Little is needed in the way of 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 invite 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, and off-grid, eco-friendly campsite close to Croatia.
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In regular beaches, topless sunbathing is fine in Christian areas, but frowned upon in Muslim places like 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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