Montenegro is unlike anything I've ever seen before. The towering mountains border different villages along the Adriatic Sea. All of the buildings have coral-colored roofs that paint the hillsides. After spending so much time in the concrete jungle of Malta, it was refreshing to be immersed in a new landscape.
We joined a tour bus at 7 a.m. in Dubrovnik and traveled South to the border. Our passports have been marked multiple times this weekend, adding to the ink we've accumulated so far this semester!
After a long 30-minute wait to check out passports and go through certain security protocols, we were again cruising through the mountains of Montenegro (the country's name translates as "The Black Mountain"). Our bus drove right onto the ferry outside of Herceg Novi, a city on the border near Croatia. We took the ferry across the Kotor Bay towards Budva. Our guide explained the recent history of Montenegro and a bit about the country's journey towards independence in 2006. Soon we were in Budva, a busy tourist location in the summer season.
Budva stole my heart. I loved walking along the Promenade towards the old city. The Adriatic Sea was a beautiful turquoise and, again, the city was filled with coral rooftops.
From Budva we went to Kotor, another fortified city. Similar to Dubrovnik, visitors could pay to climb the city walls. Despite the nearly 80-degree heat and what seemed like endless steps, we persevered and climbed up the mountain along the wall. I have never seen a view quite like that. Although I didn't climb quite high enough for the docked cruise ships to seem smaller, the bay was still breathtaking.
I keep thinking that I've found my favorite places and then we discover somewhere new. With every trip, city, or attraction I learn so much! There is so much power in learning on the grounds where it all happened.
I really wish we had more time to spend in this part of the world...but how cool is it that we get to "go home" to Malta?!