Wondering how to get to Montenegro? Discover the top 5 easiest and most affordable ways to get to Montenegro, whether you're flying, driving, or taking a bus.
With three international airports to choose from, rail links, daily buses, and a ferry, there are lots of ways to get to Montenegro.
Finding the best option for you will depend on where you’re coming from, how much time you have, your desired level of comfort, and of course your budget.
I’ve been traveling to and from Montenegro for the last 15 years. In this guide, I’ll give you a comprehensive overview of the best ways to travel to Montenegro, whether by air, land, rail, or sea.
For most people, flying is the best way to get to Montenegro. There are daily flights to Montenegro from European centers and further abroad, especially during the summer months.
You can also choose from three international airports, which makes finding convenient and affordable flights easier.
Montenegro is served by two main international airports: Tivat Airport, located near the popular coastal town of Tivat, and Podgorica Airport, situated near the capital city.
If you are staying in the Bay of Kotor or Budva, Tivat Airport is the most convenient airport to fly into. If you are staying in Podgorica, Bar, Ulcinj, or anywhere in the north of Montenegro (eg Žabljak or Kolašin), Podgorica Airport is the best airport to fly to.
However, Montenegro is tiny, so you can use either airport and easily travel to your destination.
The third airport you can use is Dubrovnik Airport in Croatia. At just 21 kilometers (13 miles) from Montenegro, it’s close enough to be a convenient option for flying to Montenegro. And getting from Dubrovnik Airport to Montenegro is easy. You can take a bus, taxi, transfer, or rent a car.
Air Montenegro is Montenegro’s national carrier and operates flights from around Europe to both Podgorica and Tivat airports.
In addition, the following airlines also fly to Montenegro:
Renting a car for your stay in Montenegro is a great idea to help you get the most out of your stay. It's more cost-effective than using taxis and booking tours if you plan to do a fair amount of sightseeing.
Having a rental car will help you to fit more in to your trip and give you the flexibility to see some of the country's best scenery. You can also rent a car just for a few days of sightseeing during your stay.
There are rental car car booths at the airport. I recommend booking in advance, especially during the summer months, to get the best deals and options.
I recommend Localrent for the best car hire in Montenegro. They have a huge range of cars at 5-25% below what you'll pay with international agencies, excellent service and their deposits are hundreds of euros less than companies like Avis and Sixt.
Read more: Renting a car in Montenegro
Neither of Montenegro's airports have airport shuttle services and there is no Uber or Lyft in Montenegro. If you're not hiring a car on arrival, it's best to book a transfer to take you to your accommodation.
There are taxis at the airports, but these can be severely overpriced and there are scammers just waiting to pressure you into their cars and then overcharge you. And finding and haggling with a driver can be stressful when you've just arrived in a foreign country.
Booking a transfer means you know how much your transfer will cost in advance. All you have to do is get off the plane and meet the driver waiting for you.
Average ticket prices from major cities: Expect to pay around €200-€400 for a round-trip ticket from European cities. Prices from North America start at approximately €600.
Airport facilities: Both airports offer car rental services, currency exchange, and basic amenities like restaurants and shops.
Opening hours: Generally open from early morning until late at night, depending on flight schedules. Neither airport is open overnight, so you can’t sleep there. You’ll find a lot of good accommodation near both airports.
Driving to Montenegro is easy if you’re coming from a nearby country in Europe.
Major roads like the E65 and E80 are in good condition and connect Montenegro to the neighboring countries of Croatia, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, and Albania.
The trip from Dubrovnik, Croatia to Kotor, Montenegro, for instance, takes about two hours.
The only requirements for driving your car or a rental car are the car’s paperwork (registration etc) and car insurance for Montenegro. If you don't already have insurance cover for Montenegro, you can buy border insurance at the border crossings.
If you’re renting a car outside of Montenegro, let your car rental company know you plan to drive to Montenegro so they can give you the paperwork you need. There's often a cross-border fee for this of €10-20 per day.
Serbia: Rance, Cemerno, Dobrakovo, Kula, Drazenovac, Vuce.
Albania: Bozaj, Sukobin, Grncar.
Bosnia and Hercegovina: Sitnica, Ilino Brdo, Vracenovici, Krstac, Nudo, Scepan Polje, Metaljka, Sula.
Croatia: Debeli Brijeg, Kobila
Border crossing: Have your identification and any necessary visas ready for a smooth crossing.
Traveling by bus to Montenegro is an excellent option if you're looking for a budget-friendly and fairly convenient way to explore the beauty that Montenegro has to offer.
You’ll find daily buses from neighboring countries such as Serbia, Croatia, Albania, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Some of the most frequented routes include:
You’ll find both day and night buses on the most popular routes. Although traveling at night might deprive you of some stunning views, it can make traveling in summer heat more comfortable.
One of the common complaints of traveling by bus in the Balkans is that drivers sometimes smoke while driving the bus. Keep this in mind if you plan to travel by bus to Montenegro.
Ticket Prices: Vary depending on the route and company but usually range from €10 to €30.
Booking: You can buy tickets at the bus station, although I recommend booking online if possible, especially during the busy summer months.
Customs and Border Checks: These can add time to your journey, especially during high tourist season.
The only train route to Montenegro runs from Belgrade in Serbia to the city of Bar on the Montenegrin coast.
This journey of 476 kilometers (296 miles) includes 254 tunnels, 435 bridges, and is considered one of the top 10 scenic rail journeys in Europe!
The journey takes about 11 hours and you can get sleeper cabins for the overnight journey.
The service is no frills on the standard Serbian Railways train and there are complaints about the cleanliness of the trains, but you’ll be treated to some stunning scenery as you pass monasteries and go through mountain passes.
There are many highlights and if you take this trip you’ll be glued to your window for most of it.
Moraca Canyon: One of the most breathtaking sights, Moraca Canyon offers stunning views of cliffs and the Moraca River below.
Lake Skadar: As the train skirts the edge of Lake Skadar, you'll be treated to expansive views of one of the largest freshwater lakes in Europe.
Tara River Canyon: Another natural marvel, the Tara River Canyon is among the world’s deepest river canyons, providing captivating sights of rugged landscapes.
Kolašin: A popular mountain resort town in Montenegro, Kolasin offers vistas of the surrounding forests and hills.
Descent from Kolašin: This descent is one of the steepest rail inclines in the world, descending 1,000m over 70km.
Vrbnica Tunnel: The longest tunnel on the route, the Vrbnica Tunnel marks the border crossing between Serbia and Montenegro. The darkness gives way to a new set of landscapes once you exit.
Mala Rijeka Viaduct: Until 2001 this was the highest railway bridge in the world at 200m above the Mala Rijeka river. You'll get excellent views as the train rounds the bend and gives you a view of the bridge over the canyon.
Rail Europe has multi-passes that are great if you're planning on travelling around Europe by train.
Rail Europe has a Global Pass which includes unlimited travel in 33 countries in Europe, including Montenegro, Serbia, Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Ticket prices: A one-way ticket from Belgrade to Bar starts at around €24. On the night train a couchette costs an extra €6, a bed is €15 in a 3-bed sleeper, and €20 in a 2-bed sleeper. It costs €3 to reserve a seat on the daytime service.
Facilities: Basic amenities are available on the trains and at stations, including bathrooms and snack bars.
The major ports in Montenegro are in Bar and Kotor. Bar is a commercial port with services from Italy, while Kotor is more focused on cruise ship tourism.
Montenegro Lines runs a ferry service from Ancona and Bari in Italy to Bar in Montenegro. The ferry crossings take 8 to 11 hours and you can book cabins for the overnight journeys.
2023 Update: Unfortunately, these services have been suspended for now. You can check for updates on these services on the Montenegro Lines website.
Cruises to Montenegro provide not just a convenient way to travel, but also give you the chance to see several destinations without having to sit in uncomfortable buses for hours.
The major cruise port in Montenegro is Kotor port, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its well-preserved medieval architecture and maze-like streets.
Kotor is a great cruise destination because the views as you sail in through the Bay of Kotor are absolutely stunning.
There is also a plethora of things to see and do in Kotor. Exploring the old town is a must, but you can also swim in a sea cave, visit an island church, try local delicacies like oysters, wine, and rakija, and much more!
Some cruises also make stops at Bar, further south on the Montenegrin coast. Bar is less touristy than Kotor and you’ll find fewer attractions here, but Bar also has an ancient old town perched on a hill about 5km from the cruise port.
Duration: Cruises to Montenegro typically range from 7 to 14 days, often as part of a larger Adriatic or Mediterranean itinerary.
Best Time to Go: The cruise season runs from late April to October, with the warmest and busiest months being July and August.
Facilities: Cruise destinations offer a range of services including currency exchange, shopping, and guided tour arrangements.
The most common way to get to Montenegro is by flying. With three international airports to choose from and dozens of connections, flying to Montenegro is easy.
You can also drive to Montenegro from neighboring countries, either in your own car or with a rental car.
If you’re on a budget, traveling to Montenegro by bus is cost-effective and there is an excellent bus network connecting Montenegro to countries throughout Europe. The train journey from Serbia to Montenegro is also very affordable and is one of Europe’s most scenic train journeys.
For a luxury journey in style and comfort, a cruise to Montenegro offers jaw-dropping scenery and the chance to visit many destinations in one trip.