Early morning, sun barely breaking through, we headed to wait for the tour bus to bring us to Montenegro. I’ve always been a big fan of lead group tours. Not only does it help you see more things and places you might not have gotten in your own time, but if nothing else, it’s a wonderful carpool to and from your destination, allowing you to leave your bags, stress and whatever else in your hotel room and return for them later. This tour kills more birds with one stone as it takes you not only to a new destination for the day, but to a totally different country. We were welcomed by a friendly Anastasia and in between periods of naps so early in the morning, were told of a brief history of the country we were about to enter.
Just about 40 minutes south, we reached the boarder of Croatia to Montenegro. The clouds grew heavy and soon a thin downpour lashed against the windshield of our bus. Cozy inside, we handed our passports over to the guard and waited for our passports to be returned with fresh stamps and headed towards our first destination of Budva.
The sun was desperately trying to break through and so with the time we had, we explored the streets of one of the oldest settlements in the Adriatic, nearly 2,500 back in time. Archaeological evidence suggests that an Illyrian settlement was formed on the site of the Old Town before Greek colonization of the Adriatic. Reminiscent of Dubrovnik, the small town is surrounded by fortress walls and very walkable, dotted with restaurants and souvenir shops.
After lunch overlooking the water, raindrops running down the windows were now still and slowly disappearing in the midday sunshine. We loaded back onto the bus and headed to the next destination of Kotor.
I cannot say enough about how beautiful Kotor is. The mountains hula hooped wisps of white clouds and we were lead on a tour of another walled city by a local tour guide and were then let on our own to explore. With about an hour to kill, we all decided to hike up the walls that zigzaged up the mountain. The view speaks for itself. The contrast of clay red roofs against the deep emerald of the bay and white buildings matching the shore. The bay opens its mouth wide to lead to the sea in a disarray of colors. The houses cluttered at the base of the mountain like an avalanche, rubble gathered before the water. The calm of the water unzipping, lead by small boats. From above on the mountain, you can see it all.
I could have stood watching the old town from the fortified walls above for hours watching the clouds move with the wind in and out of the folds of the mountains like dry ice dispersing to sky.
As we loaded onto the bus for our return to Dubrovnik, the clouds had parted and gave us a lasting vision of what some call the southern most fjord in Europe. The water had turned to a cerulean blue pocked with bright red fishermen’s jackets. Before we knew it, we were facing the sunset over Dubrovnik just in time to watch the sun dip beneath the sea.
Liza Herlands an adventurist, a journalist, a project manager, but chiefly A TRAVELER! Liza ditched the corporate love to indulge her life passion. After David Letterman closed his chapter with Late Show with David Letterman on NBC where Ms. Herlands was a Project Manager, she went to Wall Street Journal.
Like Lisa’s travel story? Find more on her blog brewedtravel.com
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