Two guides, one town: Kolašin

I believe you will want to meet my colleague Ivan. I remember the first time we met: it was at the time he was working as a guide at the Botanic garden. I was fascinated not only by his great botanical knowledge, but also by the way he took us to a whole new world. It was as if the plants were telling us their own amazing stories.

Since then we are not only colleagues, but friends as well. I will let him take you on a tour through his town and his world. Most of the photos that you can see in this text were taken with his camera and given a personal touch by our host. Enjoy!

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Fighting oblivion with gusle

Musical ear of a contemporary man, even that born in Montenegro, is not accustomed to the sharp, the dramatic sound of our national instrument. Perhaps because the times are not as dramatic as they used to be? Or even because of  a variety of instruments we have today that produce more melodic and pleasant sounds?

But for every Montenegrin, gusle remain to be a sacred instrument. It’s no coincidence that its sales price is so high: Gusle is not a wall decoration, or a souvenir, and it should never become that. Nonetheless, gusle kept our history from oblivion till the appearance of those who replaced the oral tradition with a written word.

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Bar – the city where the olive trees tell their stories…

“It’s been a long time, but I still remember it well…” an old olive tree begins its story,”when there was not so many people around me, not so many curious tourists, only a hardworking hand here and there, one of which gave me life…”

“I’ve been told  you are 2,240 years old. Is that right?”I ask.

“Well,ladies are not to be asked about their age, especially when they’re as old as I am. But let’s say it’s true. I think some Greek planted me, I would say so by the sound of his name. It was a long time ago. I remember a lot, but I have also forgotten a lot.”

“You said well, you remember all the ups and downs of this region, all the touching stories … Can you share some of them with me?”

“I would be glad to. I’m not in a hurry anyway.”

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Holy Places and Saints of Montenegro

Not long after the break-up of the Christianity, between 12th and 13th century, under the influence of the Serbian dynasty Nemanich, Orthodoxy spreads through the Montenegro. Orthodox believers, which constitute 72% of population of Montenegro, highly honor the cult of saints, some of which are more famous than others. They have shared the faith and temptations with the people of this small country. You can get to know some of them here.

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