Welcome to Kingfisher's FAQ page, your comprehensive guide to planning an unforgettable adventure at Lake Skadar!

Lake Skadar: Should I visit? How & When?

While contemplating the questions to feature on our FAQ page, one inquiry was particularly popular on Google: “Is Lake Skadar worth visiting?”

The answer is simple for us at Kingfisher. Absolutely yes!

Lake Skadar is more than just a destination; it’s an unforgettable experience waiting to unfold, and you should not miss your chance! With its rich natural beauty, diverse wildlife, and cultural significance, a visit to Lake Skadar promises to captivate your senses. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, an avid birdwatcher, or simply seeking tranquillity amidst stunning landscapes, Lake Skadar has something unique waiting for you.

  • And you don’t need to listen to us (our job is to promote the lake everywhere). Listen to hundreds of thousands worldwide who were left breathless by Lake Skadar’s beauty!

You don’t need a car to visit National Park Lake Skadar! Various alternative transportation options are available based on your starting point and preferences. If you favour the convenience of public transportation, buses or trains provide easy access to Lake Skadar.

  • Virpazar, a charming town nestled between Bar and Podgorica, serves as the main entry point to the lake and is accessible via both railway and bus connections.

However, if you value the flexibility of driving, having a car offers added convenience for exploring the area at your own pace. Additionally, it allows you to cover more landscapes and delve deeper into nature. But in the end, whether or not you require a vehicle depends on your travel preferences and itinerary.

Getting to Lake Skadar largely depends on your starting point and preferred mode of transportation. Several routes are available, whether you’re coming from coastal towns like Budva or Bar, the inland city of Podgorica, or elsewhere. The easiest way to reach the lake is from Podgorica, with eight to ten trains travelling between Bar and Podgorica daily and stopping at Virpazar.

The main gateway to Lake Skadar: Virpazar

Virpazar is the main gateway to Lake Skadar and the most easily accessible location. Public transportation services typically extend only as far as Virpazar, making it convenient for travellers without private vehicles. This charming town lies between Bar and Podgorica and offers both railway and bus connections, making it an ideal starting point for your journey to the lake.

Below are some tips for reaching Lake Skadar using public transportation, depending on your starting point:

How to get from Ulcinj to Lake Skadar?

  • Take a direct bus from Ulcinj to Virpazar or travel via bus to Bar and then by train to Virpazar.

How to get from Bar to Lake Skadar?

  • Travel by train or bus directly from Bar to Virpazar.

How to get from Budva and Kotor to Lake Skadar?

  • Begin with a direct bus line from Budva/Kotor to Sutomore. From there, opt for either a train or bus to Virpazar.

How to get from Podgorica to Lake Skadar?

  • Travel by train or bus directly from Podgorica to Virpazar.

For all other cities, you should see which of the previously mentioned starting points is nearest, and you should first get to that one.

Timetables and Resources

To plan your journey efficiently, you can check the train timetable here. Again, note that Virpazar is not a central station and lies between Bar and Podgorica. Additionally, you can find bus timetables here.

Determining the best time of year for your Lake Skadar journey depends on your preferences and what you hope to experience. Whether you visit during the vibrant spring months or the serene autumn season, each time of year offers its unique charm and beauty on the lake. However, there are a few factors to consider when planning your visit.

Spring and early summer (April to June) offer mild weather, blossoming flora, and abundant birdlife, making it an excellent time for birdwatching enthusiasts, nature photographers and nature lovers. The lake’s water levels are typically higher during this period, enhancing the scenic beauty of the surrounding landscapes.

Alternatively, late summer and early autumn (September to October) provide pleasant temperatures and fewer crowds, allowing a tranquil and immersive experience on the lake. During this time, you can witness the stunning colours of fall reflected in the lake’s clear waters, creating a picturesque setting for your boat tour.

July and August bring warmer temperatures and longer daylight hours, making them popular months for visitors to explore Lake Skadar. While these months may see more crowds and tourists, the vibrant atmosphere on the lake creates a lively and dynamic experience. It’s an excellent time to connect with fellow travellers, share experiences, and enjoy this stunning destination together.

Additionally, the summer months offer ideal conditions for swimming and water-based activities, providing refreshing opportunities to cool off in the lake’s crystal-clear waters. If you enjoy a lively ambience and meeting other travellers, July and August can be exciting times to embark on a boat tour of Lake Skadar.

Swimming in Lake Skadar is safe and a must if you ask all of our previous guests! Swimming breaks during our boat tours are conducted in the middle of the lake, as it’s considered the safest area for swimming. Our experienced guides carefully select locations away from dense vegetation and potential hazards, ensuring guests a safe and enjoyable swimming experience.

On the other hand, if you choose to swim independently, you must consider some factors to ensure a pleasant and risk-free experience. The lake’s water quality is typically good, meeting European standards for bathing water quality. However, while swimming in Lake Skadar can be a delightful way to cool off and enjoy the natural beauty of the surroundings, it’s essential to be aware of potential risks and pay attention to ensure a safe and enjoyable swim.

One consideration is the presence of aquatic vegetation. While some areas may be clear and suitable for swimming, others may have dense vegetation that could pose obstacles or entanglement risks. Additionally, be mindful of any signs or warnings indicating unsafe areas for swimming.

Another factor to consider is the lake’s depth, which can vary significantly in different areas. While most of the lake is shallow near the shore, deeper areas are further out. It’s essential to assess your swimming abilities and choose a suitable location.

Additionally, Lake Skadar is home to various wildlife, including snakes and fishes. While encounters with snakes are rare, it’s possible to encounter them near the shore, particularly in areas with dense vegetation. Avoid swimming in areas where you can find snakes, such as thick reeds or marshy spots.

Lastly, be aware of potential hazards, such as submerged rocks or branches, especially if swimming in less frequented areas. As with any natural body of water, exercising caution and swimming within your comfort level is essential for a safe and enjoyable experience.

While there are numerous spots around the lake where you can swim, two popular locations are the beaches at Godinje and Donji Murići. These picturesque spots boast clear waters and stunning surroundings, making them ideal for a relaxing swim in Lake Skadar. Please note that you can reach these spots only by car.

If you are on foot and are still deciding about doing a boat tour but still wish to experience swimming in the lake, self-guided kayaking offers an excellent alternative. Kayaking allows you to explore the lake’s beauty up close while reaching secluded spots for swimming. Our team is happy to guide you on how to reach the small, hidden beaches via kayaking, ensuring you have a memorable and enjoyable adventure on Lake Skadar.

Lake Skadar’s depth varies throughout its vast expanse. The lake is in a cryptodepression state, meaning some parts of its bottom are below sea level. These unique areas, known as “Eyes,” are fascinating features of the lake, with approximately 30 scattered across its surface. The most profound Eye is the Radus Eye, reaching depths of 60 meters, although some data suggests even greater depths. The lake’s average depth is around 6 meters despite these deeper areas. This variation in depth creates diverse aquatic environments within Lake Skadar, offering visitors a fascinating glimpse into its complex and dynamic ecosystem.

The most stunning viewpoint in the Lake Skadar area is undoubtedly the Pavlova Strana Viewpoint. Situated near Rijeka Crnojevića, this viewpoint offers breathtaking panoramic vistas of the surrounding countryside. Named after the local poet Pavle Rovinski, it has become a must-visit attraction for all visitors to the area. On the other hand, this viewpoint is accessible by car only.

For those seeking a viewpoint reachable by foot, you can find one near Besac Castle, a 10-minute walk from Virpazar.

You can find another remarkable viewpoint in Godinje. This viewpoint can be reached on foot from Virpazar, although it would take approximately 40 minutes to walk.

When considering accommodation options at Lake Skadar, we recommend booking with our trusted partner firms, Draga’s Rooms and Kingfisher Apartments. Both establishments offer comfortable and convenient lodging options to ensure a pleasant stay during your visit to Lake Skadar. By booking with our partners, you can enjoy quality accommodations and excellent service, enhancing your overall experience in this stunning destination.

While there isn’t a designated footpath encircling the entire lake, numerous well-marked trails lead you through some of the most picturesque areas of Lake Skadar. From walking along old military trails to enjoying stunning lake vistas from the surrounding hillsides, each hike offers a unique perspective of this captivating landscape.

  1. Rijeka Crnojevića to Obod: This scenic route takes you past the ruins of Obod village, the seat of the Crnojević Dynasty centuries ago. Along the way, you’ll encounter historical landmarks such as Obod Cave and old watermills, offering a glimpse into the region’s rich history.
  2. The Waterfalls and Springs of Walnut Valley: This hike leads you along old military trails used by the Ottoman Turks, crossing over ancient bridges and through deserted woodland. One of the highlights is the opportunity to cool off in natural spring-fed pools and beneath waterfalls along the way.
  3. Medieval Hill Village to Magical Beach: This route takes you over Mount Sutorman to the fortified medieval village of Upper Godinje, offering stunning views over the lake. You can also extend the hike and take a detour to Pješačac beach for swimming and sunbathing.

While Lake Skadar is generally not plagued by abundant mosquitoes, it’s always wise to be prepared, especially if you plan to explore the surrounding areas. Like other Mediterranean regions, mosquitoes exist, but they’re not typically found in swarms. However, if you venture into wooded or marshy areas, you may encounter them. We recommend bringing insect repellent to mitigate any concerns about mosquito bites. Additionally, if you know you have a severe reaction to mosquito bites, it’s a good idea to pack antihistamines, as these may be challenging to find locally.

Activity details: Prices, Discounts, Where to meet & What to wear?

The cost of a boat tour at Lake Skadar can vary depending on the duration of your tour and whether you choose a shared or private option. Shared tours typically offer more economical options, ranging from around 10 euros per person for a 1-hour cruising experience to approximately 30 euros for a 4-hour tour that includes meals onboard. For those seeking a more personalized experience, private tours are available at slightly higher rates.

Private tours typically cost around 40 euros per hour for up to 2 people, offering the flexibility to tailor the experience to your preferences and schedule.

At Kingfisher, we strive to provide exceptional value while offering competitive pricing for our boat tours. We understand the importance of affordability and aim to ensure our customers receive excellent service at reasonable rates. We prioritize transparency and fair pricing, allowing you to enjoy your Lake Skadar experience without any unwelcome surprises.

  • We highly recommend booking your boat tour in advance. Like that, you will secure your spot and avoid any potential hassles. Booking in advance guarantees availability and helps you avoid inflated prices that other companies may charge on the spot.

While our tour prices cover most of your experience on Lake Skadar, there is one additional fee not included in the tour price. As Lake Skadar is a national park, visitors must pay an entrance fee to access the park’s pristine natural surroundings. The entrance tickets cost 5 euros per person for individuals aged 15 and older (as of 2023).

  • This fee helps support the maintenance and preservation of the Lake Skadar National Park, ensuring that future generations can continue to enjoy its beauty. We appreciate your understanding and cooperation in contributing to the conservation efforts of Lake Skadar National Park.

Yes, we offer discounts for kids to make our boat tours more accessible for families. Children under four years old can join our tours for free. For children aged 5 to 12, we provide a 50% discount on shared tours, and they don’t pay for private tours.Children aged 13 to 15 recieve a 50% discount on private tours. We believe in making our tours inclusive for families of all sizes, allowing everyone to enjoy the beauty of Lake Skadar together.

Absolutely! Our tours are well-suited for solo travellers looking to explore the beauty of Lake Skadar. Whether you’re an adventurous explorer seeking new experiences or prefer to travel solo, our tours offer a fantastic opportunity to discover the area’s stunning landscapes and rich biodiversity.

Joining one of our shared tours allows solo travellers to connect with like-minded individuals, share experiences, and create lasting memories in a friendly and welcoming environment. So, if you’re travelling solo and eager to explore Lake Skadar, Kingfisher is the perfect choice!

Yes, Kingfisher is pet-friendly! We understand that pets are an essential part of your family and your travel experience. That’s why we welcome well-behaved pets onboard our boat tours. Whether you’re exploring Lake Skadar with your furry friend or enjoying a leisurely cruise, you can rest assured that your pet is welcome to join you on your adventure.

Yes, absolutely! We understand that every traveller has their unique preferences and special occasions, and we’re happy to accommodate them. Our boat tours can be customized to suit your needs and wishes. Whether you’re craving more wine, cheese, and olives for a romantic sunset cruise or seeking specialized birdwatching gear for a nature-focused excursion, just let us know, and we’ll make it happen. We aim to ensure that your boat tour is tailored to your preferences, allowing you to enjoy a personalized and unforgettable experience on Lake Skadar.

Of course! We encourage guests to bring their food and beverages onboard during the tour. While each tour includes a tasting of wine from the region and opportunities to refresh yourself, some tours also offer snacks and appetizers for added enjoyment. However, we understand everyone has different preferences and dietary needs. We recommend bringing your food and drinks if you have preferences or want to enhance your experience onboard.

For more extended boat tours, restroom facilities are typically available onboard. Our longer tours, which extend beyond a few hours, often feature boats equipped with restroom facilities for your convenience. However, for shorter tours lasting up to 2-3 hours, we typically utilize smaller boats that may not have restroom facilities onboard.

If restroom availability concerns you or you have specific requirements regarding this aspect of your tour, we encourage you to contact us directly. Our team is more than happy to provide additional information and discuss any concerns you may have regarding restroom facilities on your specific tour. Your comfort and satisfaction are important to us, and we are committed to ensuring you have a pleasant experience during your boat tour on Lake Skadar.

Yes, our company is fully registered and legally compliant. We take pride in operating within the bounds of the law and ensuring that all our activities adhere to regulatory standards. Additionally, we have all the necessary insurance for all our activities.

You can rest assured that when you choose to do a tour with us, you are in safe and capable hands! Our commitment to legality, transparency, and safety underscores everything we do, allowing you to relax and enjoy your experience on Lake Skadar with complete peace of mind.

Yes, we’ve got you covered! While you’re out exploring the tranquil beauty of Lake Skadar, you can stay connected with our onboard Wi-Fi. Our boats are equipped with Wi-Fi, allowing you to share your experiences, upload photos, or stay connected with loved ones while you cruise along the picturesque waters of Lake Skadar.

When preparing for your Lake Skadar boat cruise, it’s essential to consider the fluctuating weather conditions and the activities you plan to engage in. We recommend dressing in layers, as temperatures can vary throughout the day. Additionally, it’s crucial to protect yourself from the sun’s rays, so be sure to bring biodegradable sunscreen and a sun hat to shield yourself from the sun. Remember to pack your swimwear if you plan a refreshing swim in the lake’s crystal-clear waters.

Yes, free parking is available near the departure point in Virpazar. In 2023, all parking facilities in Virpazar were free of charge. To ensure a smooth start to your adventure, we recommend finding a parking spot using Google Maps and arriving a bit earlier, especially during peak times when there may be more cars.

Our meeting point is located near the central bridge in Virpazar. Look out for the Kingfisher information desk, where our team will be waiting to welcome you. If you need help locating the desk, ask the locals about the Kingfisher company or keep an eye out for individuals wearing blue shirts adorned with the Kingfisher logo.

  • Please arrive at the meeting point 30 minutes before the scheduled departure time.

At Kingfisher, we take pride in offering a diverse fleet of boats to ensure your Lake Skadar experience is exceptional. Our commitment to transparency means that the boat used for each tour is indicated in the tour description and visible in the accompanying photos. This lets you see what to expect before booking your adventure.

We understand that flexibility is critical to creating unforgettable experiences, which is why we have a variety of boats available for different tour durations and group sizes. However, if the specific boat used for a tour is not mentioned, we will select the most suitable option based on availability and departure times.

Booking process: Payment options & Cancellation policies

Booking your adventure with Kingfisher is simple. To get started, browse through our selection of tours and choose the one that best suits your preferences and interests. Once you’ve identified the perfect tour, book directly through the product page to secure your spot.

You can reserve your spot for our tours online through our website. Navigate to the tour of your choice, select your preferred date and time, and complete the booking process to secure your reservation.

While you can reserve your spot online, please note that payment is made upon arrival as we have yet to offer online payment.

At Kingfisher, we offer convenient payment options to suit your preferences. While we currently do not offer online payment, you can settle your payment upon arrival for your tour. We accept both cash and credit card payments, providing flexibility and ease of transaction.

In the event of inclement weather, we have contingency plans in place to ensure your experience remains enjoyable and safe. Depending on the severity of the weather conditions, we may switch to larger and more stable boats that offer enhanced safety features. Alternatively, if the weather poses significant risks, we may regrettably need to cancel the tour altogether. Rest assured, our team will keep you informed every step of the way, prioritizing your safety while striving to provide you with the best possible experience on Lake Skadar.

At Kingfisher, we understand that plans can change unexpectedly and aim to accommodate our guests as best as possible. Our cancellation policy allows for flexibility while ensuring fairness to our guests and our team. If you need to cancel your booking, please give us at least 24 hours notice before the scheduled tour time. This allows us to manage our resources effectively and offer the spot to other guests. A cancellation fee may be applied for cancellations made within 24 hours of the scheduled tour time. However, we strive to handle each cancellation request on a case-by-case basis, considering individual circumstances with empathy and understanding.

While we understand that last-minute plans can sometimes be the most exciting, we recommend booking your tour with us a few days in advance. This ensures we can better accommodate your preferences and guarantee availability on your desired date and time.

However, if spontaneity strikes and you find yourself itching for an adventure at the last minute, don’t hesitate to reach out to us! We’ll do our best to accommodate your request and make your experience with us unforgettable, no matter when you decide to join us on Lake Skadar.

We highly recommend making a reservation, especially if you plan to visit during the peak months of July, August, and September. These months are hectic, and securing your spot in advance ensures you won’t miss out on the experience.

However, for visits during other months, whether you should make a reservation or show up depends on availability and your preferred tour. While reservations provide peace of mind and guarantee your spot, we do our best to accommodate walk-in guests whenever possible.