AMAN SVETI STEFAN (link) (instagram)

Photography by Jeff Thibodeau

Across the Adriatic Sea and sandwiched between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Albania is Montenegro, a sovereign state in Southeastern Europe. It’s a beautiful destination with lush greenery and beautiful wine, but before I got to visit, I was only familiar with the place from its depiction in movies. Famous exports from Montenegro include their Vranac and smoked ham, but its location will transport you to another era. Sveti Stefan Island, Montenegro is a seasonal island, open from May to October that offers picturesque views of the sea as well as cobblestone paths around the area. It’s a fortified village that dates back to the 15th century, and the Aman Sveti Stefan property has restored historic buildings to provide an authentic, original experience.

With views of mountains, forests, and lakes at every turn, staying at Aman Sveti Stefan is a feast for the eyes. The property is vast with two pools, one indoors and one overlooking the peninsula. Monasteries, museums, and galleries outline the area for plenty of cultural activities to occupy your afternoon. The property is detailed and charming and is the perfect backdrop to relaxing and spending time with friends, but I highly recommend taking advantage of the adventures offsite – boat around the town of Budva or explore the streets of baroque Perast. During my stay we tried a spa treatment at their esteemed spa. They provide everything from oat milk rehydration soaks to hydrotherapy suites with plunge pools. Their focus on wellness provides some of the best experiences in the world, and after our treatment, we felt brand new.

I love being by the water and the endless peninsula views made me excited to explore. We cruised Lake Skadar (the Mediterranean’s largest body of water), with beautiful clear waters and picture perfect moments at every turn. The sailboat took us to a secluded area where we had a picnic full of the local indulgences – local olives, cheese, wine, and Montenegrin donuts to finish. If you have an attachment to land, there is not short of places to explore and roam like the summit at Mount Lovcen or the tree-lined boulevards in Cetinje. After an idyllic afternoon, we ended with a wine tasting of local red wines, brandy, and liquor. Filled with rich history and culture, I’d 100% recommend checking out Montenegro for your next European getaway.




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