Top historic sites in Montenegro

Kotor Cathedral

The Cathedral of Saint Tryphon in Kotor is one of two Roman Catholic cathedrals in Montenegro. It was built in honor of Saint Tryphon, the patron and protector of the city, on the same site where an older church had already existed long ago. That earlier church was built in 809 by Andrija Saracenis, a citizen of Kotor, where the remains of the saint were kept after being brought from Constantinopole. The cathedral was c ...
Founded: 1166 | Location: Kotor, Montenegro

Budva Citadel

The entire town of Budva is encircled with defensive stone walls. The fortifications of Budva are typical of the Medieval walled cities of the Adriatic, complete with towers, embrasures, fortified city gates and a citadel. The Old Town of Budva is situated on a rocky peninsula, on the southern end of Budva field. Archaeological evidence suggests that Illyrian settlement was formed on the site of the Old Town before Greek ...
Founded: 15th century | Location: Budva, Montenegro

Our Lady of the Rocks

Our Lady of the Rocks is one of the two islets off the coast of Perast in Bay of Kotor, Montenegro. It is an artificial island created by bulwark of rocks and by sinking old and seized ships loaded with rocks. The Roman Catholic Church of Our Lady of the Rocks is the largest building on the islet; it has a museum attached. There is also a small gift shop close to the church and a navigation light at the western end of th ...
Founded: 1452 | Location: Kotor, Montenegro

Stari Bar

The Old Town of Bar (Stari Bar) is the largest and the most important medieval archaeological site in the Balkans. It covers the area of 4.5 hectares, where the remains of around 600 public and private edifices are the proof of the existence of various construction phases present in different epochs of the Mediterranean history. The visual identity of the Old Town of Bar is formed by the ramparts, bastions, towers, a cit ...
Founded: 10th century | Location: Bar, Montenegro

San Giovanni Castle

San Giovanni, also called St. John’s Castle, is perched 1200m high on the hill of St. John. The fortifications date back as far as 532 when Byzantine Emperor Justinian I had the fort built. Since it’s creation, the fort has under seen plenty of changes and battles under Venetian, Russian, and French rule. It’s been bombed by British Naval armies, occupied during World War II, and even survived three separate earthqu ...
Founded: 532 AD | Location: Kotor, Montenegro

Herceg Novi Old Town

Herceg Novi was founded (on a former small fishing village, existing since Roman Empire times) as a fortress in 1382 by first Bosnian King Stjepan Tvrtko I and was called Sveti Stefan or Castelnuovo. The Turks conquered Herceg Novi in 1482, and ruled for 200 years, until 1687. However, there was a short pause between 1538 and 1539 when it was held by the Spaniards before they were defeated in the Siege of Castelnuovo.  ...
Founded: 1382 | Location: Herceg Novi, Montenegro

King Nikola's Palace

King Nikola"s Palace served for more than 50 years as the seat of the Montenegrin Royal family. In 1926 it became a museum, from 1980 it was one of the departments of National Museum of Montenegro. The small palace was built from 1863 to 1867 in a simple style typical of Cetinje houses with certain elements of neoclassicism. The interiors were designed in style of Historicism and Art Nouveau. In the entrance hall ...
Founded: 1863 | Location: Cetinje, Montenegro

Ulcinj Old Town

Ulcinj is an ancient castle and neighborhood. Today mostly inhabited by Albanians, it was built by the Illyrians and Ancient Greeks on a small peninsula at the right side of the Pristan Gulf. Today, oldest remains are the Cyclopean Wall. The castle has been restored many times since it was first built although major changes were made by the Byzantinians, Serbs, Venetians, and Ottomans. The modern city of Ulcinj was built ...
Founded: 300 BC | Location: Ulcinj, Montenegro

Sveti Dorde Island

Ostrvo Sveti Đorđe (Island of Saint George) is one of the two islets off the coast of Perast in Bay of Kotor. A small action took place during the Siege of Cattaro on 14 October 1813 when the French held island was captured by a British and Sicilian naval force. The island contains Saint George Benedictine monastery from the 12th century and the old graveyard for the old nobility from Perast and further from the whole ...
Founded: 12th century | Location: Kotor, Montenegro

Ostrog Monastery

The Monastery of Ostrog is a monastery of the Serbian Orthodox Church sitatued against an almost vertical background, high up in the large rock of Ostroška Greda. It is dedicated to Saint Basil of Ostrog, who was buried here. Ostrog monastery is the most popular pilgrimage place in Montenegro. The Monastery was founded by Vasilije, the Metropolitan Bishop of Herzegovina in the 17th century. He died there in 1671 and som ...
Founded: 1671 | Location: Bjelopavlići, Montenegro

Sveti Stefan

Sveti Stefan is a small islet in the central part of Montenegro Adriatic coast line. It was first mentioned in 1442 as a fort near seacoast from which Paštrovići, led by vojvoda Radič repulsed the forces of Stjepan Vukčić Kosača during his offensive in Zeta. According to a legend recounted by Stjepan Mitrov Ljubiša, the town fortification was funded after Paštrovići looted Turkish ships moored in front of Jaz d ...
Founded: 15th century | Location: Budva, Montenegro

Cetinje Monastery

The Serbian Orthodox Cetinje Monastery was founded between 1701 and 1704 by Prince-Bishop Danilo I on the site of the former court of Ivan Crnojević (founded 1485). Cetinje was attacked by Ottomans on 25 September 1692. Instead of fighting, Venetians entered negotiations, and reached an agreement to abandon the monastery under honorable terms. However, they mined a monastery with a time bomb, which set of in the evening ...
Founded: 1701-1704 | Location: Cetinje, Montenegro

National Museum of Montenegro

National Museum of Montenegro in Cetinje is a complex institution consisting of four museums: Museum of History, the Art Museum with the Modern art gallery Dado Duric, the Ethnographic Museum and the newly founded Archaeological Museum with Lapidarium. Collection of museum exhibits on the territory of present-day Montenegro can be traced back to the ancient past. In a modern sense, however, it is possible to record the t ...
Founded: 1896 | Location: Cetinje, Montenegro

Ribnica Fortress

Ribnica is an Ottoman fortress, located in the Stara Varoš neighborhood of Podgorica, the capital city of Montenegro. The fortress was built in late 15th century (around 1477), during the period of Ottoman reign. It was built above the confluence of Ribnica and Morača rivers, and was one of two fortresses surrounding Stara Varoš. For a long time, Depedogen was used as an ammunition warehouse. It was severely damaged i ...
Founded: 1477 | Location: Podgorica, Montenegro

Miholjska Prevlaka Monastery

Miholjska prevlaka, also known as 'Island of Flowers', includes a monastery dedicated to Archangel Michael. It was founded by Serbian Archbishop Sava (s. 1219–35). The church base was built earlier, reconstructed in the 9th century and destroyed in the 11th century. The monastery was the seat of the Eparchy of Zeta between the 13th and 15th centuries. Under planned restoration, the monastery was destroyed by ...
Founded: c. 1230 | Location: Tivat, Montenegro

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Luxembourg Palace

The famous Italian Medici family have given two queens to France: Catherine, the spouse of Henry II, and Marie, widow of Henry IV, who built the current Luxembourg palace. Maria di Medici had never been happy at the Louvre, still semi-medieval, where the fickle king, did not hesitate to receive his mistresses. The death of Henry IV, assassinated in 1610, left the way open for Marie's project. When she became regent, she was able to give special attention to the construction of an imposing modern residence that would be reminiscent of the Palazzo Pitti and the Boboli Gardens in Florence, where she grew up. The development of the 25-hectare park, which was to serve as a jewel-case for the palace, began immediately.

The architect, Salomon de Brosse, began the work in 1615. Only 16 years later was the palace was completed. Palace of Luxembourg affords a transition between the Renaissance and the Classical period.

In 1750, the Director of the King's Buildings installed in the wing the first public art-gallery in France, in which French and foreign canvases of the royal collections are shown. The Count of Provence and future Louis XVIII, who was living in Petit Luxembourg, had this gallery closed in 1780: leaving to emigrate, he fled from the palace in June 1791.

During the French Revolution the palace was first abandoned and then moved as a national prison. After that it was the seat of the French Directory, and in 1799, the home of the Sénat conservateur and the first residence of Napoleon Bonaparte, as First Consul of the French Republic. The old apartments of Maria di Medici were altered. The floor, which the 80 senators only occupied in 1804, was built in the middle of the present Conference Hall.

Beginning in 1835 the architect Alphonse de Gisors added a new garden wing parallel to the old corps de logis, replicating the look of the original 17th-century facade so precisely that it is difficult to distinguish at first glance the old from the new. The new senate chamber was located in what would have been the courtyard area in-between.

The new wing included a library (bibliothèque) with a cycle of paintings (1845–1847) by Eugène Delacroix. In the 1850s, at the request of Emperor Napoleon III, Gisors created the highly decorated Salle des Conférences, which influenced the nature of subsequent official interiors of the Second Empire, including those of the Palais Garnier.

During the German occupation of Paris (1940–1944), Hermann Göring took over the palace as the headquarters of the Luftwaffe in France, taking for himself a sumptuous suite of rooms to accommodate his visits to the French capital. Since 1958 the Luxembourg palace has been the seat of the French Senate of the Fifth Republic.