The historic city of Kotor, Montenegro is tucked into the southern end of the Bay of Kotor under towering, majestic mountain peaks. Walking through the gates of the thick defensive walls that extend to the hill-topping fortress feels a bit like walking back in time. The originations of the seaside city can be traced to Ancient Roman times, but throughout the centuries, the city was conquered by various rulers. Today, visitors to the city will find many things to do in Kotor, Montenegro – and we’ve compiled a list of our top six to help tourists experience the best of the city and region.
Fresh air. Clear water. Green forests. Towering mountains. Wide pastures. Deep gorges. Flourishing nature. Lake Bohinj is uncomplicated and raw; she’s the girl next door that doesn’t have to dress up or put on make up in order to attract attention. Lake Bohinj is a postcard-picture scene, naturally designed in hues of unbelievable blues and shades of intense green. Cradled in the Julian Alps, the glacial lake is watched over by the mountain peaks that rise around it and is protected within the boundaries of Triglav National Park.
My desire to visit Vietnam was ignited the first time I glimpsed a photograph of Halong Bay. It countered the image of Vietnam I had conjured in my head; the one where chaotic streets are overcrowded with motorbikes and stifled with pollution. The picture of Halong Bay showed a different scene entirely – one of tree-covered karst mountains rising from an azure sea. I was intent on traveling to Vietnam just to see Halong Bay with my own eyes. I didn’t know it then, but my expectations would be surpassed when we actually experienced the UNESCO World Heritage site on a 2-night Halong Bay cruise.
London is one of the most visited cities in the world – and it’s easy to understand why. The city is both historic and modern, it is home to royalty and celebrities and it’s packed with iconic sights, museums, palaces and parks. Unfortunately, the high price of sightseeing in London can quickly add up – with some entrance fees costing upwards of $30 USD per person. Budget travelers might fear a visit to London will break the bank, but we haven’t found that to be the case. In our 3-Day London Itinerary on a Budget, we focus on seeing the sights in London via self-guided walking tours and taking advantage of the many free attractions the city has on offer.
The autumn sun was already setting over the lake as we made our way down the narrow, one-lane cobblestone street to our apartment; the soft light cast a warm glow over the town. The paper-wrapped, grilled fish that I carried in my hand was growing lukewarm, but I wasn’t all that fussed. Slightly buzzed from the potent combination of Turkish coffee and homemade rakia, I was feeling rather bemused by the random events of the day. It was not how we had anticipated spending our last day at Lake Ohrid, Macedonia – but it turned out to be exponentially better than we could have ever planned.
Interesting. Zany. Nonsensical. Inspiring. Weird. Wacky. Before visiting Skopje, Macedonia, these were some of the adjectives we had heard used to describe the capital city. After visiting Skopje, Macedonia, we completely agree…with all of them. Regardless of opinions, we can certainly attest to there being no shortage of things to do in Skopje.
During our visit to Skopje, Macedonia in November of 2016, the city was in the process of a massive renovation. The complete overhaul is part of the lingering – and costly – Skopje 2014 Project; this government plan aims to reinvent the city with a classical appearance in order to boost nationalism and attract tourists. Only about half of the residents support the project, which has a price tag of more than $700 million USD – a pretty penny for one of Europe’s poorest countries. (Even some of those who agree with the facelift are not content with the project, as many accuse the government of being corrupt and wasteful.)
Croatia’s calling. Croatia keeps calling. In nearly three years of full-time travel, we’ve followed a path that has led us back to Croatia five times. We’ve swam in the sea along the Dalmatian Coast, sampled culinary treasures in Istria, gazed at the waterfalls of Plitvice Lakes, felt the buzz of urban city life in Zagreb and ventured into the less-visited terrain of Osijek-Baranja in the Slavonia region.
We’ve seen more of Croatia than most tourists, yet we continue to be lured back to the country by the diverse and picturesque landscapes we have yet to discover and the warm and welcoming people we know we’ll meet there. In 2017, we’ve zeroed in on three cities in Croatia to visit: Stari Grad, Makarska and Ston.
Packed with iconic sights, an incredible history and a lively nightlife, Budapest, Hungary certainly knows how to entertain its guests! Whether you’re a nature lover or admirer of architecture, there to marvel at monuments or partying the night away, on a low budget or seeking a luxury escape, you can find what suits your style in Budapest. We think the city is worthy of more than just three days, but our Budapest 3-Day Itinerary is designed for the visitor who is short on time, but wants to maximize Budapest sightseeing and experiences.
As we reflect on our travels in 2016, we are digging through the archives and reviewing the past year via our JetSetting Fools Instagram account (@JSFtravel). In an effort to wrap the past 365 days of travel into one post, we’ve picked our 20 best Instagram photos of 2016 that reflect our travel experiences this year.
In 2016, we explored new countries and revisited a few that we love. We rang in 2016 in the Netherlands, got a real dose of winter on a quick jaunt to Iceland in February and then completely thawed out with a five-month stint in Costa Rica. After a quick visit to the States, we took off for Europe in the middle of the summer…and have yet to leave. For five months, we’ve ventured through the countries of the former Yugoslavia (including Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Kosovo and Macedonia) before landing in London for Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
We invite you to review the year with us and take a look at our 20 best Instagram photos of 2016.
Many travelers think of Croatia solely for its stunning seaside and hundreds of idyllic islands, looking inland only as far as Plitvice Lakes or the capital city, Zagreb. The eastern region of Slavonia, including Osijek and Baranja, are destinations that go unnoticed. We, too, overlooked Slavonia until we heard whispers of culinary delights and small production wineries coming from the region. (OK, to be honest, mostly it was the tales of wine that garnered our attention.) The more we learned, the more we were intrigued and we knew we had to visit Osijek, Croatia.