Fishing in Montenegro is a popular activity among both locals and tourists alike. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or a beginner, there’s something for everyone here. In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about fishing in Montenegro, including where to fish, what fish you can catch, fishing from the shore versus from a boat, prices, and more. Let’s dive in!

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tuna fishing in montenegro
Can you really catch a tuna from the shore in Montenegro? I doubt it. But you definitely can from a boat.

Fishing in Montenegro: general points

Fishing in Montenegro is a diverse experience, ranging from freshwater lakes to mountain rivers and the Adriatic Sea. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Montenegro boasts around 40 “major” lakes, where you can find plenty of fish
  • The country is home to several rivers, with the Tara River being the largest. These rivers offer opportunities to catch species like grayling and river trout.
  • Montenegro’s coastline along the Adriatic Sea provides ample opportunities for sea fishing. The link is a large article: where you will learn everything about the sea in Montenegro.
grayling in the rivers of montenegro the tara river
Here is such a big grayling was caught in the Tara River in Montenegro

It’s important to know:

Live bait is scarce in Montenegro: it is impossible to find maggots, worms, bloodworms, and so on. Locals fish on turntables, spinners, wobblers. When fishing from the shore, bread and dough are used as bait. For some fishing methods, mussels and chicken hearts are used, but this is more of an exception.

To sit on the shore and set up a feeder – you will not succeed here. There is no such way of fishing here.

Types of Fish in Montenegro

In Montenegro’s lakes, you’ll primarily find trout, chub, and possibly perch. While fishing for roach or bream is less common, tourists mainly come here for sea fishing. Montenegro isn’t known as a destination for lake fishing.

About fishing in the lakes:

Most national parks in the country (Durmitor, Biogradska Gora, Skadar) allow fishing. Bring your gear, and a one-day license typically costs between 5 and 20 euros. Anglers primarily target trout. You can read more about these locations in the article: National parks of Montenegro.

Here’s a list of the most common fish you can catch along the shores of Montenegro:

  • European bass (Dicentrarchus labrax). But the locals call it sea bass 🙂
  • Redfish – Sebastes marinus. Delicious when smoked
  • Sea Bream
  • Barracuda
  • Mackerel
  • Moray eels. Very tasty by the way. I tried it for the first time in Montenegro.
  • Mullet
  • Dorado
  • Conger Eel
  • And the ultimate catch: Tuna. It’s the most coveted fish in Montenegro, especially for anglers.
how to catch barracuda in montenegro
And this is a barracuda. By the way, it swims closer to the shore than any of the large fish.

Interesting to know:

Spearfishing is permitted and popular among locals in Montenegro. The fish are shot either from a spear gun or a crossbow. They hunt far from the beaches among the rocks.

The most popular fishing among tourists is sea fishing.

Sea fishing in Montenegro: everything you need to know

Few common points.

  • Sea fishing is allowed anywhere along the coast where there’s the sea
  • Fishing is prohibited on city beaches
  • You’ll need a license for sea fishing, which costs around 7 euros per day in 2024.
    • However, if you’re fishing from the shore, it’s typically not enforced.
    • If you’re going sea fishing on a boat, the responsibility of obtaining a license falls on the organizer.

Shore Fishing in Montenegro

In all cities, the beaches are shallow, and the depth starts quite far out. Plus, fishing on beaches is prohibited. So, all anglers seek out cliffs, which are abundant, and fish from there.

  • It’s free
  • Most people use spinning rods like we do. The bait is different: spinners, turntables, ordinary wobblers. You can catch a small barracuda or even a moray eel, there are groupers.
  • If it is deep, fishermen use fishing line with a weight lead and a hook, dough or bread as bait. The catch is small fish for cats.

For shore fishing, the Bay of Kotor is perfect. There, even at just 5 meters from the shore, the depth is over 10 meters. And if you can cast your spinning rod for 50 meters, you’ll find depths of over 30 meters.

fishing in the bay of kotor in montenegro
This is the waterfront of Kotor. Just 10 meters from the shore, the depth is already 20 meters. You can fish right here.

All about the Bay of Kotor.

If you’re vacationing by the sea, rather than in the bay, look for cliffs. They’re everywhere, just walk along the coast about 500 meters away from any city’s main beach. Budva, Becici, Petrovac, Dobra Voda, Ulcinj, and so on. The only city with few cliffs by the water is Bar. You need to go at least 3 kilometers away from the city.

fishing in montenegro
In cities outside the Bay of Kotor, look for these rocks. Here you can fish.

It is better to take your tackle with you, there are few fishing shops here. There are tourist rods that, when folded, fit in a suitcase like tackle.

Remember: you need to rinse your reel with fresh water after each sea fishing. Sea salt can quickly ruin your fishing gear.

Sea fishing in Montenegro on a boat

In any city of the country, at any marina, just take a stroll along the shore, and you’ll see plenty of boats advertising sea fishing. Finding a boat is really not a problem, even in the Bay of Kotor.

montenegro fish
In any marina in Montenegro, you’ll find boats like these with sea fishing ads. That’s what you need.

Here’s what you need to know about fishing from a boat:

  • They take you out to sea 3-10 kilometers from the shore.
  • This type of fishing is usually for at least half a day, if not the whole day.
  • They provide all the fishing gear and bait.
  • You can take your catch home.
  • They fish using two main methods:
    • Trolling. You can catch tuna, sea bass, barracuda, and maybe even moray eels.
    • Deep-sea fishing. When the boat stops, and you use a line, hook, and live bait (mussels, octopus pieces) to fish at depths of 30-40 meters. You can catch moray eels, dorado, squid, and a dozen other fish.
everything about fishing in montenegro prices
Trolling on a boat looks like this. You can even enjoy a beer if the waves aren’t too rough.

Good to know:

Usually, throughout the day, you’ll try both fishing methods multiple times. Trolling is more exciting, but fishing from a stationary boat and pulling fish up from depth is more effective. However, with trolling, there might be hours without a single bite.

Fishing in Montenegro: prices

And now, about the prices. Sea fishing in Montenegro isn’t a cheap activity. Here’s a breakdown for a standard boat with a motor of at least 140 horsepower:

  • Renting such a boat for the whole day costs around 300 euros (rental gear included), give or take. You can try to negotiate, but know that 300 euros for the whole day is the standard fee.
  • The boat can take two anglers. More people can come, like spouses and children. Everything is arranged in advance onshore with the captain. But only a maximum of 2 people fish. If you find a fishing partner, or sometimes the boat owner looks for a partner for their client. Then it’s 150 euros per person. Pre-arranged spouses and children go for free.

Good to know:

In the open sea, 3-10 kilometers from the shore, it can get quite rough. Gathering a bunch of people and then sailing for half an hour to drop them off isn’t the best idea. Keep that in mind.

For 300 euros, you get a standard sea fishing experience, as I described earlier. I want to point out that tuna fishing in Montenegro is offered separately and is more expensive.

In essence, tuna fishing takes place in the same waters as standard sea fishing for 300 euros. Same gear, same trolling, same route. The difference lies only in the price, with tuna fishing in Montenegro typically costing around 60 euros more on average, making the standard price around 350-360 euros.

montenegro fishing price what you can catch
Catching a tuna of this size is a big success. But catching specimens weighing 1-3 kilograms is quite realistic.

So, what’s the difference, you might ask? It’s quite simple: when you specifically target tuna, the captain buys 60 kilograms of small herring (which costs 1 euro per kilogram at the market) and constantly throws it overboard during trolling. This significantly increases the chances of catching tuna and other large predators. That’s the only difference. Essentially, the surcharge is for the barrel of herring used as tuna bait.

There’s a chance to catch tuna without herring, just by luck. The choice is yours.

  • A very useful article about yacht charter for a day/week, how much it costs, and where to find one. We rented a yacht with a captain for a week, and it wasn’t more expensive than staying on land.
  • And about the holiday budget in Montenegro, how much money to bring, where and how much you can spend, read in this article via the link.

In conclusion: fishing in Montenegro is diverse and attracts tens of thousands of tourists every year. You can fish from the shore, or you can find a boat and spend the whole day out at sea — the choice is yours.

Tight lines and bent rods!

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