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St. Mary's collegiate Kotor

Art and Culture

Where the East met the West



Painting in Boka Kotorska has a very long tradition. This is confirmed by the examples of artistic expression on the cave walls at Lipci, created in the prehistoric era. The floor mosaics in Risan, dating back to the 2nd century AD, with the image of Hypnos, God of Dreams, are considered the most beautiful examples of floor painting in this region

Fresco painting has also got a long tradition, but only fragments have been preserved in the churches of St. Tryphon, St. Luke, St. Mary Collegiate in Kotor. In St. Basil’s Church in Lower Stoliv, unique samples of wall paintings have been preserved, depicting the saints of both Western and Eastern Church, with the names of the authors written in the alphabet used by the respective church.

The last representatives of the byzantine tradition in this area are found among the icon painters from the family Dimitrijević-Rafailović from Risan.

Famous domestic icon painters are: Todor Vuković, whose activity is linked to the 16th century, and Maksim Tujković from Grbalj, who was painting icons in the 18th century.

Best known among them is Dimitrije Rafailović, known as the author of the fresco paintings in the churches of St. Nicholas in Pelinovo and St. George in Šišići – Grbalj, at the end of the 17th century and the first decades of the 18th century. The best icon works of this family are found in the church of St. Luke and in the annexed Chapel of St. Spyridon.

The most famous representative of Kotor School of painting is Lovro Marinov Dobričević (1420–1478). Most of his works have been preserved in the churches of Dubrovnik. In Kotor region, his most significant work of art is Our Lady of the Rock, made around 1452, and preserved on the altar of the church with the same name.

The influence of the Venetians gradually overpowered the domestic artists and consequently, in the region of Boka Kotorska, there were more and more works of Italian painters, sculptors and architects, many of which being the masterpieces of the Renaissance and Baroque era.

Although under the influence of the Venetian school of painting, during Baroque era, Tripo Kokolja (1661–1713) from Perast, successor of the domestic painting tradition, made the paintings for the walls and ceiling of the Church of Our Lady of the Rock, with the altar painting in the same church being the work of Lovro Dobričević.

Like many other coastal towns, Kotor had a well-developed literary life. Golden Era of Kotor poetry belongs to the 16th century. Those who excelled at their works were: Ljudevit Paskvalić, whose poems ensured him a very high position in the Italian literature, then Ivan Bona Boliris, Bernard Pima and others. Contrary to their predecessors, Kotor writers of the 17th century, write in vernacular. In the 18th century, patriotic and love poetry surfaced, with Ivan Nenadić being the most prominent representative.

Literary work in the 19th century is mostly reduced to collecting and processing folk literature, like the collector’s work of Vuk Stefanović Karadžić, as well as of his collaborators in this field, Vuk Popović (1806–1876) and Vuk Vrčević (1811–1882), both from Risan.

At the end of the 19th century, Srećko Vulović from Perast and Pavo Kamenarović iz Dobrota, the author of the verses for the Boka Navy dance, excel at their works. The successors of the tradition related to the studying of Boka Kotorska, Kotor in particular, during the 20th century are the following: don Niko Luković, Miloš Milošević PhD, Maksim and Ignjatije Zloković, Slavko Mijušković PhD, Risto Kovijanić, don Gracija Brajković, don Pavao Butorac, don Ivo Stjepčević, don Anton Milošević, don Srećko Vulović, Predrag Kovačević from the field of history, Vasko Lipovac creating his works of art, Rajko Vujičić, in the field of art history.

Explore Tourism Offer in Kotor Area

Things to See and Do


Guides / Muo Fishing specialties and fishermen nights    Well-known fishing village, mentioned as such in the 15th century documents Farther on towards Kotor, there is Muo, a well-known fishing village, mentioned as such in the 15th century documents stored in Kotor Historical Archives. Besides, some words and names used by the inhabitants of Muo in their fishing vocabulary are of Greek and Roman origin, which indicates that the fishing tradition in this place is very old. The Church of [...]

Klapa Festival in Perast

Authentic vocal music in Perast     A festival of traditional a cappella singing has been held in the picturesque town of Perast for almost two decades.  International Klapa Festival Perast Date: September 9 - 12 Check-in: Perast http://festivalklapaperast.com/wpfest/   Klapa is a form of traditional singing, and the word klapa means "group of friends". There are two types of klapa: „a traditional folk klapa, an informal group of friends, ususally brought together by similar interests, age group or occupations, [...]


Building an island     Fašinada constitutes a special symbiosis of the custom and practical maintenance of the artificial island of Our Lady of the Rock. Fašinada is a unique event related to the origin of the island of Our Lady of the Rock. Legend has it that the island was created after Mortešić brothers from Perast on 22nd July 1452 had found on a rock the icon with the Mother of God holding baby Jesus. In the 15th century, [...]

Kotor Montenegro

Hiking paradise Activities Harmonious realtionship between the nature and rich cultural heritage of Kotor, created and maintained through centuries, makes this area cultural landscape of exceptional values. Show more Meet our locals People From Grbalj, through the Old town, Perast and Risan, until you reach the mysterious hinterland of the Bay of Kotor, you will discover gems of human creation with deep respect for nature, and magical sponataneity of local people. Show more Kotor Old town Centuries young  Two different [...]


See & do / SUP Stay active and enjoy discovering hidden beaches and coves in Kotor Bay at your own pace. Share unforgettable moments with friends and family. Montenegro+ Monte Mare Travel SUP.Monte Explore Tourism Offer in Kotor Area Things to See and Do KayakingSee & do / Kayaking Montenegro+ Adventure Montenegro Monte Mare TravelRead moreNAUTICA CBC ProjectStrengthening, innovation and promotion of the nautical tourism offer and cultural heritage by cross-border cooperation – NAUTICA CBC Financiranje/Funding: The project is co-financed [...]


Guides / Prčanj Ideal climate at the foot of Mount Vrmac   Specific topographic position enables the mixing of the marine and mountain air, a confirmed natural treatment factor in Prčanj for more than one century Driving along the coast, one reaches a famous settlement called PRČANJ (1 128 inhabitants), which has “grown together” with Lower Stoliv for the reason of intensive construction activity. Formerly, just like in the case of other settlements in Kotors – Risan Bay, Prčanj had [...]

Camellia Days

Events / Cammelia days Spring blooming camellias festivity   During March and April in Kotor are held a series of events in honor of camellia flower 20th March – 30th April Stoliv, Kotor Camellia is a flower of Japanese origin that has been grown in Stoliv for 150 years. According to a popular belief, the camellia seedling was brought from a long journey by a captain from Boka in 1870 to his bride from Stoliv. For the last 22 years, [...]

Strp and Lipci

Guides / Strp and Lipci Fishermen and legends   Former seamen and fishermen settlement, nowadays, it is more Strp and Lipci are more recognized as summer resorts Strp is a village along the road from Risan to Herceg Novi, some 3 km away from Risan. In itssubmarine area, an archaeological site was found dating back to the 4th – 7th century. Farther on, we come to the settlement called Lipci (50 inhabitants). There is a rock shelter there on the [...]


Guides / Risan Oldest settlement   Risan is mentioned in the 3rd century AD as a fortified Illyrian town _____________________________________________________________________ By Vilma Kovačević, archaeologist The Town of Risan, situated in the inner section of Boka Kotorska Bay and surrounded by high mountains always constituted a strategically well positioned place for urban development. The abundance of fresh water and good spot for the docking of ships had also been particularly conducive to this. Already Classical authors mention Risan as related to [...]

Getting around Kotor

Getting Around Kotor In Kotor, there is a local city bus running every hour. Departures towards Kostanjica start at 6.15 at Škaljari Novo Naselje. Tickets are sold by the driver, and the price, depending on the distance, ranges from 1 to 2.50 euros. Here you may find the price range. The schedule of departures for locations in the bay and to Dragalj you may find on this location. On Sundays, departures are scheduled at odd hours from Novo Naselje (Škaljari), [...]

Kotor Craft Beer Festival

Events / Kotor Craft Beer Festival Domestic beers and small craft breweries Kotor Craft Beer Festival "Špina" is the first and only festival in Montenegro dedicated to the promotion and popularisation of domestic beers and small craft breweries. The first edition was held in mid-August 2018 at the Cinema Square in the Old Town. On this occasion, eight craft breweries presented their beers, and visitors could taste about 30 different types and styles of beer (IPA, American pale ale, Blonde, [...]


Guides / Dobrota About goodness     Lots of sun, many springs and mild climate of this area, probably influenced the origin of the name of Dobrota, which in Serbo-Croatian means goodness The inhabitants of Dobrota distinguished themselves, not solely as seamen, but also as warriors, participating in the famous battles. Moreover, Dobrota is known for its captains’ houses, which surrounded by “emerald waters and soaring mountains rival anything in the Italian lakes” The oldest preserved monument is the Church [...]