Kotor cruise

Montenegro’s jewel
The old Rector’s Palace
St Tryphon’s Cathedral

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Glorious history by a crystal clear sea

Sailing on an MSC cruise to the Mediterranean Sea you can see perched on the edge of a majestic bay, the medieval Old Town of Kotor; it’s the undisputed jewel in Montenegro’s crown.

Though no longer Europe’s best-kept secret, Kotor’s sudden elevation to the tour-cruise league has failed to dim the timeless delights of its cobbled alleyways and secluded piazzas. Enclosing cafés and churches galore, the town walls are themselves glowered down upon by a series of hulking peaks.

Down below, a harbour now bustling with sleek yachts marks the end of the Bay of Kotor, made fjord-like by the 1000m cliffs that rise almost vertically from the serene waters. Kotor’s charms are best appreciated by heading to the Old Town, without map, and getting lost in the labyrinthine streets. You’ll likely start your excursion entering through the Sea Gate, next to the harbour, where your MSC cruise ship awaits your return, and emerge onto the main square, Trg od Oružja.

Cafés spill out from glorious buildings, the most notable of which are the old Rector’s Palace and a leaning clock tower. Burrow through the streets and before long you’ll end up at St Tryphon’s Cathedral, backed by a wall of mountains and perfect for photos; it’s well worth the entry fee for a peek inside.

Elsewhere there are several churches that merit a look, as well as a fascinating Maritime Museum, a repository of nautical maps and model ships. The old fortress walls sit proudly above the town, and make for a rewarding climb. Allow at least ninety minutes for the round-trip to St Ivan’s Castle, from which you’ll have tremendous views of the fjord.

Must see places in Kotor

Discover our excursions

3 results found


    • Drink included

    • Snack included

    • Limited seats

    • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

      Difficulty Level

    • Duration
      4 h

    • Adults$79Price per person

    • Children$59Price per person


    Upon leaving the port, you will first head for the old coastal town of Kotor, one of the best preserved medieval towns in this part of the Mediterranean, to enjoy a pleasant walking tour. The asymmetrical structure of the narrow streets and squares, combined with the town’s many important medieval monuments, helped to put Kotor on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. Your tour then continues by coach for a 45-minute drive to the village of Zabrde, which is situated on the Luštica Peninsula that effectively separates Tivat Bay from the Adriatic Sea. As you travel to the village, you can enjoy amazing views of both the peninsula and of the Orjen and Lovcen Mountains. On arrival at the Stoikovic estate, you will be welcomed with a drink served by the host and his family. The old mill naturally takes pride of place on the estate, which offers breathtaking views of the landscape beyond. Look forward to a live performance of local music accompanied by a tasty snack of smoked ham, cheese and salad. You will also have a few hours to get a feel for Montenegro folklore before returning to the port. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with back problems, pregnant women or wheelchair-bound.

      • May involve a limited quantity of steps, uneven surfaces and/or periods of standing

        Difficulty Level

      • Duration
        4 h

      • Adults$55Price per person

      • Children$39Price per person


      The excursion begins with a walking tour through the old town of Kotor, one of the best preserved medieval towns in this part of the Mediterranean. The asymmetric structure of the narrow streets and squares, combined with the many important medieval monuments helped secure Kotor’s position as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. We will visit the Maritime Museum before continuing to the elegant town of Perast that built its wealth on maritime trade; the city is the most significant example of Baroque architecture on the Montenegrin coast and has numerous examples of lavish palaces and houses. A short boat ride will take you to a man-made island in the middle of the beautiful Boka Bay where you will visit the church of Our Lady of Rock. Then, back to Perast you will enjoy a walking tour of the city and a visit to St. Nicholas Church. Please note: conservative attire recommended for visiting sites of religious importance. This tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair. In Perast, guests not interested in visiting the church of Our Lady of Rock may remain in the city to explore on their own until the guide returns from the island.

        • May involve inclines, steps, uneven surfaces and/or extended periods of standing

          Difficulty Level

        • Duration
          5 h

        • Adults$52Price per person

        • Children$35Price per person


        Panoramic views of Montenegro’s stunning coastline on the Adriatic Sea, complete with rugged cliffs falling steeply to the water far below, as well as calls at two picturesque coastal resorts, the port of Kotor itself and the nearby Budva, await you on this relaxing half-day excursion. Starting out from the port of Kotor – whose sheltered position on the Gulf of Kotor gave rise to strong historical ties with Venice, as evidenced by the many the Venetian-style houses in the town – you will make your way to the nearby resort of Budva on the so-called “Budvanska Rivijera”. A vast body of archaeological and documentary evidence is available to prove that Budva is one of the oldest urban settlements on the Adriatic coast, having been founded in the 5th century B.C.. You will have some free time to explore the old city walls or citadel in Budva’s appealing historical quarter at your own pace, or perhaps just amble through the narrow streets with their many churches, inviting cafés and a slew of great souvenir shops. The short return drive to Kotor and your ship will then give you a chance to relax and enjoy more lovely views of Montenegro’s countryside. Please note: this tour is not suitable for guests with walking difficulties or using a wheelchair.

      The excursions in the program above are intended to provide MSC Guests with an idea of the different tours that can be arranged in each port of call; this program is merely a guide and confirmation of each excursion and its description and prices will be made during your cruise.
      Shore excursions programs and itineraries may vary depending on local conditions and/or any unforeseen events in relation to the timing on the day of the tour.


      Some excursions are very popular and therefore availability cannot always be guaranteed, it is advisable to book in advance to avoid disappointment. The guides are guaranteed in English. Only for South America cruises, the guides are guaranteed in Brazilian Portuguese. Narration in other languages depends on the availability of guides. Please note that the final language of the tour will be confirmed on board during the cruise.


      An unexpected jewel
      An unexpected jewel

      The tiny state of Crna Gora is better known under its Italian name, Montenegro. The English translation – “Black Mountain” – may sound a little bleak, but it’s a land exploding with colour.

      Carpeted with flowers for much of the year, the country’s muscular peaks are dappled with the dark greens of pine, beech and birch from which turquoise streams rush down to a tantalizingly azure blue sea. Its Mediterranean coastline is dotted from border to border with beaches of yellow and volcanic grey, and huddles of picturesque, orange-roofed houses – a postcard come to life to admire during your holiday to Montenegro.

      While the coastline is most appealing for the traveller, Montenegro’s most precious jewel – phenomenally photogenic Kotor – sits just a little inland at the end of a fjord-like bay. The beach town of Budva is the other real highlight, but you should also try to make time for the ruins of Stari Bar.

      Away from the coast, the country’s pleasures are mainly confined to the mountains, particularly the spectacular national park of Durmitor, while the old Montenegrin capital of Cetinje is also well worth a visit; the present-day capital, Podgorica, gets few visitors but certainly has its charms.