A scenic road through the Piva Canyon in Montenegro
Piva Canyon is a very scenic canyon located in northwestern Montenegro, near the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The road through the canyon is called M18, part of the European Route 742 (E742). It’s totally paved running along the Piva Canyon, cut between the mountains of Bioč, Volujak, Maglić and Pivska planina. The canyon is 33 km long, deep up to 1.200 m, in the Piva, one of few most spectacular rivers in Montenegro. The road goes through many rocky tunnels through the rocks of the canyon, near the lake. The views, with an extreme, untouched natural beauty, are superb and the place remote, but you have to keep your eye on the road and the other drivers.
Tucked away in the northern part of the country, the drive is extremely scenic. Drive carefully: high risk of landslides. The road alongside the river is a feat of engineering in itself, clinging to the cliffs and passing through 56 small and unlit tunnels carved out of the stone. The paved road, also known as M18, runs along the deep green Lake Piva reservoir, the second largest reservoir in the country. It’s the result of the construction of the Mratinje Dam on the Piva River in 1975. The dam is 220m (720 ft) high, and therefore one of the highest in Europe and the view from the top is astonishing.
The road, locally known as Piva Canyon Road, is 81.6 km (50.70 miles) long, running south-north from Nikšić, the second largest city in Montenegro, to the Bosnian border.