Kotor and the Bay of Kotor

Kotor is a Montenegrin city, similar to Croatia or Italy, more like the other cities in the country. If a beach vacation in Budva is tiring during a trip, Cetinje and Podgorica are visited, and national parks are fully explored, then you should go to Kotor. Arriving tourists plunge into the medieval atmosphere, entering the Old Town, which is much larger than the neighbouring Budva Riviera. However, it is the city to visit among the first.

A brief history of the city

In Byzantine times, there was a settlement called the "Decameron" on the site of the present Kotor. Rulers were Slavs. In 1420, Kotor and the adjacent territory became an independent city-state with the minting of its coin and elected rulers. But to avoid the attack of the Ottoman Empire, the city needed to go under the rule of Venice. That is why visiting tourists can find many similarities with the Venetian style in the architecture of houses, churches and even just streets. If we talk about the religion of Kotor, then, unlike many other cities, Catholicism prevails here, but there are also a lot of Orthodox churches. In addition, Kotor has always been a shopping centre thanks to the Bay of Kotor, which protects the city from attacks from the sea. Today, it is a major tourism centre. This can be understood by the giant cruise liners constantly standing in the bay.

Sights and city description

As mentioned earlier, Kotor is a city with medieval architecture. It suffered the least during enemies' attacks and wars. Now, it combines the oldest churches, temples, and palaces with modern high-rise hotels. It may seem to some that the city, along with the Bay of Kotor and the mountains, resembles Scandinavian landscapes.

The main attraction of the city, however strange it may be, is cats. They are an unofficial symbol of the town, and most live in one of the squares. In many souvenir shops, you can buy figurines or mugs with cats or handmade products featuring these cute animals.

If we keep the architectural structures in mind, the leading and most popular place to visit is the Fortress of St. John. To climb to its top, you must overcome over 1300 steps and pay 8 euros per person during the holiday season. If you arrive in Kotor in late autumn or winter, this pleasure will cost you free of charge. Fortunately, in summer, travellers can also try to get to the top for free, but in a roundabout way and through the fortress window. But also, when visiting, it is worth considering if this is an excursion and how much time is allocated for this attraction. Usually, it is 60-90 minutes, which is very short. During this time, you can only jog there and back without taking panoramic photos of the beautiful Bay of Kotor with the liners floating in it. The best way to find out "little Venice" is to get it on your own, without an excursion. Without time limits, you can safely walk along the narrow but clean, shampoo-washed medieval streets, built in the form of a maze and master both ways to the Fortress of St. John.

As for swimming in the bay, there are several sandy beaches and concrete piers in Kotor and its environment, but the water is foul because of the constantly arriving and departing yachts and l dirty. Therefore, it is better to swim to neighbouring Budva, where the beaches are much cleaner. In Kotor, it's worth taking a boat or yacht for rent to appreciate the picturesque of the bay and the city from the sea against the backdrop of mountains. Also, you can try to get to the top of the mountain of Lovcen National Park - this can even be done by bicycle, which is much cheaper to rent than a car.

How to get to Kotor

The closest thing to get to the city will be from the airport in Tivat because it is only 8 km away. A significant disadvantage is that it does not take planes at night, and the landing will already be in Podgorica. Just as when travelling to any other city in Montenegro, you can choose a few. The first and easiest is to fly to Tivat in the afternoon with a reserved number in Kotor and then stay there for the entire rest period. If another city is chosen as the place of residence, then you can either get on the bus or a rented car. If you get from Budva, the road is less dangerous than in the more northern mountainous areas. For more courageous travellers, it is worth considering visiting several countries closest to Montenegro at once, having reached everyone by car. Thus, you can compare architecture and find out where some of its elements came from in the culture of Kotor.

When concluding the city, it is worth mentioning that a trip to Montenegro is simply a must for views of the old medieval city, beautiful landscapes from the heights of the Fortress of St. John, and the opportunity to plunge into the architecture of Venice for a moment.