Wednesday, September 28, 2022

Visit Budva, Montenegro

Budva is not really a large town, spread on about 4.5km² everything is easily accessible and very well connected – so you’d for sure enjoy exploring it.

When we speak about Budva, the first thing that pops in someone’s mind is it’s trademark – The Old Town. It is raised on the island, which used to be connected with the land by a sandy covering and so it grew into a peninsula. According to historical sources, Budva is one of the oldest urban centers in the Adriatic – it is more than 2.500 years old.

The Old Town of Budva is full of history and legends. It goes back to Roman times when Roman and Greek necropolis was established here. Many Roman and Hellenistic villas and artefacts including gold and silver jewellery were discovered on the numerous researching sites in Budva, and these are now on display in the Ethnographic Museum in the Old Town. The ruins of Villa Urbana can be seen close to Porta di Terra Ferma, the main gate into the Old Town.

The Old Town of Budva is encircled by a fortress wall. Its first defensive walls were built during the 9th century. After these walls were destroyed by an earthquake during the 17th century, they were replaced by the Venetians. Budva was part of the Venetian Republic from 1420 to 1797. It then came under the rule of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Even today, all these stories and historical facts are visible in the Old Town, making it a true gem of Adriatic.
Once inside the walls visitors will find themselves in a living museum, where locals still live in the original medieval stone buildings. Budva has been recognised as a monument of architectural antiquity by UNESCO. Its narrow cobbled streets are dotted with souvenir shops, cafés and bars as well as many attractions including museums and churches
On the sea-side of the Budva Old Town is the magnificent Citadel also known as the Fortress of St. Mary, which dates from the V – VI century B.C. and today is a stage of the famous City theater. Constructed to protect Budva from an invasion by sea, its multi-layered arrangement of walls was guaranteed to be impregnable in the event of an attack. It was equipped with everything necessary to withstand a long siege. Today it is the keeper of Budva’s long history and is open to the public. Inside there is a museum, a restaurant and an observation deck with a panoramic view of Budva. Leave the city through the small gate that leads to the Ričardova glava on the far side of the Old Town for some good views of the Citadel…
Now, let me add a little something about the main symbol of Budva – The Dancer statue. It is located on the seaside right outside the Old Town walls; on the way to Mogren beach. Among the locals there are many legends about the statue – the most famous one says about the enormous love between a girl and a sailor from Budva. She waited for him for years to come back home, waiting every day by the sea to see his ship sail into the town’s marine, but that never happened. Legend says that eventually she died of grief. There are the other legends, more or less similar to this one; but they are all enchanting enough that they inspired famous sculptor Gradimir Aleksić to make this graceful bronze statue. Up to this day, The Dancer stayed main symbol of Budva, pride of its locals and one of the most visited places in town. While enjoying its beauty and taking a few pictures of it – don’t forget to rub The Dancer as we believe that she brings a huge luck.
If you already had a chance and visited Budva, please share your impressions with us in the comments below
beaches in Budva

Old Town Beach

Old Town Beach in Budva is a small but charming stretch of sand right outside the walls of the OldTown. During the summer months, you can swim around the citadel. On a stormy winter’s day, youcan sit in a cafe and watch the waves crash on both sides of the cliffs that surround the coastlineIf you start your day with a coffee and a swim in the early morning, you can often find a sunlounger on the 1st row to lounge on and enjoy the sea breezes. There are bars and restaurantsaround Old Town Beach, as well as an onsite freshwater shower. As night falls, the beach isusually lit by candlelight on dining tables, giving it a warm atmosphere

Sveti Stefan Beach

Sveti Stefan beach is open to everyone with a view of the fantastic Sveti Stefan island. The water is clear and the view is impeccable.

On Sveti Stefan island there is a closed 5-star resort that is not accessible to the public. If you are not going to stay there, Sveti Stefan beach is a great way to enjoy the wonderful area.

Budva’s Famous Ballerina Statue

The Budva Ballerina Statue, also known as “Gymnast from Budva” is a bronze sculpture of a girl frozen mid-dance, created by Belgrade sculptor Gradimir Aleksić. She stands on a rock guarding Mongren Beach, with the Old Town and the Adriatic Sea in the background. The statue has become a symbol of Budva and makes for some beautiful photos. 

Apparently the sculpture was inspired by a local legend about a girl who was engaged to a sailor. He sailed away to make money for the two of them to live together but he never came back. She spent years waiting for him, watching the sea every morning in hope that he would return. Sadly one day he was found dead on the rock where the sculpture now stands. 

Enjoy a Romantic Dinner

Budva has many restaurants where you can enjoy a romantic dinner. For a delicious seafood dinner, try one of the restaurants along the waterfront. Jadran is the most popular and well-known, serving grilled fish, seafood and meats right on the water. I’ve eaten here a couple of times and the experience has always been magical.

Hemingway Bar & Restaurant is another favorite, offering live music, cocktails and a diverse menu featuring salads, burgers, steaks, fish, pastas and risottos.

In the Old Town, visit Stari Grad, a restaurant serving traditional Montenegrin cuisine and seafood in a rustic setting.

Another great option is Restoran Rivijera, which serves octopus, grilled prawns and other seafood dishes. The restaurant has a cute courtyard with blue and white checked tablecloths.

If you’re looking for something a bit upscale, try Restaurant & Beach Bar Azzurro, which has a large terrace filled with tables overlooking the bay. 

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