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Wednesday, April 29, 2009. It was raining hard as we approached Kotor. From the boat's deck we could glimpse the majestic mountains, the fjords and some houses. A tender brought us to shore, and by the time we disembarked, the rain had stopped .


As we got closer we came across two islets. One of them, Svaeti Djorge,(St. George) is a natural island crowned by the monastery of St. George, dating from the 12th century and ringed by a group of elegant cypresses. The other one, Gospa od Skrpjela, (Our Lady of the Rocks) is a man-made islet, built upon a rock where sailors found an icon depicting the Virgin and Child. They started bringing rocks to add to the original one, and by 1630 there was enough foundation to erect a church.


 We entered the town, surrounded by a medieval wall, through the Main Town Gate, aka the Sea Gate. It dates from the 16th century, and it's on the western facade of the wall. The Clock Tower stands directly opposite. Built in the 17th century, it still houses a watchmaker's shop on the ground level



We walked through the town, which was very interesting, with lots of steps  and narrow streets. Many tourists were congregating in its plazas.


Among the interesting buildings there was one belonging to an ancient pharmacy, in business since 1326.  Pat posed in front of the sign for a Kodak moment.


As we continued our excursion we passed the church of St Luke, and shortly after we came upon the Cathedral of Sveti Tripun, a monument of Roman culture and one of the most recognizable symbols of the city.


On a hill behind Kotor, 853 feet above sea level, stand the ruins of Tvdjava Sv Ivana, St John's Fortress.  It is approached by a series of serpentines and some 1300 steps. They say the view from the top is awesome, but we didn't go up. We also went by other fortress ruins. Cattaro means Kotor in Italian.


From the top of the wall surrounding the city we could see some awesome views, especially the red colored tiled roofs of the buildings.


The Medieval surrounding walls were built between the 9th and the 18th centuries.  They measure almost 3 miles in length and reach up to 66 feet in height and 53 feet in width.  They act as retainers for all the water that collects within the town.



 We left the town through another gate. It had a plaque identifying it, but we couldn't read the language. Before we left Stari Grad  (Old Town), we passed by a couple of churches, St Clare's and St. Marija. Montenegrins have lots of churches.                                                            


By now it had started to rain again, so we exited the town with a last look at an official building with a gigantic tree in front of it, and headed to the boat, in time for afternoon tea. The ship had moved to an empty dock, so tenders were not needed.  


We rested a bit before dinner, and prepared ourselves for our next adventure, Dubrovnik, in Croatia.



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