christian, Muslim, Illyrian, Byzantine, Turkish, and Slav civilizations merged here making Montenegro forever a crossroad of culture and history.
We will be arriving in Podgorica, the capital of Montenegro and heading straight to the coastal town of Bar which is an old historic town first mentioned in the 9th century. We will have a tour around the old town and choose a nice restaurant for our first opportunity to sample the great Montenegrin food and wines. We will stay in Kula Guest House which has its own wine bar and restaurant. If we feel like it we can do a 1 hour hike to Bartula village for a BBQ dinner in an olive tree garden.
Below is a photo of Skadar Lake which we will be visiting and seeing from the mountain Rumija as we descent during our hike on day two. We will have a certified mountain guide who will accompany us throughout the trip and he will lead the hike to Rumija summit (1595 meters) on day two.
distance: 7km ; tot.ascend: 600m ; tot.descend: 1100m ; effective walk: 5:00h
We will be picked up by our minibus and drive on the narrow road along the lake to arrive in Virpazar where we are staying next in a family guesthouse.
In the morning of day three we will take a boat down the river Crnojevica which takes about 2 hours in a most wonderful surroundings to hike to the old capital of Montenegro Cetinje.
distance: 12km ; tot.ascend: 750m ; tot.descend: 100m ; effective walk: 4:30h
Along the way, we will stop for lunch and to admire the views from our trail before we arrive in the old Montenegrin capital Cetinje where we will have a guided tour seeing the old embassies and an old relief of Montenegro – made by Austro-Hungarian officers at the beginning of 20th century.
Map of our week long trip of hiking and cultural site seeing following a route above the Adriatic coast of Montenegro which will enable us to have some of the best views of St. Stefan and the stunning Kotor Bay. Our accommodation in Ivanova Korita (1100 meters) is hotel Monte Rosa which will be our base for the next two nights.
On day four we have two optional routes so those who are really keen can do a total of 19km in more than 7 hours of effective hiking to Babina Glava peak (1474m), Dolovi village, Jezerski Vrh (1657m) and Mali Bostur village. This will be the most challenging hiking day for those who decide to do both the morning and the afternoon hike, but there will be plenty of opportunities to stop and try local delicacies.
distance: 9.5km ; tot.ascend: 350m ; tot.descend: 300m ; effective walk: 3:15h
distance: 9.5km ; tot.ascend: 500m ; tot.descend: 500m ; effective walk: 4:00h
Our final destination of the day is Ivanova Korita, a most beautiful mountain resort near the peak Lovchen which we will also be visiting.
Recently opened, Monte Rosa hotel, where we will be staying has a lovely restaurant with a fire place where you can taste some of the best local lamb and beef as well as a variety of fresh salads and amazing local wines. We usually have dinner with a family in order to experience true Montenegrin hospitality.
We will be coming back to our hotel in the evening for a well deserved rest before we start our descent towards Kotor the next morning. The UNESCO town of Kotor is located in a secluded part of the Bay of Kotor which in my humble opinion is one of the most beautiful spots in the whole Adriatic. This Mediterranean port is surrounded by fortifications built during the Venetian period.
Together with the overhanging limestone cliffs of Orjen and Lovchen, Kotor and its surrounding area form an impressive and picturesque Mediterranean landscape. These cliffs will be a part of our hiking expedition on our way to our final destination Perast. Both Kotor and the surrounding Bay are recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site. To learn more about the region we are visiting click on the video below to enjoy some of the views of this medieval town.
We will arrive to Perast, our final destination in the evening of day 5 and stay in a family guesthouse built in the 17th century. The whole town of Perast (where the main and only street is just over 2km long) is protected by UNESCO and we will stay there for the last three nights in Montenegro, while doing hikes through the local mountain villages on day six and visiting Kotor on day seven.
On day six we will be doing our last hikes on this trip to fort Vranovo Brdo ending in the village Orahovac by the sea.
distance: 15km ; tot.ascend: 300m ; tot.descend: 850m ; effective walk: 5:00h
On day seven there is an optional boat trip from Perast to "Our Lady of the Rocks" church and afterwards the boat will take us to Kotor.
You will have time to explore Kotor, to wind down enjoying a coffee and ice cream or a glass of well deserved beer. Usually the future trips of Hiking the Balkans are planned on days like this, while having a rest from our hiking holiday, enjoying the local delicacies. Being curious as we are, we always want to know what is behind the next mountain and the next border.
On the last day we have an early start to go back to Podgorica and catch the flight back to London.
So what is in a name?
Some will say that its name, Crna Gora (MONTENEGRO), was brought by the seamen to whom it seemed cragged and dark. Others would say that its name was given by its enemies, because of the bad luck which would strike everyone trying to conquer it. The truth lies that the country carries its name by those who made it a state – the dynasty Crnojevic. Along with the dynasty of Petrovic they have remained the founders of this modern, small but proud, country in the Mediterranean.
Montenegro, even though small, always attracted attention and the sympathies of the great. It was painted and described by Tennyson, Gladstone, Byron....it is as the Dutch writer Dolard said: “A land behind the God’d back”. Montenegro is simply breathtaking! If you are up for a hiking adventure and want to "discover" a new European country do join us on another journey of discovery.
A full payment of £595 will secure your spot. Due to the fluctuation of the British Pound we reserve the right to ammend the price to an equivalent of €660 at the time of payment. We will send you the conversion rate in British Pounds and the bank details of Hiking the Balkans when you RSVP. The deadline for payment for this trip is 20th of February 2017.
Included in the price:
• 7 overnights based on B&B and 4 star hotel in twin rooms
• all transfers within Montenegro incl. arrival/departure transfers (for recommended flights only)
• all luggage transports between lodges
• English speaking certified mountain guide (8 days)
• tours guided by local cultural guides
• packed lunches during hikes
You must arrange your own:
• insurance (you can only join this trip if you produce insurance details prior to the trip)
• travel to and from Montenegro (airfare)
• all entrance fees to museums
• Lunches and dinners in restaurants. Packed lunches are included in the price.
• personal expenses for drinks, boat trips or souvenirs
Departure flight: London Stansted – Podgorica
[masked] Flight Number: FR 7961 (6:55 – 10:45)
Return flight:Podgorica – London Stansted
[masked] Flight Number: FR 7962 (11:10 – 13:05)
This trip is open to all our members as well as to members of London European Club. The total number of participants will not exceed 18 people. Contact Maja or Lea via Meetup to confirm your place before purchasing your flights. We don't like mass gatherings so the trip has a limited number of spaces, once full it is full. These trips are organised with the intention of discovering new countries and destinations in Europe. We are not a travel agency nor are we holiday reps. You will be expected to be a good team player and look after yourself and the members of your group. Join us if you are up for an adventure of a lifetime!