Perast is one of the most beautiful cities on the Montenegrin coast. It is located 7.5 miles from Kotor, in the direction of Risen, at the foot of Mount Ilija, opposite the Verige gorge.
It is divided into two parts with a large stone ball. The port extends from Piazza to Posovo and includes a coastal area between two rows of houses. The first is an old shipyard full of palaces of noblemen like the families Balovic, Bronza, Corko, Mazarevic, Mrsa, Miskovic, and Sestokrilovic. The second part is the west side and is called Pencici.
Perast Has a Rich History
Just like the entire Boka Kotorska, Perast is characterized by a long history, which began in the Neolithic era, 3500 BC.
A beautiful old town got its name after the Illyrian tribe of Pirust. Namely, according to a legend, Queen Teuta wanted to secure the entrance to the bay, so she settled on the eastern part of Risen with a tribe from Albania.
Throughout history, many have tried to conquer Perast, starting with the Byzantine Empire, the Venetian, the French, as well as the Austrian conquerors. All of them left their own marks on this beautiful place. You can really feel the ghosts of the past while walking through the city.
Perast is, above all, a maritime town. In 1336, a shipyard was built, which operated until 1813. Thanks to seafaring, this town bloomed during the 17th and 18th century, when its ships sailed around the world.
Perast Is Made Up of Stone
What makes Perast unique and sets it apart from other cities is its structure. Today we see it as it was built in the 17th and 18th centuries, filled with some of the most beautiful examples of the Baroque style in the region.
In fact, Perast only has one long street which is by the sea. From there, various stairways rise towards its scattered houses. Beautiful family stone houses attract the viewers with their charm and invite us to glance into its hidden gardens filled with flowers and cats sunbathing lazily on the warm rocks.
Although a small town, with only 350 inhabitants, there are as many as 18 churches and 19 palaces in it. The symbol of the town, of course, is the church of St. Nicholas with its impressive bell reaching 180 feet, which proudly rises above the building. Unfortunately, because of the lack of funds, it was never finished.
Out of all the palaces, the most impressive one is the Bujovic Palace, which is a wonderful example of the Renaissance-Baroque architecture. According to a legend, the owner Vicko Bujovic was extremely proud of it. So, when the builder stated that he could build a better place, Bujovic angrily threw him from the roof of the palace into the sea. Today, this palace holds the Museum of the city of Perast, which is full of testimonies from the tumultuous history of the city.
Perast, with Our Lady of the Rocks, Is One of the Most Luxurious Destinations in Montenegro
As the island of St. Nikola is an indispensable part of Budva, so from the coast of the city there is an incredible view of Our Lady of the Rocks.
The famous artificial island was created by placing stones and sinking boats onto the underwater rock. There is also a church of the same name, which was built right in the place where the Virgin Mary appeared on July 22, 1452. On this day every year, the locals sail by boat to the island carrying new stones. The traditional ritual also has a practical side, because this way the stones taken by the sea are compensated.
The church was painted by the baroque painter Tripo Kokolja and decorated with 2000 silver tiles. They were donated by the seamen as a sign of gratitude for God’s protection during sailing. This place also holds the most famous and most valuable needlepoint in the world. Jacinta Kunic spent 25 years making it, while waiting for her beloved’s return. She added her own hair to this unique symbol of love. You can see the hair in the needlepoint get lighter and lighter, turning grey in the end. It is said that she also went blind after completing it.
Perast is today an extremely quiet town. Nevertheless, it attracts numerous tourists with its beauty, offering an unforgettable experience. This location is undoubtedly among the most popular vacation destinations in the summer of 2018. It’s quite clear why.