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Tuesday, All Day Exploring Podgorica, Montenegro

Podgorica, Montenegro
Tuesday, October 29, 2019
I took a long walk around Podgorica to visit all of the tourist sights. I started at the center of the city at Trg Nezavisnosti (Nezavisnosti Square) which is just a block and a half from Star's Hostel.

First I went to the Old Ribnica River Bridge (Adži-paša's Bridge). It's a little stone bridge which was originally built during Roman rule in the early first century AD and rebuilt in the 1700s. There are some ruins above the bridge but they have become part of the fence around someone's house.

From the bridge, I walked over to the Dvorac Petrovića, the former winter palace of the royal family. Now it's the Center of Contemporary Art. It's in the middle of the scenic Petrovića Park. Next to it is a little chapel and a statue of some weird babies. The park is near the USA embassy and there must be a high school nearby because it was full of teenagers.

Next I walked a few blocks over to the excellent Cathedral of Christ's Resurrection. It's a large church and the interior is completely covered in murals. It's very interesting and it takes awhile to take it all in.

From the cathedral, it was a few blocks over to the Millennium Bridge. I didn't cross the bridge but I kept going along the river toward the ruins of the ancient Roman town of Doclea. It was about three more kilometers to the ruins which were outside of the city.

The ruins of the Roman-era town of Doclea include the sparse remains of a forum, thermal baths, a basilicia, and other structures. There's not much left of the buildings but there are pieces of large columns and a lot of blocks with sculpted decoration. A few of the blocks have writing on them. It's an interesting site for history buffs and it's nice place to walk around outside of the city.

After spending about an hour at Doclea, I walked back to the city and zigzagged through some neighborhoods with narrow streets on the way to Gorica Park which is a hill. Podgorica means "below Gorica" so it is the city below Gorica Hill.

In Gorica Park, I went by the World War II Partisan's Memorial and then to the little St. George Church on the other side of the park. The 900 year old orthodox church has some ancient frescoes which have been partially destroyed. There is also a beautiful mosaic of Mary and Jesus on the outdoor water fountain next to the bell tower.

From the park entrance and St. George Church it's just a few blocks to the city center. Along the way, I stopped at Korzos Bakery, the oldest bakery in the city, opened in 1961. I had Greek Baklava and homemade lemonade since they didn't have coffee or hot tea.

That was the end of my almost six hour, 8.8 mile / 14 km walk around the Pod. I made a lot of long stops to enjoy the sights so it could have been done much faster.


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