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Bay of Kotor
Post from 14/08/2014

Bay of Kotor - a fjord in the Mediterranean

The rugged rock faces are reflected in the shimmering blue sea of the Adriatic, while winding coastal villages cling to the steep, towering mountain slopes. The 1,500-metre-high mountain range in the north of Montenegro extends right up to the coast and ends abruptly there, where the sea begins.

We would like to spirit you away to a region in the Mediterranean that has barely been discovered by holiday home vacationers up to now. In the north of the small coastal state of Montenegro, not far from the border with the "big neighbour" Croatia, a unique landscape formation has emerged and been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. The Bay of Kotor, an inlet which stretches about 30 kilometres inland and branches off into several sections, is, in our opinion, the ideal setting for a holiday home vacation with the right mix of beach, sightseeing and experience of nature.

Were it not for the Mediterranean flora, you would almost think you had ended up somewhere in Norway due to the landscape. Little wonder that the Bay of Kotor is therefore also referred to as "the southernmost fjord in Europe" or "the only fjord in the Mediterranean". However, whilst the impressive landscape forms in the far north are the result of powerful glaciers shifting across the ground, the winding Bay of Kotor has formed between the slopes of the coastal mountain range through the erosion of karst rock over millennia.

The bay has always been the ideal place for a hidden harbour as it is sheltered from the sea and its narrow entrance is difficult to observe: Whether it was the Romans, the Byzantines, Venetians or Austrians - all of those who ruled the surrounding land over the centuries, paid particular attention to the strategically important inlet with its harbours and villages. Even pirates used the bay as a hiding place on occasions. Can one treasure or another still be found here?

In the most hidden recess of the inlet is the medieval harbour and fortress town of Kotor – which is both the namesake and the main town in the bay. Given its location, Kotor is almost easier for visitors to reach via the water than on the winding coastal road. But a visit here is worthwhile, no matter how you plan your arrival. The entire old quarter with its historic buildings that date from various epochs is a great ensemble of the diverse cultural influences that have characterised the area over the past 2,000 years.

One special tip, among the many other large and small places in the bay that are worth visiting, is Perast, which is situated a few kilometres north of Kotor. A fantastic panorama awaits you here, picturesquely nestled on the rock face - as the narrowest part of the whole bay, which thins to 330 metres and is surrounded by verdant mountain slopes, is right opposite. The small monastic island of Sveti Djorde that can be explored as part of a boat tour, is also located in front of Perast.

And what about a holiday by the sea? This is, of course, also possible and highly recommended here. Just don’t expect wide, long sandy beaches. Rather, many - sometimes even very secluded – small coastal strips and coves can be found along the bay, which are great for enjoying a relaxing day at the beach. The water quality is very good and at many (usually the most popular) beaches, there are also facilities such as cafes, public washrooms and the possibility of hiring sun loungers and sunshades. You can, for example, find particularly beautiful beach sections near the mouth of the bay, flowing into the open sea around Herceg Novi.

And while we're on the subject of a seaside holiday in Montenegro, we cannot let another worthwhile destination along the coast of the tiny state go unmentioned: The town of Budva, located southeast of the Bay of Kotor, not only offers a historic quarter that is worth visiting, but its nearby surrounding area will also tempt you with its great beaches, which rank among the most popular on the entire Adriatic coast. We therefore suggest either taking a swimming trip or two to Budva while on a holiday home vacation in Kotor or, vice versa, - definitely taking trips to the Bay of Kotor from Budva. Both destinations are only around 45 minutes’ travel time from each other.

The nearest possibility for arrival by plane is via the small airport of Tivat, which is served by some charter carriers in summer. There are significantly more connections in nearby Dubrovnik (Croatia), from where the Bay of Kotor can be reached in about one and a half hours’ travel time.


Selected holiday homes and holiday apartments in the Bay of Kotor