• Group size

    min 4 – max 18 persons

  • Difficulty grade

    Moderate

  • Availability

    Jun – October

Our Montenegro’s Three ‘Crown Jewel’ National Parks” features the highlights of North Montenegro, including the beautiful Durmitor National Park – a UNESCO World Heritage site, Biogradska Gora NP – one of the last three primaeval rainforests in Europe and  Prokletije National Park – considered one of the most breathtaking mountain areas in Europe.

Durmitor National Park is the largest National Park in Montenegro and it is a UNESCO World Heritage site. The Park is characterized by diversified ecosystems and numerous endemic species, as well as the some of the highest peaks of the Dinaric mountains, Tara River Canyon, which was proclaimed a world ecological reserve, 18 glacial lakes known as “the mountain eyes” of which the Black Lake is the most famous one and represents a symbol of the Park and its beauty. Here, the water and ice have eroded the limestone typical of the place and thus creating a rare-beauty landscape – a reason enough why you shouldn’t miss experiencing it. The Park territory covers the Durmitor massif and the narrow Tara Canyon which is 1.300 meters deep – the second deepest in the world, after the Grand Canyon Colorado. Tara River, also known as the “Teardrop of Europe”, is considered to be one of the most beautiful rivers on the entire continent. 

The diverse flora and fauna of Biogradska Gora National Park is another amazing treasure of nature. Biogradska Gora is one of the oldest protected areas in the world. Only 6 years after Yellowstone was declared the first national park in America, Prince Nikola I Petrovic put Biogradska Gora under state protection in 1878. Due to its immense natural wealth and its preservation, Biogradska Gora National Park has been proclaimed a UNESCO Natural Heritage Site. The most impressive part of the National Park is the primeval rainforest reserve, one of the last in Europe.

Prokletije National Park is the most dramatic hiking destination in Montenegro. Prokletije or Accursed Mountains are the southernmost and highest part of the Dinaric Alps. Surreally scenic and remote, this magnificent area may well be one of Europe’s least explored corners. Here, vertical peaks pierce the sky. The views and the trails transform, switching from rocky paths and bare peaks to meadows rich with flowers and plants, where nature has been left to run wild. The park encompasses most of the Prokletije Mountains (also known as the Albanian Alps), which form the natural border between Montenegro and Albania.  Given the remoteness of this region, you’ll see very few people hiking here.

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Žabljak

Day 1

Welcome to Montenegro!

Upon arrival at Podgorica Airport (TGD), your team leader will be waiting for you at the arrivals hall, greet you and direct you to the transfer. After assisting you with the luggage, you will be transferred by private vehicle (minivan) from the airport to the small town of Zabljak (Durmitor National Park, 125 km, 2,5 hrs drive) with several photo stops or coffee breaks. The town of Zabljak is situated in the northwest of Montenegro, in the heart of the Durmitor region, at an altitude of 1,450 meters above sea level is the highest urban settlement in the Balkans. Embraced by 22 mountain peaks higher than 2,000 metres, 18 mountain lakes and the 2nd deepest canyon in the world – Tara Canyon, Durmitor is definitely a must-experience location. Check-in to the hotel and short time for refreshment and lunch. Afterwards, an easy walking tour around Black Lake, the premium tourist attraction of the Durmitor area. It is the largest and the best known of 18 glacial lakes on the mountain. A path around Black Lake, that we will take, is a 3,6 km long walking path and is a must-do for each visitor to the Park. Black Lake’s position is wonderful: surrounded by coniferous forest and the rounded mass of Mount Bear, as its guardian behind it.

Following a picturesque trail along Mill Creek, we continue our walking to Snakes Lake, which is hidden deep in the spruce forests at an altitude of 1,520 m. It is a calm and peaceful place, perfect for rest. Transfer to our accommodation. For dinner, we have a chance to sample traditional Montenegrin dishes, including highland specialities and Montenegrin red wine with a Mediterranean character called Vranac. Overnight.

Day 2

‘Red Rock’ (2,175 m) peak hike

We hope you’ve had an enjoyable night’s rest and are excited by today’s adventure. After breakfast, you will be transferred (20 mins drive) following the gently winding road through the forest to ‘Red Rock’ massif, this mountain stands out not only for its natural beauty and the magnificent views it offers but its amazing diversity of lakes surrounding it. The trail goes along the meadows and clearings, partly through a thin pine forest and slightly upward in the direction of Red Rock. During summertime, flowers and wild plants create a beautiful carpet which makes it even more impressive. After the last meadow, the trail separates and we will continue on the right part that will lead us into the visible trail heading to the peak. For the next 1,5–2 km the path is semi-circular, going along the edges of the mountain through the small pine woods, gradually uphill, around the beautiful Jablan Lake (1,791 m). From the peak, you will enjoy the stunning view of Black Lake, the highest peak – Bobotov Kuk and the entire Durmitor massif. Short break time after which will hike downwards to Jablan Lake and make a short photo stop. Then we will continue approx. 5-6 km towards Black Lake (1,416 m) which, despite the name, this glacial lake gleams in emerald green reflecting mysterious pine forest and craggy peaks. Here will rest and enjoy on the shores of this alluring lake. Return to Zabljak. Overnight.

Hiking for the day: 7-8 hours, 14 km 450m 850m

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Jablan Lake

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Tara River

Day 3

Whitewater rafting on Tara River

The inevitable outdoor activity during the visit to Durmitor National Park is undoubtedly rafting on the Tara River. Tara River Canyon is the deepest canyon in Europe and the second-deepest in the world next to the Grand Canyon in the United States. Tara River is 158 km long whilst 80 km of its length belongs to Durmitor National Park, UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1980. Rafting is by far the most fun and exciting way to see the Tara Canyon. The water is crystal clear, waterfalls rush down into the river and you can even stand under a waterfall. During the tour guests will enjoy in untouched nature of the National Park, passing by river Ljutica, which is the shortest river in Europe and under the famous Tara Bridge. At the time it was built, this bridge that stands 172 meters above the Tara River, was the biggest vehicular concrete arch bridge in Europe. Lunch after rafting and for those who want another adrenaline shot – the longest zipline in Europe is around the corner (optional). Driving back to Zabljak, towards villages Njegovudja and Zminica, amazed by the spectacular nature, we arrive at Zminicko Lake. Without a doubt, you will find this mountain lake surrounded by thick pine forest perfect. After admiring Zminicko, we continue towards Fish and Devil’s Lake. Beside the road are situated mysterious carved stone tomb monuments (stećci) – dating from between the 12th and 16th centuries (added to Unesco’s World Heritage list in 2016). Arrival and overnight at Zabljak.

Day 4

‘Prutas’ (2393 m) peak hike

A hiking tour that provides views of the most beautiful Durmitor NP landscapes — a real mountaineering pleasure and experience! Adorned with unique rock shapes (sticks or rods), the name “Prutas” (eng. mountain of rods), ideally reflects the real beauty of this peak. With easy ascent along the deep, green slopes, amazing views over the glacial Skrcka lakes, including peaks of Djevojka (2440 m), Bezimeni Vrh (2487 m) and Bobotov Kuk (2525 m), the Prutas hiking trail is probably the most beautiful trail at Durmitor National Park.

Our start is from Sarban ( 1,707 m) and during the next 2,5-3 hours with a total ascent of 700 m over the 4 km trail, we will reach this magnificent, grass-covered peak. It is adorned with gentle ridgelines, green mountainsides, miraculous oblique layers of “Rods” after which it was named, cliffs of vertically elevated layers, but also typical limestone rock formations. The peak is a spacious plateau covered with grass and the view spreading from the peak is remarkable in all directions — you will take great photos! This is one of those hiking tours that provide dazzling views thus creating immensely hiking pleasure and experience! At the top, you will have a well deserved time for rest, while soaking up the beauty surrounding you. This hike will be the highlight of your Montenegro and Durmitor National Park adventure.

Hiking for the day: 6-7 hours, 8 km ↑700m ↓700m

Durmitor National Park.

Prutas

Bjelasica

PESICA LAKE

Day 5

Zabljak – Kolasin – Hiking Zekova glava summit (2117 m)

After breakfast, transfer from Zabljak to Kolasin (90 km, around 1.5 hrs drive), along the road that mostly goes above the stunning Tara River Canyon. Upon arrival to Kolasin, check-in and short refreshment and then departure to our today’s hiking tour which begins at Bjelasica ski centre Jezerine (1450 m). Mountain Bjelasica with its specific shapes, rolling hills and smooth pastures is predestined for sustainable mountain tourism both in summer and winter. This pastoral mountain invites nature lovers for an easy hike with breathtaking views. As we hike across the trails of Bjelasica, a massif with ten separate peaks above 2,000 m, views stretch across spectacular mountain terrain, while the lush meadows below are scattered with wooden shepherd’s huts (called “katuns”) amid the dense beech forest. Walking through the forest, we will arrive at the Vranjak village. After a brief stop, we will hike up to the grassy summit of Zekova Glava (2117 m) and then descend and enjoy a prolonged rest at a nearby glacial lake – Pesica Lake (1.771 m). On our way back to the starting point we will pass by the natural spring of Biogradska River. Transfer to Kolasin. Dinner. Overnight.

Hiking for the day: 6-7 hours, 12 km ↑600m ↓600m

Day 6

Summit of Kom Vasojevicki (2460 m)

Breakfast. Transfer from Kolasin to the Stavna village (1650 m), at the foot of Komovi massif, where we will hike up to the Kom Vasojevicki summit. Ripping through clouds, the giant Komovi mountain impressively dominates the southeastern part of Montenegro and are considered the most beautiful mountain in Montenegro.

Upon arrival to Stavna, we start our Komovi adventure to Kom Vasojevicki. The route to Kom Vasojevicki begins from Stavna, on the north side below the rocky massif. The path continues along with grassy and rocky areas. After approximately 2,5 hours of ascent, you will reach to beautiful Vera Pass (2200 m) where you will have the opportunity to enjoy in border mountains of Albania, particularly to Prokletije mountain range (aka Accursed Mountains) and its highest peak Maja Jezerce (2694 m) which dominates the wider area. From there, the path continues to the summit and very soon you’ll have the privilege to enjoy the view from the summit of Kom Vasojevicki (2460 m). Return to Stavna village on the same trail. Transfer to the small town of Plav (45 km, 1-hour drive). Dinner and overnight in Plav.

Hiking for the day: 5-6 hours, 6 km ↑650m ↓650m

Note

KOMOVI

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HRID LAKE

Day 7

Hiking tour to Hrid Lake (1968 m)

Breakfast. Transfer from Plav to starting point of today’s hike in Babino polje (40 min drive). Our destination for today is situated around 20 km from Plav and according to many opinions, it is the most beautiful mountain lake in Montenegro – Hrid Lake.

Hrid Lake is situated in the heart of a spectacular landscape of high pine and spruce trees and interesting rock formations. It is a glacial lake also known as the “Pearl of Prokletije”. The clearness of its water was an inspiration to many legends. One of them says that the Lake was created by the Gods as a hidden bathing place for fairies where they could bathe hidden from human eyes.
Short break to take photos with 2 options – we can continue to the nearby Hridski Krs peak or rest and swim in the lake. Return transfer to Plav. Visit the Ethno-Museum in Redzepagica Tower in Plav. Dinner. Overnight.

Hiking for the day: 5-6 hours, 8 km ↑400 m ↓400 m

Day 8

Grebaja Valley – wedged between the towers of Karanfili Peaks

After breakfast, transfer to Grebaja Valley. The Grebaja Valley is one of the most astonishing Balkans valleys, lodged between the karst towers of Karanfili Peaks (2.461 m). A narrow, U-shaped valley embraced by high sharp peaks seems like a colossal jaw of a Balkan wolf but is definitely a true paradise for outdoor lovers!

Hiking today starts by ascending through shaded beech forest, whilst the last steep climb takes us to the double peak of Popadija and Talijanka (2,056 m) from where extends a spectacular view of the nearby Karanfili, continues on the massif of Prokletije with all its highest peaks. Here the craggy peaks across us seem almost within our reach and the gaze wanders across the border between Montenegro and Albania. We’ll go along the ridge walk which is the best option and the most suitable route to take us back to the track down, rewarding us with staggering views of the craggy Karanfili Mountains, for a reason nicknamed the ‘Dolomites of Montenegro’. On our way back we will pass by the rock carvings (petroglyphs) dating back to the Neolithic Age, some 600 years B.C. There is a primitive drawing showing a wolf attacking a child, as well as other Paleolithic carvings. Traversing the narrow spine to a series of panoramic viewpoints back onto the shaded forest path, where the circular hike closes. In a guesthouse garden on the valley floor, we celebrate the adventure before dinner and overnight in our accommodation.

Hiking for the day: 6-7 hours, 10 km, ↑ 950 m ↓ 950 m

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KARANFILI PEAKS & Albanian Alps

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Ropojana

Day 9

Ropojana valley, Eye of the River Skakavica, the waterfall of the River Skakavica and Alipasa’s springs

The Ropojana Valley belongs at the top of the list of natural beauties in the region of Plav and Gusinje and is a pleasure we should indulge in. Besides, without a visit to Ropojana, our stay in this magical world on the northern side of Prokletije would not be complete. The Ropojana valley is a spectacularly beautiful place – jagged limestone peaks, rolling green pastures, high passes and beech forests – the perfect postcard picture. Hidden deep in the valley and surrounded by a dense forest, the karst spring of Eye of the River Skakavica (or Sava’s Eye) attracts visitors with its crystal-clear water through which every stone can be seen, and which constantly changes its colour from shades of blue to green throughout the day. Fed by water from this spring, the River Skakavica, after slightly more than two kilometres of its course, suddenly disappears under the surface, forming a 30-metre high waterfall of the River Skakavica, one of the largest and most beautiful waterfalls in the Prokletije Mountains.

We continue with the tour to Alipasa’s springs. It is said that the famous Ali-Pasha of Gusinje used to come here every morning to enjoy the beauty and serenity of this place in which a magnificent play of nature created a large karst spring comprised of 25 minor springs.

During farewell dinner, we celebrate the eventful trek with our new friends, recalling the past days of travel and celebrating the memorable journey through the Montenegrin mountains.

Hiking for the day: 4-5 hours, 5-6 km ↑ 200 m ↓ 200 m

Day 10

Departure through amazing Cem River Canyon

After breakfast, a transfer to airport Podgorica is arranged (75 km, 2 hours drive). Shortly after border crossing between Montenegro and Albania, we will be greeted with a breathtaking view of the valley of the Cem river (Montenegrin: Cijevna) and the mountains of Montenegro and Albania. It is worth stopping at the lookout point! The road winds its way over numerous, tight curves towards the valley floor. The River Cem is a river that rises in Kelmend, Albania, and after nearly half of its length, crosses into Montenegro where it pours into the Moraca River near the capital city Podgorica. The river’s basin is a source of very high biodiversity, and hundreds of plant and animal species live along its banks. The marble trout is one of the 22 fish species in the river, which consistently ranks as one of the least polluted rivers in Albania and Montenegro. River Cem passes mostly through limestone terrain where many karstic formations are observed. The terrain through which it flows in its 60 kilometres course, is at an elevation of more than 1,200 m and can reach as low as 50 m. Throughout its declining elevation, it passes through narrow valleys and steep canyons, where waterfalls are formed before it reaches the Zeta plain and Podgorica. Tamare is the main settlement in the Albanian region of Kelmend and has been restored over the last few years with international support. The pretty village square invites us to stop for a coffee in one of many restaurants. After crossing a border between Albania and Montenegro, and 40 min drive we arrive at the airport Podgorica (TGD). Departure. End of the tour.

Thank you for joining us for this adventure, we hope you had a great time and hope it’s not your last visit to the country of warm hospitality, countless mountains and exceptional nature.

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Cem river