Montenegro Road Network

By | October 31, 2022

Montenegro’s main road network, with the A1 in green.

According to wholevehicles, Montenegro has a fairly dense network of roads, but traveling is a time-consuming affair due to the country’s mountainous nature. The road network consists of mostly winding two-lane roads that sometimes overcome large differences in height. In Montenegro there is one highway northeast of Podgorica. In addition, the best developed road is the M3 between Podgorica and Nikšić, this is a semi-level road that bypasses built-up areas. The M2 has partly 2×2 lanes south of Podgorica. Another relatively modern road is the M8 to the Bay of Kotor. The Sozina Tunnel is a 4.2 km tunnel from the M1.1 for traffic to the port town of Bar.

Motorways

Two motorways are planned in Montenegro. The A1 is to form the north-south route that will connect the port city of Bar with Serbia via Podgorica. More than 41 kilometers of this has been opened up between Podgorica and Mateševo. The rest of the route has been recorded but is still planned. It is also planned that the Adriatic-Ionian highway from Trieste to Athens will pass through Montenegro. These plans are not very concrete and given the financial burden associated with the construction of the first part of the A1, it is unlikely that other highway sections will be built soon.

European roads

European roads in Montenegro
E65 • E80 • E762 • E763 • E851

Road management

The ministry in charge of the roads is the Ministarstvo saobraćaja i pomorstva (MSP). The execution is done from the traffic directorate (Direkcija za saobraćaj). After independence in 2006, much more was invested in the Montenegrin road network than before. Between 2002 and 2005 only € 3 – 9 million was spent annually. In 2007 and 2008 this amounted to € 57 and 64 million, with which roads could actually be modernized, but for large road projects such as tunnels and motorways this budget is insufficient and tolls and other forms of financing are necessary.

Signage

The signage can be divided into old and new. The old includes Yugoslav signage and is flawed. However, the new signage is much better and will be done with yellow signs with black letters, similar to Croatia. Tourist destinations are indicated on brown signs with white letters. The signage is in Latin script, although Montenegrin and Serbian can be written in both Cyrillic and Latin. Cyrillic is in principle never used on the signage. Road numbers are administrative and are indicated very sparingly on the signage. In the southeast of the country, around Ulcinj, the inscriptions are bilingual Montenegrin-Albanian.

Borders & accessibility

Montenegro is quite isolated from the rest of Europe, especially the tourist coast. The most logical route to drive to Montenegro is via Croatia. The waiting times for the border at Herceg Novi can increase considerably, especially in the summer. The borders with Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina are calmer. You can also reach the country from Serbia, but most tourist areas are on the other side of the country, requiring long stretches of winding single-lane mountain roads. This makes the route via Croatia more attractive. There are also no major through routes to Kosovo, there is only 1 border crossing (Kula). Albania is easily accessible from Podgorica.

Toll

For some time there was one toll road in Montenegro, the Sozina Tunnel between Podgorica and Bar. Until 2021, tolls also had to be paid on the M12 from the coastal town of Herceg Novi to the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina. Toll must also be paid for the use of the A1. Both the Sozina Tunnel and the A1 are managed by Monteput Podgarica.

The ecotax of € 10 for passenger cars introduced in 2008 has been canceled as of 1 January 2012.

The manager can charge entrance fees for roads with a purely touristic-recreational character. For example, Durmitor National Park and Piva Park have an entrance fee of a few euros per passer-by.

Montenegro Road Network