Sitting at the cafe on Crkvina Hill in Trebinje in Bosnia (BiH), savouring the last of our coffee and the view, we cajoled ourselves into moving. It was time to leave Bosnia and East Herzegovina and head to the Montenegro Border and that day’s destination in the Bay of Kotor. But there was one last thing we wanted to before leaving Trebinje.
What You Will Find in This Post
Arslanagić Bridge, Trebinje
For a small town, Trebinje has more than it’s fair share of bridges. This beauty looked a tad out of place – as if it had been whisked away from an important old trading route junction and plonked in the suburbs of Trebinje – and that is exactly what did happen.
Originally it was a further 5km upstream at Gorica, which in 1574 stood at the junction of an important trade route between Herceg Novi in Montenegro and Dubrovnik in Croatia. It wasn’t till the 17th century that a noblemen called Arslan-aga escaped Novi as it fell to the Venetians, set up a toll house and bestowed his name upon the bridge.
Crkvina Hill as seen from Arslanagić Bridge.
Hydro power came along and in 1965 a reservoir was built which submerged the bridge. In 1966 the water level of the reservoir was reduced to enable it’s dismantling brick by brick. The reconstruction 700m upstream of the Tribinje’s stone bridge was complete in 1972.
Heading for the Hills and the Montenegro Border
At one more stop beside at Trebinjsko Jezero, where the lake forms on the river, we said a final goodbye to Trebinje and headed for the hills.
Lastva was an idyllic spot on the river.
The road started to climb.
Leaving the Trebišnijica behind the M6 climbed steeply passing the last town of note in Bosnia (BiH), Zupa and toward Ilino Brdo, the Montenegro Border crossing. There was little to no traffic and the feeling of standing roadside absorbing the stillness of the mountains, was surreal.
At the border stop point there were only two in front of us – one cow and a car.
Looking up to the Montenegro Border
By the time we pulled up at the checkpoint the cow had wandered in front of us. I wasn’t brave enough to photograph the cow lined up at the border 🙂
I know it doesn’t look it but the cow was real.
Once over the border it was easy driving on straight roads through the high plains (800m) of Grohovo. This highway is relatively new and brings hope that it will bring investors to provide tourist infrastructure.
After absorbing a totally different mountain view from high above the Bay of Kotor, our day ended in the frenzied traffic scene of downtown Kotor. The town shown in the photo below is Risan, the oldest town in the Bay.
The Bay of Kotor known as simply Boka.
Our Bosnia Road Trip
From Croatia we began our Bosnia road trip following the Neretva River to the bombed out buildings and 16th Century Ottoman Stari Most (bridge) of Mostar. It took us to the jaw dropping mediaeval tombstones of Radimlja Necropolis that slumber in an unlikely roadside location. Only 3km away from the necropolis we saw the Caršija Mosque at Stolac newly rebuilt with original stone after being totally destroyed during the war. We enjoyed driving on Bosnia roads and followed a Yellow Bus all the way to Trebinje.
Our Destination of Kotor
Our Bosnia Road Trip Concludes.
Our Bosnia road trip was a kaleidoscope of images and sensations crammed into a day and a half.
We like to travel slow, but sometimes a whirlwind materialises and we are reminded of how much fun a fast ride can be.
TELL ME ABOUT YOUR WHIRLWIND TRAVEL DAYS IN THE COMMENTS OR ASK ANY QUESTIONS YOU MIGHT HAVE.
Leave a link to your travel photo post below.
I am co-hosting Nancie’s Travel Photo Thursday with Ruth from Tanama Tales Rachel from Rachel’s Ruminations
So gorgeous these parts. I need to go back, rent a car and take my time.
Yes Sophie, there are some big mountains and snow near Trebinje too that I would love to explore.
Toni | 2 Aussie Travellers
It must be because it’s so hot and humid here today that I’m attracted to articles with gorgeous beaches and waterways. This looks like an amazing road trip, I’d have been constantly in and out of the car with the camera too
I didn’t get much time out of the car only 5 times on the whole trip, but it wasn’t very long so that was OK I guess.
Stunningly beautiful!! I could get lost in these photos, Jan. 🙂 Truly, they’re so gorgeous, and remind me of a beautiful couple of weeks one Spring spent traveling this area. 🙂
I remember your photo of a boat and a lake in Bosnia Krista and your story of roadworks or a diversion and not knowing where you were. Fun!
Pinay Flying High
Absolutely stunning! I am truly speechless! The town of Risan looks like a nice place to live in. 🙂
I’m happy that you liked the photos. It was a pretty drive and the view over the Bay of Kotor is mind-boggling.
Love that bridge – is was certainly worth saving. The high road above Kotor Bay is so gorgeous, it’s one of the most beautiful places I’ve been.
Where did you go on the high road Cindy?
Ruth - Tanama Tales
Oh my! My jaw dropped several times when I was reading and scrolling down. These places are so stunning. You have convinced me that having your own wheels is the best way to enjoy the region.
Having a vehicle makes exploring the area so easy Ruth.
Jan, First of all, I loved day-tripping to Montenegro and BiH from Croatia. The road is gorgeous and all along it’s so pretty. I love, love, love your cow!
She was even funnier when she lined up at the border lol.
What a beautiful drive, Jan! Looks like it took a few hours but with so many scenic spots, I can see why it took a day and a half.
I love the emptiness of it, how pristine and unspoilt it looks. Yes, it’d be good to have better infrastructure, but that would mean more people. Unfortunately difficult to have one without the other.
Love that bridge!
The drive in that particular post only did take a couple of hours. The 1.5 days included all the other posts as well. We really packed it in!
Your photos of Montenegro and the Bay of Kotor are wonderful!
Thank you Rachel.
Oh we had just a taste of Montenegro on a cruise stop and this post makes me want to go back for several more helpings! Loved the photo of the bridge and its reflections.
The Trebišnjica River was very shallow with loads of grasses growing on the bottom. The reflections were great all along it Jackie and I loved that bridge too, especially it’s history.
Hi Jan! I love that cow. It really doesn’t look real 🙂 That is one gorgeous bridge. I would not have wanted to be the person responsible for dismantling it and putting it back together. Can you imagine if a brick somehow got misplaced? 🙂 #TPThursday
A nightmare job I agree Nancie. It took six years to put back together! That cow certainly was a classic. It doesn’t even look real to me and I know that it was.
Beautiful mirror effect of the bridge on the water Jan. What a picture postcard place in the world. I’m hoping to see Montenegro next year.
The Trebinje River was full of mirror reflections Kathy – a fantastic river to photograph.