Podgorica sights in Montenegro

All about attractions of Podgorica in one place

Tourists flying to Montenegro think its capital is a boring place, and to dispel this myth, I will tell you about the sights of Podgorica. It is the largest and most populated city in the country. The local airport takes flights from all over Europe. In the city works the main university of Montenegro, the convergence of roads and railroads.

But this does not yet answer the question of what to see in Podgorica. The situation is exacerbated by the fact that during World War II the city was destroyed to the ground. Therefore, there are almost no old historical sites. But there is the Temple of the Resurrection in Podgorica, the Turkish clock tower, the monument to Vysotsky and Pushkin. And also obligatory historical museum, beautiful bridges and streets. In the city of Podgorica attractions are new, no older than the twentieth century, but there are also ancient. They include the ruins of the Roman city, the church on the hill of Gorica.

Further I will tell in detail about Podgorica itself, and about its interesting places.

The Bridge in Montenegro's capital city

History of Podgorica

The first people appeared here before Christ. They were Illyrians. They were quickly conquered by Roman legions, who founded the city of Birziminium. About three kilometers away there was another Roman settlement, Diocleia or Ducla. Its ruins are part of the present sights of Podgorica. An important trump card of the cities was their convenient location on a plain at the confluence of the rivers.

Since the 5th century, in Dukla, as the whole region began to be called, lived the Slavic tribes . They lived in Ribnica, another town in the area of modern Podgorica. The current name first appears in documents of 1326. At that time, the town prospered thanks to the active trade between the territories of today’s Serbia and Croatia.

But since 1474 the region came under the rule of the Ottoman Empire. In the city of Podgorica (Montenegro) attractions relate to this period – there is a tower Sahat-kula. The Turks constantly waged war with the local militia, and Podgorica was the main stronghold of the invaders.

Only in 1878, after the end of the Russian-Turkish war, Montenegro, with Podgorica as part of its independence. In the first half of the twentieth century, the future capital was developing rapidly. A bank and a tobacco plantation appeared here. Roads connected Podgorica with the nearest cities.

During World War II the city was almost completely destroyed, all the old landmarks of Podgorica were damaged. One third of the inhabitants were killed. By 1946 Podgorica was restored and made the capital under a new name – Titograd. In honor of the Yugoslav leader Josip Broz Tito. In 1992 the old name was given back to the city.

Cafe in Podgorica

Podgorica in our days

Modern Podgorica is a new city in the truest sense of the word. After the war it was almost entirely built up with typical apartment buildings, familiar to all post-Soviet inhabitants. Only in the old town there are houses of Turkish period and narrow streets. Since the 1990s there are modern buildings, built a new Podgorica.

Is it worth to go to Podgorica? It all depends on the length of vacation and plans for it. I advise to visit the capital of Montenegro in three cases:

  1. If you arrive at the airport Podgorica and are in no hurry to go further. On the city is enough for a partial day, you will have time to see all the sights Podgorica.
  2. If you are passing through the city and are ready to stop for a few hours. During this time you can walk through the old center and have a bite to eat in a cafe.
  3. If you plan to spend at least a month in Montenegro. Definitely have time to spare a day or two for a visit to the capital.
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It’s time to figure out what to see in Podgorica first!

Podgorica – main sights

This section is dedicated to the main sights of Podgorica. What is called a must see. At the end of the article I will place a map with the markings of interesting places. There will be easier to build a route and understand what is where.

Church of the Resurrection

The largest Orthodox Church in the country was opened in 2013, although the construction began in 1993. The Church of the Resurrection (Podgorica) is located on the opposite bank of the river from the Old Town. Built it with money from the state and ordinary citizens. Many helped otherwise – carried stone and other materials.

The Church of Resurrection in Podgorica is built in the Neobyzantine style, with large stone slabs on the outside and paintings from the Old and New Testament inside. The height of the temple is 34 meters. Up to 5,000 people can be seated inside. The church has 14 bells, the largest of which weighs 11 tons.

Main Cathedral of Podgorica

To get into the Church of the Resurrection in Podgorica is free. It is better to come for the morning or evening service – at 8:00 or 17:00, respectively. Do not forget the closed clothes.

  • Address: 3 George Washington Blvd.
  • Official website: hramvaskrsenja.me.

Church of St. George

Much earlier than the Church of the Resurrection in Podgorica, another church was built. It dates back to the IX-XI centuries. The church is single-nave, orthodox, built in typical Romanesque style from the stones of an older church. Inside there are interesting frescoes of the XVI century and the iconostasis created in our time. Nearby there is the old city cemetery.

You can get to this place of interest in Podgorica through Ivan Černojevića boulevard. You have to walk to the central stadium and turn north, to the foot of Gorica hill. There, at the end of December 19 Street, stands the church. The temple is open all day and admission is free.

Independence Square

Until recently, the main square of the country was called “Republic Square”. The rectangle of 15,000 square meters is surrounded by government buildings, restaurants and boutiques. In the center is a fountain with interesting night lighting. There is free Wi-Fi throughout the area. In the city of Podgorica, the attractions of the new areas are concentrated just around Independence Square. The square is located in the center of the New Town east of the river.

Squares of Podgorica

Hercegovacka Street

The central pedestrian street of the capital is located one block north of Independence Square. Podgorica’s main attractions for shopping lovers – stores, boutiques and cafes – are concentrated here.

There are many cafes in Podgorica

Petrovic-Njegosje Palace

The palace complex was built in 1889 by Nikola I Petrovic-Njegos for his wife. Today the Podgorica Gallery of Modern Art is located here. On the upper floors several rooms are occupied by Nicholas II, who sometimes stays in the palace with his family. He is now considered to be the head of the Royal House of Montenegro. Among the interesting exhibits of the Gallery: African and Asian paintings and sculptures, as well as the collection of gifts of Josip Broz Tito.

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Useful information:

  • Address: Petrovic Park on the west bank of the river near Revolution Boulevard.
  • Opening hours: 7:00-21:00, on Saturdays until 13:00, Sunday off.
  • Ticket price: 5 euros.

Millennium Bridge

Millennium Bridge (Podgorica) or simply Millennium was opened in 2005 as a symbol of the new European Montenegro. The length of the structure is 140 meters. It connects the two banks of the Moraca River, the old and new districts of Podgorica. It cost 7 million euros to build.

Millennium Bridge in Podgorica

The neighboring Moscow Bridge is also an interesting attraction. It is completely pedestrian. From here you can see perfectly both Millennium Bridge (Podgorica) and both banks of the river. The Moscow Bridge was built in halves with funds from Podgorica and its twin city, Moscow.

Podgorica walking areas

Clock Tower

Sahat-kula is a former Turkish watchtower in the Old Town. It was built in the 16th century and was used by the Turkish soldiers as a watchtower. The tower was later rebuilt into a minaret. Sahat-kula is one of the most interesting sights in Podgorica and you will not miss it if you are in the historical center. The 19 meter tall structure surprisingly survived all the bombing of Podgorica.

The Clock Tower in Podgorica

The tower is located on the square of the governor Becir Bey Osmanagic. It used to be possible to climb up to the bell at the top, but in 2012 it was removed and a new digital clock was put.

City Museum of Podgorica

The main museum in Podgorica was opened in 1950. It combines historical, cultural, archaeological and ethnographic exhibitions. The exhibits are devoted to the life of all Montenegro. The first findings date back to the 3rd century B.C., and the first floor shows the works of modern artists.

Useful information:

  • Address: 23 Vuka Karadžića.
  • Opening hours: 8:00-20:00, on Saturdays until 16:00, Sunday off.
  • Ticket price: 1 EUR.

Monument to Vysotsky

Vysotsky came to Montenegro twice and he truly loved this country. In 2004, a monument to Vysotsky was unveiled in honor of the poet in Podgorica. Vladimir Semenovich is represented in the image of Hamlet and with a guitar in his hand. It is located on boulevard of Ivan Tomasevich, near the Millennium Bridge.

Monument to Vysotsky in Podgorica

Monument to Pushkin

The monument to Vysotsky in Podgorica is not the only one dedicated to Russian artists. In 2002 there was opened the monument to Pushkin. The composition consists of a sculpture of the poet reciting poetry and his beloved Natalia Goncharova.

In Montenegro there is one more monument to the Russian man – Yuri Gagarin!

Attractions near Podgorica

Niagara Falls

The namesake of the famous American waterfall in Montenegro is much smaller, muchooooo less. But I still advise to go here. The Niagara Falls (Podgorica) appeared on the Cijevna River after they built a dam there. The waterfall is especially beautiful in the spring or after a rain. It is worth stopping by the waterfall and for the restaurant with the same name. From the veranda you can see the waterfall, the waiters serve local fish, and the interior is nationally-authentic. The waterfall dries up in the second half of summer and early fall. Keep this point in mind when planning your trip.

Niagara Falls near Podgorica

How to get there. On the road from Skadar Lake to Podgorica, find a sign for Golubovci. After the turn to the airport and the bridge over the Cijevna River take the country road near the sign to Rakica Kuca. Continue straight until you see a sign for a restaurant and a waterfall Niagara (Podgorica). Beyond that, take a sharp right, and after 100 meters you will be on the spot.

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Daibabe Monastery

The half-underground Daibabe monastery was founded in 1897, and it is still active. It is interesting to visit here if you like caves and catacombs.

Daibaba Monastery near Podgorica

If you drive from Podgorica on the main road in the direction of the sea, after 4 kilometers there is a roundabout. Turn right there, if you are coming from the capital, and then just follow the signs. You can get to the ring by bus number 1, and from there you can walk. In the city of Podgorica (Montenegro) attractions are quite interesting, but if you have time, I advise you to go to Daybabe.

The official website: dajbabe.org.

Bukumir Lake

The picturesque lake is located at an altitude of 1,443 meters 40 kilometers from the capital. According to legend, the gods created it in response to the prayer of a tired traveler. It is believed that the lake grants wishes. Another legend about its origin is associated with the newts that live here. They are said to be the descendants of dragons that punished the tribe of bukumirs and left them only with the lake.

In addition to the things to see in Podgorica, I strongly advise you to go to Lake Bukumir. You have to go north all the time, following the signs. From the main road E80 we turn to the serpentine and do not forget to turn at the sign. The public transport doesn’t go there, you can order individual excursion.

Lake Bukumir in Montenegro

Lake Skadar

To the south of Podgorica is the main natural attraction of the country – Lake Skadar. On the shore there are preserved ruins of castles and monasteries, and there are functioning complexes. The lake is home to 260 species of wading birds. Excursions on pleasure boats on Lake Skadar and neighboring rivers are popular among tourists. For example, Rijeka Crnojevica. Offers such excursions and Podgorica.

Montenegro's main lake

Ruins of Dukli

Four kilometers north of the center of Podgorica is the place Rogami. This is where in the times of the Roman Empire was situated the city of Duklja, which is now in ruins. Rather large area is fenced with netting, but the central entrance is always open. However, tourists are not taken here. In the ruins here and there lie pieces of columns and traces of roads and buildings. If you like antiquity, then Duklja is a must visit place.

If you don’t have much time, take a walk through the old town, visit the Church of the Resurrection (Podgorica) and Independence Square. You’ll have time for a couple of hours before or right after your flight.

Map of sights in and around Podgorica

As promised, I marked on the map all of the above-mentioned places of interest in Podgorica. It is not difficult to make a route around the city, as it is not very big. While walking around the Montenegrin capital I used only trolleybus 11. I hope you understood that I am about my two feet .

Podgorica is the young capital of Montenegro

Podgorica

If you ask someone who has never been into seasonal tourism what the capital city of Montenegro is called, he is unlikely to answer. After all, the name of this city is not too familiar to ordinary Russians. However, anyone who has ever visited the Balkan country on the coast of Montenegro on the Adriatic Sea, will immediately answer this question. After all, Podgorica is not only the capital city of Montenegro, it is also one of the most frequently visited places by tourists.

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Attractions of Podgorica

Podgorica is one of the oldest settlements of South Europe. Archaeological excavations have shown that the first settlement on the site of the future capital was in the Stone Age. Thanks to its favorable location the settlement, which over the centuries has changed its name several times, has always remained an important economic center of the entire region.

Podgorica got its modern name at the beginning of the 14th century. It comes from the name of the steep Gorica Hill, at the foot of which the city itself is located. As for the capital status, it was given Podgorica only in 1949.

The Church of the Resurrection in Podgorica

Tourists come to Podgorica not only as the capital of the country, but to get acquainted with its many attractions. And there are enough of them in the city. It is worth to list only some of them:

Its New Byzantine style is in many ways unique to the city. The temple is new, construction of the temple began in 1993, and in its place once stood the Church of the Holy Apostles. Patriarch of All Russia Alexy II came here and laid the first brick to build it. It was built over 20 years and was opened to pilgrims in 2014. Today the church is a kind of heritage of ancient Montenegrin Orthodoxy. Tourists are attracted not only by the decoration of the temple, but also by the bell tower, where there is a unique bell weighing 11 tons. Here you can not only admire the temple frescoes and architectural merits, but also pray during the service.

2. Bridge on Ribnica

Millennium Bridge in Podgorica

Not too wide river Ribnica flows near the city, and it is crossed by the bridge, which dates back to the 16th century. It is called the Old Bridge, and the peculiarity of this construction is a peculiar tradition – it is on it couples in love swear eternal fidelity to each other. In the olden days the bridge led the travelers to a small church, of which today only ruins remain.

The Millennium Bridge (Millennium Bridge).

It was built relatively recently – in 2005, but it has already become a landmark of Podgorica. This bridge connects two parts of the city – the old and new. From Millennium tourists usually admire the panorama of the entire city, and the bridge itself is surprisingly beautiful in the evening lighting. The bridge is crossed by the emerald-colored mountain river Moraca, which flows from the canyon of the Moraca River, past the Monastery of Moraca, and flows into Lake Skadar. The construction of the bridge was sponsored by Elena Baturina.

4. Monument to poet Vladimir Vysotsky

It is another link between Montenegro and Russia and by its existence it proves the existence of our common cultural heritage. The monument was erected in 2004 by a Russian sculptor. Vysotsky visited Yugoslavia many times, especially loved Belgrade, and came to Montenegro to rest. Many of his poems and songs were written here. You will see not only the figure of the poet and actor himself, but also lines from his poems,

Monument to Vysotsky in Podgorica

which are listed here in two languages at once.

I was not born alone,

I should grow from two roots,

I wish Montenegro had been

My second homeland.

5. Lake Bukumirsko

Monument to Pushkin in Podgorica

There are a lot of natural attractions in the vicinity of Podgorica. Among them is Lake Bukumir, rounded and deep enough – up to 17 meters. The legends say that once this lake was inhabited by dragons, and some believe that they live there even today. This lake is considered one of the cleanest in Montenegro.

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6. Temple of St. George

One of the oldest buildings and churches in Montenegro, belongs to the XI century and is located near the central part of the city. The church is worth visiting in order to feel the spirit of centuries that have been preserved here, despite the fact that the church itself was once partially destroyed and later restored. Tourists are attracted by the ancient frescos of an unknown painter and shrines that are still protected by the state today.

7. Clock Tower

Another of the city’s landmarks, built in the second half of the 17th century. The tower was built at the time when Montenegro was part of the Ottoman Empire. The direct purpose of the construction was to look over the city to control it. But the tower was also used as a minaret. The tall square structure is topped by a bell.

Podgorica Republic Square

8. Monument to Alexander Pushkin and Natalia

The Monument to Alexander Pushkin and his wife Natalia is a gift from Moscow to Montenegro and its people. It was established in 2002 by Russian sculptors. It proves another link of kinship of the brotherly Orthodox people between Russia and Montenegro. The monument is depicted in action: Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin recites poems, and Natalia admires them. Poems about Montenegro are written on the pedestal:

Montenegrins? What is it? Bonaparte asked, Is it true: This tribe is evil, Not afraid of our forces.

9. Republic Square

Podgorica Montenegro

This is the main and the largest square in the city, about 15000 m2. The high fountain and magnolias adorn it. Often it is used for mass festivities and fairs in the city. Around the square, as usual, a lot of boutiques and stores are gathered.

10. Moraca River

The river flows through almost all of Podgorica and is considered one of the most beautiful in Montenegro. Its water is emerald-colored, crystal clear. It flows from the north of Montenegro from the canyon and flows into Lake Skadar. The water level falls in summer, but in spring, especially after the snow melt and heavy rains, the level rises to 4-5 meters. In summer, the residents catch trout by fly fishing and enjoy swimming in the cool river from the scorching heat of the lake.

These are just a few places that tourists in Podgorica want to visit. You can also visit the palace of Petrovic-Njegosje, the old Ottoman fortress and many other museums.

How to get to Podgorica

Millennium Bridge in Podgorica

You can get to Podgorica in several ways. Tourists arriving in Montenegro go to Podgorica by plane. And what to do for those who chose a resort area, such as Budva or Becici? In this case, it is best to go here with an organized tour. For this ideal is a group tour, such as a tour of the monastery Ostrog and Podgorica – the bus will take you directly to your place of rest. Or any other individual tour, which includes Podgorica in its program.

The second option is to use transfer service, for example cab from Budva to Podgorica. You can order your cab transfer in Podgorica directly on our site. On the website of Podgorica you can find detailed information on how to get from Budva to Podgorica, the most popular resort in Montenegro.

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