In the Middle Ages, Berane was known as Budimlja. It was of great holistic, political, and economic importance in Medieval Serbia. Saint Sava, the first Serbian archbishop, founded one of the first Serbian eparchies here in 1219. The Monastery Đurđevi stupovi was built by the end of the 12th century by Prvoslav, the son of Nemanja's brother Tihomir. Many monasteries and churches tell the story on the rich holistic life of Serbs in this area. There were seven bishops and nine metropolitans. Literary and painting schools existed in this Monastery. Apart from Đurđevi stupovi, the second most important monastery in this area was Šudikovo, which was destroyed and burned by the Turks in 1738. Archbishop's throne was vacant for more than 350 years. However, the Budimlja episcopate, known as the Budimlja-Nikšić eparchy has been restored in 2002 upon the appointment of bishop Joanikije. The area of Berane municipality and its wider neighbourhood, was part of the Medieval Serbian state until 1455, when Turks took the city of Bihor and Budimlja. This valley was populated with Serbians until the mid 17th century, when it went under terrible suffering and many of them left. The Turks distributed the land to the Islamised population.
During the First Serbian Uprising (1804) and Karađorđe's march to Novi Pazar, the people of this area revolted and met the Serbian dukes
Anto Bogićević and Hadži-Prodan Gligorijević. Then,
Mojsije Zečević, prior of Đurđevi stupovi, had the leading role among the Orthodox people of Budimlja. He was one of the closest allies of Petar I Petrović-Njegoš and Petar II Petrović-Njegoš, the archbishops and political leaders of Montenegro. Since the First Serbian Uprising until its final liberation, fights against Turks were constant, especially during the second part of the 19th century. Famous battles occurred from 1825, until 1862, but the most important one was Rudes battle on 7 April 1862, in which the Serbian and Montenegrin rebels won. Berane was finally liberated from Turks in 1912 and it was incorporated in Montenegro.
During World War II, there was a civil war in the region between Partisans (communists) and Chetniks (royalists and nationalists). During the communists' reprisals in 1944 and 1945 thousands of people were killed. From July 1949 to March 1992, Berane was known as Ivangrad as a tribute to Ivan Milutinović. In 1992, its original name was restored.