how you can climb to
The main entrance is near Kotor’s North Gate. You weave your way through the narrow passageways of Kotor until you reach the start point of the walk. It is very well signposted so you shouldn’t have a problem. During the touristy seasons there is a lady with an umbrella who collects an entry free before you start the atrocious ascent to the fortress. From my research, entry seems to be around 8 EUR and is collected 8am-8pm during May-September. October, being on the outskirts of the summer rush, meant that the lady wasn’t there when I visited, and I saved myself a few euro (yay).
The walk follows the walls leading up to the fortress. The walls vary in width as they zig-zag up the hill. At 100 meters high, the first place you will reach is the Church of Our Lady Remedy. Built in the 15th century, it is said that the church healed people of the plague … that’s if they made it that far before keeling over. From here you can see the Bay of Kotor and the terracotta rooves below (and catch your breath). You won’t be alone when you’re up there. In the summer, there’s heaps of tourists. And when there’s no tourists, there’s heaps of stray cats and kittens. It’s so sad to see all of them because they’re so skinny and a little scraggy looking. If I was a cat person then I would happily adopt them all and feed them all the whiskers cat food I could find!
After you’ve caught your breath, you’ve got to tackle another 155 meters of climbing to get to the top of the fortress. The original fortress, built by the Illyrians somewhere around the 5th century, has been replaced by a modern medieval version that guards Kotor below. You really appreciate how valuable the positioning of the fortress would have been during invasions. The panoramic views extend on for miles and miles!
The whole walk, from start to finish, should take you around two hours… maybe three if you stop to take heaps of photos. Remember to pack lots of sunscreen, water and snacks!