Kotor is among one of the most beautiful of Montenegro’s coastal towns. It is surrounded by lofty mountains which peer over its Boka Kotorska (Bay of Kotor), Europe’s southernmost fjord. As the Mediterrannean’s only fjord, this bay was added to the list of the twenty-five most beautiful bays in the world in July 2000. Boka Kotorska (Bay of Kotor) has long been celebrated in song and bears witness to a tempestuous history—a place where cultures and civilizations have often clashed. Situated on the southeast end of the bay, the town of Kotor can trace its origins back to ancient times. In the cave of Lipci, near the town of Risan, Neolithic period tools and ceramics, as well as cave wall paintings, have been found—a witness to the areas continuous inhabitance. Kotor has entered the list of world cultural heritage sites under the protection of UNESCO. The first herald of spring brings the “Mimosa Festival.” Dedicated to the mimosa–a flower brought from Australia to the bay a few centuries ago–festivities generally begin in late winter in the nearby town of Herceg-Novi.