Montenegro cycling holidays guide

The wisdom goes, ‘If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way.’ A cycling holiday in Montenegro does just that. The small thing is Montenegro, a country the size of Northern Ireland with a population of just over 600,000; the ‘great way’ to do it is cycling. Two wheels take you from mountain to coast, woodland to lake, on manageable distances and quiet routes. Stop when you like, too – cycling breaks are generally self guided and there are no yellow jerseys being handed out at the end of a week.
Biking never gets boring in Montenegro; it never takes itself too seriously either – there’s just so much else to enjoy here, too.
The prize is just being here, enjoying the bike, but also the chance to cool off in Lake Skadar after a swooshing descent; to sup a beer overlooking Kotor Bay; to shop in a local market, picking up fresh pomegranate juice, honey, fruit brandy. And all in a country a little less discovered, a little more rustic than nearby Italy or Croatia, brimming with history and ready with a warm Balkan welcome.

Is a cycling holiday in Montenegro for you?

Go on a Montenegro cycling holiday if...

… you like to swim as much as cycle. Most biking breaks take in some Adriatic coast, the Bay of Kotor and Lake Skadar, so pack some swimmers in your panniers. … a week is all you can spare. Montenegro is small but perfectly formed; just right for a seven day cycling break. Pedal through mountains and woods one day, along sunny coastline and bay shores the next. … you’ve got good eyesight. Or decent glasses. The views on a cycling holiday are spectacular – down from the Lovcen mountains, over Lake Skadar or out to sea. …you want a sense of the country in a single week. A cycling holiday here is never exclusively about cycling. You’ll meet local people, stay in little towns, shop in local markets and soak up Montenegrin life in between pedaling.

Don't go on a Montenegro cycling holiday if...

… you have a need for speed. In Montenegro, you’re often cycling on rough roads, old railway lines and narrow off-road trails, so this isn’t the place to pelt down smooth Tarmac in full Lycra. …you’re only free in July and August. It can hit the 40s in Montenegro in high summer, plus the coast can get clogged with tourists. …you’re not used to life on two wheels. You don’t need to be a seasoned biker to enjoy a cycling break in Montenegro. Most routes aren’t technically demanding or longer than 50km, but be prepared for some rough sections, some precipitous drops and some long inclines. …you like to cycle with a guide and a group. Most cycling in Montenegro is self guided. This gives you flexibility to go at your own pace, but it’s not ideal for anyone who doubts their map reading skills or prefers a small group dynamic.

Best time to go cycling in Montenegro

To avoid sizzling temperatures or soggy conditions, spring, early summer and autumn are best in Montenegro.
Cycling holidays to Montenegro are typically tailor made and run throughout the year, but the best time to go is between April and the end of June, and then again from mid September to late October. July and August can be fiercely hot in Montenegro and temperatures, particularly in the lowland regions of Lake Skadar and Bay of Kotor where cycling holidays take place, can soar above 40°C, which is not easy to pedal in. Coming outside peak season means you’ll also avoid the crowds that head for the coast in high summer.

Montenegro Weather Chart

 
MIN °C
MAX °C
RAIN (mm)
JAN
1
9
187
FEB
3
11
163
MAR
5
15
155
APR
9
19
143
MAY
13
24
91
JUN
17
28
64
JUL
20
31
46
AUG
19
31
65
SEP
16
27
113
OCT
11
21
165
NOV
6
15
233
DEC
3
10
215

Our top Montenegro cycling Holiday

Montenegro mountain biking holidays, self guided

Montenegro mountain biking holidays, self guided

Mountain bike experience in stunning Montenegro

From €650 to €750 8 days ex flights
Tailor made:
This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
Helpdesk
Hello. If you'd like to chat about Montenegro cycling or need help finding a holiday to suit you we're very happy to help. Rosy & team.

A month by month guide

December, January and February can feel chilly on the coast and near Lake Skadar, dropping to 2°C. November and December are also pretty wet, with an average of 13 or 14 rainy days a month and snow on higher ground. By March, the temperature begins to pull up in Montenegro, with highs of 16°C, but you can expect plenty of showers along the coast. April, May and June are superb for cycling, with temperatures ranging from 19°C to a toasty 28°C, the landscape green, wild flowers in bloom and not too many crowds along the coast. In July and August, Montenegro can feel too hot for cycling, unless you’re prepared to get up early and pedal through the miles before the temperatures peak towards midday. Highs of 40°C and above were recorded during the ‘Lucifer heatwave’ that hit the entire Balkans region in summer 2017. Late September and October are great for cycling. The weather cools down but the water stays warm – think 22°C to 25°C – so a dip in the sea or Lake Skadar is bliss after a day in the saddle. You’ll also see crimson pomegranates, orange persimmons, yellow quinces, deep red cornelian cherries and lots of different figs ripening in the landscapes of southern and central Montengero.
Written by Joanna Simmons
Photo credits: [Page banner: Pavlo Hryhorash] [Go/don't go if: Pavlo Hryhorash] [Best time to go: Pavlo Hryhorash]
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