Ostrog Monastery

The first stop off on our Montenegrin road trip is to the incredible Ostrog Monastery and this entails a lot of hairpin roads….as usual!

The monastery is split into an upper and lower site, and is a Serbian Orthodox Church.

Its most famous sight is the upper monastery situated against an almost vertical background high up in the large rock of Ostroška Greda.

The Metropolitan Bishop of Herzegovina founded this monastery in the 17th century – he decided to build the beautiful monastery around three caves that were formerly used by a hermit.

He died in 1671 an his body is enshrined in a reliquary kept in the Church of the Presentation – one of the two cave churches in the complex. 

We stood in a queue for quite a while until we realised we were waiting to see (and kiss) the mummified body.

The other cave church is the Church of the Holy Cross which dates back to the year 1665 and is on the upper floor of the monastery.

It is covered in vivid frescoes which were contributed by the Serbian Master Radul and painted on a pure rock surface. (no photo allowed!)

In post Covid world it is very strange, and uncomfortable, to see so many people kissing pictures and the floor . . all I can think of is viral transmission!!

The view from Ostrog upper monastery offers panoramic vistas of the Bjelopavlići plain.

Ostrog Monastery is one of the most important pilgrimage sites for believers of the Orthodox Christian faith. Pilgrims traditionally march up the steep 3-kilometer walking path from one monastery to the other – barefoot.

There are dorm rooms available for pilgrims here too and crowds of them mill around and escape the heat on outdoor beds.

Here’s a look back at the upper monastery from the lower monastery site, showing just how high up in the hillside it actually is!

Published by Derbyshire Gal

World traveller, proud auntie, bit of a liability.

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