Hello traveling guys and girls! I can detail for you, some of my life living in Montenegro as an American expat in this blog post. I moved to Montenegro last summer after having spent a few months in Belgrade, Serbia which I loved. I came to visit Montenegro on a tourist visa from August for almost 3 months of time, so not your typical 1 week or weekend vacationer.
Now Montenegro does have its charms especially if you like the ocean. The primary industry here near the coast is tourism. First, a few things about Montenegro, it is a very small country, mountainous and located along the Adriatic sea across from Italy and within the former Yugoslavia. The population is about 620,000 people so its extremely small for a country. It borders on Albania which is the country i moved to afterwards. The capital Podgorica is a smallish big city that is located on a plain away from the ocean near the center of the country. Its not even close to the size of Belgrade so it can barely be called a city at 156,000 vs. 1.37 million.
Getting to Ulcinj, Montenegro. I took an interesting bus ride from Belgrade to Podgorica to Ulcinj. It was memorable for several reasons. Namely because of the amount of hills and mountains we passed in the night. It was an overnight bus and i was seriously afraid that the bus driver would drive off one of the 100s of cliffs we passed. It was a 12 hours long ride, more about driving here in Montenegro later. From Belgrade, many Serbians go to visit Ulcinj and many parts of Montenegro for summer vacation via plane or by car. A traveler can fly into either Podgorica or Tivat which is along the northern part of the coast. Ulcinj is actually a very small beach town along the very south portion of Montenegro. Here it is affordable even for the hottest and most popular part of the summer and this is what drew me to it. Go to the north, and its much more expensive to rent for August. the same is true for Croatia, prices up there are pretty ridiculous unless you want to visit in the winter.
Now there are certain things that were memorable about my trip over to Ulcinj and the surrounding areas, here we have a tourist town on a hill with many beaches around. There is a small castle/fortress area, the rocky beach area, the Little Beach at the center of town, and what is called Ada Bojana Velicka Plaza, which is translated to big beach, which is a huge flat beach about 2 miles south of town and doesn’t have any mountains. On the other side of this is Ada Bojana which is a nudist island, memorable for its own reasons, and ill get to this later.
So, just a few notes about my moving there, i took the bus to Budva Montenegro but there is also apparently a bus to Ulcinj from Belgrade, you just cant buy the tickets online. I mentioned the hills earlier, that was a bit scary and the second issue was my luggage, 3 big jumbo suitcases, a backpack, and a bicycle, quite a haul. I was able to get these into a taxi in Belgrade, then get them to the bus station, then aboard the bus for roughly $2 per bag, so only $6 total, flying with these items is much more costly. After I arrived in Budva, which is a cute upscale area, a little more so than Ulcinj, i then hired a local taxi driver to take me to Ulcinj, this cost me a bit more $$$. It took about 1 hours time and cost $50. The taxi driver helped me with my bags going into a guest house in Ulcinj.
I spent the summer time, a few weeks/months in Ulcinj and going to the beaches here, cycling, droning with my Mini 2, boating, and hanging around the beach doing just summer stuff. I didn’t do any fishing here but i am considering buying a pole, since i do have a small rubber boat inside my luggage – one of the reasons that i have so much luggage. I also spent some time hanging out in the local cheap restaurants that are not a bad price for a burger. Here is a vid i filmed along the main drag… uploaded Youtube.
After my time was up in Ulcinj I actually moved to two different locations, i spent one month at a guest house in Ulcinj, and didn’t really like the owner too much, but the price was decent for the room type. I switched to another place over in Ada Bojana Velicka Plaza that was more expensive, for about 2 weeks, and after this i moved to a place called Sutomore, Montenegro which also has its charms, this was in September to October of 2021, and ill tell you why it was memorable. Sutomore is a small beach town that is up the coast of Montenegro about 30 minutes in between Budva and Ulcinj. The taxi driver who drove me from Budva to Ulcinj was badmounting Sutomore because it was the cheapest place you can rent along the coast in Montenegro.
My time in Sutomore Montenegro. When i arrived here the summer was winding down and it was interesting to see the place becoming more quiet into the fall, in my mind this was memorable. Sutomore I would describe as charming in the fall. I stayed in an Airbnb up a hill about 1/3 of a mile from the beach. It was a super affordable price, one of the lowest prices ive paid for a monthly rental for a private room with A/C, tv, its own private bathroom, and a fridge! Here i spent my time at the beach or inside the restaurants on my laptop as I’m somewhat of a digital nomad/pro tourist and social media fiend. I also used to play with the strays along the beach one of whom was adorable. One town south, is a place called Bar, Montenegro.
Bar, Montenegro and the fall season. In order to get to Bar, you must either hitchhike or take a local private bus for about $1. You cant walk along the roadside because theres not one and there is no sidewalk, there are also big trucks that come barreling down the windy roads without looking, did i mention hills and curves? So once one hitchhikes his way over to Bar, theres a bit more of a town there, including some shipping centers, a waterfront, sports facilities, and bigger resorts that cater to cruise ship customers. there is also a port for loading and unloading. You can see this video that i took in Bar which i uploaded to Youtube here! You can see how its kind of deserted in the Fall, enjoy.
Moving… Later in the fall it became very dark and rainy here in Montenegro, and beach season ended. Over in Sutomore many of the business shut down for the season, and hardly anything was left. on October 20th i made the choice to relocate to Tirana, Albania. I hired a private taxi driver to drive me from Sutomore to Tirana for about 120 Euro, it was a smooth trip, and i needed to get a Rapid covid test to enter Albania, and passed the border by land.