Lake Skadar National Park

This tiny town, gathered around a square and a river blanketed with water lilies, serves as the main gateway to Lake Skadar National Park. If you're interested in sampling local wines, you'll find family-run vineyards and tasting cellars in the surrounding hills.

Virpazar (Вирпазар) may be a small speck on the map now, but it was once considered so strategically important that the occupying Turks built the Besac fortress on the hill looming above the village. After their downfall, Virpazar became an important trading town (pazar means marketplace) with a lively port; in the early 1900s, it was connected to Bar by Montenegro's first narrow-gauge railway. It was also the site of one of the country's first significant uprisings against Axis invaders in WWII, an event commemorated by a striking bronze sculpture near the bridge.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Lake Skadar National Park attractions

1. Žabljak Crnojevića

5.94 MILES

For a brief time in the 15th century, between the fall of Skadar (now Shkodra in Albania) and the founding of Cetinje, this was the capital of Zetan ruler…

2. Dodoši

6.06 MILES

Although some of the old stone houses date from the 16th century, the main reason to visit this tucked away village is for a dip in the river alongside…

3. Red Commune Memorial House

8.17 MILES

Petrovac became the first communist-run municipality in the Adriatic following an electoral victory in 1919. That auspicious event is celebrated in the…

4. Elijah’s Church

8.24 MILES

Dedicated to the Old Testament prophet Elijah, this Orthodox church dates from the 14th or 15th century. It's often open, revealing some beautiful old…

5. Roman Mosaics


Apart from the beaches, Petrovac’s most interesting attraction is also its least heralded. In 1902, the foundations of a Roman building complete with…

6. Rijeka Crnojevića

8.33 MILES

The northwestern end of Lake Skadar thins into the serpentine loops of the Rijeka Crnojevića (Ријека Црнојевића; Crnojević River) and terminates near the…

7. Kastio

8.37 MILES

Clamber up the steps of this small Venetian fortress for photogenic views of the beach and the dramatic diagonal stratification of the limestone cliffs…

8. Katič Island

8.58 MILES

One of two islets directly in front of the town beach, Katič can be visited via kayak or by hopping aboard a tourist boat; have a word to any of the chaps…