Year of 2017

The fortifications of Kotor, Montenegro

The many fortifications of the coastal city of Kotor started with a settlement built by ancient Greeks. In the 6th and 15th centuries, additions to the defenses atop St. John mountain extended the ramparts, towers, and turrets that are now a major part of Kotor’s identity as a city. Walk up the ramps and stairs that lead from the harbor where Kampana Tower, seen here, stands, and you’re walking through the city’s history. These centuries-old defenses were so effective, the Axis forces were still using them to stave off an Allied invasion here during World War II.

The fortifications of Kotor are an integrated historical fortification system that protected the medieval town of Kotor containing ramparts, towers, citadels, gates, bastions, forts, cisterns, a castle, and ancillary buildings and structures. They incorporate military architecture of Illyria, Byzantium, Venice, and Austria. Together with the old town and its natural surroundings the fortifications were inscribed in the list of World Heritage Sites in 1979 labelled Natural and Culturo-Historical Region of Kotor and represent the only such site of cultural significance in Montenegro.