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TRIP OVERVIEW

7 days
Classic
5km/day
Moderate

Trip Dates

2024
13 Jul - 19 Jul
Finished
24 Aug - 30 Aug
Full
31 Aug - 06 Sep
Full
14 Sep - 20 Sep
Full
21 Sep - 27 Sep
Full
28 Sep - 04 Oct
Private
05 Oct - 11 Oct
3 Spaces
2025
24 May - 30 May
Available
31 May - 06 Jun
Available
14 Jun - 20 Jun
Available
28 Jun - 04 Jul
2 Spaces
05 Jul - 11 Jul
Available
19 Jul - 25 Jul
Available
16 Aug - 22 Aug
Available
30 Aug - 05 Sep
Available
06 Sep - 12 Sep
Available
20 Sep - 26 Sep
4 Spaces
04 Oct - 10 Oct
Available
2026

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Tour Highlights

  • Enjoy an unforgettable swimming holiday in Montenegro and discover hidden coves, tranquil lakes and sheer mountains

  • Leap into four different types of open water in less than a week: fjords, lakes, rivers, and the sea!

  • Relax in a beautifully restored former palace with outstanding views over the tranquil fjords

  • Explore the famous Plava Špilja (Blue Grotto) and swim towards the Albanian border, along the monastery-strewn shores of Lake Skadar

Montenegro is one of the few locations in the world where you can swim in four different types of open water in less than a week. On this warm-water swimming holiday, you’ll have the chance to leap into fjords, lakes, rivers, and the sea. While we explore the spectacular scenery and rich history that Montenegro has to offer.

Discover hidden coves, tranquil lakes, and beautiful coastline as we take in some of Montenegro's finest landscapes from a truly unique perspective. With imposing mountains that soar upwards from the fjords, this is a unique opportunity to stretch out your strokes and drink in a backdrop of natural beauty unique to this historic corner of Europe. From a swim in the famous 'blue cave' of Plava Špilja, to snaking meanders across the Bay of Kotor, as well as island hopping between monasteries in Lake Skadar, this trip is filled with amazing swimming experiences. The memories will stay with you long after your last stroke in the water.

At the end of each day, you will have the chance to relax and unwind in a refurbished former palace in the historical town of Perast. The beautiful Mrshe Palace offers stunning accommodation, with a wide range of room options, open-air terrace, and picture-perfect views over the breathtaking Bay of Kotor.


Who is this trip for?

This trip is ideal for guests who are keen to swim in a full range of open water types, from lakes and rivers to fjords and the sea.

Swimmers should have a basic understanding of open water swimming and be capable of completing the average swim distance and average daily swim distance (over the course of two swims) prior to the start of the trip.

The average swim distance is around 3km. The average daily swim distance is around 5km.

We have given this trip a ‘Moderate’ grading. Most swimmers comfortable in the open water will be able to take part and enjoy one of these trips.


What's included?

  • Fully guided swimming holiday (swimmers only)
  • Professional swim guides and full safety escort on all swims (swimmers only)
  • Six nights' accommodation
  • All breakfasts
  • All lunches (swimmers only)
  • Full ABTOT Financial Protection
  • Technique advice with video playback

What's not included?

  • Travel to and from the start of the trip
  • Evening meals
  • Drinks and additional activities


Sample Trip Itinerary

Please note that the below daily itineraries are an example of the swims that may take place during your trip, however, actual swim locations and distances will vary according to local weather and swim conditions. Your SwimTrek guides and local boat pilots will determine the most suitable swim locations each day and will communicate the plan with all guests as soon as possible.

Trip Schedule

Start Point: Mrshe Palace, Perast, Montenegro

Start Time: 17:00 on Day 1

Finish Point: Mrshe Palace, Perast, Montenegro

Finish Time: 11:00 on Day 7

Day 1

We meet at our accommodation, nestled near the bottom of the hill, a short walk from the water and accessible by a flight of 60 stone steps. After a chance to relax, you will get to know your guides and fellow swimmers during a safety briefing and discussion of the week ahead. We will then hold an acclimatisation swim nearby, which will be followed by an optional group meal.

Day 2

After breakfast we meet the boat and head out for our first coastal form Verige channel towards Lavender bay. We return to the Palace for lunch ready for our afternoon swim. Our second swim is from outside the hotel, Perast beach. We head along the coast towards Kotor where we can finish with a drink on the beach to celebrate.

Day 3

We travel out of the Bay of Kotor and head for Sveti Marko. Here we will then swim over to Gospa od Milosrđa. Sveti Marko is known for its flowers and the whole swim is both intriguing and varied. After lunch, we have an opportunity to carry out some filming of your stroke above and below the water before we head off from Krasici. Our afternoon swim takes us to Basketball House along the coast.

Day 4

This day is significantly different from the rest of the trip as we travel to Lake Skadar, located across the Montenegrin/Albanian border, for a unique experience of lake and river swimming in freshwater. We make our escape from Grmožur, the “Montenegrin Alcatraz,” to the deepest part of the lake - the old fishing village of Raduš. The afternoon is spent swimming upstream in the cooler waters of the Morača River to finish at the 8th century Monastery of St Nikola. On the way back to Perast, we have a break from travel to take in the majestic view of the private village and beaches of Sveti Stefan, perched on a rocky outcrop and joined to the mainland by a narrow isthmus.

Day 5

Starting in the Bay of Kotor, we cross on the boat to the picturesque hamlet of Stoliv nestled on the Gulf’s remote western shore. From here, there is an optional 45-minute walk to the Church of Gornji Stoliv located on the slopes of Mt Velji Vrh. The views from 300m above the Gulf are truly breathtaking. We complete our swim of the day from Stoliv to the Blue Kotor Spa. After lunch, you have some free time to either relax at Mrshe Palace, or catch a bus or taxi to the nearby town of Kotor, where you can wander freely and soak up the charm of this UNESCO World Heritage site, which dates back as far as the 12th century.

Day 6

Travelling through the Verige Strait, we head to the Adriatic shoreline of the Luštica Peninsula and to the coastal village of Žanjica, which is only 4km from the Croatian border. The morning is taken up swimming in and out of caves along the Adriatic coast and ending in the largest and most famous cave in Montenegro; “Plava Špilja” (“Blue Grotto”). The cave is over nine metres high - the water temperature inside is often a few degrees warmer than the outside sea temperature. For the afternoon swim, from Žanjica, we head from Rose along the coast to Prstan, stopping to explore the WWII submarine tunnel.

Day 7

After breakfast, our final swim is out to the two islands lying just off Perast: Saint George Island and “Our Lady of the Rocks” Island. It’s an excellent and exciting way to end the trip, surrounded by the imposing fjords that dominate the local landscape.

Reviews

Before my SwimTrek trip to Montenegro, I was very focused on the swimming, hoping I'd be able to keep up. Once there, the wonderful unexpected bonus was the camaraderie in the group and all the fun we had! I have made new friends and loved the swimming. Can't wait to go again!

Fiona L, UK - 2024

My first SwimTrek holiday surpassed my expectations, Montenegro is a beautiful country, the holiday was extremely well organised and the guides were wonderful!

Helen W, France - 2024

Montenegro Fjords is a super trip, enjoyed every minute, great location, great guides, great group, thank you!

Karen C, Ireland - 2024

Absolutely fantastic location, excellent swim guides and fabulous hotel providing delicious food. We had a brilliant time and would highly recommend this trip

Helen D, Ireland - 2023

Fabulous open water experience - beautiful in every location, diverse, active yet laid back and fun. A true winner!

Galia V, Israel - 2023

The Montenegro trip should not be missed! Beautiful water in a stunning setting, and the most welcoming and comfortable lodgings with Liliana.

Jennifer L, USA - 2022

A trip of a lifetime! Perfect location, outstanding accommodation, gorgeous water, couldn't have been better cared for by the swimtrek crew!

Krista W, UK - 2022

We had been planning our Montenegro trip for years and it did not disappoint. Beautiful setting, great swims, wonderful guides. Can't say enough good things!

Josh F, USA - 2022

This was an amazing trip. Stunning scenery, wide variety of swim locations, fabulous guides and wonderful food. Would highly recommend.

Clare W, UK - 2022

Accommodation

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Mrshe Palace, Perast

The Mrshe Palace is a gorgeous former palace which has been totally refurbished in a traditional Montenegrin style. Ideally situated in an area of outstanding natural beauty, the palace overlooks the Bay of Kotor and offers a number of different bedrooms options, as well as large open plan living areas with spectacular views.

Location Summaries

Perast

A picturesque Venetian town and a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Perast is in the middle of the Bay of Kotor. It has inspiring views over the entire bay and the buildings represent the peak of Dalmatian Baroque architecture. Lying some 400 metres offshore are the two islands: Saint George (home to a 12th century Benedictine Monastery) and the island of “Our Lady of the Rocks” (home to a 17th century Roman Catholic church).

Kotor

Lying in the south-eastern part of the Bay of Kotor, this former town of merchants and seafarers dates back to the 12th century. The old town is a densely packed triangle of twisting streets contained by the steep slopes of Sveti Ivan to the east. It is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and, for a small charge, you can even climb the approximate 1.350 steps to the fort for impressive panoramic views of the bay.

Gulf of Kotor

The Gulf of Kotor is widely acknowledged as the single most impressive geographical feature anywhere along the Adriatic coast. It consists of two parts - Tivat Bay and, further inland, the Bay of Kotor. Giant mountains sweep directly down into the clear, blue waters, which form a series of inland fjords. Old historic towns are also dotted around the shoreline, offering a wealth of opportunities for go off exploring.

Lake Skadar

The largest lake on the Balkan peninsula is split between Montenegro and Albania. The Montenegrin section was declared a National Park in 1983, which is home to over 260 bird species. Numerous sites and monuments show that this was an important cultural and historic centre in the 14th and 15th centuries.

Trip Grading

We have given this trip a ‘Moderate’ grading. Most swimmers comfortable in the open water will be able to take part and enjoy one of these trips.

Swimming Distances

Swim Distance Swim Distance
Coastal Verige - Lavender Bay 2½km Coastal Perast Beach - Kotor Drazin Vrt Beach Bar 2½km
Sveti Marko - Gospa od Milorsđa 2½km Krasici to Basket house 2½km
Prison Island – Fishing village 2½km Morača River) 2½km
Stoliv to the Blue Kotor spa 2km
Blue Grotto 2km Swim to Rose into Submarine Tunnel 2½km
Perast – St. George/Lady of the Rocks 1km

*Please note that these swims are an example of what may take place during your trip and should be used as a guide only. Actual swim locations and distances will vary according to local weather and swim conditions.

Swimming Conditions

Swimming in the open water is a fantastic experience, however you should be aware that certain marine life such as jellyfish, plankton, sea lice, sea urchins and coral could be present during the swims and may cause some discomfort. In all cases we will work on reducing your contact with these creatures and that any interactions are managed safely. If you suffer from anaphylaxis, please consult the office prior to booking.

Walking Distances

Mrshe Palace, our Hotel for the week, is located approximately 60 meters from the waters edge. It is worth noting that, from the waters edge, there are approximately 60 stairs to climb (3 flights of steps), if your mobility is of concern, please contact head office for more information.

There is an optional 45-minute walk to the Church of Gornji and should you wish to visit Kotor, there is also the option to take the climb up the 1,350 steps to the Kotor Fort.

Most walks take place on recognised paths and tracks, however there may be cases where we walk along trails or other unsealed surfaces and care should be taken in these areas.

Temperatures

Month Water Temperature* Air Temperature*
May 19-23°C / 66-73°F 22-24°C / 72-75°F
June 20-24°C / 68-75°F 22-24°C / 72-75°F
July 22-26°C / 72-79°F 23-27°C / 73-81°F
August 24-27°C / 75-81°F 26-29°C / 79-84°F
September 22-24°C / 72-75°F 23-26°C / 73-79°F
October** 18-22°C / 67-72°F 16-21°C / 60-70°F

*Please note that these temperatures are indicative and should be used as a guide only.

These temperatures relate to the Bay of Kotor and should be used as a guide only. Water temperatures in the lakes and rivers in which we swim may be 3-5˚C cooler than these temperatures.

**Please also be aware that water temperatures will drop and be colder (possibly down to 19˚C) later in the season.

Weather Caveat

For safety reasons, we rely on decent weather conditions when carrying out our swims. As a consequence, open water swimming holidays require a certain degree of on-trip flexibility which can result in changes to the planned itinerary. These changes often add a touch of uniqueness to your trip and will be communicated to you by your SwimTrek guides as quickly as possible.

Trip Information

Group Size

This trip has a maximum group size of 15. The group will be split into a maximum of three groups, based on speed, with each group being accompanied by their own safety vessel/escort. 

Boat Support

Boat support on this trip includes one main boat and two support boats to be piloted by your SwimTrek guides and a local boat pilot. Please note that this boat support is subject to change without notice and cannot be guaranteed.

Equipment Checklist

For your basic, essential packing list, please visit our Packing List page on the website. For additional, location specific items, please see the information below.

SwimTrek will provide water and electrolytes at every location and refill your bottles.

Note: There is no need to pack towels as the accommodation provides both bath towels and beach towels that can be used outside of the house.

Item Item
Wetsuit Warm Clothes

Due to the changeable water temperatures, we recommend bringing a wetsuit if you are susceptible to the cold and warm clothes for after your swim.

Getting There

There are several ways to travel to Perast, however, the most common route is to fly into Dubrovnik Airport in Croatia and book the shared transfer service which leaves at 13:00 on Day 1 of your trip.

It is also possible to fly into Tivat Airport in Montenegro, which is located closer to Perast but is a smaller airport than Dubrovnik and has fewer international flight arrivals. Please note that flights are often not available on Saturdays, so you may need to book an extra night’s accommodation at Perast Palace prior to the start of your trip. As SwimTrekkers come from all over the world, and join our swimming holidays in numerous destinations, we don't currently offer flights as part of our SwimTrek packages. We do however want to do as much as we can to ensure that our guests get the best deals when travelling to one of our trips so check out our SwimTrek flight tips page on the website.

Whichever route you choose to take, we recommend confirming your flights and other travel bookings as early as possible in order to avoid price rises and availability issues.

Option 1: Travel via Dubrovnik

Transfer from Dubrovnik Airport to Perast

There is a local group transfer service available from Dubrovnik Airport to Mrshe Palace in Montenegro which coincides with morning flight arrivals into Dubrovnik and must be booked directly with the transfer company by emailing Niksa on: niksa@vijad-cavtat.com. Please note that this is a shared transfer service and may include up to eight fellow travellers.

The transfer leaves at 13:00, depending on the flight arrival times of the guests who are booked on the transfer, and takes approximately two hours to reach Mrshe Palace. It is worth mentioning that this journey time could be significantly longer due to possible delays at the Croatian/Montenegrin border. Prices for this transfer service are as follows and are payable directly to your driver upon arrival:

Number of Guests Transfer Price
1-4 Guests €150 to be split between all passengers (one way)
5+ Guests €40 per person (one way)

IMPORTANT: To book your place on this transfer, you must email niksa@vijad-cavtat.com with your flight arrival details at least 7 days prior to your arrival.

The return transfer from Mrshe Palace back to the airport is organised after your arrival, this is to ensure that you get the most cost effective & time efficient way transfer on the last day of your trip, ultimately saving you time, and money.

Private Transfer from Dubrovnik Airport to Perast

Private transfers from Dubrovnik Airport to Perast are available at the above rates for guests whose flights to not coincide with the shared transfer at 13:00. To make your booking, please contact Niksa at: niksa@vijad-cavtat.com.

Public Transport from Dubrovnik to Perast

There is a bus service which runs from Dubrovnik’s main bus station to the town of Kotor, which is situated just 12 kilometres from our base in Perast. Please note that Kotor is the closest scheduled stop on this service, so you will need to ask the driver to let you off in Perast. Once released, the bus timetable can be viewed at www.libertasdubrovnik.com, however, please note that it is subject to change without notice.

Private Transfers While Staying in Dubrovnik

If you are planning to stay in Dubrovnik before or after your trip and need a transfer between the airport and your accommodation (including to meet the shared transfer on Day 1), please email Niksa with your arrival details or travel plans: niksa@vijad-cavtat.com

Option 2: Travel via Tivat

Private Transfer from Tivat Airport to Perast

Private transfers are available from Tivat Airport to Perast from €40, which can carry up to three passengers and take approximately 30 minutes. To book this transfer, please email Liliana: lilianaglyn@hotmail.com.

Private Transfer from Podgorica Airport

A Private transfer from Podgorica Airport to Perast is also available - the transfer time is 90 to 120 minutes and costs €90. To book this transfer, please email Liliana: lilianaglyn@hotmail.com.

Return transfer

During the week, Liliana will organise a group return transfer based on your travel schedule and follow the arrival steps in reverse order. The cost of the transfer will be at the same rate as above. For any additional transfer requests contact niksa@vijad-cavtat.com

Accommodation

Mrshe Palace is a beautiful former palace which has been totally refurbished in a traditional Montenegrin style and which is booked exclusively for SwimTrek’s use during our trips. The Perast Palace is a home away from home and is situated up a flight of steps, just metres from the water’s edge on the banks of the Bay of Kotor. The house features a large lounge, separate dining room and TV room as well as wireless internet and an outdoor terrace in the heart of Perast. Please note that there are a range of bedroom/bathroom options at Mrshe Palace. Most of the rooms are offered on a twin share basis and have en suite facilities, however, please be aware that there are two bedrooms (Rooms 2 and 5) which have a shared bathroom. Please ensure that you select the correct room type at the time of booking and be aware that all rooms are subject to availability. Due to the limited number of rooms at the house, there is only one single supplement available on each departure, which is often booked very early. If the single supplement is still available for the departure that you are interested in booking, it will be available to select during the booking process. Full details on MrshePalace and photos of the bedrooms and living spaces can be found at www.mrshepalace.com.

Finding Mrshe Palace

The Mrshe Palace is known locally as ‘Palata Mrshe’, so if you are asking for directions, it is often helpful to use this name. If you arrive into Perast from Kotor, the steps leading up to Mrshe Palace are just after the fire station on the right-hand side. If you arrive at Perast from Risan/Herceg Novi, the steps leading up to Mrshe Palace are just before the fire station on the left-hand side.

Pre/Post Trip Accommodation and Trip Extension Options

Whilst visiting Montenegro, you are probably going to fly through Dubrovnik, this 16th century City in Croatia, which is known for it's distinctive old town is a popular destination for previous SwimTreker's to visit either before your trip or after.

If you'd like to extend your stay in Montenegro itself, you can contact Liliana to lengthen your stay at Mrshe Palace: lilianaglyn@hotmail.com.. Please note that Liliana won’t be able to provide breakfasts if you decide to extend your stay.

Travel Advice

For more information on any of the following sections please visit the Travel Advice page of our website.

Food and Drink

All breakfasts and lunches (excluding lunch on day six) are included on this trip. On the first night, an optional 3-course welcome dinner is held at the Mrshe Palace. This meal is always a great way for you to get to know your guides and fellow swimmers over a delicious, homemade meal, however, if you wish not to be included, please let the SwimTrek office know prior to your departure. Vegetarian and vegan options are available upon request. Please do get in contact with the SwimTrek customer team to let them know of any dietary requirements. Other dinners are not included, allowing you to experience the local restaurant of your choice over the course of your trip.

Money, Extra Expenses and Tipping

You should bring extra money with you to cover items such as meals not already included in your package, drinks, entertainment, souvenirs, etc.

In some countries, tipping (gratuities) is not part of the culture - in others it has become an expected norm. We believe that tipping is done entirely at your own discretion. If you have been provided with excellent service it may be something you wish to do. Your SwimTrek Guides can advise on local norms for service providers like boat crew, waiters or taxis. Nothing is expected for your SwimTrek Guides but many groups like to present something to the Guides at the end of the trip.

The local currency in Montenegro is the Euro (€).

There is one ATM located in Perast, as well as others nearby in Risan (3 km from Perast) and Kotor (12 km from Perast).

Responsible Travel

SwimTrek is conscious of the importance of protecting the world’s natural wonders. We are acutely aware of our responsibility to not only take care of the natural environments which we are lucky enough to explore, but also to educate our guests about the importance of conservation efforts and responsible tourism. It’s for this reason that we have worked so closely with our partners to ensure that our trips are conducted in the most responsible and sustainable way possible, working tirelessly to minimise the impact of our presence on local marine life and the natural habitat.

For more information, please visit our Responsible Travel page on the website.

Passports and Visas

Non-citizens of Montenegro require a full passport to enter the country, which should be valid for six months beyond the expected length of stay. Citizens of all E.U. member states, U.S., Canada, Australia, and New Zealand do not require a visa to enter Montenegro for less than 90 days. Please note that visa regulations are subject to change and it is important that you check your own visa requirements prior to travel.

Travel Insurance

We consider comprehensive travel insurance to be essential, and we strongly recommend that you purchase insurance which includes, but is not limited to, cover for illness, accident, emergency repatriation, ambulance, air ambulance, helicopter rescue services, cancellation, lost luggage and delays. Your travel insurance should also cover you for open water swimming and any other activity listed in your trip itinerary (including races and competitions, where applicable). Please read your policy details carefully and remember to take them with you on your trip for your own reference.

For further information, please visit our Travel Insurance page on the website.

Here at SwimTrek, we pride ourselves on our focus on safety and the well-being of all our guests. As we operate in some beautiful and remote locations medical facilities are not always easily accessible. SwimTrek Guides, and many staff working for our local partners, are first aid trained. However, we ask that you read our Travel Health page to ensure that you are informed about general Travel and Swim Health precautions.

Travel Plugs & Electricity

For a useful source of information on the different electrical outlets, electrical plugs, and electric sockets, please visit www.worldstandards.eu.


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