The Charming Town of Kotor, Montenegro

Kotor, Montenegro was an almost accidental destination for me.  The anchor destination for the trip was Italy but my wanderlust wanted me to go further to new places (even though Pompeii was new to me).  So I added Croatia by visiting the gem of the AdriaticDubrovnik.  But then I found out about day trips to Mostar (in Bosnia-Herzegovina) and Montenegro.  It didn’t take much for me to say “sold!”  Kotor was a very picturesque and “alive” town with its cafés and old architecture.

Café scene in old town Kotor, Montenegro Canon EOS Rebel

Part of the café scene

Kotor sits between the bay of the same and the mountain of St. John which was fortified as early as the 6th century.  This town has passed from empire to empire from Roman times, Byzantine times, Republic of Venice’s time, Hapsburg times, Bulgarian times, Ottoman times and Yugoslav times among others (even if not all those officially had the name “empire”…).  You get the picture of the changes this places must have gone through over two millenia!

Sea Gate in Kotor, Montenegro part of the fortifications city wall Canon EOS Rebel

The Sea Gate which dates from the 16th century

Madonna with Child in the Sea Gate of Kotor Montenegro carving Canon EOS Rebel architecture detail

Madonna with Child in the Sea Gate

fortification wall tower Kotor Montenegro St. John history Canon EOS Rebel

Fortifications consist of large walls interspersed with towers along the water and up the mountain

Its architecture, heavily influenced by the Venetian style, contributed to it being named a UNESCO World Heritage Site which seconds my recommendation that this is a place that ought to be checked out – the trip to reach it is both, worth effort AND beautiful as Kotor Bay is a unique setting – in and of itself worth seeing in person.

Architecture in Kotor, Montenegro Canon EOS Rebel balcony

Architecture in Kotor, Montenegro tower Canon EOS Rebel

Architecture in Kotor, Montenegro street Canon EOS Rebel

Architecture in Kotor, Montenegro Canon EOS Rebel

Churches in Kotor

Kotor has quite a few churches from different times – 11 if I counted correctly on the tourist map for this town of around 13,000 inhabitants.

St. Tryphon's Cathedral in Kotor, Montenegro - crucifix, museum Canon EOS Rebel

Crucifix in the small gallery on the second level of St. Tryphon’s Cathedral

St. Tryphon's Cathedral - alter and crucifix in Kotor, Montenegro Canon EOS Rebel

Altar and crucifix in St. Tryphon’s Cathedral

St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church in front of St. Lucas in Kotor, Montenegro Canon EOS Rebel

St. Nicholas Serbian Orthodox Church (facing St. Lucas Church) in Kotor, Montenegro

Church of St. Lucas in Kotor, Montenegro Romanesque architecture photo Canon EOS Rebel

12th century Church of St. Lucas – Romanesque style

Getting lost in Kotor -and is true in many places – is a neat way to see this town and, trust me, you won’t be lost for too long as you are bound by the mountain, the moat or the Sea Gate!



  1. What a beautiful place! My family is from Croatia, so I’ve been, but only in the North. I would love to make it further down, and also visit the surrounding countries as well. You’ve definitely brought Kotor, Montenegro to my radar. It’s really beautiful!
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  2. You had me at “cafes and architecture,” Raul! Your post reminds me that another trip to Croatia is overdue for me. It’s been over 10 years and I only got to see Zagreb. I’d love to explore some of the smaller towns, and this one looks beautiful.
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  3. Very cool…everyone told me that I had to go to Montenegro on my Croatia trip last summer, but I just didn’t have the time! Would love to go back – that entire region fascinates me so much after a 2 week intro!
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  4. Very lovely and looks quite off the beaten path. Reminds me a bit of Toledo, Spain.
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  5. i love love loved kotor. we also went to budva for two days, and montenegro was one of my favorite stops on our trip. kotor was much less touristy than budva, though both were filling up with cruise shippers around mid-day. were you able to hike up to the castle?
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  6. so charming. i need to hit up some new places in the world. 😉
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