In October and November, the weather conditions in Montenegro have been perfect for the time of the year. The warm, pleasant, sunny days surprised both the citizens of Montenegro and the tourists who were lucky to enjoy this beautiful season.
In general, autumn is a great time to visit Montenegro: it is gentle and colorful, quiet and sometimes even mysterious. You can still swim in the Adriatic Sea until the end of October or even longer. As the summer crowds have disappeared, driving is relaxing and many “seniors” with campervans travel along the coast and through the Balkans, taking advantage of the low off-season prices.
Hikers have excellent conditions for long hiking tours, both in the central part of Montenegro and on the coast, for instance along the Montenegrin Coastal Transversal, as these trails are often too hot during the summer.
But this weekend, the rains finally started. Podgorica was wet, windy and foggy. We can already see the first snow on the mountains around the city. This is a good moment to remember some beautiful tours we have made in the last few weeks. But although I made a lot of photos on those trips, I don’t have the feeling that I managed to capture all the beauties of nature.
It is so nice to live in Podgorica, from where it takes you just a few hours to explore the country! In October, a trip through Piperi and a day in Kučka Korita (see also Circuit around Korita) were very special experiences. The intensity and colorfulness of the beech forests in sharp contrast with the grey karst rocks – it just seemed to be unrealistic (photo 1 and 2).
In late October we also traveled to Kotor, taking the old and curvy Lovćen road that starts in Cetinje, passes through the famous ”Stone Sea” (photo 3) and the traditional village of Njeguši. This 38 km long road that is considered to be one of the most dangerous and spectacular roads in Europe, is very quiet in this time of the year. There was no traffic, just the silence of nature and the green and golden shadows of the forests on the slopes of Mount Lovćen (photo 4)
A visit to the old town market in Kotor gave us an idea about all the treasures of autumn: pomegranates, olives and carob, domestic juice and marmalade of Cornelian cherries (see also An unknown wild fruit: Cornelian cherries), herbal teas, smoked meat, home-made olive oil… A feast for the eyes!
Our last trip, in early November, took us through the villages around Skadar Lake and Cetinje. We were just roaming along the narrow roads, edged by wild pomegranates (see also: Pomegranate: Symbol of Abundance and Fertility), junipers (photo 6) and the vibrant red foliage of smoke trees (photo 7). Picturesque kaki trees (also called Japanese persimmon) and the red-brown colors of the vineyards around the village houses made the picture complete. By the way, do you know that the leaves of smoke trees were used in old Montenegro for dyeing textiles in all shades of blue?
On our way back, we were surprised to see a happy group of hunters along the road. They proudly showed their bag: four wild pigs, one of which was almost 200 kg heavy (photo 8). I am no hunting fan, but I know that wild pigs cause a lot of damage to crops and forests…
Well, I am sure that there will be other beautiful and sunny days in the next weeks. But after the heavy rains, the stunning backdrop of vibrant leaves has disappeared… Thus, our next trips will lead to the northern part of Montenegro: we want to see the snow!