Popular Kotor Shore Excursions
The Old City: Architectural highlights include the 12th-century Romano-Gothic St. Tryphon (Sveti Tripun) Cathedral; the little Church of St. Luke (Sveti Luka), which dates from the same century and contains original medieval frescoes; the 13th-century watchtower; the ninth-century city fortifications; the 19th-century Napoleon's Theatre; and a number of imposing 17th- and 18th-century palaces.
Hiking: If you're fit enough, walk around the city walls, which ascend the mountain just behind the town. Entry costs around 2 euros, and a steep-ish walk takes you 918 feet up to the St. Ivan Fortress (known to the locals as San Djovani). About halfway up, you'll find the Church of the Healing Mother of God (Gaspe od Zdravlja), which was built in 1572 by survivors of a plague. The walk to the fortress and back takes about 90 minutes, and although you need to be fairly fit, you'll be rewarded with lovely views and a real sense of achievement.
Maritime Museum: A short walk from the Sea Gate, this museum spans three floors of the early-18th-century Grgurina Palace and contains a fine collection of paintings, photographs, uniforms, model ships and elaborately decorated weapons used by Montenegro's navy, which has defended the Bay of Kotor for more than 12 centuries. (Trg Bokeljske Mornarice; 382 32 304 720; Hours vary depending on the season, it is open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. most weekdays in the summer, 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. on weekdays in July - September and to noon or 1 p.m. on Sundays, but Sunday winter hours run 9 a.m to noon.)
Wine tasting: Explore Montenegro's Wine Road and pay a visit to the Plantaze vineyards, where some of Montenegro's best-known wines are produced. Head to the underground wine cellar for a tasting paired with local cheese. You'll need around seven to eight hours; the drive from Kotor to Podgorica and the Plantaze vineyards of "Cemovsko field" takes about two hours. If you'd prefer a guided tour, try Globtour Montenegro.
Kotor has many attractions, but, sadly, great beaches are not among them. There are a few pebbly beaches along the waterfront, mainly attached to hotels, where you can hire a sun bed and parasol and take a dip in the sea. And there are sand beaches at Ljuta en route to Risan, but they lie several miles from Kotor.
That said, Montenegro's reputation as an up-and-coming vacation spot prompted holiday village developer Purobeach to open a marina and beach club on the site of a former naval base on Kotor's outer bay. The development comprises a marina and a holiday village, with bars, shops, restaurants and waterfront sun loungers. Consider a taxi ride or a shore excursion there if you're looking for a lazy day by the sea.