After Megan and I spent 10 days in Italy, and fell totally in love with the country, we headed off on our Greek Island Cruise. It was a way for us to take a “break” from the hustle and bustle of travel while still waking up in a new city (or country) every day! It is a very restful way to travel and a lovely change of pace! Our cruise included Kotor, Montenegro, and Corfu, Athens, Mykonons & Kephalonia, Greece. It was wonderful. We sailed with Royal Caribbean on the Splendor of the Seas and had an amazing experience, as always. Our first stop was Kotor, Montenegro – which is not exactly a Greek Isle, but we loved this stop!
Fog nests around high, jagged mountaintops, whose slopes run steeply down into the Bay of Kotor. Echoes from Splendor Of The Seas’ foghorn make their way back through winding bays and between countless peaks. I am taken a back by how majestic this little known bay is. Green trees climb in the crags, looking like thin boney fingers struggling to maintain a grip on the sheer cliffs that tower ever upwards.
The bay sits back through channels of water that maze back to the little town. Kotor has been a very well protected port for hundreds of years, having been established by the Byzantines originally, and later used by several countries as a safe harbor. Kotor is now part of a new country called Montenegro. Kotor has milder temperatures similar to other Mediterranean ports, much warmer than the rest of Montenegro, which can be very cold, especially in the mountainous areas.
I am in absolute awe at the beauty of this area. The mountains that lead down to the sea, the wild flowers that grow up the old fortress walls and up all of the hills make Kotor a place I am sure never to forget. There is an old fortress set high up on the side of the mountain directly behind the city. As we hike to the top, the view gets better and better. If you ever make it to Kotor, ABSOLUTELY DO THE HIKE.
When we finally reach the top of the 1,300 brutally steep stairs, leading to Saint John’s Fortress, we are rewarded with stunning 360-degree views. The mountains on one side, the little town and the sea on the other. Behind the fortress we see old ruins of a smaller town that has long since been vacant. After we hike down from the old fortress, the old town of Kotor is a lovely little place to explore full of old churches, cafés, ice cream stands, & antique shops.
I can’t say that there is a lot to do in Kotor, or that it would be a place to spend a week, but I am so glad that our Mediterranean cruise ported here. It was not a wasted day by any means. I highly recommend Kotor for a short visit. The view was absolutely worth the time for me.
Who has ever heard of Kotor anyway? I surely never heard of the place before this cruise, but all my friends will have heard about it as soon as I get home. Hopefully you can make it to Kotor one day and behold its beauty.