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Little is needed when it comes to warnings for Montenegro. This young Adriatic state, tucked between Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia and Albania, enjoys a reputation for being safe and friendly.
The popularity of its seaside resort towns, however, inevitably invites a brand of scoundrels that live to get something for nothing, and some basic precautions are needed.
Beggars and pickpockets are common in Kotor, Budva, Sveti Stefan and Herceg Novi.
They are known to employ tricks to knock valuables form your hands or bags slung on your shoulder.
Always carry bags in front of you, resting on the front leg, where you can see it.
If you're holding an object and see a child running your way, move it away until the child passes.
As with any other place, carry minimal cash and valuables with you, as foreigners tend to attract the attention of criminals.
And if you're driving, know that four-wheel drive and luxury vehicles are popular targets for smash-n-grab theft or occasionally, car-jacking.
Montenegro is mostly populated by Orthodox Christians and Sunni Muslims, and modest clothing is expected in public institutions like schools and hospitals.
Shorts are not permitted inside churches, monasteries and mosques.
Despite the conservatism, naturism is a growing phenomenon in Montenegro, with plenty of choices for clothing-optional beaches and camps.
One popular getaway is Camp Full Monte, an off-grid, eco-friendly campsite close to Croatia.
In Christian areas, topless sunbathing is fine on the regular beaches. It is totally frowned upon in Muslim places, such as Murici.
Removing your bikini bottom anywhere other than a nude beach is strongly condemned.
Montenegrins know how to hold their liquor, and expect visitors to do the same.
Being visibly drunk is a sign of bad taste, even after heavy drinking.
Pace yourself among locals: sip, don't shoot, and temper the booze with food and water.
Know that rakija, a popular plum spirit, is 53% alcohol. Treat it with respect.
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Tim Neville ignores the warnings of others and explores Albania on foot, ultimately discovering a place that feels totally out of this world.
Listen to this episode of the World Nomads Podcast on Albania and hear the story of Ash who retraced the footsteps of a WW2 British SOE.
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please let me know if dogs are allowed on the beaches of Montenegro in August. I am traveling there at the end of august with my friend, a medium sized dog and would really love it if it was allowed to play on the beach and hit the water !
I realise the need for an answer to the above comment has long since passed but just in case people stumble across this article in future here's my take. Firstly, the attitude to dogs in Montenegro and even the wider Balkans may surprise some. It is changing but more often than not locals think dogs are to be given a wide berth and feared. Mainly because they are commonly used as alarm raisers and tied up for long periods around a property. With regard to your specific question about beaches, it can be difficult to find a beach where dogs will not be viewed as a nuisance or even banned. Many establishments rent beach front space and provide loungers umbrellas and access to food and drinks. These will generally not allow dogs on the beach. That is certainly true for our favourite naturist beach at Hotel Riviera in Njivici near Herceg Novi. That said, there are plenty of places around the bay of Kotor where you can easily access the water. They'll be mostly stone, gravel or rock beaches and not huge open sandy areas. If you're lucky you'll have such spaces to yourself and even if not, you should be fine with a well behaved dog in these places.
I am slightly disappointed. It's going to sound harsh, but there's an issue with hygiene all over the beaches. It's dirty and it has bad smell in most places, just disgusting :(
Definitely not going there again, I had a bad experience.