After a lovely week in Bosnia I took the bus down to Montenegro, one of the world’s newest countries. We headed straight for the stunning Adriatic coast and the charming town of Budva.
Tiny Montenegro has been an independent country for less that four years. It was the last of the former Yugoslavian nations to break away from Serbia, and many citizens wish it had just stayed put. As a result of it’s longstanding ties with Serbia, the country missed out on most of of the violence that engulfed the region.
The town of Budva is a shocking 2,500 years old! The walled city was built in the Venetian style during the Middle Ages and is a pleasant maze of winding alleyways.
Budva is a beach resort town. Although still relatively unknown to the west, Montenegro is fast becoming a popular vacation destination for rich Eastern Europeans, particularly Russians. After a week of difficult ruins, it was nice to be in a country where buildings were going up, not crumbling down.
Unlike other parts of the adriatic coast which are very rocky, the beaches in Montenegro were sandy. The big island is known as Hawaii by the locals and is uninhabited wilderness. My hostel offered boat trips out there, where apparently you can swim in a private bay and jump off the cliffs, but we were unable to go because of time constraints.
The Montenegrin version of Red Bull which I’m certain must be illegal in the US. I had one can and was awake for DAYS.
This cheerful but dilapidated house gives an idea of what the less touristed areas of Montenegro looked like. Although not directly involved, the Yugoslav wars hit Montenegro’s economy hard and it is still only recovering.
A couple more pictures of the town of Kotor. Montenegro’s short coast is lined with beautiful walled cities like these two. I wish I’d gotten to explore further inland where there are roman ruins, abbeys and a European rainforest. Just goes to show how hard it is to get a complete view of even the smallest country.