Who thought my 50th country would be so tiny… I would highly recommend a day trip to Montenegro from Dubrovnik. Hopefully you will not be wildly jet-lagged and wake up at 2:30am for your 8am pick-up. But when you decide to totally mess with your body clock, these things happen. I did a lot of yawning and did close my eyes for a few minutes here and there but it’s a full day excursion and I tried to just push through…
Because I had read about Montenegro in a magazine a while ago as the new Riviera alternative… the undiscovered perfect European beach holiday destination… I don’t think the article was wrong, especially if you like Russians 🙂
I booked the tour with Amico.
I don’t think I would have the social energy to be a good tour guide but Davor was a delight. Our mini bus was full so I gave up my front row seat to a couple from England. It may have been just as well as I could have super tiny naps without Davor thinking I was bored… just exhausted. He even lent me 50 cents so I could use the stupid pay to pee toilet in Kotor. They use euros in Montenegro! I had euros (including coins) back at the hotel in Dubrovnik but had to hit the ATM… I love the idea of throwing myself into a new country but there are advantages to research 🙂
Other than having to hit an ATM to get euros, Montenegro lived up to its travel magazine billing. First we hit a gorgeous fjord with a legend of star-crossed lovers. Then it was off to Kotor, the less famous walled city – but also a UNESCO world heritage site. It’s pretty tiny and you can see it all in an hour or two – but it’s definitely impressive. And Davor passed us off to a local guide who proved how stylish the women of eastern Europe can be while beguiling you with their charm… and praising Tito?
That part I wasn’t expecting – but it is unclear whether Montenegro is actually large enough to be a viable country. Coming from a bit of wacko place (lots of land animals don’t even want to inhabit; ergo huge amount of land with small population), I am a little more attuned to countries that should maybe not be so independent…
Independence is a bit like crack… really seductive and addictive but not a good idea in most situations… perhaps you wake up after a few weeks and think you need rehab…
I am the crazy girl who wrote Robertson Davies as a teen (google him 🙂 because I was a huge fan and recently re-read his thoughts on nation states in the 20th century. This will be explored further, absolutely, but I think there is a lot to learn from dude/esses born in the 20th century.
Back to the black mountain! Not surprisingly, I learned that is what Montenegro means. So it is a place of challenging geography that still managed to make a go of it.
There are gorgeous landscapes to discover. Some amazing beaches. A private island owned by some Russian dude where Novak got married. If you are Russian, there are several flights each day in high season from Moscow and you don’t need a visa.
If you want to hang out on the beach, I would highly recommend it as a holiday destination. If lying around on the beach is not your thing, book a day trip with Amico – and bring some euros 🙂 And your camera!