In this article we will tell you about the most interesting, unusual and surprising facts about Montenegro, about its historical sights and cultural monuments, about the life, traditions and customs of the local population and much more.
The name "Montenegro", as it is not hard to guess, came from the words "Black Mountain". The native name of the country that sounds like "Tsrna Gora" was first mentioned in 1296 in the decrees of King Uros I to the Serbian Orthodox bishopric. In the world, now the most common adaptive name is from the Venetian "Montana Negro" or "Montenegro" (from mons - "mountain" and niger - "black").
By area of occupied by territory, this small country in the Balkans is on the 155th place in the world (13.8 thousand km²).
The official and business capital of Montenegro is Podgorica. The city occupies 225 km² with a population of more than 135 thousand people and is actively developing in construction and tourism.
The population of the whole country (estimated in 2016) is 622,218 people, with a population density of 45 people / km². By this indicator, the country is on the 167th place in the world.
Montenegrins are the tallest nation in Europe. The average height of the representatives of the stronger sex is about 185 cm.
The official currency is the euro (€). However, because Montenegro is not part of the European Union, it does not have the right to issue money, i.e. manufacturing and releasing them in circulation. The bulk of the finance comes from abroad from vacationers.
According to the Constitution, the historical capital of the country is the city of Cetinje, in which at the moment there are only about 16 thousand people. It is also the cultural capital of Montenegro, as here there are still most of the departmental buildings and objects of cultural heritage.
The form of government in the country is a parliamentary-presidential republic. The president is Filip Vujanovic, and the prime minister is Dusko Markovic. The Parliament consists of 81 deputies (unicameral Assembly).
Montenegro became a sovereign state on June 3, 2006 after a referendum held on May 21, 2006, during which 55.5% of voters in Montenegro voted for the country's independence and its withdrawal from the union with Serbia. On June 28, 2006, Montenegro became the 192nd member of the UNO. Independence Day is considered a national holiday and is an official holiday.
In 1991, the government of Montenegro declared Montenegro an "environmental power" and prescribed it in the constitution. To date, 8.1% of the total area of the country is environmental.
The Canyon of the River Tara reaches 1,300 meters in depth and is the deepest canyon in Europe and the second in the world after the Grand Canyon of Colorado (1600 m.) In Colorado, USA.
The Tara River is known for its clear water, which can be drunk immediately.
In Montenegro, the highest automobile bridge in Europe is built - the Djurdjevic Bridge, 166 meters in height and 366 meters long, connecting the banks of the Tara River.
Bay of Kotor (Boka Kotorska, Italian Bocche di Cattaro, literally - "Kotorskoe estuary") is the largest bay on the entire Adriatic coast, which is a river canyon immersed in the sea.
At the end of the 15th century (1494) near the southern Slavs, exactly in the place of modern Montenegro, the first printing house appeared and the first printed book "Octoechos (eight sounds)" was published. At the moment this book is in the Monastery of Moraca.
The warmest cities from the countries of the former Yugoslavia are Mostar (Bosnia and Herzegovina) and the capital of Montenegro, Podgorica.
In Montenegro, according to local residents, there is a unique river in the world - Bojana, which flows in opposite directions. The fact is that the river bed in several places is below sea level and with the south wind the water from the sea gets into the river. Once all vessels in Montenegro went only along it.
The name of the town Mojkovac is derived from the phrase "my kovani novats", which literally translates as "my forged money." This place is known for the production of metal money.
The printing house in Cetinje in 1852 temporarily stopped its work because of the war with Turkey, because from tin they made letters the bullets were started to produced.
In the early twentieth century, Elena Savoyskaya, daughter of the King of Montenegro, Nikola, was Queen of Italy.
In the battle of Crusima (between Montenegro and the Ottoman Empire) in 1796, the Turks were defeated, although their army consisted of 30,000 soldiers, while the Montenegrin army had only 7 000 warriors.
The world's first private nautical school was opened by Marco Martinovic (1663-1716) in the Montenegrin city of Perast.
The town Niksic is known for being close to a field with about 30 rivers and 300 water sources.
In the village of Godin, tunnels and passages are laid underground, linking all houses to protect from attack.
In the Old city of Kotor there is one of the narrowest streets in the world with the name "Let me pass". It is so narrowed that it is difficult to pass for two people.
On the Šipčanik mountain, near Podgorica, there are now vineyards on the site of the old airfield for military aircraft, and wine cellars are located in the former hangar for Yugoslavian military aircraft.
Peter I Petrovich Niegosh is the only king in the whole world who was wounded three times in battles in defense of his Motherland.
Near the village of Stabno there are still the remains of the milk pipeline, through which milk was delivered from the peaks of the mountains. Such a unique supply system is the only survivor in Europe, and according to some sources, in the world.
In the city of Risan there is a single figure from the mosaic dedicated to the god of sleep Hypnos.
Montenegro built the highest city on the Balkan Peninsula - Zabljak, it is located at an altitude of 1485 meters above sea level.
In the church of St. Nicholas you can see the biggest bell, 55 meters high, on the entire Adriatic coast.
The Church of St. Mary in Ulcinj was built in 1510. In 1693, during the Turkish attack, it was rebuilt into a mosque. At present, the architectural remains of this building are called a mosque church.
National Park Skadar Lake, with an area of 475 km², is known for its unique flora and fauna: there are 282 species of birds and 38 species of fish. In addition, here you can see the "curly pelican" - the only species of surviving pelicans in the whole Europe. The lake itself in several places goes below sea level.
Forests occupy more than 40% of the entire territory of Montenegro.
There are 2,833 different plant species in Montenegro, 22 of which are found only in Montenegro and nowhere else in the world.
The entire city of Kotor is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is a kind of open-air museum.
For the first time in Europe, it was in Montenegro that a car was used to transfer mail (05.07.1903).
The largest vineyard in Europe (area 2310 ha) is Plantage, the harvest of which goes to the production of such popular Montenegrin wines as Vranac and Krstac.
It’s strange, but in this country on the seashore, meat and meat products are more common and cheaper than fish or seafood. Just here there is no commercial fishing, and in fish shops, restaurants and markets, fish deliverd from private fishermen.
Casoron (Trupa Longicurpa) is a plant that can be found only in Montenegro on Lake Skadar.
Despite the small area of the country, the following fact is surprising: the longest beach of natural sand (12 kilometers !) Is located exactly in Montenegro in the city of Ulcinj and called the Great Beach (Velika plaža).
The total length of beaches suitable for bathing (and there are more than 117 of them) is 73 kilometers. Thanks to this, about 1.5 million tourists from all over the world visit Montenegro during the year.
You can walk the entire Budva Riviera along the shore, as all the beaches are connected by paths, tunnels and bridges.
In Pogorica there is the shortest in Montenegro and one of the smallest streets in the world - Cetinje Street. Its length is only 30 meters and there is only one building on it.
The Church of St. Elijah in Tsarina, 1800 meters high, is the highest church in Europe.
The ancient medieval town of Sas (today it is Svac, located on Satck lake) had 365 churches, one for every day of the year.
To the famous Orthodox monastery Ostrog pilgrims of all religions come: Orthodoxy, Catholicism and Islam. The thing is that all people believe in the miraculous power of the relics of St. Basil of Ostrog, regardless of religion.
In Montenegro, there are two important shrines for the entire Orthodox world - the right hand of John the Baptist, the Part of the Life-Giving Cross, on which Jesus Christ was crucified.
Illyrian Queen Teuta, who reigned in the III century BC and received the throne after the death husband Agros, chose the city of Risan in Kotor Bay as the capital of her kingdom.
Cave Djalovicha is the longest (12 km.) And the most picturesque cave in Montenegro.
The bridge on the Malaja River is the highest railway bridge (212 meters) in the entire Balkan Peninsula. It is on the railway between Belgrade (Serbia) and Bar (Montenegro).
The man-made island of Gospa od Skrpela (the Mother of God on the Reef), located in the Bay of Kotor opposite Perast, was formed artificially from one large stone in the water, on which, according to legend, the icon of the Virgin was found. Approximately from the middle of the XV century, passing by, people sprinkled other stones to strengthen it. At present, every year on July 22, during the Fashinada holiday, local people pay tribute to the tradition, sail to the island by boats and throw stones into the water.
In 1935 Bečići beach was awarded the title of the best beach among European countries.
The Mratine dam on the Piva River, built in 1975 for the needs of the Pivskaja hydroelectric power station, is the largest in Europe. Its height is 220 meters, the width at the base is 30 meters, and at the highest point - 4.5 meters.
During the construction of the Mratine Dam, due to the flooding of nearby places, it was decided to move the Pivski Monastery to a safe place. For 12 years, the temple, stone by stone, was moved to 3 kilometers away from its former place.
During the Second World War Podgorica was bombed 90 times. More massive damage was caused only to Pearl Harbor, Stalingrad and Dresden.
The oldest cathedral in Europe - the cathedral of St. Tryphon located in the Old Town of Kotor, being its main attraction. And this church building is older than the world-famous cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris in 69 years.
Dusan Vukotich is the first and only director from Montenegro received an Oscar. He was awarded in 1961 for the animated short film "Surrogate".
Glory to actor Brad Pitt came after the release of the movie "The Dark Side of the Sun" in 1988, where he played the main role. It is noteworthy that this film was shot in the picturesque streets of Ulcinj.
In 1979, on the coast of Montenegro and Albania, there was a powerful earthquake of magnitude 7 on the Richter scale and IX on the Mercalli scale. The epicenter of the earthquake was located in the Adriatic Sea at a distance of 15 kilometers from the coast between the cities of Bar and Ulcinj. This serious natural cataclysm caused serious damage to many ancient architectural structures, historical monuments, cultural and residential objects. Up to 2003, with financial support from many countries around the world, active restoration work continued throughout the country.
Montenegro, as an ally of the Russian Empire, took part in the Russian-Japanese War (1904-1905), thus expressing enormous gratitude for Russia's help in the war against Turkey. It should be noted that because of the territorial remoteness from the battlefields, the country from the Balkan Peninsula helped just symbolically. An interesting fact: after the war, Montenegro and Japan never signed a peace agreement.
The tourist attractiveness of Montenegro is growing every year. The country's income from foreign tourists is about 20% of GDP and according to economists' forecasts this figure will only grow in the coming years.
According to the International Tourism and Travel Council, a small country from the Balkan Peninsula is among the three fast growing countries in the tourist segment! One of the main factors of success is the absence of mandatory visas for holidaymakers.
The pride of the county is hand-made carpets, as well as tapestries, jewelry and ceramics. Also the most popular among tourists are processed and artistically decorated objects made of wood and, of course, local honey, olives and wine.
Montenegrins do not like to remember the war, so it's better not to talk about it.
More than 3/4 of the country's population is Orthodox. Islam is practiced by about 17% of Sunni Muslims.
In the church of St. Luke in the Old City of Kotor there are two altars: one - Catholic, and the other - Orthodox.
In the village of Krusevice in Kotor Bay, one of the most respected popes of the Vatican - Sixtus V (1520-1590) was born.
The common domain .me is the property of Montenegro. Currently, the World Wide Web in the zone .me is more than 231 million Internet sites.
Funny fact: Montenegro is extremely uncomfortable for cartographers state, because of its small area it is quite difficult to map even a figure that corresponds to the name of the state in the map note! (Thus it is customary to designate small countries whose full name does not fit on the map).
The ideal time to visit Montenegro is from the beginning of May to the end of October. The air temperature during the day is kept within the range of +24 - + 28 C °. However, for night walks, it is better to take a warm jacket along.
The water temperature in the sea can change quite often throughout the year. This is determined by the underwater currents in the Adriatic Sea.
The basis of the country's economy is the production and processing of aluminum, as well as textile, food and light industries, ferrous metallurgy, shipbuilding and ship repair. Montenegro grows tobacco, extracts bauxite, iron ore, coal and salt. In the summer, the country receives huge profits from the influx of tourists. The main crops are grains, potatoes, tobacco, grapes, citrus fruits, olives and figs.
The area of the country is less than the state of Connecticut (USA) and 3 times smaller than the Moscow region (Russia).
In the city of Bar the oldest on the planet olive tree - Old Oliva grows. Its age exceeds 2000 years, but, despite its age, it annually fructifies.
On Mount Orien, at an altitude of 1,076 meters above sea level, is the village of Crkvice, which is the rainiest place in Europe. Here it falls up to 5 meters of precipitation per 1 square meter of the area annually.
The city of Bar is considered the sunniest place in Europe - on average, there are 270 sunny days per year.
Ada Bojana Island is known throughout the world as the largest center of nudism and naturism.
The village of Konusi in the north of the country is known for the fact that almost 60 bachelors who voluntarily abandoned the bonds of marriage live there alone.
In Montenegro, people drink mostly natural coffee. Its soluble counterpart or tea can be found in shops, cafes and restaurants with a very limited assortment.
Empty bottles of local beer (0.5 liters) the buyer must necessarily return to the store! Sometimes this leads to curious situations with tourists who simply cannot buy a foamy drink and do not understand why ... This requirement does not apply to canned beer and foreign manufacturers' alcohol drinks.
The country has an official Montenegrin language, although it is very difficult for a tourist to distinguish it from a Serbian one. In fact, this is one language, with some insignificant differences.
Nicola Jovanovic is the first football legionnaire from Montenegro. He played for Manchester United (England).
Montenegrins can look quite different. This is due to the historical confusion of many nationalities and cultures.
There is an unofficial fact about most of the local men: they are not prone to adultery.
For the convenience of tourists from the city of Bar, ferries run to Italy (Bar-Bari-Bar).
Industrial plants in Montenegro are small and the lion's share of goods is imported. That is why their quality is high, and counterfeits in stores are extremely rare.
Montenegrins treat family with great respect and save family traditions.
In the country it is considered normal without a reason to start singing on the street.
In local eating establishments, portions are usually enormous and the food is delicious. Therefore, do not order many dishes at once, sometimes one salad and a bowl of soup (corba) are enough to eat to heart content.
In Montenegro there is no such famous fast food as McDonald's.
Small lockers for bags in shops and supermarkets are not locked, and in the yards there are plenty of children's toys, bicycles and kick scooters. The thing is that the probability of being robbed in Montenegro is very small.
In Montenegro, most people are "larks".
As a token of gratitude, it is customary to show the thumb "up".
Taxi drivers are not allowed to carry drunk passengers in the front seat.
There is no central heating, like natural gas, in homes. For heating in Montenegro, electricity, wood stoves and warm clothes are used.
- How many people do you have in Montenegro?
"In Russia, here, there are as many as one hundred and forty-five million Russians!"
- And if without Russians, how much is it?
"What do you mean, without Russians?" We do not leave our people along!
Found a mistake. Highlight the text and press Ctrl + Enter