If you happen to be heading to Montenegro, there is an island you should not miss discovering.
Our Lady of the Rocks is an artificial island on the bay of Kotor.
The legend says that after a shipwreck some fishermen from the beautiful town of Perast found on a sea rock an icon of the Virgin Mary and Christ in 1452 and they founded on that right spot a church dedicated to the Holy Mother of God, protector of sailors and fishermen. After each successful voyage, they laid a rock in the bay. So year after year the island emerged from the sea.
The island has a beautiful Roman Catholic Church “Gospa od Skrpjela” “Our Lady of the rocks” which is the largest building on the island and a museum.
The church is painted by one of the most famous baroque painters from Kotor Tripo Kokolja and it hosts a collection of 68 paintings of his work. Its stunning marble altar is a great piece of work of Antonio Kapelano, sculptor from Genoa. I cannot say exactly how long I stood there in front of that altar admiring it, taken by its amazing beauty. The icon of Gospa od Skrpjela on the altar which dates from XV century is the work of the painter Lovro Dobric.
Every year on the sunset of the 22nd of July, the festival of Fasinada takes place where local residents, tourists and everyone there set out in rowing boats towards the island and throw rocks overboard in a symbolic widening of this small island.
May you come here one day and see and feel for yourself all the beauty awaiting for you!