This is a photo diary from our time in Montenegro when we were travelling in Rover, our beloved VW T4 Westfalia. After leaving Croatia we embarked on our southward journey along the coastline, headed for our final destination – Albania. The drive was one of the most scenic and memorable of the entire trip. It’s a special moment that will forever be etched in my mind and I’m sure my future day dreams will be filled with crystal blue sparkles of the Adriatic Sea.
The sun was shining and the weather was warm. At that point in time I hadn’t a worry in the world, I was free. The sea breeze blew in the passengers seat window, messing up my hair while the warmth of the sun hit the freckles on my nose. I stared out into the world appreciating the endless beauty of Mother Nature. The Adriatic Sea has a mesmerising effect. At the time I was certain each view was the best I’d ever seen, until of course we followed the winding road around a headland and another piece of beauty was revealed. Our eyes were treated to secluded rocky coves glistening in the sun, olive trees standing tall, fishing boats bobbing on the horizon and locals bathing and basking on their private rickety jetties – over and over again.
After no more than an hour and a half we found ourselves entering the Balkan country, slowly meandering along the skinny roads, with the sea glistening below and the mountains standing tall above. We had arrived in paradise! Montenegros wild and rugged beauty completely blew me away. It was afternoon by this stage and we hadn’t the faintest idea where we were staying the night. Upon entering the Bay of Kotor we’d passed two auto camps and so assumed they’d be dotted all around. We were wrong. We ended up nearly circumnavigating the Bay of Kotor, searching for a campsite to no avail. Our phones didn’t work so we were searching blindly. We’d heard that unlike many other European countries wild camping was illegal in Montenegro. Unwilling to backtrack, we decided to play naive to the law and ended up parking by a quiet little stretch of rocky beach. We set up our camp chairs on the edge of the jetty and made dinner while there was still light. Locals past us by as they went for their afternoon stroll or set up along the coastline to try their luck casting a fishing line but not another tourist was in sight. We were still completely in awe of how picturesque the setting was. As the sun set, the mountains shone brightly with colour – all sorts of spectacular reds, oranges, yellows and pinks. Not thinking it could get any better than this, dolphins swam by right in front of us, as if on cue. They put on an evening show but even they didn’t stay to join us.
The next morning we woke early with the sun, took a refreshing dip in the ocean and sipped coffee on the jetty before we continued on our journey to Albania, in an attempt to prolong Summer (you can read more about our adventure here). We were excited to venture into a new country but we knew we weren’t done with Montenegro. Two weeks later and we were back in the Bay of Kotor, very happy about it. We ventured around to Ponte Veslo in search of a hidden rock pool. We spent the afternoon jumping off the rocky peninsula into turquoise waters before retiring to the van for dinner and an early night. After this we retired to one of the first auto camps we had seen in the Bay of Kotor. It was nestled right on the water front and a truly breathtaking spot. We parked Rover and One night turned quickly turned into three and even then we didn’t want to leave. We spent our time doing very little – taking the days slower, sleeping in, swimming in the ocean and feeling refreshed from the crisp and cold water temperature, exploring towns by foot, climbing castles, drinking wine and cooking our own meals all whilst soaking in and appreciating the country’s beautiful landscape. We wouldn’t have had it any other way! For me the photos below evoke strong feelings of nostalgia. I’ll forever hold special memories of this magical place.