Explore the Bay of Kotor and its well-preserved medieval towns
Montenegro offers stunning scenery, friendly people, delicious food and wine - not to mention that it is more affordable & less crowded than its European counterparts. Be warned - it has been discovered, get there soon!
The Bay of Kotor (Boka Kotorska), known simply as Boka ("the Bay"), is the winding bay of the Adriatic Sea in southwestern Montenegro and the region of Montenegro concentrated around the bay. The bay has been inhabited since antiquity. Its well-preserved medieval towns of Kotor, Risan, Tivat, Perast, and Herceg Novi, along with their natural surroundings, are major tourist attractions. The Natural and Culturo-Historical Region of Kotor has been a World Heritage Site since 1979.
DAY 1: EXPLORE KOTOR
Kotor is a fortified town on Montenegro’s Adriatic coast, in a bay near the limestone cliffs of Mt. Lovcen. Characterized by winding streets and squares, its medieval old town has several Romanesque churches, including Kotor Cathedral. It's also home to the Maritime Museum, which explores local seafaring history. If you are physically fit, climb the 1 355 stairs to St John’s fortress and you will be rewarded with a spectacular view of Kotor and the Bay. In the summer Kotor can be hot, start your ascent early! Otherwise just amble and browse through the narrow streets and squares at a leisurely pace. Kotor is a stop for many cruise liners in season, we suggest that you visit the town early in the morning or late afternoon.
EAT AT RESTAURANT GALION
Restaurant Galion is a 5 star restaurant located in the waterfront,a few minutes walk from the Old Town with views of Kotor's marina and the Old Town. It is an excellent choice for connoisseurs, the ones who enjoy food and a glass of good wine and for those who consider every meal a special occasion.
DAY 2: DISCOVER THE BAY BY SPEEDBOAT WITH LADY BLUE TOURS
Visit the magical artificial island of Our Lady of the rocks (photo above) and the stunning village of Perast (photo below) and swim at the Blue Cave. Visit their website for all the options & to book directly at the best prices.
After your wonderful trip, we recommend a great lunch or dinner at one of the following:
EAT AT KONOBA BARBA
Konoba Barba is Mediterranean restaurant located right on the water in Dobrota serving excellent seafood, pasta and risotto. Watch the sun set over the Bay without a care in the world!
EAT AT KONOBA CATOVICA
Half way between Kotor and Herceg Novi, in Boka Kotorska, lies a small town called Morinj. Morinj has been long known for its mills that used to grind olives and grains. But, time took its toll and the mills of Morinj, together with the old customs, were forgotten. 20 Years ago Lazar Catovic put a lot of work and love into the mill and the family house that has been in his family for over 200 years and turned them into a world-class restaurant.
EAT AT VERIGE65
Elegant and sophisticated restaurant & bar Verige65, is the perfect combination of nature and modern way of life, which offers a magnificent and impressive view on Boka Bay. It is located in the narrowest part of the Boka Bay from where you can get a breathtaking view over the fairytale city of Perast and islets of Our Lady of the Rocks (Gospa od Škrpjela) and Saint George.
DAY 3: DRIVE ON OF THE BEST-DRIVING ROADS IN THE WORLD
If you have a car, drive 38 kms to Cetinje, the most challenging part of the road is a short 8.3km stretch with 16 hairpin turns called the Kotor Serpentine and the views are spectacular. (see below) We recommend that you drive before 10 am to avoid possible trucks and busses. Reward yourself with local Montenegrin cuisine and beautiful views at National Restaurant Belveder (see below) - try the slow roasted veal with paprika potatoes, its delicious!
Restaurant Belveder offers you traditional Dalmatian cuisine and drinks produced in this region. The atmosphere of the restaurant makes you feel the same way as if you have visited a traditional Montenegrin house. There are local delicacies, dishes under iron, home-made wine and other drinks. Wide-open doors and the best dishes of Montenegrin cuisine are waiting for you.
DAY 4: EXPLORE HERCEG NOVI, TIVAT & PORTO MONTENEGRO
Herceg Novi is located at the entrance to the Bay and at the foot of Mount Orjen. It was known as Castelnuovo ("New castle" in Italian) between 1482 and 1797, when it was part of Ottoman Empire and the Albania Veneta of the Republic of Venice. Herceg Novi has had a turbulent past, despite being one of the youngest settlements on the Adriatic. A history of varied occupations has created a blend of diverse and picturesque architectural styles in the city.
Tivat is located in the central part of the Bay and has a number of tourist sites. Renaissance Summer House Buca in the centre of city, Ostrvo Cvije?a (Flowers’ Island) with sacred monuments, Gornja Lastva, the old nucleus at an altitude of 300 m, the magnificent sandy beach at Plavi Horizonti and the Sveti Marko Island with ex-Club Med cottages are the most visited. In the city itself there is the natural port Kalimanj.
Pretend that you are a multi-millionaire at Porto Montenegro (if you are not!), an exclusive marina and yachting paradise offering waterfront residences, luxury shops, restaurants and high-end events.
HOW TO GET THERE: Fly to Podgorica or Tivat or drive from Dubrovnik (it is only 90 km, but please note that some nationalities require a separate visa for Croatia & Montenegro)
WHEN TO GO: Summer is mid May - early October with July and August the hottest months
GETTING AROUND: Rent a car and explore all the beautiful villages around the bay
WHERE TO STAY:
SELF-CATERING: Stay in an apartment with one or two bedrooms in this beautiful Stone House meters from the water in Ljuta (view from verandah below).
Next week we will post our recommendations for the stunning coast from Budva to Ulcinj