Welcome back! If you’re planning a trip to Budva in Montenegro, here are all the best excursions and activities you have available to you. Budva is extremely diverse and has something for everyone. If you’re a casual vacationer I have listed beaches, boat tours, and day trips. If you’re an extreme adventurer, you will find everything from scuba diving to paragliding, ziplining, and all things outdoors. Excursions in Budva are bountiful – there’s truly something for everyone!
- Water and Sea Excursions
- Day trips (village exploring & scenic routes)
- Action & Adventure
Water/Sea Excurisons in Budva:
I tend to associate clear blue water with places like Tahiti, Florida, and Mexico. While all of those are well-known tourist destinations, there is no denying the fact that the Balkans are an exceptional place to travel. Not only to travel but to vacation.
Because Budva is located on the Adriatic sea there are A LOT of water activities. The Mediterranean warms up considerably during the summer, creating the perfect environment for all your vacation needs. The water is inviting, it’s crystal clear and the sun never stops shining.
There is something so alluring about the aquamarine-colored water… it’s photogenic, it’s captivating… It’s a real treat to see the natural wonders of the world. trust me when I say you won’t be able to stop taking pictures of everything you see on your excursions on the coast of Montenegro!
Sveti Stefan: In my opinion, this is a must-do excursion for anyone visiting Montenegro. The trip won’t consume your whole day and you will get to experience a view of stunning arcitecture. Sveti Stefan is an island just off of the mainland south of Budva. Navigate the waters between the Island Hawaii (what the locals call the big island protecting the city) and tour around Sveti Stefan.
This island is an architectural feat – it reminds me of the Almafi Coast in Italy. While the island is now currently a single hotel and closed off to tourists, taking a trip around the island is still available. The structures rise with the cliffs that drop straight into the sea.
There are several boat companies you may use to take a tour of Sveti Stefan. They are listed under boat taxis!
Budva to the Bay of Kotor: You may also book a private tour from Budva to the Bay of Kotor that includes a stop at the Blue Caves as well as Our Lady of the Rocks, Kotor, and Perast. This may be the best way for your family or group of friends to get acquainted with the sea and peek into the unique culture that Montenegrins share with the sea. Boat tours are one of the best excursions in Budva, Montenegro.
Check out the full tour information here: https://www.tripadvisor.com/AttractionProductReview-g295381-d17517611-Private_boat_tour_Kotor_Our_lady_of_the_rocks_Blue_Cave_up_to_6_passenger-Kotor_Ko.html
In pretty much every Marina along the coast of Montenegro you will be able to find boat taxis. They’re one of the more popular things to do and well worth the money they cost. Whether you’re interested in fishing, a tour, or just a simple ride to an island you’re sure to find an option by walking down to the waterfront.
Taxis are perfect for spur-of-the-moment transfers from Budva to the Island. But! You can also plan full on excursions on private boats with them as well.
In Budva, I recommend getting a taxi to Hawaii. There are boats that will take you there regularly – for around 3-5 Euros. You may leave directly from the main marina or one of the docks located on Slovenska Plaza.
Poseidon: Poseidon taxi boat does a little bit of everything. They offer private tours as well as taxi services to the Island of “Hawaii”. check them out on their Instagram at @Poseidontaxiboat
Havana Boat Budva: Another exceptional option Havana boat does it all. Their services include diving, swimming, fishing and tours. They can be found at Hiddengemsmontenegro.com
My husband is a fishing aficionado. The man lives by the sea and goes with a trident (free diving style) as well as with a rod. There is a ton of fishing options available in the area! For big-game fishing and spearfishing alike you will be able to find the niche you desire.
Unfortunately, it can be hard to find some of these companies ahead of time. The online presence of many of these companies is almost non-existent. That’s why what I list here is so limited. You’re free to shop around once you arrive in Budva, but here are some of the options you can look at ahead of time.
The best way to look for your fishing excursion in Budva is to use fishingbooker.com
Deep Blue: Deep Blue offers both big-game fishing (HUGE tuna), and spearfishing options. My husband has personally gone on a boat tour with deep blue and LOVED his experience. He opted for the “near-shore” experience and went from Sveti Stefan to Jaz.
Although he is a local to Budva he rarely takes boats during the summer months, and he said his favorite part was seeing the shore from the sea. He doesn’t get that view often and raved about it to me for more than a couple of days.
Check them out here: https://fishingbooker.com/charters/view/17003
Predator Fishing: you may bring up to 5 friends on this fishing adventure with Zoran. A perfect way to spend your afternoon and the ability to keep some of the fish you catch. If you don’t catch anything, you’re guaranteed not to pay!
If you came to Budva for the scuba diving alone, I would recommend going on the first or second day of your trip. The only reason I tell you this is because the reviews for most places are mixed…and it’s not because of the companies, but the people who will be scuba diving with you.
That way you can see if you want to go again, or if it’s not worth your time. I am not a scuba diver, but have heard promising things about the views and sealife, but VERY bad news about the people who do scuba.
This is a great way to see the crystal clear water without the hassle of equipment. It’s perfect for kids. A fun excursion in Budva.
Check out: www.semisubmarine-budva.com
Snorkeling (Diving center Budva):
Equipment for snorkeling can be rented, and I highly recommend doing this for at least one of your beach days. You’ll be surprised how much sealife there is to see just a few meters off the beach.
Rajko, my husband, can spend HOURS in the water. He’s spending his time hunting fish, but I always enjoy tagging along with him to see what kind of critters live along the coast. It’s rare to see an octopus, but not impossible! This is a great way to spend an afternoon with kiddos too. There are companies who offer boat tours that include snorkeling, my suggestion is to take one!
You can get tours that include the Blue Caves and take you around to see the coast. Boat tours are a great way to spend the day with people who know the waters. Snorkeling is one of my top recommendations for excursions in Budva.
Jet skis/wake surf center:
For thrill seekers, jet skis are available for rent on several beaches in the Budva area. Enjoy some time on the water getting to drive yourself and a friend around! There’s more to watersports than Jet skis, and Budva also offers wakeboarding and innertubing.
I personally think with so much to see and do this will be on the bottom of your list, but it’s a still fun way to spend an hour at sea. This is best suited for younger people or people without children.
Beach excursions in Budva:
Budva has an astonishing number of beaches. You will find a little bit of everything to fit your needs hopes and wishes. I have listed here my favorite beaches for all my different moods.
Some days I want to just lay in the sun unbothered by other tourists, some days I want to feel like I am in the middle of a party! This is a list of my personal favorites and recommendations. Whatever you’re looking for, beaches are the number one excursion in Budva. Picking a different beach every day is something I highly suggest.
If you want to know more about all of the beaches, I have a separate article here:
Kamenovo isn’t the most expensive beach to visit, but not the cheapest one you will encounter either. They promote local DJs and artists daily. The music is likely to be internationally influenced, NOT local folk music. If you’re American or Western European this will be more of your “comfort zone” when it comes to music.
Kamenovo also has a beach volleyball court, jet ski rental, and even boats to ride a giant banana. This beach is perfect for the 20-30 something crowd. There are kids around, but not nearly as many as on other beaches. The vibe here is upscale and classy, but not over the top. It’s one of my favorites!
This is what I consider to be my “home” beach. We go to this beach at least three days a week – more than any other beach in the area. the reason I love this beach is that the prices are fair, the music is great and there is plenty of open beach space. Becici is long and wide.
There are plenty of bars to find on this stretch and the boardwalk has anything you could need during the hot summer months. Not only is this beach notoriously less crowded than all other beaches in the area…it tends to be filled with locals. While this is a positive for me, if you’re searching for other internationals I would stick to one of the beaches closer to the heart of Budva.
This is a perfect place to bring your kids… there is sand, wide open space, and clean water. There’s sea glass to be found, the beach gradually gives into the sea, and beds can be purchased for around 10 euros.
The ultimate family beach. If you have young kids they’re likely to exhaust themselves on the floating obstacle course. I went on it last summer and had the time of my life! it’s not limited to just youngsters, either. My stepmom was bounding around with us for well over an hour!
This beach has some of the BEST surrounding views. It sits in a cove that has high-rising cliffs all around. However, the beach itself is pretty small and beds sell quickly. If you want a bed, you’ll have to get there early, or much later in the day! They’re limited on drinks but always have a fresh beer on tap.
Go to Mogren II for the obstacle course, the bed and seaglass!
Jaz (“Yaz”) – Malaj Beach (access from Jaz):
Just north of Budva municipality is Jaz beach. This is one of the few sand beaches you’ll find on the Adriatic coast. There are lots of smaller bars and accommodation. There’s more open space than a lot of other beaches. Not only that, but the parking is MUCH easier to find for this beach if you’ve rented a car.
This beach is likely to host more tourists from Serbia, bosnia and russia. For that reason many of the bars are playing more folk music and cater to those groups of people. It IS however a great family beach and the vib matches that. Lowkey and great water access makes it perfect for swimming.
Malaj on the other hand takes a bit of work to get to, but is well worth the work in my opinion. It’s much quiter and has a very tranquil vibe. In fact, the last couple of times I was there there was no music. There is a bar all the way at the end of the beach! They get their supplies via boat. This is a perfect place to come for a more intimate setting. Expect more people to be topless! Very few kids at this end of Jaz.
Malaj is a bit harder to reach, but for kid free people, it’s a great excursion. Plan your trip accordingly with enough sunblock, snacks and books!
Slovenska is the main water front of Budva. This is where you will find more clubs and a party-like atmosphere with people standing around drinking at the bars. It is heavy with restaurants and is within walking distance from Budva. I only mention this place because it is likely to be closest to where most people stay within Budva… But it’s close to everyone In Budva.
With that in mind, it is next to the Budva marina. The foot traffic is high, and in my opinion is a VERY dirty beach. I put it on this list for you to AVOID because there are so many other great beaches in the area. This is however a great place to find people selling excusions in Budva. If you’re looking for boat tours, fishing tours and the lot – this is where vendors advertise.
This is a perfect beach for people looking for a more upbeat and luxurious experience. They are a bit more private. The beds are bigger than the standard ones found on other beaches and even come with a bottle of prosecco. If you’re looking for a Miami-type of vibe, this will be your place!
Galija has its own cafe and restaurant so you won’t go hungry. In addition to all the other amenities, this beach is Instagram-worthy. Dj’s everyday, comfy beds, and top-notch service make this one of the more “star” attractions of the Montenegrin coast. Don’t be surprised to find famous people getting their sun on here!
Day-trip excursions from Budva:
If you’ve chosen to stay in Budva as a “base”, you’ll see that there are so many worthwhile day drips within reach. I highly recommend you either take a boat tour to see these places or rent a car. There is so much to explore in these tiny villages. No only that, but you’ll come to see that the Mediterranean culture isn’t limited to just Italy, France and Spain.
You can get to some of these places via bus and excursions with companies. For the smaller coastal cities parking will be a hassle, so booking an excursion will save you the pain of trying to find parking. For some other trips, it really is ideal to have your own car.
Check out these day trip excursions that are all within an hour or less of Budva!
Perast Islands & bay of Kotor:
Gospa Od Skrpjela or “Our Lady of Rocks” is a made island, with a church… definitely one of the most photographed places in all of Montenegro. It sits across from the old town of Perast. Both Perast and the church are worth the visit. Perast has some upscale restaurants and hotels sitting along one of the most beautiful promoenades in Europe.
I’ve been all over Western Europe and found the tranquility and beauty of Perast rivals that of Lake Como… with approximately a quarter of the tourists. It carries the same vibe of eloquence and luxury – Oprah Winfrey has been known to vacation along the shore of the bay of Kotor and you can see why!
Kotor and the Bay of Kotor are one of the greatest indents of the Adriatic sea. It has a deep water port that brings an increasing amount of tourists in. And not without good reason! Kotor is an old Venetian city and you will notice the remnants all through the town. The landscape and views are hard to beat with the mountains rising straight over the city and clear blue water below.
One of my favorite things about Montenegro is their dedication towards making structures fit with their long Mediterranean history. White walls and terracotta roofs make the city stand out against the dark mountains. Ugh! What a beautiful sight!
You will find everything you need to know on Kotor in a post here.
Tivat is one of the main landing points for tourists, and one of the main take-off points for excursions in Budva. They have their own airport as well as cruise ship docks. When you drive through Tivat on the main road you can see the height of cruise ships peeking over the buildings! While Tivat is newer compared to its neighbors of Budva and Kotor, it still serves as a great place to visit.
I mention Tivat to you not for it’s historical merit, but rather its importance for being a hub. You will find everything you need and more in Tivat including fine dining, beach clubs like Nikki Beach. Yes, the Nikki Beach (that’s found in Miami) and other upscale pool party clubs.
Many excursions launch from Tivat, so it’s an important city to keep on your radar. If you plan on taking an excursion into the mountains to Lovcen or the Ostrog Monastery, Tivat is where you will start your journey.
Porto Novi in recent years has gotten a serious revamp. This is one of the more serious upscale locations for those seeking luxury. The Restaurants are all top-notch, the streets are pristine marble, and there are villas available for renting. If you want to see the luxurious side of Montenegro, Porto Novi is the place to go!
There’s one really great restaurant I suggest visiting – Romeo and Juliet. They have fantastic Italian food, wine from around the world and a perfect ambience for an evening of relaxation and fine dining. The view of the harbour is just meters away! Even if you don’t stay for dinner, a walk along the Marina is worth it. Seriouisly, you don’t want to miss seeing some of the charter yachts that come through Porto Novi!
Montenegro’s coast is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful parts of the country, but it would be silly to miss seeing what the country is named for. Montenegro literally means Black Mountains! Lovcen (pronounced Lov-chen) and the old capital of Cetinje are view worthy places to visit. Afterall, you can’t go to Montenegro without seeing the Black Mountains!
Cetinje is just a 25 minute drive up from Budva. Take your rental car and go for a lovely drive to escape the heat of the coast in the mountains. Visit the Ivanova Korita National Park in Cetinje followed by a trip further up the Mountains to Lovcen.
Lovcen peak is the resting place of Montenegro’s Petar II Petrović Njegoš. This monument is has one of the best views of the Dinaric Alps. A great place to visit with kids, too. If you’re looking for outdoor adventure Lovcen has mountain biking, hiking and more. This is a must-do excursion from Budva.
Check out this post to discover more:
Kotor Serpentine – Cetinje to Kotor:
If you plan on visiting Lovcen and Cetinje this road is an absolute MUST. However, it is NOT for the faint of heart. The Kotor Serpentine has 16 hair-pin turns! My husband and I drove down the serpentine, coming from Lovcen and Cetinje into Kotor. At the top of this winding road is a bar/restaurant with, in my opinion, the best view of Montenegro. If you’re looking for a day trip, throw in this excursion just 40 minutes from Budva.
There’s not much more to say than…go!
Lake Skadar is the largest lake on the Balkan peninsula. You can take kayaking tours or a boat tour to see what Lake Skadar is all about. Much like ethe coast the lake itself is dotted with small villages. To get a feel for pure Montenegrin culture, you can take a gastronomical tour or wine tour.
If you’re a bird watcher or love the tranquility of nature this is a must-do excursion just outside of Budva. Check out this tour to see what it’s all about: https://www.tripadvisor.com/AttractionProductReview-g304074-d17846898-Private_Skadar_Lake_Cruise_and_Tasting_Tour-Budva_Budva_Municipality.html
If you’re into architectural feats and churches, this is the perfect mix of both. Ostrog is a Serbian Orthodox church located just 50 km from Podgorica. It is the most visited pilgrimage site in Montenegro by practitioners of all religions. I think it’s an interesting place to visit, period. The monastery is a perfect day-trip excursion in Montenegro and can easily be added to your itinerary!
If you’re planning to take the serpentine, add this to your list of paces to visit.
Action and Adventure excursions in Budva:
If you’re like me, you enjoy experiences just as much as sights. These adventure excursions in Budva are sure to give the adrenaline junkies the best of both! I’m a total sucker for ziplining and so it in any country I can. Sadly, due to COVID I haven’t been able to go ziplining in Montenegro yet, but it’s at the very top of my list.
Paragliding was not affected by COVID… but I have yet to convinced my husband to go with me. So I’ll have to get a friend to join me this summer! Parasailing was also not affected by COVID, this is better if you want a bird’s eye view of the coast and want less risk.
Jump off the mountain face overlooking Budva and see the coast from above!
check out this website that has everything thrill seekers could and would want to do: paragliding.me
There is a zipline that’s on the road taking you from Budva to Cetinje, it takes you over a steep drop and gives you INCREDIBLE views over the coast. If you’re not up for ziplining, this is still a great place to pull over and get pictures. These will be the BEST pictures to show anyone who asks about your trip!
You can find ziplining under the same link for paragliding.
So much to do, so little time:
There is SO much to do in Montenegro and Budva in general. It’s why I recommend staying in Budva for at least a week. You can fill your days with excursions in Budva. Some at the beach, some for exploring new villages and others for seeing the historical sights and enjoying the culture. Budva is hands down my favorite place to be, and I hope you get the same value out of your trip form this meditteranean village that I have!
If you have any question feel free to ask them in the comments section below. Ciao for now!