I still remember vividly about the time spent strolling aimlessly around the well preserved medieval walled town of Kotor. The coastal town was a prosperous trade centre under different rulers and fortifications were made to fend off invaders. Located in the beautiful Bay of Kotor surrounded by mountainous landscapes formed an impressive and picturesque backdrop for Kotor. The picturesque setting makes it a desirable place to visit in Montenegro.
So I made a long journey from Belgrade to this lovely town via night train and bus. And it’s the same old feeling when I see my single Bedder compartment as per previous night’s train – cold and sleepless. The 10-hour train ride departed from Belgrade station at 20:00 and scheduled to arrive in Podgorica at 06:14.
Similar experience at the border controls with the Serbian officers who stared at my red passport for the longest time before returning to me. Up next was the Montenegro side where the officer rudely demanded to see my VISA. And that’s despite explaining to him it’s stated on visit-montenegro.com that Singaporean does not need one. His colleague came over after hearing our debate. He took my passport and went through a document list with it, returning to me thereafter unapologetically…oh whatever.
The Montenegro mountainous terrain is truly a sight to behold.
Upon reaching Podgorica train station, I went straight to the main bus station right across the road to purchase a ticket to Kotor (check out the timetable here). The 2 hour plus ride from Podgorica to Kotor cost 7 Euro and 1 Euro storage fee to keep my backpack in the bus compartment.
The storage fee charges came as a surprise since most Asian countries do not charge for that.
From Kotor main bus station, it’s a rather short walk to the old town where the defensive walls are hard to miss. There’s a left luggage service at the bus station that costs 2 Euro.
Along the external walls is like a farmers’ market where vendors sell all sort of daily essentials like fruits, vegetables, meat, groceries, and stuff.
The other side of Kotor wall
Do grab a map at the tourist information office just in front of the main gate. The things that caught my eyes after I entered were the ‘not so squarish’ town square, its clock tower and the honey-coloured-style of stone buildings. A very charming old town preserved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
From here, the old town spreads out like a labyrinth with its nameless, shaded cobblestone streets. However, the town ain’t too big a place to be worry of getting lost within the walls. I didn’t set a course of where to go or what to see but merely just wander around rather aimlessly.
Some of the streets will lead you to a dead end, a quiet corner or some of the many cafés around every corner.
Not forgetting the old buildings and churches rich with history.
Once inside the walled town means I cannot see anything beyond the protective walls other than the mountains. It’s almost like being cut off from the outside world LOL. I chanced upon a gate which leads to a moat formed by the mountain water. Finally get to see beyond the ancient walls!
Maritime Museum of Kotor
I also checked out the smallish Maritime Museum showcasing the seafaring history of Montenegro. Before I proceed to hike up the imposing Kotor fortress.
The display of traditional weapons, equipment, costumes, treasure chests makes it one interesting to be.