If you’ve seen a photo of Kotor, you’ve likely had to hold yourself back from booking a ticket right there on the spot. Or maybe you did, and that’s why you’re reading this guide!
Kotor, Montenegro is one of the most breathtaking cities in Europe. Each new street offers a new surprise, so it’s never hard to find an Instagrammable spot in Kotor. These are streets that are simply made for strolling and snapping away.
While this guide focuses on the most Instagrammable places in Kotor city, I’ll zoom out just a little bit to include a few of the most photogenic places in the Bay of Kotor, which includes nearby seaside towns like Perast and Risan which are accessible easily by bus or ferry.
Saint John’s Fortress
Sure, there may be 1355 steep steps of pure torture, but they’re balanced out by plenty of wonderful places to stop and catch your breath under the guise of taking Instagram photos of Kotor Bay 😉
But if you’re not going to hike up to the best view of Kotor, can you even call yourself an Instagrammer?
Still, though, the views along the way up aren’t just a consolation prize – you can get some really beautiful compositions this way.
Location: St John Fortress, Rd to the Fort of St. Ivan, Špiljari, Montenegro
Cost: €8 entry fee (recently raised from €2, boo!). However, I’ve heard this fee can be avoided if you get there bright and early before the ticket collector arrives… I’ve never woken up early enough to test this out.
Travel Tip: Don’t go for sunset! The mountain behind you blocks the bay and makes it dark and look really sad in photos. Go in the morning (before the heat sets in) or around mid-day for the best photos.
The Ruined Church
I don’t know the name of this church but I do know just where to find it! As you’re hiking up to the Fortress, a little more than halfway up, you’ll find a small hole in the wall (literally) that people are climbing through.
Follow their lead and you’ll discover this beautiful ruined church that nature is reclaiming, grass on the roof and all.
Location: On the walk up to the Fortress
Cost: Included in your entry fee, if you paid it
St. Luke’s Church
This church was built in 1195 in the Romanesque style and is one of the oldest and best-preserved buildings in the town. It even survived the horrific
For two hundred years, this church was both a Catholic and an Orthodox church, serving both communities. A real lesson that could be learned in many parts of the world!
Location: Trg Sv. Luke, Kotor 85330, Montenegro
The Cathedral of Saint Tryphon in Kotor is incredibly impressive – if not for its size, for its beautiful background against the mountains that give Montenegro its name.
It’s one of only two cathedrals in Montenegro and serves as the cathedral for the entire Boka Bay (Bay of Kotor).
Location: Cathedral of Saint Tryphon, Kotor, Montenegro
Cost: €2.50 to enter
Tip: Make this part of an early morning walk through Kotor to avoid the crowds!
Pjaca od Drva
Every Old Town needs a beautiful square and Kotor has a few! This smaller one, Pjaca (piazza) od Drva, is extremely photogenic – palm trees plus medieval old town equals Instagram crack.
Location: Pjaca od Drva inside the city walls
Arms Square & Clock Tower
The famous clock tower of Kotor is funny for one special reason: it has a ‘snooze’ button! It goes off every hour on the hour, like any normal clock, but then it goes off again a mere five minutes later. The joke is that it reminds locals that they’re running late.
Location: Trg od oruzja, Kotor
The Streets of the Old Town
If ever there was a city where you could walk and be guaranteed a good Instagram spot, Kotor is it! This is a city that rewards you for wandering, so go ahead and get lost, already.
Location: Literally anywhere inside the city walls, but bonus points if there is laundry hanging up to dry.
Tip: Be sure to do this as early as you can, especially before the cruise ships arrive and start letting off passengers! The Old Town can be a congested nightmare when a big cruise ship is in town.
This city loves cats so much it even has a museum dedicated to them (which you definitely have to visit, especially since it costs just €1 which goes towards feeding the local stray population). It’s a Kotor photography must.
Kotor kitties are spunky, friendly, and endlessly photogenic. They’re definitely ready for their close up. Add some bokeh against a medieval wall? Fire emoji.
Location: Look down at your feet and there’s probably already a cat somewhere nearby you
Cost: Free, unless you get bitten and need rabies injections which
Hop on a bus from Kotor to Perast, which takes about 30 minutes. I’m not sure where exactly this viewpoint is, but you’d have to head up and inwards away from the bay until you found a nice vantage point.
A much easier photo opportunity is just walking along the beautiful seaside promenade and capturing Perast in your photo that way.
Cost: €20 for a boat to Kotor plus Our Lady of the Rocks | Book here now worry-free
Tip: The boat is much prettier, but if you’re on a budget, you can also take the bus to Perast. It leaves from the main bus station or outside the Kotor walls. It takes 30 minutes and will drop you off in front of the main church in Perast.
Our Lady of the Rocks Church
This floating island church in the Bay of Kotor is like a dream. In fact, I thought it was photoshopped when I first saw it! The island is actually artificially created, but it doesn’t make it any less beautiful.
There are two classic angles you want: one from the sea, and one from the island itself to capture more detail.
Location: The middle of Kotor Bay – you’re going to need a boat!
Cost: €20 for a boat tour | Book a combo ticket with a trip to Perast here
Tip: Unless you plan on swimming (and really… don’t) there’s no way of getting here without a boat tour, so I suggest you splurge! If not, there’s also a zoom lens to make it seem like you were closer then you were.
Finally, Don’t Go without Travel Insurance!
Make sure you always travel with a valid travel insurance policy. While Montenegro is safe, accidents can happen anywhere… especially if you’re petting adorable stray cats or climbing over a thousand ancient stairs in the hot sun. If you experience an accident or theft, travel insurance will help you recover your costs and enjoy the rest of your trip.
For travel insurance, I use World Nomads.I’ve been a happy customer of theirs for almost three years, and I’ve never had an issue when making a claim. I’m happy to refer them to anyone I meet.
Originally from California, Allison has been living in Bulgaria for the last two years and is obsessed with traveling around the Balkans. She has been published in National Geographic, CNN Arabic, Matador Network, and the Huffington Post. She loves befriending dogs, drinking coffee, geeking out about wine, and cooking food from around the world.