Travelling through Montenegro April 1975 and October 2009

First view of the Adriatic Sea 2009 © Ricky Yates

First view of the Adriatic Sea 2009 © Ricky Yates

First view of the Adriatic Sea 1975 © Ricky Yates

First view of the Adriatic Sea 1975 © Ricky Yates

As I mentioned in my previous post, our journey from southern Serbia into Montenegro took me along the same route I had traversed by coach when travelling overland from Kathmandu to London during a period of two and a half months in the Spring of 1975. Leaving Podgorica, we continued on that same route, passing Lake Skadar and then proceeding steeply around numerous hairpin bends to cross the Rumija mountain range before being rewarded with our first view of the Adriatic Sea. A similar steep decent around many more hairpin bends, brought us to the coastal resort of Petrovac.

I still remember the thrill of seeing the Adriatic for the first time in my life in 1975 and, as you can see from these two photos, the view is still pretty spectacular.

About 5 km north from Petrovac along the coastal highway, is probably the most iconic site in Montenegro if not the whole of Adriatic coast of the former Yugoslavia. This is the tiny island of Sveti Stefan, connected to the mainland by an isthmus. Sometime in the 1950s, this former fishing community was turned into a luxury hotel which is what it was when I passed by in 1975. When we tried to venture on to the island in October 2009, access was forbidden as the whole complex was undergoing renovation work so it can re-open for the 2010 season. If you look closely at the 2009 photo, you can see the workmen’s yellow vehicles parked by the entrance and a green crane to the left of them.

Sveti Stephan 2009 © Ricky Yates

Sveti Stefan 2009 © Ricky Yates

Sveti Stefan 1975 © Ricky Yates

7 comments to Travelling through Montenegro April 1975 and October 2009

  • And there was me bemoaning how much this beautiful country has changed in the last 2 years! In a way the economic crisis has been a blessing – the speed of development especially along the Adriatic coast seemed to be getting out of control. I guess everyone’s entitled to live the dream. Nice post.

  • Ricky

    Hi ‘How things have changed!’

    I’m sure there are issues in relation to uncontrolled and inappropriate development. I did notice a large hotel complex under construction in Budva, right on a headland, when we drove through, which did seen rather out of place and unnecessary. Overall, I felt that things had mostly changed for the better. You might note the improvement in the ferries illustrated in my most recent post

  • That little island/peninsula is incredible. I wanted to visit the Balkans for so long. I think I’m going to make it a resolution for 2010.
    .-= Pink boxing Gloves´s last blog ..BBE Pink Boxing Fitness Set =-.

  • What a great post!

    Love the images of Sveti Stefan form 75 and 09

    Tarras Bed and Breakfast – Lockerbie

  • Beautiful pictures, really like Montenegro, and this year I will go there on holiday
    .-= travel montenegro´s last blog ..Take a bus from Belgrade to the coast of Montenegro =-.

  • Wow Ricky, youve taken some marvelous photos here. I especially like the island photo – so beautiful. Was it possible to walk around the island? I’ve never been to Montenegro but my husband and I are heading to Serbia later in the year so will possibly get time to visit places similar to this!
    .-= Trace @ Turkey Costume´s last blog ..About Us =-.

  • Ricky

    Trace – As I wrote, access to the island was forbidden when we visited because of the renovation work. However, it was meant to re-open in 2010 so I guess it should do so very soon.

    Whilst Serbia has much attractive scenery, it is a landlocked country. You have to go next door to Montenegro to reach the Adriatic Coast.