Lake Skadar

Biggest lake in the Balkans, half an hour from Podgorica and apparently a must-see. How does one get there? “Take the train!” said the hostel staff. I enquired about buses but was told that they’re more expensive and less reliable. Oh well… train it is.

And what a train it was! Clean, modern, could have cruised the rails of Germany. My opinion on train travel in the Balkans got a bit better.

At the lake it was a 10-15 minute walk from the station to the village centre (across the train tracks, through the shrubs and there you are).

The recommendation I got for experiencing the lake was to go kayaking. It’s reasonably cheap with just 3 Euros per hour and I was in need for some exercise.

Twenty minutes of paddling later and I’m still in some form of canal, on my way to the actual lake. It did look beautiful.

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Once I had reached the open lake, it was a fair bit to the next landing point. Almost an hour into the journey my arms are falling apart and I’m grumpily scanning the coast for a place to come ashore.

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It finally arrives and I spent a relaxed half an hour with eating, re-hydrating and taking some pictures.

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The way back is a little easier, thanks to wind from the back, but after 2.5 hours of paddling in the mid-day sun, I’m pretty much done for.

I spent some time with a look around the village and a nearby castle and decided to have dinner before getting on the train back to Podgorica.

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The dinner is number one contender for blandest food on the Balkans and I don’t stick around for much longer. Or so I thought. Thanks to a train breaking down on the tracks, I have to wait for another 1.5 hours at the station. Ah, the joy of train travel.

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