Best Places to Live in Montenegro

Panoramic view of the old town of Budva, Montenegro
Image source: Shutterstock / Location: Budva, Montenegro


Montenegro is a small charming country situated on the Balkan Peninsula. The country boasts many beautiful towns on the Adriatic coast, low cost of living, low tax rate and business-friendly options. Montenegro also shows great potential for future development and relatively affordable luxury living. There are plenty of dream places where one would want to settle in. To help you decide which location is ideal for you, we have put together a list of the best cities to live in in Montenegro.

Best cities to live in Montenegro

Montenegro has been receiving a good amount of attention from expats for quite some time, especially from British nationals. The majority choose to relocate in the numerous towns scattered along the Adriatic coastline, however, there are also some interesting places further inland. 

Here are the top 5 cities to live in Montenegro:

Budva

We start our list with a city that has lots to offer to anyone. Whether you are moving with your family or you are a student looking for exciting nightlife, the city of Budva and its sunny region will be ideal for you. Defined as the Miami of Montenegro, Budva has vast sandy beaches, numerous festivals throughout the year, nice clubs and scuba diving options. On the other hand, Budva is an old town and off the season it turns into a charming family-friendly place with beautiful medieval cobblestone streets and vibrant cultural life.

For all those reasons, the towns within the Budva region are popular relocation destinations for foreigners. Once you are there you will definitely feel the international vibe. Moreover, those moving with their children and not speaking the local language will be happy to know that there is the Adriatic College international school.

Kotor

Going further north along the Dinara Alps, right next to Lovcen National Park, you will find the picturesque Kotor Bay. Sunning waters and mountain landscapes will take your breath away. The crown jewel of the area is the city of Kotor. Almost the whole place is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, so the history buffs among you will feel at home at this destination. The heritage of the place also brings many tourists during the summer, however, most of them are cruise ships. 

Moreover, Kotor is the home of many expats and you can even manage fine with English if you don’t speak the local language. If you are a cat person here is one more reason to love Kotor – cats are the symbol of the city and you will be able to find those furry friends everywhere. Ten minutes away is the city of Dobrota – a nice family area for the wealthier. From the coastal atmosphere to the modern housing, Kotor and the namesake bay don’t leave much space for disappointment.

Podgorica

While the majority of expats tend to choose the diverse coastal towns in Montenegro, the country’s capital Podgorica is also a great city that deserves every chance to win your heart. Surprisingly as it may sound, the capital offers a cheaper cost of living and lower rental options. It also scores a standard of living above the average and guarantees more job opportunities. 

Podgorica is the home of many Brits and it has two international schools for expat children. It is well connected by a great international airport and bus and train stations. Shopping there is made easy with plenty of malls and outlets offering international brands. There are also international restaurants offering a wide diversity of cuisines, well kept green spaces and the coastline is just an hour away.

Tivat

An option on the high-end is Tivat. It is the perfect place for luxury life enthusiasts and yacht owners, having a platinum-certified marina – the Porto Montenegro. Tivat is a paradise of palm trees, stunning sunsets and beaches, located on the Bay of Kotor. Being the centre of luxury real-estate and foreign investment, the city is known as the Adriatic version of Monaco. 

In Tivat are located the two of the most prestigious academies in the region and the only other international airport. There is a well-connected community of expats as many foreigners already live there. Tivat is also a popular spot for hikers and mountain lovers and it is not a busy tourist location.

Herceg Novi

If you are looking for a cheaper option on the coastline of Montenegro, look no further than Herceg Novi (“New Castle”), a town surrounded by sea and green mountains. Herceg Novi is a historic town, very close to Croatia and influenced by the diverse cultures of the many settlers throughout the centuries, home of beautiful architecture and nearby hiking paths. 

Numerous outdoor bars and restaurants are contributing to a vibrant atmosphere that is never boring, but it’s also not too overwhelming. The town is not too busy with tourists and there is the perfect mix of locals and foreigners. You will always feel welcomed there. Many speak English which makes it easier to live in this lovely town. If you add to that the affordable cost of living, this place turns into the ideal location for an expat.

Other honourable mentions

As you have already seen, in Montenegro, there is a city for every taste. In this section, we will introduce you to two other towns that might not be absolutely perfect but definitely deserve to be mentioned.

Perast

Perast is another strikingly beautiful coastal town situated on Kotov Bay. As a result of 200 years of Venetian rule, the tiny town is built in a Baroque style and has an amazing heritage. Nowadays, this small stone village is a UNESCO World Heritage site and it is ideal for people looking for a quiet place to relax and live happily with their families. However, the housing prices in Perast can be seen as very expensive and many tend to choose other close-by towns to settle in instead. Grocery shopping is also less expensive in other places and many locals visit the supermarkets of Kotor as a more affordable alternative. 

Kolašin

If you love the mountains, you would love Kolašin. The Alpine town vibe of this place can captivate everyone. Though the winters can be quite cold there, you will be surrounded by snow-capped peaks, fresh air and tranquillity. You can also find the best skiing options there. During the summers, however, you will be able to enjoy all the mountain has to offer – hiking, mountain biking, climbing and camping. A downside of life in Kolašin is that there are no international schools and private medical options.

Cities and places you should avoid in Montenegro

Montenegro is considered a safe country to live in, having a low crime rate. During the high tourist season, street crime in most coastal towns can increase. Be careful of beggars and pickpocketers. Avoid crowds and dimply lit places. Moreover, Montenegro is seen as a safe place for women, however, certain places show lower levels of homosexual tolerance.

Most expats moving to Montenegro prefer to avoid the northern part of the country as it is considered less interesting. Life there is not only more relaxed but it is even seen as boring compared to the seaside. Of course, it depends on what you are looking for. 

Takeaways

Overall, Montenegro can easily be seen as a great place to settle in. From various coastal towns to striking green mountains, there are enough cities to choose from. If you choose a life close to the sea, prepare for a higher cost of living. However, know that it will be worth it. On the other hand, if you want to locate further inland, you will be able to enjoy more affordable living and picturesque mountain landscapes. Once you decide on your new home, the next step comes – planning your international removal from the UK to Montenegro.

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