Montenegro may be tiny, but it sure packs a punch! Lying in the south Adriatic - bordering Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Albania - it is arguably one of the most diverse, interesting and alluring countries in Europe, and is crammed with cultural heritage, architectural treasures and jaw-dropping natural beauty.
Our twin-centre walking week is a glorious and contrasting mix. Starting in the mountainous north, we explore first the vast Durmitor National Park, with its glacial lakes, dense forests - with masses of endemic species - sparkling streams and fast flowing rivers. We visit the Tara Canyon (a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve and the second deepest canyon in the world at 1300m, after Arizona's Grand Canyon) to survey one of nature's best-kept secrets from a viewpoint 1200m above the crystal clear Tara River, granting panoramic vistas over the whole plateau!
For the second part of our trip we head south, to the warm shores of the Adriatic - described by Lord Byron as 'the most beautiful encounter between land and sea' - where pretty coastal villages cling vertiginously to rock walls that jut dramatically from the sea. We stay in Venetian Perast, considered the prettiest town in Montenegro, and relax by the water's edge after exploring some of its 18 historic churches. For a totally different perspective, we'll also take boat trips around Lake Skadar (great for bird-spotting) and the shores of tranquil Kotor Bay with its famous islets.
In both the mountains and on the coast, we've hand-picked high-quality 4-star hotels. Evening meals are included on all nights except for one where we've left you free to enjoy dinner at leisure at a restaurant of your choice.
Read more about this holiday in our blog.
Walks involve a mixture of woodland and forest trails, open meadows and country roads. While not challenging, short sections are rocky. The walk around Kotor's walls will take place at a gentle pace but involves steps to the top. Walking boots are recommended.
Arrive in the high Balkan mountain town of Zabljak (1450m) and your 4-star hotel. (Staying at Hotel Soa for 3 nights on Half Board)
A feast for the eyes of both keen and novice photographers this morning as we stroll the woods and meadows up to the spectacular Tara River Canyon, the deepest in Europe (1300m) and arguably the most beautiful river canyon in the world. Part of the Durmitor National Park and a protected UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, it boasts 40+ tumbling waterfalls, 80+ large caves, rapids, lakes and dense forest harbouring an abundance of plant and wildlife.
Swimming in the glacial Crno Jezero (Black Lake), walking through deciduous forest - keep your eyes peeled for various eagles in the skies above - and a picnic in the shadow of the Medjed Peak are just some of today's highlights as we explore the heart of the Durmitor National Park. Formed by glaciers, and traversed by a multitude of rivers, lakes and underground streams, the park is also home to one of the last virgin black pine forests in Europe with fauna including brown bear, wild cat, chamois and capercaillie.
We take a scenic drive south west this morning from Zabljak to the coast. En route, we'll stop in Niksic, home to Montenegro's most popular (and only homegrown) brewery. There's lunch on arrival at the Hotel Conte in Perast (home for the next 4 nights) followed by a relaxed afternoon on the water exploring the gorgeous sheltered Bay of Kotor and its postcard-pretty mediaeval villages, ancient coastal settlements and tiny man-made island of 'Our Lady of the Rocks' whose famous church is steeped in maritime history. (Staying at Hotel Conte for 3 nights on Half Board)
A scenic serpentine road takes us up (45 mins) to the Lovcen National Park with over 6,000 hectares of natural contrasts: imposing snow-capped peaks, stunning coastal views, 2000+ plants, 85 species of butterfly and over 200 bird types including many regal birds of prey. Besides its natural beauties, the park protects a rich, cultural and architectural heritage too, including authentic katuns - summer cottages for cattle breeders. We walk up to the mausoleum of Prince- Bishop Petar II Petrovic-Njegos - the ruler, poet and philosopher credited with having modernised Montenegro. We then continue to his birthplace - the picturesque mountain 'food' village of Njegusi, famous for its cheeses, honey and dried smoked hams, before returning to Perast for dinner.
Wedged between brooding mountains and the gorgeous bay, the historic city of Kotor is a UNESCO listed Natural and Culturo-Historical Region. Within the ancient walls its labyrinthine streets reveal some of the finest examples of mediaeval architecture: Romanesque churches, Venetian piazzas, San Giovanni castle and other cultural monuments. We've built in a walking tour of the city walls in the morning, but have left the afternoon free for you to continue exploring independently; you might prefer to simply sit and survey the yachts of the super-rich at the sun-kissed water front!
A 90-minute drive this morning takes us past pretty coastal villages and wonderful mountain scenery, then on to the warm waters of Lake Skadar on the Albania-Montenegro border. Flanked by small orchards and vineyards, this is the largest lake in the Balkan Peninsula, and is one of the most important reserves for wetland birds in Europe. After a circular walk up to the wine village of Godinje - we'll take a boat tour on the lake to view the area's wild beauty from the water. Think verdant hills rising from the lake, old world villages peppering the shores, an abandoned C14 monastery on its own tiny island and whiskered terns building their nests on floating water lilies. (Staying at Hotel Conte, Breakfast only)
If you wish to extend your holiday with nights in Dubrovnik, we can provide a free transfer there at the end of your holiday.
During your holiday you stay at the following hotels. If you'd like to extend your time at any of these or, if you'd like to enhance your stay with an upgraded room, just let us know at the time of booking. You can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss accommodation options.
NEARBY:Situated in the heart of Žabljak and surrounded by the natural scenery of the Durmitor National Park is the newly built Hotel Soa. The hotel features a blend of traditional and contemporary architecture with 18 comfortable rooms, a restaurant offering a variety of dishes and a stylish lounge bar. The hotel itself is tucked away, just off the road to the lakes, and surrounded by conifer trees, with a magnificent view of the mountains.
|Dates||Standard suite||Family suite||Executive suite|
|21/05/2017 - 01/10/2017||£24||£34||£54|
All prices shown above are valid from 19/05/2017. Supplements are per person per night based on 2 sharing. The Suites are larger than the Superior rooms and include a kitchenette.
Please contact us for extra night prices.
NEARBY:Lying right by the water's edge and boasting one of the area's best restaurants is the historic Hotel Conte. The hotel was once the Venetian town hall but was converted into a stylish hotel by the current owner in 2010. The restaurant is right at the water's edge with simply stunning views of the Verige straight and the tiny islands of St George and Our-Lady-of-the-Rocks. In the morning boats can often be seen mooring here to look at the menu and visit some of the town's 18 churches, the church of Saint Nicholas being just a few steps from the Hotel.
|Dates||Junior suite with sea view||Apartment with sea view||2 Bed apartment with sea view||3 Bed apartment with terrace & outdoor jacuzzi|
|21/05/2017 - 31/05/2017||£30||£38||£50||£70|
|01/06/2017 - 31/08/2017||£30||£42||£80||£90|
|01/09/2017 - 01/10/2017||£30||£38||£50||£70|
All prices shown above are valid from 19/05/2017. Supplements are per person per night based on 2 sharing.
Please contact us for extra night prices.
If you'd like to extend your trip with extra nights at the start or end, or if you'd like to arrange a stop off point en-route, then we recommend the following hotels.
NEARBY:Situated on the beautiful peninsula of Lapad, the Hotel Dubrovnik Palace’s dramatic cliffside location, below aromatic, pine-covered woods, affords it spectacular views in every direction. Of all the five-star hotels in Dubrovnik, this one stands out with its luxurious spa and wellness centre and spectacular sea views from every room.
|Dates||Deluxe sea view with balcony||Single deluxe sea view with balcony|
All prices shown above are valid from 19/05/2017. Prices are per person per night. Deluxe rooms are approximately 6m2 larger than the superior rooms and also have a sofa.
Please contact us for extra night prices.
Transfers included from Dubrovnik airport at 10:30 and back to Dubrovnik airport at 08:00.
Please call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 or email email@example.com to arrange connecting flights.
Everyone who goes on a Headwater holiday will be emailed a link to our post-holiday questionnaire where they can give us an honest assessment of all aspects of their holiday - everything from how quickly we answer the phone to how clean the hotels were - plus, of course, an overall rating and comments about their holiday.
Any feedback collected is posted straight to our website - totally unedited. So, for the real tales, twists and turns of our holidays, look no further than the reviews from our previous travellers.
I thought Montenegro was very beautiful. Headwater are an excellent and efficient organisation with well planned holidays.
Excellent scenery with a nice mix of challenging walking and more relaxed days. Montenegro is a really beautiful country and the guide really knows it well.
Our guide was really knowledgeable, helpful and friendly. She led us on some excellent walks with stunning views. If you like organised group holidays and walking I would recommend this company.
An excellent experience discovering a fascinating region which is still mostly unspoilt by mass tourism.
Montenegro must have some of the most beautiful, unspoilt landscapes in Europe. The walks are a good distance, mostly through woodland, but with some spectacular mountain top views as well. In September, the temperature was about right, although we did have some thunderstorms and rain, fortunately mostly at night. I have never seen so many varieties of fungi as there were in Durmitor National Park and the fields were carpeted with Autumn crocuses and the woods speckled with wild cyclamen. The gr... read moreoup of 12 got on really well and our local guide was delightful and looked after us brilliantly. The food was delicious and we were able to buy wild berries, dried mushrooms and smoked ham and cheese, eat local pastries for our picnics drink Montenegran and Croatian wines and try local liqueurs. The second part of the week in Perast makes for an excellent contrast, with a bit a culture thrown in, a couple of boat trips and wonderful seafood.
Very nice holiday in nice locations, with excellent local guide, only spoilt by extremely poor accommodation at Hotel Conte in Perast and extreme tiredness on first day due to ridiculously early flight time from Gatwick.
Dear Mr Goodfellow, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire. We were pleased to see you enjoyed your holiday overall and rated our local guide as excellent, we will ensure your praise is passed on. We were however sorry to read you felt the room allocated to you at Hotel Conte was extremely poor; this was disappointing to read; especially since past customers have rated this hotel highly. However, in light of your feedback, we will continue to monitor this hotel and work closely with the Hotelier to ensure our customers receive the standard of accommodation they have come to expect on a Headwater holiday. We were also sorry to hear you felt extremely tired due to the early flight from Gatwick. In order to alleviate this, we do offer extra nights in Dubrovnik before the start of the holiday, which can help break up the travel a little. We are sorry if you were not aware of this option. In closing, we would like to thank you for your continued loyalty and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future. Kind regards, Headwater Customer Service team
We had really good walks in quiet, beautiful countryside in a part of Europe that is so far relatively unspoiled by excessive tourism. Our guide was friendly and knowledgeable and the group of 13 got on very well with each other.
This was my first holiday with Headwater and I really enjoyed it. It was well organised, the accommodation and food was very good and our guide was really good, helpful and very knowledgeable.
Montenegro was graded one and a half boots - I think two boots would be more accurate as some of the walks were more challenging that those in the holidays I had recently with Headwater on the Amalfi coast and in the south of France. Having said that, the country is very beautiful and unspoilt and although some of the bus rides from Perast were long (over two hours) the countryside was so interesting I didn't mind at all - despite the hairpin bends!
The holiday provides plenty of views of this country of contrasts during walks and (longer than expected) minibus transfers. Our local guide Olivera helped to explain much: from tourism on the crowded coasts to the many deserted buildings. Zabljak area provides mountain walks and scenery, so take warm layers as air can be cool if sun goes in (the hotel looks good, but only rates 2*). The village of Perast is a gem and fairly quiet in September, luckily 20mins drive from busy Kotor where the oce... read morean liners stop. Hotel Conte really is 4*, with super food. All walks can be rugged from 1 to 2 boot (sturdy shoes and poles useful even on town walls of Kotor), and sometimes views hidden by low (wet) clouds (so thanks to our safe drivers). Not much evidence of wild life as we missed migration season.
Dear Mr Ward, Thank you for taking the time to complete your post-holiday questionnaire following your holiday to Montenegro, Please be assured that all of the feedback we receive whether complimentary or critical is valuable in helping us to continue to improve and develop our holidays for the future and is well received. We were pleased to read you had and enjoyable holiday overall, taking in the contrasts this area has to offer. Since receiving your feedback and as we continue to improve and develop our holidays for the future, we have made some changes to this holiday for the 2016 season. Firstly, we have changed the hotel in Zabljak to a 4 star located in the heart town, we have also increased the rating to a 2-boot holiday; we hope you will agree that these changes will help enhance an already interesting and enjoyable holiday. In closing, we would like to thank you for travelling with us this summer and look forward to welcoming you on another of our holidays in the future. Yours sincerely, Headwater Customer Service team
Good walking in a stunningly beautiful Country though the geography meant some long drives to access them.
Hotel Zabljak though looked good, once experienced felt cheap....bathroom fitments all loose, no plug in a tiny washbasin, shower that flooded the bathroom, awful food, undrinkable coffee! Not up to what we believe are Headwater standards.
Hotel Conte stunning location very good food until last evening when our group played second fiddle to a wedding party. By the time we were... read more offered dessert, very late, there was only ice cream on offer.
Dubrovnik Palace Hotel fabulous a brilliant way to end a good holiday.
The Hotel Conte in Perast, its staff and its service were excellent and we thoroughly enjoyed being there, much more so than at the hotel in the mountains. What a pity that there are not more local walks in that lovely coastal area; although the boat trip in Kotor Bay was most enjoyable. The walks in the mountains (Durmitor NP, Tara River Canyon and Lovcen NP) have spectacular scenery but are somewhat dependent on fine weather for full enjoyment which, unfortunately, was not always the case for us - disappointing! Overall, though, a good holiday.
Very enjoyable. The first two walks in the Durmitor NP were fantastic, definitely my favourite.
Montenegro is a beautiful country, fantastic mountain scenery and Kotor Bay is wonderful. We didn't bring walking poles due to the 1+ grading but I would have found them very useful on some of the walks, especially the last day walking to Godinje. Can't comment on Lake Skadar boat trip as that wasn't possible for us. Our guide Sinica was great, very considerate and obviously knew all the walks well. We have had some wonderful holidays with Headwater and this was one of the best.
Do not stay at the Hotel Zabljak. See our separate email to you.
We were surprised at your recommendation of the Dubrovnik Palace Hotel - it is so different to what you offer elsewhere!
An excellent guide, wonderful walks and very agreeable fellow travellers. We would always recommend small group holidays - they are so much more friendly.
A series of walks in varied locations.
You can be confident that our pricing includes all the standard requirements of your holiday and many additional extras. Always ensure that you are comparing like for like when booking your holiday. Find out about The Headwater Price Promise to ensure you're getting the very best value for money.
|Oct 2017||Tour only||Availability|
|1st Oct||US$2060||Check availability|
Minimum group sizes
A minimum of 6 people (in total) are required for each departure.
This holiday is unsuitable for children.
Guided walking Managed locally by Headwater appointed agent.
All buffet breakfasts, 4 lunches and 6 evening meals
Transfers included from Dubrovnik airport at 10:30 and back to Dubrovnik airport at 08:00.
If you choose to book your own flights please check with us first that your chosen departure date is definitely operating as our guided holidays are subject to minimum group sizes.
Due to the tailor-made nature of our holidays, we need a little more information in order for us to check availability for Highlights of Montenegro Walk. Simply complete the form below and a member of our sales team will contact you (when it's most convenient for you) to provide availability information, travel options and an accurate price. Of course there's no obligation, but if you do wish to proceed with a booking they will be on-hand to assist you throughout the process.
Alternatively, you can call our sales team on 1-800-567-6286 to discuss your requirements in more detail.
We've been creating high-quality relaxed activity holidays since 1985 and our wealth of experience means we're able to build the perfect tailor-made tour for you. Our 'Gold Trusted' rating on Feefo, the independent review site, underlines our exceptional levels of customer service, and our ATOL bonding and ABTA membership guarantees your holiday is safe with us.