15 Reasons why I love living in Montenegro
Newsflash! I love living in Montenegro. On so many levels it’s perfect for me and Raphy at this stage of our lives. It’s no surprise that I can’t stop singing the praises of this unique country in the Balkans.
As a digital nomad having visited 15 countries and lived in 4 (Cape Verde, Israel, Nigeria and now Montenegro). It can be puzzling to people why I decided to settle in a country that’s off the beaten path.
So without further ado, here are the 15 reasons why I love living in Montenegro. From the amazing landscape with the most scenic routes ever, to people that are friendly AF. At the end of this article you might wanna pack your bags and move here ASAP, so brace yourself.
Table of Contents
Sveti Stefan Island, Montenegro
1. It’s a small country in Europe
Coming from a country in Africa with over 200 million people, all scrambling for limited resources. I’ve learned to appreciate small countries and the awesomeness they offer. With roughly 629,000 people in the Montenegro and over 237,000 people in the capital city of Podgorica (my city). The ease of life is just unmatched and I pray to God it stays like this while I’m here.
[Find out the 7 reasons I don’t like living in Montenegro. Reason #2 is quite a bummer.]
2. Life is slow-paced and peaceful
Montenegrins don’t like stress. As a matter of fact instead of working, many of them would rather drink coffee and smoke cigarettes in coffee shops lol. But that’s more an indication of how ‘tranquilo’ things are here.
The small city life in Podgorica Montenegro means life is slow-paced and peaceful. Considering I’m all about that soft life and I don’t like stress too, this is one of the major reasons why I love living in Montenegro.
3. The nature is stunningly breathtaking
Of all the countries I’ve been to, never have I seen such an insanely gorgeous place. From mountains, landscape, trees, lakes, rivers, tunnels, it’s often hard to keep track. It’s like being in the garden of Eden everyday regardless of where you turn. Everything is simply breathtaking and indeed a sight to behold.
Njegośev Mausoleum Lovćen, Montenegro
4. The people are very warm, friendly and helpful
Montenegrins may not be as warm and friendly as the Mexicans (no one is), but they’re sure as hell warmer than their fellow Europeans (*coughs* Germans, the French *coughs twice*). I mean, they’ll offer to help you if you seem like a confused tourist and will make an extra effort to recommend hidden gems to visit in their beautiful country.
5. Most Montenegrins speak English
The official language here is Montenegrin/Serbian. So imagine how glorious I felt when I realised that most Montenegrins speak English. Sometimes I even forget it’s not an English speaking country tbh. However, it’s common for some older people to not know/speak a word of English so keep this in mind.
For me I’m especially glad that language barrier is not another issue I have to struggle with in a foreign country.
6. Cost of living is affordable AF (even now that the world is turning to shit)
For those of you who watch my YouTube videos, you must have seen my baller apartment in the background. I’m bragging because there’s nowhere else I’ll pay 550 Euros for a 66sqm, 2 bedroom, 1 and a half bath luxury mini-penthouse living like a G. Basically, the cost of living is quite affordable in Montenegro and my money here goes a lonnnnnnnnng way.
7. Montenegro is the perfect country for remote workers, freelancers, business people and retirees
The reality of living in a small country is that there are limited job opportunities and the local income is often low. In 2022, the minimum wage for Montenegro was increased from around 331 Euros in 2021, to 532 Euros per month. This makes the country not so ideal for foreigners looking for jobs or better career opportunities.
However, for remote workers, freelancers, people looking to start a business and retirees; living in Montenegro can be a fantastic pick. Imagine earning 2000 Euros monthly online/pension as a single person. With modest monthly expenses of over 700 – 900 Euros including rent, food, utilities, transportation and entertainment. This means you could have over 1300 – 1100 Euros disposable income monthly, which equals less worry and stress in your life.
On top of that, you won’t only be doing well financially, but you’ll also be living in a beautiful tourism location where everyday is like a chill vacay. Sounds like paradise no?
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Lustiča Bay, Montenegro
8. The weather is amazing in comparison to other countries in Europe
The climate in Montenegro is Mediterranean on the coast and more continental inland. In Podgorica, the capital city, the minimum average temperature in January is about 5 degrees Celsius while maximum is 10 degree Celsius. In summer the low can be 16 degree and the high could reach over 40 degrees, hence we call it the ‘frying pan’ in summer. (Still awesome though).
For comparison, Germany has a temperate climate and the average daytime temperature in January is about 3 degrees Celsius and in July about 22 degree Celsius. In winter extreme temperatures can reach -10 degree celsius (yikes!)and in summer the high can be up to 35 degree celsius.
9. The currency is Euro
I don’t know about you but as someone who when earns in Dollars and Euros, living in a foreign country with a different currency. The constant conversion between currencies can be a pain in the butt.
This is why it’s so awesome for me that the currency of Montenegro is in Euros. The currency used to be Yugoslav dinar until 1999 when the Euro was adopted. (Thank goodness)
Crno Jezero – The Black Lake, Žabljak, Montenegro
10. You’re constantly surrounded by nature, even in the capital city of Podgorica
If I didn’t already mention it, Montenegro is one of the most beautiful countries I’ve ever seen – nature wise. There are numerous parks all over the city, rivers, lakes, mountain views. I mean which other capital city do you hear loud crickets when you walk around during the day in the summer? Tell me if you know any, I’ll wait in the comments.
11. Ease of living
For anyone who despises big city traffic, excess people and is aware of the ‘lower life expectancy’ due to heavy pollution; you need Montenegro in your life.
Living in Montenegro means, 0 to no traffic, less density of people scrambling for resources, less queues, almost everything is a breeze and exactly why I love living in Montenegro.
Crno Jezero – The Black Lake, Žabljak, Montenegro
12. Black people are special here (the good kind)
For black Americans, this may sound like a story from the future, but being black in Montenegro is actually something very special in a good way. This is because there are almost no black people living in Montenegro.
This means Montenegrins are curious, as most of what they know about black people is from the movies. So therefore, Montenegrins are extra friendly to black people and will stare at you like you’re some celebrity. Many go as far as asking to take pictures with you. If you’re black, Montenegrins are very helpful and will give you their umbrella if you’re walking in the rain. #Facts
However, to my surprise the few black Americans I’ve met in Montenegro did not appreciate the behaviour of the Montenegrins (albeit innocent). They often found the constant staring/attention either ‘racist’ or ‘rude.’ I later understood it’s mainly because of their history and experiences as black people in the US, which is quite complicated.
I mention nothing about how Montenegrins perceive other people of color (POC) like Latinos, Asians etc. This is because in my opinion, Montenegrins see most people who are not black as “white” and I mean color-wise, not race-wise, Get it?
However, Montenegrins are very welcoming of all people’s from all shades and races of the world which is refreshing.
13. It’s a spectacular tourism destination
According to data from the statistical office of Montenegro, a total of over 2.6 million tourist arrivals were recorded in Montenegro in 2021. This means when you live in Montenegro especially in the coastal region, you get to meet people from all over the world particularly in the summer-time.
14. Quality of life is tip top
In Montenegro, the air is fresher, the sky is bluer and the sun is brighter. Basically, your quality of life goes all the way up, because there is very minimal stress on you from your environment. (Most of my stress here is caused by Montenegrin drivers who happen to be the worst btw)
15. You’ve got options
You can choose to live in Žabljak in the cold North, the frying pan of Podgorica or maybe in an old city next to the sea in Kotor if you’re the type that loves to go fishing. Bottomline, wherever you choose to live in Montenegro, you’re guaranteed to find something amazing nearby and have a good life overall.
Bonus: Montenegro has a young population
With all due respect for the elderly, it’s refreshing to announce that the majority of the population of Montenegro is not old like many countries in Europe – where they refused to have children. (massive shade thrown here).
The age distribution of Montenegro from 2021 is as follows:
0-14 make up 17.97%
15-64 make up 65.86%
65+ make up 16.17%
For comparison; The age distribution of Germany from 2021 is as follows:
0-14 make up 10.85%
15-64 make up 53.95%
65+ make up 18.44%
There’s no denying that a younger population makes a country feel alive and not life it’s dying off. This feeling of hope is one of the reasons why I chose Montenegro over Germany where my husband is from. HAHA!
Life in Montenegro is easy, stress-free and overall amazing. If you’re looking for a country with a high quality of life, some breathtaking nature with affordable cost of living, Montenegro is your best pick. Of all the 15 reasons why I love living in Montenegro, which is your favourite?
[To kickstart your remote work career, the blog post How to work remotely; a beginner’s guide will help you!]