Monday, September 10, 2012

Kotor, Montenegro

The first stop on our cruise was to Kotor, Montenegro. Most people who I've talked to about our trip have never heard of it, but Montenegro was part of the former Yugoslavia and just declared its independence in 2006. The nearby wars in the 1990's pretty much killed tourism, which is just now picking up in the area mostly due to cruise ships. I'm not sure that we would have visited otherwise, but one of the things I love about cruising is getting to see places we wouldn't typically plan to visit. Kotor is a very pretty coastal town surrounded by mountains. The scenery throughout the Adriatic Sea was just gorgeous. Montenegro means "black mountain" but in this part of the country they were mostly grey and green rather than black.










The port of Kotor is extremely small, so our ship anchored in the bay and we tendered to shore on the emergency life boats. We never tendered on our honeymoon cruise so this was a first. I sure hope tendering is the only time I'm on one!!





To be perfectly honest, there isn't a whole lot to do in Kotor once you're on land. I really could have just sat on the boat and enjoyed the scenery, but we went exploring anyway.



Kotor is surrounded by an ancient city wall, and the Fortress Sveti Ivan is at the very top of the mountain. You can actually climb all the way up, but we only went about a quarter of the way. You actually have to pay for the climb, so Bo was not pleased with the hike or the cost but we are glad we went. Afterward, we didn't feel like we missed anything by not going to the top. Sure, the view would have been awesome, but several other passengers on the cruise (who were in shape!) were in pain for a few days after that hike. I don't mind a little exercise on vacation, but still - it's vacation!


if you look closely you can see the fortress at the top



The slippery stone steps made the climb harder than it should have been. Had I known this ahead of time, I would have worn tennis shoes instead of my cute sandals.


Port of Kotor
 
our ship in the bay, from the highest point we climbed




The rest of the pathway looked even worse than the path that took us here. Did I mention we didn't regret stopping at this point??




Instead, we strolled through the old town and learned a little bit more about Kotor.

Towers of the Cathedral of St. Tryphon

St. Nicholas Church


Kotor Monument

the flag of Montenegro



After our mini-hike and tour of the city, we had pretty much seen everything there was to see - in about an hour. We tend to do the sights pretty quickly and don't really like excursions, so this made for a pretty short day. We found a really cool rooftop bar/restaurant and just relaxed until it was time to head back to the ship.


local beer

local favorite - squid stuffed with octopus. amazing.





We tendered back to the boat, and sat on the deck with a few drinks to take in the view until the sun set. We had a great time in Kotor but I'm not sure it's a place we'll need to see again in our lifetime. Check that one off the list!




Bay of Kotor

Our Lady of Rocks Island and the Island of St. George


Farewell, Kotor
 
Bo and his martini flight

my beverage - the drink of the day, creamsicle margarita
 






8 comments:

  1. Those drinks looked heavenly! I haven't had a cocktail in a while I guess :) and Montenegro... I had heard of it, but had no idea where to find it on the map, so I've been educated! :)

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    1. To be perfectly honest, I had to look it up on the map when we first looked into this cruise! It was a great little discovery :)

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  2. I'm glad you didn't hike to the top and risk being sore for part of your trip - you're pictures are gorgeous from where you stopped. What a cute little town.

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  3. I think this is a really pretty little town - but the most random part to me was those big fat palm trees! They didn't fit in at all. Great pix and those drinks made me jealous :)

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    1. Haha...I thought the same thing. Mountains and palm trees just don't really go together - but I love me some palm trees! :)

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