Nestled in the picturesque Bay of Kotor and surrounded by the majestic mountain Lovcen, the fortified medieval town of Kotor is a sight to behold. With winding cobblestone streets, charming squares, and a thriving café culture, this city on Montenegro's Adriatic Coast offers visitors a lot of things to see and do.
While many tourists only spend a short time in Kotor during a cruise ship excursion, independent travelers should consider booking a few nights in this enchanting city to fully experience its charm. For those short on time, we recommend making a beeline for the city walls and climbing the steep stone steps for breathtaking views from the top.
To help you plan your visit, we've prepared a list of the top things to do in Kotor. Read our guide.
Breathtaking City Walls
St. Tryphon Cathedral
One of only two Roman Catholic churches in Montenegro, the St. Tryphon Cathedral is considered by many to be Kotor's most beautiful building. Originally built in 1166, the cathedral has undergone reconstruction after damage from multiple earthquakes. Inside, visitors can admire intricate frescoes and an ornate altar.
These are just a few of the many sights and experiences that Kotor has to offer. Whether you're interested in history, or culture, or simply soaking up the atmosphere, this charming city is sure to leave a lasting impression.
Castle of San Giovanni
The Castle of San Giovanni (also known as the Castle of St. John) is an old fortress situated atop Kotor's City Walls. The climb to the top involves ascending 1,350 stairs and climbing 1,200 meters in elevation, but the views are well worth the effort. From the castle, visitors can see the city below and the Bay of Kotor beyond. The Chapel of St. Ivan is also located on the city walls, reachable through a hole in the old wall. Visitors should allow three hours for the hike, although it can be completed in two hours for those in good physical shape.
Perast is a small fishing town in the Bay of Kotor, Montenegro. It's a hidden gem that's often overlooked by tourists, but it's worth a visit. Here are a few reasons why you should consider adding Perast to your travel itinerary.
Perast has a rich history dating back to the 12th century. The town is home to several beautiful Baroque buildings, including the Church of Our Lady of the Rocks and St. Nicholas Church. Both of these churches are located on a small island in the bay and can be accessed by boat. The island is man-made and was built by the residents of Perast over the centuries.
Perast has a good location, which means that it offers stunning views of the bay and the surrounding mountains. It's the perfect place to take a walk, enjoy a meal, or simply sit and relax while taking in the beauty of the area.
Our Lady of the Rocks
This manmade island located in the inner portion of the Bay of Kotor near Perast houses a 1722 church. The island's history dates back to 1452 when two fishermen allegedly discovered an image of the Virgin Mary on a pile of rocks.
Over time, the Orthodox chapel was replaced with a Catholic one and the pile of rocks was built up into a proper island. Visitors can take a bus or rent a car
to Perast and then catch a quick boat to the island.
Our Lady's Temple of Prcanj
Our Lady's Temple of Prcanj in Montenegro is a must-see destination for any traveler looking to experience the rich history and culture of the region. This stunning church, dating back to the 17th century, is a true architectural gem, featuring intricate stone carvings, frescoes, and a beautiful bell tower. The temple is also surrounded by a picturesque village with traditional houses, making it an ideal place for a walk or a picnic. The stunning views of the Adriatic Sea and the nearby islands add to the charm of this historical site. Don't miss the opportunity to visit Our Lady's Temple of Prcanj on your next trip to Montenegro.
Tre Sorelle Palace
Tre Sorelle Palace in Kotor, Montenegro is a true hidden gem that is often overlooked by tourists. This beautiful palace, built in the early 20th century, is a perfect example of the elegant architecture of the time, featuring a mix of Art Nouveau and traditional elements. The palace is beautifully preserved, and the intricate details of the facade, the frescoes and the ornate staircase are simply breathtaking.
Inside, the palace is home to a small museum that showcases the rich history of the region and the lives of the palace's former residents. Visitors can also admire the beautiful gardens and terraces, which offer stunning views of the old town of Kotor and the Bay of Kotor.
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