Bus from Budva to Tivat
During our visit to Montenegro in May 2012, my girlfriend and I made use of the local bus network to explore the towns around the Bay of Kotor and further afield.
Prior to our trip, I had struggled to find comprehensive bus timetables online. I managed to locate an online timetable for buses operated by "Blueline" from Herceg Novi, but only a few daily buses were listed. Thankfully, there were numerous other companies running buses and so we found that there were dozens of buses each day linking the various towns.
On a Saturday, we caught an early morning bus from Herceg Novi to Budva (see separate tip). We then caught a bus from Budva to Sveti Stefan and then a taxi from there back to Budva. In the afternoon, we decided to return to Herceg Novi via the town of Tivat.
The following information was correct as of May 2012:
Budva to Tivat
We paid 3.50 Euros each for the one way journey between Budva and Tivat. We purchased our tickets from a counter at Budva bus station (they weren't available from the driver) and caught a bus that was operated by Krivokapic Turs.
We arrived at the station just in time to catch the 15:44 bus on a Saturday afternoon. The previous bus had left at 14:25 and the next bus, had we missed this one, was due to leave at 16:20. There were around 20 buses from Budva to Tivat that day; the first one left at 07:40 and the last one at 21:15. I have attached a photo of the timetable to give an indication of the frequency of the buses, but this will likely be outdated within a few months.
The bus that we caught had begun its journey in Bar at 14:30 and was due to arrive in Herceg Novi (via Tivat, Kotor and Risan) at 17:45. The bus was therefore taking the long route around the bay (i.e. via Risan on the northern coast) rather than crossing the bay on the Lepetane-Kamenari ferry.
The journey from Budva to Tivat took around 40 minutes. However, this included about 10 minutes where we were pulled into a layby, 5km outside of Tivat, while the driver and conductor examined an apparent fault with the bus. After this short interruption to the journey, it was decided that passengers travelling onto Kotor, Risan and Herceg Novi would be transferred to another bus, while the few of us travelling to Tivat would stay on board and complete the short journey to Tivat where the bus would then terminate to be repaired.
We were dropped off at Tivat station, which is actually located close to the village of Zupa, a couple of kilometres out of town on the road towards Tivat airport. It was a flat and straight 20 minute walk from the station to Tivat town centre.
Taxis between Sveti Stefan and Budva
We caught a taxi from Sveti Stefan to Budva during a day trip to the region in May 2012.
Earlier in the day, we had caught a bus from Budva to Sveti Stefan at a cost of 2 Euros per person (journey time 20 minutes).
Ordinarily, we'd have caught the bus back to Budva as well, but on this occasion we decided to take a taxi in order to maximise our free time in the area.
We'd actually walked a little way along the coast from Sveti Stefan to the village of Przno when we located a bus stop for Budva. We noted that the next bus was in 10-15 minutes time and it was starting to rain. If we'd caught a bus back to Budva bus station, we'd have then faced a 20 minute walk to Stari Grad where we intended to go.
As we were studying the bus timetable, a taxi driver pulled up and asked if we wanted to go to Budva. We asked him how much it would cost to go to Stari Grad and he replied 7 Euros. That was only 1.50 Euros each more expensive than the bus and it would save us around 45 minutes in waiting, travelling and walking time, so we accepted.
10 minutes later, after a journey in torrential rain, the taxi driver dropped us off on Slovenska Obala, just a couple of minutes walk from the entrance to the walls of Stari Grad. It was worth paying a little extra for the convenience compared to the local bus.
Bus from Budva to Sveti Stefan
We caught a bus from Budva to Sveti Stefan during a daytrip to the Budva Riviera in May 2012.
We had arrived at Budva bus station at 10am on a Saturday morning after a 1 hour and 50 minute bus ride from Herceg Novi. We immediately set about finding a connecting bus to Sveti Stefan.
A quick enquiry at the ticket office told us that the next bus to Sveti Stefan was at 10:30am and we should purchase tickets there rather than on the bus. We paid 2 Euros each for the tickets.
We grabbed a late breakfast in one of the station's cafes and made our way to the departure bays just before 10:30am. There were a couple of buses parked up, but neither looked to be ours. They were both full sized coaches and had various towns listed on the boards in their windscreens. We were expecting a local minibus for the short journey to Sveti Stefan.
Fortunately, we asked a member of staff and he pointed us in the direction of one of the buses. It was in fact our bus; its final destination was Herceg Novi, but it would be taking a route that went via Sveti Stefan.
We later saw bus stops closer to the town centre that displayed timetables for the "Mediteran Express" and advertised buses "every 20 minutes" between Budva and Sveti Stefan. It seems that these local buses call at various stops along the route between Budva and Sveti Stefan, but don't go via the central bus station.
The journey to Sveti Stefan took 20 minutes and we were dropped off at a bus stop on the main road high above the sea. We almost missed our stop as we were busy taking photos of the famous islet of Sveti Stefan through the window; thankfully the driver shouted out to inform us that this was our stop. From there, it was a steep 10-15 minute walk down to the beach. I wouldn't have fancied walking back up to the bus stop (we caught a taxi back to Budva from the nearby village of Przno after having walked there along the coast).
The route between Budva and Sveti Stefan is a scenic one with some fantastic panoramic coastline views.
Bus from Herceg Novi to Budva
Prior to our visit to Montenegro in May 2012, I had difficulty in finding reliable bus timetables online.
We were staying in Herceg Novi and planned to use the local buses to explore the other towns around the Bay of Kotor and further afield. I located an online timetable for buses run by "Blueline" bus company, but was a little concerned that there only appeared to be a few buses each day heading in the direction that we wanted to go.
So, on our first day in Herceg Novi we made our way to the bus station (which is located on the main road above Stari Grad) to examine the timetables. I was relieved to see that there were dozens of buses each day heading, for example, towards Tivat, Kotor, Budva, Cetinje and Podgorica.
We decided to catch a bus to Budva, before working our way back to Herceg Novi via Tivat. The following information was correct as at May 2012:
Herceg Novi - Budva
We caught the 8:10am bus on a Saturday. There were around 30 buses from Herceg Novi to Budva that day; the first one at 4:30am and the last one at 9pm.
We purchased tickets from the driver at a cost of 5 Euros per person. Curiously, if we had purchased tickets in advance from the bus station, and reserved a place on a specific bus, the tickets would have cost us an extra 1 Euro each. I haven't come across this before; I've usually found it to be the case that tickets purchased in advance are cheaper than tickets purchased on board.
The journey to Budva took 1 hour and 50 minutes and so we pulled into Budva bus station around 10am. Our bus took the "long route" via Perast, Kotor and Tivat. Some buses make use of the Kamenari-Lepetane ferry to cut out a long stretch of road around the bay and reduce the journey time considerably. Despite being a lengthy journey, it was also a breathtakingly scenic one; the majority of the route was along the coastline road with occasional ascents and descents along mountainside roads.
Between Kotor and Tivat, the bus made use of a tunnel through the mountains which made the journey far shorter than it would have been had it continued along the coastal road.
The bus station in Kotor was fairly central, just a few minutes walk from the Old Town. We stopped there for 5 minutes or so as passengers alighted, boarded and mae use of the station's toilet facilities.
The bus station in Tivat, by contrast, was little more than a large kiosk in a layby, a couple of kilometres out of town on the road towards the airport. Our guidebook suggested that Tivat's bus station was in the centre of town, so it has presumably relocated to this peripheral location fairly recently.
Our bus was larger than a minibus, but not as large as a coach. It was only half full as we left Herceg Novi and was even less full when we alighted at Budva. The bus was carrying on to Cetinje and, ultimately, Podgorica but there were only a handful of passengers on board as we watched it pull out of Budva station.
Budva bus station is located around 10-15 minutes walk inland from Slovenska Beach and around 20 minutes walk from Stari Grad. It houses several cafes, small shops and toilet facilities.
Renting cars here is easy, but expensive: 35-40 Euros per day is on the low end. Where I rented – and from what I could tell this applies all over – there’s no deposit, no extra insurance, and no licence requirements besides simply having one from somewhere. One odd thing, though – rather than being required to fill the tank on return, cars are rented with a nearly empty gas tank. The rental place will let you know approximately how much gas you’ll need to do your trip, and when you leave the lot you have to go immediately to a gas pump.
This place and the region in general seems rather popular for Mediterranean Sea yachting, you can see some nice yachts at the harbour, so if you are planning any regional cruise remember this location as one optional visit.
There is small harbour just by the old town where you can take a taxi boat trip around the bay and to other nearby towns. There are few other old towns in the region that are interesting to see, Kotor is one of them.
Taxi’s are available everywhere and as this is relatively small town the trip will be short and quick and so also cheap. I used it and it was very convenience, I didn't need to read the map or search for my hotel.
One way to explore this place can be with bicycle, if you don’t mind the hills or riding on the roads as there are no bicycle roads here, so you need to be very careful.
I notice this place that renting bikes not far from the central bus station, this is on Mainski Put street so you can get there or call.
Buses to other destinations
From the main bus station there are buses to various destinations in Montenegro and to Serbia. The bus terminal had a small tourist office (outdoor) counter where we got a free map of the old town. They can help you with accomodation should you need some. Also you will be approached by people that want to rent out rooms.
There is also a café/restaurant on the premises. Behind the bus station on the next block you will find the big Maxi supermarket.
In Montenegro you have to pay an additional 50 cent or Euro for taxes and fees for the bus station itself. So for instance the ticket to Kotor cost us Euro 3.00, but the actual fare was only Euro 2.50. Locals avoid this sometimes and get on just outside the station building and pay the driver who issues a ticket.
On rare occassions you may have to pay Euro 1.00 for your luggage.
Local bus to Sveti Stefan and Petrovac
There are convienient local buses for half-day trips to the beaches/towns on the stretch between Budva and Petrovac.
While the bus to Sveti Stefan apparently runs around every 10 minutes, the one to Petrovac runs much less often. Don't take that with the 10 minutes for granted! To me it seemed that there are much longer waiting periods, so that we ended up taking a private taxi back from Sveti Stefan for Euro 4.00.
The Olimpia buses have a flat fare of Euro 2.50 per stretch. It doesn't matter whether you travel Budva-Petrovac or Petrovac-Sveti Stefan etc. The buses leave in Budva on the main traffic drag through town and drive on the way to Sveti Stefan along some small bottom roads and on the way back on the big road above.
- Budget Travel
We found ourselves getting real bargains on a taxi ride during our low season visit in April. We managed to get a taxi in Ulcinj which took us to Budva and included two hours stop and wait in Stari Bar and another stop at Sveti Stefan for the grand total €25 for two. Well worth it considering the low season infrequent connections and unsuitable times of the Ulcinj bus. If visiting during the low season it’s well worth haggling for long distance taxi rides.
There are regular bus connections to Budva from all over Montenegro. Printed or web based timetables are hard to find and you are better off enquiring in person at bus stations as times and companies regularly change schedules. There are regular connections to/from Herceg Novi and Kotor to the north, Bar and Ulcinj to the south and inland to Cetinje and Podgorica.
Be aware that connections are less frequent in the low season.
There is no airport in Budva but Tivat airport is about 35km north. Tivat is not hugely convenient either as it has only limited scheduled flights and summer charter flights. Podgorica airport is also poorly served from Western Europe so that leaves Dubrovnik as the nearest airport with connections all over Europe. From Dubrovnik to Budva takes between 3 – 4 hours by bus depending on length of time at the border.
Adria, Austrian and JAT airlines are a airlines which do serve Tivat and/or Podgorica
Its very easy to find excursions to several places in Montenegro and to Croatia and Albania.
I´ve done two excursions with MONTELINE TRAVEL and it was perfect.
Now , some prices and the destinations :
BOKA KOTORSKA - All day excursion ( 9-19 h) - 20 Euros
OSTROG MONASTERY - 17 Euros
DUBROVNIK - All day excursion (7.30-19 h ) - 30 Euros
ALBANIA ( Durres and Tirana ) - All day excursion ( 7-21 h ) - 60 Euros
Its easy to find on the streets the Monteline agents
To Sveti Stefan you have the OLIMPIA BUS every 15 minutes only for 1.5 Euros.
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