cohn17

October 29, 2007

MONTENEGRO: The Mini-Series. Part 3: This is why we travel

Filed under: general — cohn17 @ 4:56 pm

On Saturday, we took the advice of a number of different friends and drove up the coast to Kotor, a port city that now is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is in what is called the southern-most fjord in Europe, although according to the ever-faithful Wikipedia the site isn’t technically a fjord. The trip took us about 90 minutes through some beautiful, winding, but narrow roads along the shore and through the bayside villages.

Kotor was a major trading center and it contains numerous churches, palaces, and old homes. There also are a lot of stores but unlike those in Budva, they do not overwhelm the rest of the buildings; in fact, there are still a number of residents in the city, so there actually is some “neighborhood-serving retail.”

The highlight of the visit was the walk up the side of the mountain to see the fortress of St. Giovanni and the Chapel of Our Lady of Salvation perched half-way up. I’ll let the photos speak for themselves, mostly because I’m feeling a bit lazy and don’t want to do any further research. If you want the history, you can look it up here or here. The rest of our photos are in an album.

Here are some impossibly picturesque views into the fjord, including some churches on islands and the tower of a town jutting into the bay.

The façade of a still-occupied residence in the main square; another public square; an Orthodox church whose name I can’t find, and its interior.

Various alleys and buildings in Kotor on the way to the back of the city, where the path leads up to the fortress.

These photos show the fortress of St. Giovanni and the Chapel of Our Lady of Salvation. The fortress, 280 meters above the town, was originally built during the Illyrian times, and reconstructed first by the Byzantine emperor Justinianius in the 6th century AD and then again by the Venetians in the 13th and 14th centuries. The Venetians also built the ramparts, and they were used even through WWII. These photos show the fortress and chapel from below (the chapel is in the lower left corner of the first photo); the view down the mountain from behind the chapel; the fortress with the Montenegrin flag; and the view of the fjord from the top of the mountain.

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