Panoramic route “4” – The Circuit around Korita
The Circuit around Korita is the first fully signposted panoramic road in Montenegro. The so called route “4” is 65 km long and is a perfect option for a day trip from Podgorica. It starts from the capital and leads into the mountainous area of Kuči and to the edge of the Cijevna Canyon. The route passes through land characterized by different cultures and religions as also a variety of landscapes and vegetation.
Interesting points on the route: Novak Milošev Monument – Medun fortress – Museum of Marko Miljanov – Ubli village – Orahovo village – Kučka korita – Grlo Sokolovo – Delaj – Rudine – Fundina.
PRACTICAL INFORMATION YOU NEED TO KNOW
If you are planning to explore this panoramic route you should have in mind that the road is paved but narrow and suitable only for smaller camper vans and regular cars. The best time to visit if from May to October as the roads might be covered in snow during winter season so be well informed about weather conditions. Drivers should have some experience driving through narrow mountain roads as it can get tricky if you encounter other vehicles from the opposite side. The whole route (65 km) is well marked and very easy to follow, just look for the brown Panoramic Roads logo and the number 4.
It is best to plan this as a full day trip as you should take your time to visit all the important points, enjoy the various viewpoints and have time for the light hiking trail to Grlo Sokolovo. Note that there are no petrol stations along the route so make sure you refill your tank in Podgorica. There is only one restaurant where you can buy refreshments – Stara kuća in Kučka korita.
BEST THINGS TO SEE ON THIS ROUTE
If you start driving the route clockwise, your first point of interest will be the Novak Milošev monument on your left side with a great view over Podgorica capital. Novak Milošev Vujadinović was born in 1835 in Kuči, where he also died. He was a member of the Montenegrin army and is one of the greatest Montenegrin heroes, as he stood out in the famous Battle of Fundina (1876). With his 5,000 fighters, he managed to defeat 20,000 Turkish soldiers and on that occasion cut off 74 Turkish heads! The Russian Emperor honored him with a sabre with 74 precious stones embedded, now kept in the National Museum of Cetinje. Follow the stairway to enjoy better views over Podgorica and see another monument dedicated to Marko Mirkov Ivanović who conquered the Turkish Tower all by himself in 1862.
As you continue from the monument, your next stop is only a short drive away. You will notice the stunning Medun fortress as you look up. There is a sign on your right side, turn up and after 400 meters you will arrive on parking in front of the Marko Miljanov museum. This is the starting point for the climb to Medun fort.
In the museum of Marko Miljanov you will have the chance to learn more about this writer, hero and legendary figure in Montenegrin history. Marko Miljanov was a famous duke, who wrote about the way of life and customs in this part of the country, about heroism and ordinary people. The grave of Marko Miljanov is located within the medieval fortification of the Upper Town, in front of the Church of St. Stefan above the museum.
Along the way towards Kučka korita, you will pass through the villages Ubli and Orahovo. Ubli village has about 600 residents and is known as an excellent place to grow various fruit – figs, pomegranates, cherries, figs etc.
Kučka korita are located on 1,300 meters above sea level and are a popular weekend getaway for Podgorica residents. This place has many sunny days during the summer months, while in the winter it receives a large amount of snow. The name refers to the Kuči tribe, who had used this particular area as pasture and farmland. The toponym Korita is Celtic and means something like “windy plateau“. The plateau is surrounded by impressing peaks, one of them being Hum Orahovački (1,833 meters). Here you can find a restaurant on your right side (Stara kuća), as also a market on your left, with tables to sit and drink in front. An interesting fact is that you will find an Orthodox as also a Catholic church here, as this place is known for its harmonious coexistence of people of different faiths. Kučka korita are also the starting point to Bukumir and Rikavačko lakes which can be reached by walk or off-road vehicles.
THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE TOUR – GRLO SOKOLOVO VIEWPOINT
As you drive further, you will find signs that lead you to the final point – Grlo Sokolovo (Falcon’s Gorge). Turn left and take this route clockwise as it might be easier to leave your car here, so you can visit the viewpoint and come back the same way (4.8 km one way to the viewpoint). The more experienced ones, or the ones in better shape, can take a full circle around which will last about 1.30 hours.
This will probably be your favorite part of the route! The light hike takes you through the coniferous forest, beech woods and ends up at a platform with breathtaking views of the 1,000 meter-deep gorge. This trail was actually used by border guards but now you can enjoy the beauty Prokletije mountains and the Albanian village Tamare at the foot. If you wonder why this place is called as it is, you will soon find out about mount Sokol (meaning “Falcon”) at 1,557 meters overlooking the steep cliffs sloping towards the river Cijevna. Suddenly everything becomes obvious.
ON THE WAY BACK TO PODGORICA
After this delightful experience it is time to get back to your car and continue by following the Panoramic roads sign “4” in direction to Podgorica. This part of the road leads through the village Zatrijebač, well known for agriculture, potatoes and cheese.
Your next stop will be at the very edge of the Cijevna canyon. Along the road, you will notice a huge 10 meter cross, in the village of Delaj. This monument was built in 2010 and has a terrace with stunning views over Cijevna canyon.
The route downhill back to Podgorica opens up new views over Prokletije mountains on the east, Podgorica on the west and a glimpse of Skadar lake too. You will pass through the villages Rudine, Fundina and Rašovići.
SOME IMPORTANT TRAFFIC RULES FOR MONTENEGRO
- Low beam or daytime driving lights must be activated even during the daytime.
- The following is to be carried along in the vehicle: a high visibility vest for every passenger, first aid kit, snow tires or chains if needed.
- The alcohol limit in Montenegro is 0.3 ‰.
- The speed limit is: 50 km/h within settlements / 80 km/h outside settlements
Visit Balkan Adventure for a guided tour around Korita and many more adventures throughout Montenegro.
Visit www.balkanadventure.me for more information.