Gospa od Škrpjela & Sveti Đorđe
Perast is an old village which is located in the vicinity of the Bay of Kotor. This is one of the most authentic villages you will find in Montenegro. Moreover, the village has only 350 inhabitants, so there is a very good chance that everyone knows each other from somewhere. There are some interesting reasons why it may be worth visiting Perast. This applies not least to the two small islands which are located off the coast.
Gospa od Škrpjela
Gospa od Škrpjela is a unique artificial island located in the beautiful Bay of Kotor, Montenegro. This island, built on a rock, has a fascinating history dating back to the 15th century.
The story begins in 1452 when two sailors found an icon of the Virgin Mary on a rock in the sea. According to legend, after finding the icon, the sailors began to bring stones to the rock, gradually creating the island. This is how Gospa od Škrpjela got its name, which means “Our Lady of the Rocks.”
For centuries, the residents of the nearby town of Perast continued this tradition by bringing stones and rocks to the island on July 22, the day of Mary Magdalene. This is celebrated during the Fasinada, a colorful festival where boats are decorated with flowers and vegetables and the crew throws stones into the sea in honor of the Virgin Mary. (By the way, only men are allowed to participate in the fašinada. You can see very proud grandfathers with their grandsons and groups of friends in boats on their way to the island.)
The highlight of the island is the church of Crkva Gospa od Škrpjela, which was built in 1630. The church has a beautiful interior with numerous paintings and frescoes, including the famous painting “The Assumption of Mary” by Tripo Kokolja. The church also has a museum where an impressive collection of religious art can be seen.
Gospa od Škrpjela is easily accessible by boat from Perast. There are plenty of local providers offering boat trips for an affordable price of around 5 euros. During the boat trip, you can enjoy a beautiful view of the Bay of Kotor and the surrounding mountains.
In the summer months, Gospa od Škrpjela is a popular destination for tourists from all over the world. The island offers a unique and fascinating experience that you will not soon forget.
The small island of Sveti Đorđe, which means Saint George in English, is a hidden gem off the coast of the picturesque town of Perast in Montenegro. It is home to the ancient Benedictine monastery, dating back to the 12th century, named after the famous saint George of Cappadocia, known for slaying dragons. The monastery was once an important religious and cultural center of the region and remains one of the most remarkable landmarks of Montenegro.
The island was once the homeland of a community of monks who lived there in seclusion and engaged in agriculture and fishing. The island also has a fascinating cemetery where the nobility of the region was buried. Unfortunately, it is not currently possible to visit this island, but you can still enjoy a beautiful view of the island from the coast of Perast.
It is customary for passing boats to sound their horns at the island of Sveti Djordje as a tribute to the island’s ancient history and cultural significance. So if you are ever in the vicinity of Perast, be sure to take the time to admire this enchanting island and listen to the sound of the horns of passing boats while enjoying the beautiful view of the Adriatic Sea.