When I moved to Montenegro, I didn’t know a single word of the language. I read some online guides to useful Serbian phrases (it’s the same language, just with a different name) but half of the words I never heard anyone use or I heard them in a different context and was just confused all the time.
After two years here, I have a little more of a grip on the basics and have written out some useful phrases and their context that will help you out on your trip to Montenegro or in your first phase of moving here.
Ulcinj is a seaside town on the south coast of Montenegro, near the border with Albania. While it’s most famous in Montenegro for the 12km long stretch of sand that is Velika Plaža, I like it for the diversity of beaches, the chaotic edge, and the seafood.
Kotor is one of the most beautiful places in Montenegro, if not the world. With its combination of mountains, the sea, an ancient fortress and a labyrinthine medieval old town, there is nowhere else like it. It was my introduction to Montenegro and I meant to visit for just a week, but I fell in love and ended up staying the entire summer.
I lived in Kotor for a summer without learning more than how to say Dobar dan (good day), but when I moved to Podgorica I decided to make it a priority. One embarrassing trip to the shops on my first evening was all it took to convince me.
In my first few months in Podgorica, I stayed in several Airbnb apartments as well as different rental apartments (more than most locals in their entire lives). Having gone through the full process of searching, renting, signing contracts, and moving in and out, here is what I have learned about the quirks of apartments and renting in Podgorica.
There are some useful things to know before coming to Podgorica, that are unique to the city. From your arrival here (there’s no Uber, best to know that now), how to get a SIM card, how to get around town, and also how to deal with smoking in the country (basically, just deal with it).
One of my favourite things about Podgorica is the lack of big chains and prevalence of individually-owned stores everywhere. From the dozens of little clothing and shoe boutiques to the big fruit and vegetable markets, it’s always interesting to explore.