- 1. Porto Montenegro
- 3. From the paddle to Sveti Marko Island
- 4. The Naval Heritage Museum
- 5. Prevlaka Island
- 6. Gornja Lastva
- 7. The Yugoslav Consulate
- 7. Župa
- 8. Bucha Palace
- How do I get to Tivat?
- - By plane
- - By car
- Where to stay at Tivat?
What to do in Tivat during your stay? Here are the eight must-do things to do in and around this beautiful city in Montenegro!
Montenegro is one of the few countries to gain independence in the 21st century. However, the history of several Montenegrin cities goes back more than a thousand years. This is the case of Kotor or Budva. For Tivat, the history is different. According to historians specializing in the region, Tivat is the youngest town in the Mouths of Kotor and even on the entire Montenegrin coast. Many mysteries surround the city. Among them is the origin of the name Tivat. Is it a tribute to the Illyrian queen Teuta? Is it a derivative of the Celtic word touto which means city? The answer is not clear-cut but the second option is preferred.
Founded in the 14th century, Tivat was mainly governed by the Venetians and Austro-Hungarians until the creation of the Yugoslav kingdom at the end of the First World War. After the break-up of Yugoslavia, Tivat developed profoundly and became one of the main tourist attractions in the region. So here are the eight must-see things of Montenegro's richest city!
Also to be read: The 8 most beautiful places to visit in Montenegro
1. Porto Montenegro
Visiting Tivat starts with Porto Montenegro. The marina is inseparable from the city and it is different from anything you can find in the rest of Montenegro. This is the reason why Tivat is sometimes compared to Monaco. This is not usurped: some billionaires prefer to park their yacht in Porto Montenegro to escape the exorbitant rates of the city of the Grimaldis!
Built by the Austro-Hungarians in 1889, Porto Montenegro was then a naval base for the army of the Habsburg Empire and then for Yugoslavia. Fallen into abandonment, it is then transformed into a luxury marina in 2016. This is what we call a big change! Since then, Porto Montenegro has become the main visit to Tivat. It must be said that the marina occupies almost the entire coast! You can walk through its small modern streets, stroll around the luxury boutiques, have a coffee at the Regent Hotel or at the marina.
However, before you go to Tivat, be warned of one thing. Porto Montenegro is by far the most expensive place in Montenegro. The price of dishes in restaurants is closer to the price of Parisian brasseries than to Herceg Novi's bouis-bouis. Nevertheless, it is a must in Montenegro because you can see its rapid transformation.
3. From the paddle to Sveti Marko Island
South of Tivat is the Belani beach which seems quite classic at first sight. However, it is from Belani that you can do paddle. Organized by the Montenegro Adventures agency, you can do this activity for 10€ per hour or 30€ for three to eight hours, a reasonable amount.
Paddling not only allows you to do a bit of sport but also to visit Tivat in a different way. Apart from admiring the wonderful scenery, it is one of the only ways to get to the church located on the small island of Mercy (Gospa od milosti) south of Tivat and on Sveti Marko, a much larger island right next to it.
4. The Naval Heritage Museum
This museum allows you to discover Tivat through two centuries. On the one hand, it is established in the same building as the old sawmill built by the Austro-Hungarians in the 19th century. On the other hand, its theme is of course linked to the naval base of the former Yugoslavia and it allows you to discover what Porto Montenegro looked like before the creation of the luxury marina.
Opened in 2011, the museum's main attraction is its Hero submarine, which can be visited from the inside. The descriptions, in Serbian/Montenegrin and English, give the best understanding of how a submarine works. A real gem for enthusiasts and certainly one of the most interesting things to do in Tivat. The entrance ticket is 10€.
5. Prevlaka Island
The Island of Flowers in Serbian/Montenegrin, located right next to Tivat airport, is a real haven of peace. Composed of a monastery and several residences, the island has not usurped its name when you see the amount of vegetation and gardens surrounding the buildings.
The main interest of the island is its monastery. Officially, it is possible to visit the monastery without difficulty. Nevertheless, the monks having a rather strict calendar, it is important to inquire beforehand and to ask for the authorization. If luck is on your side, you will be able to visit the monastery with a French speaking priest! Of course, a donation is appreciated.
6. Gornja Lastva
To visit Tivat is also to visit the small villages located in the heights. The most interesting of them is Gornja Lastva, located 300 meters above sea level, on the Vrmac hill. Composed of about twenty stone houses and an old church, the village lives in the old way and seems a little detached from the world.
Nevertheless, the village comes alive in summer. A festival, allowing to discover the local culture (authentic music, dances, folklore games, paintings, local cuisine, etc), is organized every August. The site attracts more and more people in summer and is undoubtedly something original to do in Tivat.
7. The Yugoslav Consulate
One of the most amazing things to do in Tivat is to visit an authentic Yugoslavian consulate transformed into a museum! Located right next to the Pine Hotel, the museum allows those who are nostalgic for Tito's time, history enthusiasts or just curious to discover objects from the Yugoslav period.
Its main attraction is the Honorable Consul Marko Perkovic, the one who has revived the nostalgia of a bygone era that some people regret. The building even includes a vehicle driven by Tito himself! For collectors, it is possible to obtain a Yugoslav passport in its traditional red colour. Visiting Tivat is therefore a bit like visiting Yugoslavia!
For those who love adventure, there is a complex of abandoned buildings called "Kompleks Bizanti". Located in the Župa Park south of Tivat, nothing is known about the history of this complex. Was it a hotel complex? The beautiful beach facing it makes you wonder. We do not necessarily advise you to put the Župa park in your priorities but it is a curiosity to be discovered!
8. Bucha Palace
Apart from Porto Montenegro, there are few things to do in Tivat itself. However, there are some hidden treasures. The Bucha Palace is one of them. Once belonging to the Buća family, the palace now houses a museum with many paintings dedicated to the Orthodox church. More than the objects, it is the building that intrigues.
It is one of the beautiful surprises to discover in Tivat. With its cannon at the entrance, its tower and its beautiful garden, the Bucha palace is a great place to escape from the marina. Given the modest sum, one should not hesitate to go there, especially to know what an old residence of a rich family of the region looks like.
How do I get to Tivat?
Tivat airport is a few kilometres from the city centre. It is therefore the ideal landing place to visit Tivat. Nevertheless, from France, it is only served from Paris-Orly betweenApril and September. Tivat is also a seasonal airport since there are only two destinations in winter: Belgrade and Moscow.
The airports of Dubrovnik in Croatia or Podgorica in Montenegro are two other options. Do not hesitate to consult the website of our partner Skyscanner to find the right combination.
Pleasenote: if your accommodation offers you a transfer, please choose it. There is no public transport between Tivat and the airport. If you are on your own, please note that the taxi fare should be between 5 and 8€, not more than that.
Renting a car to visit Tivat and the rest of Montenegro is a great option. There is only one main road between the Croatian border and Budva, with Tivat in between. If this can cause slowdowns in the summer, navigation is easier. On the other hand, it is not easy to park in Porto Montenegro. Choose a more off-centre location within a ten-minute walk.
Where to stay at Tivat?
Tivat is home to Montenegro's most expensive hotel, the Regent. For those who have the means or want to treat themselves, don't hesitate! In general, hotels in Tivat (Pine, La Roche) are quite expensive.
Otherwise, there are many Airbnb apartments at much more affordable prices. You can stay close to the marina or in the heights to have the most beautiful view of the Bouches de Kotor. To find your hotel, do not hesitate to use a hotel comparator in order to get the best offers.
You now have the maps in hand to visit Tivat. Have a nice trip to Montenegro!