1. Split: 3 days (Trogir, Omis incl),
2. Hvar: 2 days,
3. Pee-lee-teh-we-tseh National Park: 1 day,
4. Dubrovnik: 1 day (maybe one more day)...
After repetitious inquiries from our guests, we finally decided to do some research and to check out some further destinations near abroad. After Dubrovnik two options come in mind: oriental Bosnia or rocky Montenegro. Well, our Montenegrin crew from Hostel 2 spared us from any brainer on this one. So Montenegro it is, and Kotor as our first stop.
Going to Montenegro directly from Split is actually quite easier during the season (May-Sep), with 7 times a week (from 2015. every day in the afternoon) connections to all Montenegrin coastal cities. The rest of the year it goes two times a week, but there is also an option to take frequent bus connections to Dubrovnik and from there take buses to Kotor, Budva or Podgorica. (http://www.ak-split.hr/HR/vozni.red/VozniRedOdlazaka.aspx )
If you are taking this trip in peak season like we did, expect crowded bus and make sure to buy your ticket at least one day in advance, be prepared for 9 hrs long journey, 3 border checkpoint stops and some traffic jams after Montenegrin border. Our bus was supposed to arrive at 9PM in Kotor, but due to long queue on Cro-Mon border we arrived around 11.30PM! (Tip from our Montenegrin staff Marina: this bus regularly runs off the schedule so aprox 1hr late arrival is rule of thumb)
Finally Kotor! Good thing is that Bus station is walking distance from city center (read: the old part of town within the old city walls, as many touts around Bus station will try to sell you accommodation allegedly in the center, don t take it unless you don t mind taking a taxi or long walk back to center. Kotor is small but pretty outstreched city, so some of the neighbourhoods „next to the center“ can actually be few km away.)
No need to say it was one of the best locations in Old Town/ Kotor/ Montenegro/ World. Underviewing Fortress of St Ivan, listening Holy Mass in St Ana church from balcony (at least getting awaken by in the morning), overlooking people down the street and nearby restaurant. Morning coffee before going out, MUST be Turkish style with Montenegrin variety (more water with less coffee, with no sugar or milk). Tap water is bit different if you are used to clean and fresh Split styled water, still drinkable though.
Chill out in one bar squeezed in 3m wide street just in the middle of the city, hard to find if you don t know the streets here. (map) It s situated close to street that circles around the old town, before the church XXXX and after XXXX. Good thing about this bar is that the most of the day it is not exposed to the sun, has very good foamy capuccino, sweet red home made wine and excellent a la carte choice of Montenegrin, Macedonian, Croatian and Italian wines. The guy who runs it is very cool guy, apparently has been in Thailand recently, wore Thai „Chiang“ beer T-shirt 3 days in a row. Maybe too much of Bob Marley music in late afternoon, but it is tolerable because it is not so loud anyway.
After dinner? We changed our place for XXX place near XXX square. Definitely recommended if you are up for checking some domestic rakijas. Order viljamovka (pear rakija) or medica (honey rekija) won t regret it, it is also good to combine or drink together with Niksicko draft, 1 rakija shot per 0.3 beer is good ratio, but some of us managed 2-3 rakija shots per 0.3 beer. Depending where to go after, if clubbing than latter would be more appropriate. No need to go far as the only (worth) place to go after 2am (when all old town bars are closing down) is club Maximus on the west side of city walls. There is cover fee of around 2 eur for regular night, expect 10-20eur for some DJs, 30eur for Lepa Brena.
Spacious and not too crowded with oppotunity to meet fellow travelers, downside is that smoking is allowed everywhere and local people tend to smoke heavily.
This is one small beach we found just at the opposite side of Bay of Kotor,: It is 30min walk from the city, but it is woth it as the restaurant and bar are just meters away from the beach, so was possible to literally jump from bar chair into sea. There we ate kajmak, try it with bread and yoghurt in the morning, tastes like very greasy fresh cheese, good if you are still hangover or if you are planning to climb up to fortress hill above Kotor (highly reccommended cause the view is breathtaking).
Talk Russian as Kotor and its surroundings tend to receive more and more tourists from Russia. They are bit shy in English, but you will discover their real side once you start to brush up your basic Russian with them. (sl neki rusi)
Next stop Budva...seee you soon