Monthly Archives: June 2016

24th Kotor Children’s Theatre Festival

The Festival is traditionally held the first twelve days of July in Kotor – a magical backdrop, a UNESCO World Heritage site in one of the most beautiful bays in the world. It begins with the mayor of Kotor handing the keys of the Old Town to the children and thus, symbolically, the care of the town to them. The Festival was established in 1993 just a dozen steps from the building of the Kotor theatre in which the first puppet show was held in 1829.
It is the most important festival dedicated to the theatrical arts and to children and young people in South-Eastern Europe. It has been declared a cultural event of special significance in Montenegro and is supported by the European Union Culture Programme 2007-2013. It is held during the summer holiday season in the most beautiful locations in the Old Town.
The walls, squares, piazzas and piazettas become stages, and the theatre brings together all the arts in the joy of creativity and the creation of joy. After 200 years it brings the theatre back to Kotor to stay. The Festival is devoted to children and young people, but also to all those who nurture the child within them. It seeks to safeguard the values of peace, tolerance, equality and education. It serves to recognise and encourage the interdisciplinary abilities of children and their contribution to the future development of society. Or to use the words of UNICEF: Today’s children: Tomorrow’s world. It encourages the professional development of children’s and youth theatre, presenting the best in puppet, dramatic and multimedia shows from Europe and the world over.
In its 23 years, the Festival has:
– been attended by more than 350,000 people at 50 locations
– staged more than 435 theatrical performances
– taken more than 20,000 children through 750 artistic programmes
– hosted 2,700 artists from 43 countries.


UNESCO / Durmitor National Park

Many will be familiar with destinations from the UNESCO World Heritage List such as the Taj Mahal in India, Machu Picchu in Peru, the Pyramids in Egypt, Stonehenge in England, the Grand Canyon in Colorado and Lake Bled in Slovenia.  But did you know that also on UNESCO’s list of world natural and cultural heritage sites is Montenegro’s biggest national park, Durmitor? Durmitor National Park encompasses the Durmitor chain of mountains and the canyons of the Tara river with their 1,500 plant species and 130 bird species. The Tara River Canyon has been declared a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve, and there are also the Draga and Sušica canyons, the Komarnica canyon valley and a great many mountain-tops – 48 of them exceeding 2,000 metres above sea-level. There are also 18 glacial lakes that have been dubbed the Gorske Oči – the Eyes of the Mountain. Along with hundreds of other destinations the world over, this park has been specially selected for protection by the United Nations Organisation for Education, Science and Culture (UNESCO). The park is of inestimable value to all of humanity as a centre for the development of Balkan flora, with features of both alpine and arctic and, on the southern slopes, in the canyon valleys, thriving sub-Mediterranean and even Mediterranean vegetation, while the lakes are a focal point for plant life more typical of the Siberian taiga. The mountain meadows and pastures, the deep fissures, rock gardens, scree slopes, melt waters, peat bogs and freshwater habitats are what makes this part of south-eastern Europe so valuable, and incomparable to anywhere else in the world.
Durmitor National Park extends over 39,000 hectares, with 20,000 hectares under UNESCO protection after its inscription in the World Heritage list in 1980. Durmitor also comprises the highest-altitude town in the Balkans – Žabljak, located at 1,456m above sea-level and surrounded by no less than twenty-three peaks more than 2,300m in height.
German geographer Kurt Hassert said,
“Among the mountain giants of the south-Slavic countries, the most powerful and most magnificent is Durmitor”.
Photography lovers will attest to the fact that the combination of mountains and lakes makes for some of the most beautiful, natural subject matter. Durmitor National Park is an inexhaustible source of inspiration from which some of the most beautiful works of art have sprung, and the very name Durmitor has some interesting stories associated with it. It is told that the word Durmitor is of Romanic origin, from the Latin word dormitorium – it was from this word that the Italian word dormitorio came, or dormire, meaning to sleep.  When they were advancing into this territory the Roman legionaries are said to have asked themselves whether perhaps the mountain was sleeping. Another etymology of the name Durmitor dates back to the time of the Celts. According to this version the name is derived from the Celtic “water from the mountain” – dru-mi-tor, which many find a more likely explanation.
Some notable peaks dominate, setting the rhythm for all the others. The most striking are: Bobotov Kuk – 2,523m, Bezimeni Vrh – 2,487m, Minin Bogaz – 2,387m, Međed – 2,287m, Savin Kuk – 2,313m, Ljeme – 2,455m, Planinica – 2,330m, Crvena Greda – 2,175m and Pruta – 2,393m. The Austrian explorer Oscar Baumann was the first to scale the highest peak of Durmitor – Botovo Kuk – at a height of 2,523m, and his thoughts, written in “First Steps in Ciro’s Cave”, are still quoted today: “To our east stretched a deserted valley in the karst, full of rocky debris and snow drifts … while on the other side we were greeted by the green landscape … [A]ll was glistening beside Lakes Skrcko and Malo, which looked like two dark blue eyes”.
In its unbelievably deep and picturesque valleys, beneath the mountain slopes, surrounded by rich plant life, Durmitor conceals eighteen glacial lakes or, as the locals calls them, the Eyes of the Mountain. Mentioning just a few of them, there are Modro, Zminje, Vražje, Riblje and, certainly the best known, Crno Jezero (the Black Lake) which is frozen over in winter but in July and August reaches water temperatures of twenty celsius or more.
This mountain range offers ideal conditions for active holidaying all the year round – hiking, biking, angling, mountaineering and snowshoeing – but Durmitor also offers opportunities to get to know its cultural and historical heritage with visits to sites preserving prehistoric remains dating back to the time of the Illyrians, as well as the Romans. A variety of cultural influences have left their mark in the form of various characteristic structures. The Illyrians left tumuli, or burial mounds, while characteristic of the Roman period are stone bridges, standing stones and caravan trails that can be found in this region. Necropolises with their stylised tombstones, the ruins of Turkish bridges and watchtowers along the old Montenegrin-Turkish border, the remains of the ancient fortification of Pirlitor above Lever and the three monasteries in the Tara valley, at Dobrilovina, Dovolja and Đurđevića Tara, raised between the 15th and 17th centuries – all bear witness to a thriving mediaeval world here.
Seven areas of the Durmitor National Park are subject to special protection schemes, each with their own specific characteristics: the old-growth spruce and fir forest in the Mlinski Potok valley, the stands of black pine at Crni Podi in the Tara canyon, the Black Lake with its nearby forest, the Skrčka lakes valley and the immediate area of the Sušica canyon, the Barno Jezero lake with its immediate surroundings, the Zabojsko Jezero lake with surroundings and the area along the Tara river canyon.
Do you want to discover and enjoy the beauty of world heritage? Durmitor National Park is a destination you should not miss – just look at how magical the Black Lake is in winter.

5 Destinations That you Should not Miss in Montenegro


1. Perast – a unique town, guarded by UNESCO and by the affection of all those who have spent time there. It is thought to be the oldest human settlement in the Bay of Kotor – the remains of a Neolithic culture (3500 BC) and archaeological finds are evidence that the site where the town stands has been settled since Illyrian, Roman and early Christian times, right up to the present day. Perast is best depicted by its numerous important buildings – fortresses, churches, residences and museums testify to the turbulent history of this region, and to the rule here of Napoleon, the French, the Austrians and other conquering nations. Two small islands, called Our Lady of Škrpelj and Saint George’s, face Perast in the bay, lending the town a special charm and authenticity.


2. Mirišta and Plava Špilja – the former, an island close to Herceg Novi, on which the 14th-century Presentation of the Most Holy Mother of God monastery is situated (some even say it dates from the 11th century), the latter the “Blue Cave”, a unique natural feature on the Luštica peninsula. Two exceptional tourist attractions of this town which are well worth visiting. The entrance to the Blue Cave is guarded by cliffs reaching up to 40 metres above sea level. The deep blue emanating from the waters in the cave leaves visitors speechless.

3. Porto Montenegro Tivat – the most luxurious marina in the Adriatic. It has been built to receive mega yachts but also smaller sailing boats. This modern tourist complex was built to the highest architectural and engineering standards, whilst retaining Mediterranean charm and warmth. The marina is designed to provide fun and relaxation, with everything you could ever need all in one place, from numerous international restaurants, cafes, organic food shops, clothes shops offering top international fashions, pools, galleries and museums – everything you need for a quality holiday. The combination of quality service and the magical setting will afford you an experience that rivals any of the elite European tourist centres.

4. Sveti Stefan – the islet and the town sitting atop it. Once a fishing village situated on a rock just off the shore, connected to it by a narrow isthmus, in the seventies and eighties Sveti Stefan (Saint Stefan) became a famous resort for the world’s rich and famous. Famous actors, artists, kings and princes from all over the world have come to holiday in this magical seaside village, including, notably, Sophia Loren, who has been a frequent guest.

5. Biogradska Gora National Park –
Between the rivers Lim and Tara, in the middle of the Bjelasica mountain range, is the Biogradska Gora National Park, and within it, one of the last three European old-growth forests.This area has been protected since 1878, when it was encompassed by the so-called King’s Reserve – a gift to the then-king, Nikola. In the very heart of the forest, at 1094m above sea-level, is the Biogradsko Jezero lake. Its unique turquoise colour comes from the dense forest reflected in its waters. The woods are home to 86 tree species, many of them protected (incidentally, the Biogradska Gora National Park harbors 20% of all species endemic to the Balkan Peninsula). Nature-lovers can enjoy walksamong spruce, firs, beech, elm, oak and linden, while bird-watchers will want to look out for eagles and kites in flight. Large mammals include deer, chamois, bears and wolves. No less than 80 species of butterfly can be seen here too – 40% of all the species present in Montenegro.



Kite Surfing Ada Bojana

The Ada Bojana island is surely a rare gift of nature, surrounded by the deep blue of the Adriatic Sea on one side and the Bojana river on its two other sides, forming a triangular shape.
Its sandy beach, famed for its beautiful sunsets and fine grainy sand is three kilometres long and faces the sea. Favourable winds create waves perfect for all kinds of extreme water sports, especially windsurfing and kitesurfing, and this is one of the best locations for these types of sport in the Adriatic. Advanced surfers will love the strong maestral wind which blows in from the sea in the afternoons, while amateurs can take lessons at the windsurfing school here.

Kitesurfing is a fairly new extreme sport, combining elements of wakeboarding, windsurfing, surfing and paragliding, together with elements of gymnastics, and is a very dynamic sport. There are a number of styles of kiteboarding, which is why it has been likened to  “horse-riding on water”. Kiteboarding is done using small (7 to 15m2) specially-designed kite or wings. According to the ISAF and IKA, there were 1.5 million kitesurfers worldwide in 2012. We aim to popularize this attractive sport in the region and in Montenegro, where there is huge potential for its development.

Generation Gap: What Your Age Says About How You Travel

The post below was originally published on Hipmunk’s Tailwind Blog on March 9, 2016. Hipmunk Staff

For the third year in a row, we polled US travelers of all ages to find out more about the travel habits and trends of the coveted millennials as well as gen Xers and boomers. Last year, we reported that millennial travelers were “cheap, plugged in and always looking for pleasure“. Guess what, not much has changed.

Always-connected, highly-mobile millennials are forging new norms for leisure and business travel, making technology, in-the-know experiences, and adrenaline-rush adventures—not cookie-cutter vacation packages—some of the most striking hallmarks of the way they explore and enjoy their world.

When they do hit the road, millennials see themselves as explorers, not tourists. They disproportionately favor vacation rentals over hotels, cities over beaches, and grab travel opportunities whenever they can, such as topping off business trips with leisure travel.

Hipmunk is built by and for younger travelers, and we understand their travel patterns better than anyone else.  Our site and app attract people who are younger, on average, than other big online travel brands. Here are five key takeaways from this year’s study. Mix Business With Pleasure, Please!

  • Millennials do more business travel than any other age group, and they take advantage while they can:
  • They work on the road. 38% of millennials travel for business, while just 23% of Gen Xers and 8% of boomers say they do.
    And will do so even more. 80% are going to travel more for work in 2016 than 2015 (compared to 60% and 45% of Gen Xers and boomers respectively)
    They stay in vacation rentals. Seventy-four percent of millennials have stayed at a vacation rental (such as those available through Airbnb) on a business trip, an experience shared by just 38% of Gen Xers and 20% of boomers.
    They perfected bleisure. 81% will probably add extra time to a business trip (compared to 56% and 46% of Gen Xers and boomers respectively).

Millennials already dominate business travel, and they’re doing it in a different way than the previous generation. ‘Bleisure’ may sound like a contagious disease, but it’s a real phenomenon, and millennials are making vacation rentals a viable option for their business trips.
2) Cut the Cord, But Not the Tube

  • Millennials’ astute use of the Internet and social connectivity informs their travel preparation, and how they live when they’re on the road. They edge out other generations in their desire to be connected. This generation is connected 24-7, and that’s clear in the way they treat every stage of their travel.
  • They’re savvy with travel tricks and tools. One-half of millennials say they’re “travel hackers”, meaning they know all of the best sites and methods to get the best travel deals, while just 26% of Gen Xers and 12% of boomers share that sentiment.
    They stay connected always, in all ways: Whether flying for business or pleasure, Wi-Fi is the coveted in-flight amenity (41% and 46% of millennials says it’s the most important amenity for leisure and business travel respectively, topping entertainment systems or premium economy). Fast, free Wi-Fi is the favorite hotel perk for leisure travel (cited by 28% of millennial respondents). And fully one in ten say Wi-Fi trouble is their worst travel nightmare, topping extreme turbulence, lost luggage or an emergency landing.
    They get travel ideas from social media. Forty-four percent of millennials get travel inspiration from YouTube videos and 28% from Instagram.  While just 18% of Gen Xers and 6% of boomers turn to YouTube, and 7% and 1% of Gen Xers and boomers to Instagram respectively.

3) Skip the Agony (and the security line)

  • Millennials will go the extra mile – or pay a little more – to remove friction points that make travel frustrating.
  • They’re more likely to use pre-check services like TSA/Clear: 31% of millennials say they’ll do so this year, vs. 24% of Gen Xers and 23% of boomers.
    They’d like to avoid the agony of a crying baby in flight. Half say they’d be willing to pay more for a child-free flight.

4) Bye-Bye Beach, Hello Bucket List!

  • The younger the traveler, the more likely he or she eschews the label of “tourist” when on the road, suggesting younger generations want to experience different cultures authentically, not just to observe them.  The study found that 38% of millennials surveyed consider themselves to be explorers rather than tourists, compared to 30% of Gen Xers and 24% of boomers.
  • And this year, millennials say they are planning monumental, remember-it-forever travel.
  • They’re ready for a big adventure. 65% of millennials claim they are checking something off their bucket list this year, compared to just 35% and 21% of Gen Xers and boomers respectively.
    They crave nature. While beach vacations and theme parks remain popular destinations across generations (37% of all respondents say they’ll head to the shore this year and 23% to Disneyland and its ilk), millennials seek out outdoor and activity-based trips more frequently.
    Thirty-four percent of millennials will enjoy Mother Nature’s company (e.g. camping or hiking), while only 27% and 16% of Gen Xers and boomers respectively will join them. And nearly one-in-five millennials (18%) will indulge in adventure sports like skydiving or snowboarding, a risk just 6% of Gen Xers and 1% of boomers plan to take.
    They’re ready to go anywhere, anytime. 75% have a valid passport from the United States and/or another country vs. 49% of Gen Xers and 40% of boomers.
    They cross the border. Sixty percent of millennials will take a vacation outside the United States this year, while just 33% of Gen Xers and 17% of boomers will go to another country.

5) 2016 Year of the Travel Optimist (and Airbnb)

This may well be the year of the travel optimist as more people report they plan to take their vacation days. Fifty-four percent of all generations say they are planning on traveling more this year than in 2015.  That percent hits a whopping 72 percent among just the millennial respondents, compared to 59% of Gen Xers and 40% of boomers.

It’s been widely reported that Americans don’t take enough vacation, and the Hipmunk survey confirmed that 30% of all people say they took no leisure trips last year. Nevertheless, 82% of millennials took time off for fun. Some seemed to have nothing but fun: 7% of millennials took 10+ leisure trips last year, compared to just 3% of the general population.

Millennials also lead the way in preferring vacation rentals over hotels. Forty-four percent of that generation would rather bunk down Airbnb-style on their leisure trips than drop anchor at a hotel; only 23% of Gen Xers and 11% of boomers agree. This preference extends to business travel.

These trends suggest that vacation rentals could eventually surpass hotel bookings amongst this age group, for both business and pleasure.

Survey Methodology: The survey was conducted on Hipmunk’s behalf by Market Cube between February 5 and 9, among 1650 adults (22% of respondents were aged 18 to 34).


Hipmunk Hotels: Alternative California Roadtrip through Fairfield, Chula Vista and more

The post below was originally published on TheRestlessWorker on April 12, 2016.

California remains one of my favorite destinations, especially for a road trip. There are so many different cities and places to visit that it’s hard to pick just a handful of cities to see. For those of you that have been to the more well-known cities, this California road trip is for you.

This road trip should be done in about a week, five days if you really pushed yourself. It’s a long drive between Big Bear Lake and Half Moon Bay, so there is flexibility to stop along the way if you need to. Make sure you take time to admire the beautiful landscapes!                                                                                   Sabrina Garcia via Trover

Chula Vista, California

This city is the second-largest in the San Diego region, and is often overshadowed by downtown San Diego. Chula Vista has lots to offer when it comes to entertainment, shopping and dining. Chula Vista Bayside Park is a favourite for fishing. For those travelling with kids, be sure to check out the Living Coast Discovery Center or Aquatica Water Park. There are also lots of options for hotels with great prices, like The Good Nite Inn.

Big Bear Lake, California

Surrounded by the San Bernardino National Forest, Big Bear Lake is definitely a destination for outdoor lovers. It doesn’t matter in what season you visit, with the rolling hills, the rugged rocks, and the clear blue water you’ll wonder why this place isn’t at the top of everyone’s list in California. There are lots of unique options when it comes to hotel stays as well,  so make sure to do your research before heading down.

Half Moon Bay, California

Along the California coast, just south of San Francisco, Half Moon Bay is an area you don’t want to miss. The sandy cliffs spread for miles and make for gorgeous photographs, especially at sunset or sunrise. You’ll find quite a few luxury resorts in this posh area, with  fine dining to match. The beaches are the main point of interest here, and are perfect for relaxing or taking advantage of the great surfing.                                                                    Running away to the world via Trover

Fairfield, California

Not many consider Fairfield as a destination point, as it’s right in between San Francisco and Sacramento, but there are plenty of things to do here to keep you busy. Be sure to check out some of the boutique wineries in the area. For those travelling with kids, Scandia Family Center is always a good bet.

Napa Valley, California

One of the most popular places in the United States, if not the world for wine Napa Valley I’m sure is not a place to be missed (even though I did in my last trip). The region is also home to some of the more famous wineries like Robert Mondavi. From what I’ve seen in pictures, and I’m sure they don’t do it justice, the landscape around the wineries is picturesque at every twist and turn. To me it looks like a mini Tuscany.

So there you have it the idea road trip I would love to embark on for my next trip to California. I mean seriously, what’s not to love about beaches, beautiful landscapes and absolutely delicious wine?

Explore the amazing Adriatic old town of Herceg Novi

Fortress, small squares, old churches, narrow streets, exotic vegetation – all features of the town of Herceg Novi. Situated at the very entrance to one of the most beautiful bays in the world, the Boka Kotorska (the Bay of Kotor), it abounds in historical heritage, unique and varied flora and day trip that are destinations surrounded by nature and suitable for visits all the year round due to the exceptionally mild, warm climate. The average annual air temperature in Herceg Novi is 16 degrees centigrade.
Whether you are coming from East or West, as you turn off the main highway into the centre of town itself, the first thing to greet you will be the magnificent Kanli Kula fortress. It is often said that the fortress, owing to its size and position, rules over the town. It dates from the 16th century, and like most of Herceg Novi is built of stone, with thick walls and towers. Kanli Kula is known across the Adriatic as a fantastic summer theatre stage, into which it was adapted in 1966. Every summer evening Kanli Kula is the venue for all kinds of concerts, film events and more besides. During the day visitors can tour the walls and enjoy the splendid view over the town for only €1 – the price of the entrance ticket. From here you can take the most beautiful photographs of the city and of the mouth of the Bay of Kotor. Descending the steps from Kanli Kula to the main town square, Nikola Đurković Square (previously called the Salt Square), our gaze alights on the Sahat or Sat Kula (the Clock Tower).
The old clock at the top of the tower long withstood the rigours of time, only being replaced in 1995 with a new, electric one, and has always been one of the hallmarks of Herceg Novi. Built in 1667 during the time of Turkish rule, this tower, with steps running through it, is unusually positioned, and this fascinating structure has served as the main entrance to the town ever since it was built. The square is home to numerous cafes, banks, clothes stores and bookshops. Nearby is also the town market, where you can buy fresh fruit and vegetables every day, mostly home-grown, as well as freshly caught fish from local fisherman.
As soon as we get to the bottom of the steps from the main square, through the Clock Tower, we come across a second Old Town square called Belavista, meaning “beautiful view”. Belavista Square is dominated by the Orthodox Church of the Holy Archangel Michael, unique for its stone iconostasis. The Old Town square is a jewel of architecture. The water fountain in the centre of the Belavista Square was recently reconstructed and is a real attraction for tourists.
You can get down to the town promenade and beaches via any number of narrow passageways and steps. One of the most interesting is the passageway from Belavista  Square through Marka Cara Street (named after the writer) and the Catholic churches of St. Jerome’s (with its rich treasure-store) and St. Leopold Mandić’s. In this street lives a veritable dinosaur among trees – a Gingko biloba that has found its place amongst the numerous palms and seaside plant life.
This passageway will also take you to the 15th century Forte Mare fortress by way of a symbolic little bridge that connects the fortress with the Old Town. Built on a rock, it rises steeply above the shore itself, towering over the Town Beach and the harbour (the Škver). At the lower side of Forte Mare there is a door that leads from the promenade to the top of the fortress, built into the walls themselves, and the upper door is also known as the Sea Door (Porta di mare) The Forte Mare Fortress is visible from all around and, as its name suggests, is a true sea fortress. Beginning on 1st July every year, films are shown here, turning it into an open-air cinema under the starry sky – a unique experience. It can be toured between 7 am and 7 pm every day. Tickets for individual visitors are €2 and €1 per person for group visits.
Descending to the Pet Danica Promenade, if we look towards the eastern part of town we can see the Citadela fortress. Standing in the sea itself, connected to the town centre by its walls, this tower was built during the time of Venetian rule. The earthquake which struck Herceg Novi  in 1979 completely demolished this fortress, the old walls of which still lie in the sea.
If you decide to head in the other direction, toward the town harbour and the open-air water polo pool, you will see the Railway Station on your right, now wonderfully renovated as a tourist facility. This was a unique railway station in view of the fact that it was built on the very shores of the sea, next to the town harbour.
Little-known is the fact that trains once ran in the Boka along the Pet Danica Promenade and that the main station was in Zelenika, a few kilometres along the coast . The railway was officially opened on 16th July 1901 when the first train arrived in Zelenika carrying high officials of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which ruled the Bay of Kotor at the time. The railway station building in Herceg Novi was built in 1934 thanks to the much-respected mayor of the time Mirko Komnenović. It was built of stone and reconstructed and reopened in 2005.
From the terrace of the “Station” there is a view of the small marina and lighthouse, where fishing and tourist boats and yachts moor. The Škver, as it is popularly known, is the best place to rent a craft or hop on one of the small boats that take trippers to popular spots around Herceg Novi that are most easily accessed by sea. In the summer months, when the town is very busy, Rose, Mamula and Žanjice are three not-to-be missed destinations, offering natural beauty, historical sights and a relaxing atmosphere.
Not only is Rose a beautifully-preserved little Mediterranean village, it is also one of the oldest settlements in the region.It is mentioned as far back as the 4th century by the name of Resnium. Around Rosa, both on land and in the sea, there are some very important archaeological sites. A great many divers come here to explore underwater and to tour the old shipwrecks from times gone by that lie on the sea bed. Rosa is also home to a very well-known diving camp. Alongside the beach, where there are several restaurants, there is the old Forte Rose fortress where there is also a restaurant and tourist amenities.
The little rocky island of Lastavica on which the Mamula fortress stands is set on the sea route to Žanjice, at the very mouth of the Bay of Kotor. Although the Mamula fortress has a dark history it is an impressive sight. It is one of a series of important fortifications (together with Arza and Prevlaka) constructed by the Austro-Hungarian army in 1853 in order to defend the mouth of the bay. It was symbolically named after the Austrian general Lazar Mamula whose idea it was to raise a fortress on the island. Its remarkable architecture makes this fortress one of the most attractive in the Adriatic. The entrance to the fortress is on the north-eastern side of the island, where there is also a drawbridge. Although difficult to access, the site should not be missed, both for a tour and for some swimming in the summer months.
If we continue towards the open sea we will reach the Žanjić beach, one of the most popular in Montenegro. This beach is special because of its crystal clear sea, naturally white pebbled beaches and ancient olive groves growing right next to the beach. You can take a look inside the Church of St. John, dating back to 1881 and located in the olive groves just a few steps from the beach. There you can hear the interesting story about this church and the idyllic location that is Žanjice, or take a stroll through breathtaking natural surroundings to the nearby Mirišta beach.

Autumn and Montenegro travel

Yellow, red and golden colors predominate in autumn, and why miss this magical time of year in Montenegro when it is perfect for experiencing adventure? The best time to travel is often said to be between September and November, and it is not different in Montenegro. The beautiful weather, the sunny days and the cool but still-mild evenings are perfect for 4×4 safaris, photo safaris, mountaineering or simply hiking the mountain trails, visiting cultural and historical sites with our tour guides or exploring bays and concealed beaches. Here you can bathe since the average temperature of the Adriatic Sea is still 23 °C in October. For visitors who want to spend their days in complete relaxation of body and soul, we can recommend one of the spa and wellness hotels offering a variety of treatments, massages, saunas, refreshing pools or relaxation in a whirlpool bath in beautiful mountain or seaside surroundings.

What are the advantages to traveling to Montenegro in autumn?

Prices of flights and accommodation are lower.
Roads, cafes and restaurants are significantly less busy.
You can visit one of the numerous festivals and other cultural events in Montenegro.
You can tour several destinations, towns and visitor attractions when there are no crowds.
You can travel and spend time outside in light clothing, without the summer heat.
You can enjoy autumn foods and the fruits of the harvest.
You can best experience daily life and authentic local culture.



Birdwatching in the Tivat Solila

An ornithology trail has been opened in the special Tivat Solila birdwatching sanctuary, with two bird hides.
The close proximity of the sea and the well-preserved geological features of this lagoon make it especially attractive for birds. The shallow saline water, abouding in marine life, and its silt bed rich in benthos, draw water birds to feed, overwinter and stop off during autumn and spring migrations. 47 water bird species have been recorded at Solila, of which 4 species are permanent residents, around 35 overwinter there and 6 probably nest there. Including other bird groups – songbirds, birds of prey and others – 111 species have been recorded at Solila to date. However, this list is by no means complete, since every year several species new to that habitat are registered.

To date 526 bird species have been recorded in Europe, which means that the number of bird species present in this lagoon comprise more than 20% of the European total, which is no small amount.
Of special importance are at least 11 species from Annex I of the EU Birds Directive, as well as a number of internationally endangered bird species, such as for example the pygmy cormorant (Phalacrocorax pygmeus).

Special plant and animal reserve

Because of its importance for the survival of plant life otherwise rarely found along the 800km eastern Adriatic coast, and as a habitat for numerous threatened species of amphibians, reptiles and birds, in 2007 Solila was placed under protection as a special plant and animal reserve, the first of its kind on the Montenegrin coast and the first protected area of any kind on the coast since 1968, when a large number of beaches were put on the list.
Solila is an Emerald site under the Bern Convention and an IBA (Important Bird Area) in Montenegro.

Help the birds

Artificial nests (bird-houses) are primarily occupied by birds that nest in hollows, in trees or rock crevices. The best way to protect these birds is by preserving as many natural hollows as possible – and if not we can provide man-made ones. This is a good way to attract a great many birds into our orchards and gardens where we can easily watch their everyday activity.
Winter is a time of selection, when only the toughest survive. All of the birds that overwinter in our region are adapted to frost and the cold. Opinion is divided as to whether birds should be fed in winter or not. In a preserved, natural environment, in which birds can easily find food for themselves, supplementary feeding is unnecessary in biological and conservation terms. In environments in which natural food sources are lacking (for example in artificial environments, populated areas etc.), supplementary feeding of birds is worth considering. Feeding stations need only be used while snow is on the ground. Seeds needs to be kept dry and grain trays kept clean. Water, bread and salted food should not be given. The most suitable foods are sunflower seeds, oats, corn and other grains.
During dry times of year it is more important to provide birds with drinking stations than with food. Water can be supplied in purpose-made containers or any other kind of shallow dish. Care should be taken that water containers are not too deep.



Kite Surfing Ada Bojana

The Ada Bojana island is surely a rare gift of nature, surrounded by the deep blue of the Adriatic Sea on one side and the Bojana river on its two other sides, forming a triangular shape.
Its sandy beach, famed for its beautiful sunsets and fine grainy sand is three kilometres long and faces the sea. Favourable winds create waves perfect for all kinds of extreme water sports, especially windsurfing and kitesurfing, and this is one of the best locations for these types of sport in the Adriatic. Advanced surfers will love the strong maestral wind which blows in from the sea in the afternoons, while amateurs can take lessons at the windsurfing school here.
Kitesurfing is a fairly new extreme sport, combining elements of wakeboarding, windsurfing, surfing and paragliding, together with elements of gymnastics, and is a very dynamic sport. There are a number of styles of kiteboarding, which is why it has been likened to  “horse-riding on water”. Kiteboarding is done using small (7 to 15m2) specially-designed kite or wings. According to the ISAF and IKA, there were 1.5 million kitesurfers worldwide in 2012. We aim to popularize this attractive sport in the region and in Montenegro, where there is huge potential for its development.