What You Need To Know
Nikšić is the second largest city of Montenegro, with a total population of 57,278, located in the west of the country, in the centre of the spacious Nikšić field at the foot of Mount Trebjesa. It is the center of Nikšić Municipality (Population of 75,282), which is the largest municipality by area and second most inhabited after Podgorica. It is an important industrial, cultural, and educational center.
Population: Estimate 57,278
Area: 2,065 km²
Although Nikšić area has seen human settlements since antiquity, most of the modern Nikšić is a planned city. Very little remains of the Ottoman architectural heritage, despite the long presence of Ottoman Empire in the area. The city layout visible today still follows the 1883 urban plan commissioned by King Nicholas and designed by Croatian architect Josip Slade. According to this plan, the streets of Nikšić radiate to the north and east from the central city square (today a roundabout), locally known as Skver. The radial streets are intersected by circumferential streets and avenues, thus creating a half-spider web-like street layout. Layers of different architectural styles and urban patterns are evident along the radial network of streets. Thus, closest to the central roundabout is the historical core of Nikšić, formed after the liberation from Ottoman Empire, and serving as a nucleus for Slade’s urban plan. This area, on the foot of Trebjesa Hill, is home to King Nicholas Palace, City Park, and Freedom Square, main city square located along the central Njegoševa Street. The area is composed of mostly single or two storey row housing with basic designs, an architecture typical for late 19th and early 20th centuries Montenegro. The roundabout and the surrounding area is still the focal point of activities in the city, as bus and train stations, as well as commercial and civic services are located in the area. Farther from the central roundabout, the historical core is encircled with a layer of mass residential blocks, built during the SFRY era. The building of the highrise residential blocks facilitated housing of the large population drawn to the city by rapid post-World War II industrialisation. The SFRY era apartment blocks are still home for the majority of residents of Nikšić. Beyond the blocks, the city expanded in form of a suburban sprawl, that consists of detached housing. Close to the city blocks and major industrial areas, the lowrise single home suburbs are built with well executed urban plans, but farther away from the center, the city expanded in a chaotic and informal way. In addition, the rural areas south of Nikšić have merged with the city, so low density suburbs extend from the city in every direction, covering much of the Nikšić Field.
Nikšić is, alongside Podgorica, one of the biggest industrial centres of Montenegro. A Steel mill (Nikšićka Željezara), bauxite mine, Trebjesa brewery (Nikšićka Pivara), and many more are concentrated in this city. These big industries had struggled to survive the collapse of the socialist economy, but have since recovered. The process of privatization is either finished or still in progress for some of these industries. Today those industry giants cannot employ as many workers as they could back in the days of Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and the economy of Nikšić is slowly transforming into one that is more service-oriented. In 1981 Niksic’s GDP per capita was 91% of the Yugoslav average.
Montenegrin is the Official language.
Nikšić’s main road connection is E762 highway, which connects Nikšić with Podgorica to the southeast, and with Plužine and on to the Foča and Sarajevo (Bosnia and Hercegovina) to the northwest. Another recently reconstructed north/south Montenegrin road corridor passes through Nikšić, the Risan/Trebinje-Nikšić-Šavnik-Žabljak road. This road is the shortest connection Nikšić has with Bay of Kotor and Montenegrin coast. Nikšić also has the distinction of being one of the first Montenegrin towns to have a bypass road. The bypass, built during the SFRY era, has been upgraded in 2011, and now services every transit corridor of Nikšić, directing all transit traffic away from the urban core. Like many cities in the former Yugoslavia, Nikšić is the hub of multiple intercity bus companies, the largest of them being Glušica Nikšić and 4 Decembar Nikšić which operate to destinations as far as Sarajevo and Belgrade.
Construction of the train station in 1938. Nikšić is the terminus of Nikšić-Podgorica railway, which is sole rail connection of the city. This railway line connects with Belgrade-Bar and Podgorica–Shkodër lines in Podgorica. This rail link has been used mainly to transport bauxite from Nikšić bauxite mine to Podgorica Aluminium Plant. It is currently under reconstruction and electrification, and passenger service will be reintroduced once the reconstruction is completed. Three CAF Civity EMUs have been ordered by Railways of Montenegro specifically to serve this railway, cutting the travel time between Nikšić and Podgorica to only 50 minutes. The first of the new trains will go into service on June 1, 2013. Nikšić obtained its narrow-gauge (760 mm (2 ft 5 15⁄16 in)) railway connection with Bosnia and Herzegovina via Bileća and Trebinje when the railway line was extended from Bileća and opened in 1938. Not far from Trebinje, the narrow-gauge line used to branch off in three directions: towards Čapljina in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Zelenika in Bay of Kotor in Montenegro (a dead end), and Dubrovnik in Croatia (also a dead end). After reaching Čapljina, the line used to run to the south, to the Ploče harbour in Croatia, and to the north, to the rest of the world via Mostar and Sarajevo. The narrow-gauge extension from Nikšić to Titograd (Podgorica), built by youth work brigades, was opened in 1948. That extension was converted to standard gauge (1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)) in 1965. The narrow-gauge line from Nikšić to Čapljina was closed down in 1976 and dismantled soon after.
Nikšić Airport is located on the western outskirts of the city. It is a small sport airport, that caters to needs of general aviation, and of local enthusiast aviation club. After significant reconstruction and expansion, the airport was chosen to be a host of 2010 FAI World Parachuting Championships. Scheduled passenger service has yet to be introduced. Podgorica Airport is some 60 km (37 mi) away from Nikšić, and has regular flightsb to Belgrade, Sarajevo, Budapest, Zürich, Frankfurt, Ljubljana, Paris, Rome and Vienna. Both Tivat and Dubrovnik airports are some 100 km (62 mi) away, and offer regular services to major European destinations.
Under the Köppen climate classification, Nikšić has a humid subtropical climate (Cfa), which is influenced by the Mediterranean climate drying trend during summer. Average temperature for January is 1.3 °C (34.3 °F), while average temperature in July is 21.1 °C (70.0 °F). Average humidity amounts to 68,57%. Nikšić receives 2.245 hours of sunshine per year, with warm and moderately wet summers, and cool and rainy winters. On average, there are 19 days per year with snowfall.