Day 11 – Kotor, Montenegro

Kotor, Montenegro…the only port that we actually need to tender to reach the city. I hesitate to admit that Kotor is the only city that I can associate with Montenegro and thought for the longest time it was the capital. Nope. That designation falls to Podgorica.

The better part of the 20th century was spent as Yugoslavia. In 2003 Yugoslavia became the federated union of Serbia and Montenegro and in 2006, Montenegro separated itself officially.

Kotor is a remarkable mix of old and new. Exploring the old town was today’s goal.

The tender dropped us off directly across the street from the old town. In order to get there however, we had to walk down a bit of a ramp to an underground walkway. This took us safely to the other side negating the need to navigate traffic. Thank goodness for small favors as drivers here, as in most of Europe it seems, are…single minded in their desire to get from point A to point B.

The old town is one of those fascinating places that, the more you wander, the more corners you round, the more surprises you find. Photo ops were everywhere which is going to make sorting and deciding a major undertaking.

The first part of our walkabout was to casually try to cover as many of those ‘corners’ as we could. There was no formal tour today, it was just an unescorted visit. One benefit to a guided tour is that there is a voice (sometimes heard, sometimes understood…sometimes not so much) providing both a historical background as well as an explanation of what one is looking at. Today the story unfolds in its own unique way, presenting life as it is now and providing a snapshot as to what it was like centuries past. With that in mind, I will give you a brief glimpse of what we saw:

Now on to the top of the wall. Always keep in mind that elevators and escalators were not the norm 4-500 years ago. Couple that with lacking uniformity of step formation and you can well imagine the challenges of North American non-athletes. Slow it may have been but the top was reached and the views were sensational.

Back down with the intent of jumping on the HOHO bus. As luck would have it, the last one had left a few minutes earlier. Apparently they shut down shortly after lunch. Don’t quite understand that one, but again, a different life style.

Beside the HOHO stop is a driver who offers to take the four of us on a tour to Perast (town along the coast) as well as up to the top of the hilltop for more photo ops. His price was marginally higher than the HOHO would have been but we would be going to different locales. Nothing ventured, nothing gained so off we went.

About 20 minutes later my fears of being taken to a container ship were laid to rest as we arrived at Perast. An hour later, after strolling down the shore we rejoined our driver. (Of note, for later, his vehicle was an older Chevelle…4 door yes, but with a very small backseat for 3 such as ourselves, the 4th getting to ride in the passenger seat upfront).

Now up to the top and yes the view is certainly what we wanted. 🙂

Back to the ship and off we go once again. Night time and the ship is moving, but…you get the idea.

Our new port tomorrow is Dubrovnik, Croatia!

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