Discovering Herceg Novi in running shoes

When traveling, one of my favourite activities is to run. In my opinion running, wherever you are, gives you new perspectives, and while it can be exhausting, it is often worth it. In big cities you might find a big park you would never have found otherwise and in smaller ones you might soon even be out on the countryside finding beautiful landscapes.

In the town of Herceg Novi, in northern Montenegro, running is more a case of the second option. The town is home to, only, about 11,000 people, so it did not take long before I had left the central parts of the town far behind. The goal of the trip, however, was to run to the next village of Meljine, finding a few sights on the way. 

After about five minutes of running, I find myself on a little green hill, with several cemeteries and churches, that, as I understood, more or less belong to the Savina Monastery. In the same area I also found an monument for the people of Herceg Novi fighting the fascists during the second World War. With the Adriatic Sea on one side and high-rising mountains on the other, I doubt there are many more beautiful places for a final rest or to keep the memories of these soldiers alive.

10 minutes later, past fields of grapes, what I believe is the main part of the monastery, stands before my eyes. This church is also the most impressing yet, with a white polished steeple and a setting of the Kotor bay, where the villages seemingly almost are falling down in the sea. I stop for a few pictures, before continuing down through a small forest, where I have to turn around,  before finally finding the correct route to Melinje.

This village is a lot smaller and not as touristy, even if the beach is rather smocked with people. This also shows by the price on fridge magnets, as they here costs 0,50€, compared to 1€ in Herceg Novi and 3-4€ in Dubrovnik. However, my visit in Meljine was not long, and soon I am on the way back, with a short stop at a local supermarket for some refreshments.

Now, I follow the bigger road, and turn right where the road sign says Bosnia & Herzegovina. According to Google Maps, there will be a way home this way, but at the moment I quite doubt it. Anyway, I start the climb up the mountain, with fast-driving cars swooshing past me every now and then on one side, and a steep edge, with sharp blackberry bushes on the other. After, more or less, ten minutes on the road, I find the road I had seen on Google Maps, and can finally leave the, in retrospect, rather dangerous road.

From here, it is not far left to the hotel, and when I reach the old town of Herceg Novi my run is over. 7 kilometers that made me tired, but clearly also gave me a lot of memories.

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