Information about Ulcinj

Ulcinj is the southernmost city at Montenegrin coast. With its natural potential Ulcinj is tourism borne. The longest beach at the Adriatic sea – Velika Plaza that is 13 km long, the Ada Bojana – a unique river island with marvelous sandy beaches, Valdanos – a unique bay with a coastline covered in old olive trees, the reconstructed old city of Ulcinj – full of interesting restaurants, cafés, galleries and hotels … and many other attractive sights make Ulcinj unique and attractive for many tourists. Ulcinj is a city that you have to visit.

The wider area of Ulcinj has been inhabited since the Bronze Age. Illyrian tombs (tumuli), found in the village of Zogaj, in the vicinity of Ulcinj, date back to the Bronze Age.The town is believed to be founded in the 5th century BC by Greek colonists from Colchis. The Colchian colonization is mentioned in the 3rd century BC, in a poem by Apollonius of Rhodos.Illyrians lived in the region at the time, and under Greek influence built immense so-called Cyclopean Walls. In Latin, it was known as Olcinium or Ulcinium. In medieval times a shipwreck of a Saracen ship was stranded there with African slaves; locals saved the surviving Africans and made them an integral part of the population of the town.

Before the medieval period, Ulcinj was known as one of the pirate capitals of the Adriatic Sea. This is also seen during the later period of Illyrian Kingdom. Inhabitants of Ulcinj were known at the time of Christ, especially from 20 BC to around 300 AD, to be very confrontational to those who were foreigners to their land; they were especially meticulous about border disputes as well.
The Republic of Venice controlled Dulcigno (as it was called in the Venetian language) until 1573 and incorporated the city in the Albania Veneta. In those Venetian years many Christian Albanians took refuge in Ulcinj from Muslim Turks.
Ottoman rule was begun in the sixteenth century. Ulcinj was a kaza of ݺkodra sandjak of Rumeli eyalet before 19th century. Ulcinj became kaza of ݺkodra vilayet after 1867. Ulcinj finally became part of Montenegro after Treaty of Berlin in 1878.

Trilingual sign in Ulcinj

Ulcinj is administrative centre of Ulcinj municipality, which has 20,290 residents. The town of Ulcinj itself has a population of 10,828. Ulcinj is the centre of Albanian community in Montenegro. It is the only municipality in Montenegro where Albanians form the overwhelming majority.


In the summer time, Ulcinj is a popular tourist destination. Although still undiscovered by many travelers from larger countries, repeat tourists and an increasing amount of first time visitors make Ulcinj a hot spot for vacationers between the months of May and September. It is most famous for its beaches, which are considered the most beautiful in Montenegro. The most valuable resource of the Ulcinj riviera is Velika plaža / Plazha e Madhe (literally "Big Beach"), which is a 12 km long portion of sandy beach - the longest on the Montenegrin coast. There is also a beach that holds the name Mala Plaža ("Plazha Vogel") which is much smaller in size, but is very popular with visitors. "The Korzo" as it is called by locals, is a strip-like walkway ligning the small beach. At night during the summer months, young tourists walk past one another while bright lights decorate the street and live music invades their ear drums. It is said that some of the most beautiful girls in South Eastern Europe, visiting Ulcinj as tourists, can be found walking about the Korzo on a nightly basis. There are many more less known smaller beaches that serve as a get a way to many people looking to catch their breath.
Ulcinj's old town is a very well preserved castle looking community that is left over from medieval times. The old town sits atop a mountain overlooking the shore and is a tourist attraction on its own.
Ada Bojana(Albanian Buna) is popular among foreign tourists from Western Europe for its peace and unique atmosphere.
Šaško lake and Ulcinj's salt pond (porto milen: albanian) are popular among birdwatchers, because Ulcinj and its surroundings are major resting points for over 200 bird species on their migration paths.
There are numerous pubs, dance clubs, and bars that dot the city that are usually filled to capacity throughout the summer. The majority of tourists in Ulcinj are Albanians, Germans, Italians, and other nearby European countries.
A large number of Americans who are either of Albanian descent or were born in or near the city of Ulcinj often make the city a prime summer time destination.

Ulcinj is connected with rest of Montenegro by two-laned highways. It is connected with other coastal towns by the Adriatic Motorway. Reaching inland is made possible by detouring from The Adriatic Motorway at Budva or Podgorica (through Sozina tunnel).

As of today, there are no airports in the city of Ulcinj. However, nearby airports in Tivat and Podgorica are both around 70 km away. There are regular flights to Belgrade and Zurich from Tivat. Podgorica Airport has regular flights to major European destinations throughout the year. Many tourists traveling to Ulcinj from abroad arrive into the city from the airport in Tivat due to its recent renovations and general ease of navigation.
Within the city, there is public transportation available to the general public by way of city buses. Along with private automobiles, taxi cabs and vans (KOMBI) are in great abundance throughout the city and its vicinities. To avoid congestion in the often traffic-laden streets of Ulcinj, many young locals opt for travel by motorbike and scooter, which are also available to rent on daily or weekly timeshares.

The great Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes was held hostage in the town occupied by the Ottomans then. Dulcinea, one of the characters in his Don Quixote, may refer to a girl from Ulcinj.
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