Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Traveling Summer Parts 11 and 12: Budva and Kotor, Montenegro

The Montenegrin flag features the double-headed eagle that has been used for many years as a symbol of Montenegro and is on a red background, a colour that has often been found on their military flags.
Our final stops on our Balkan adventure were in Montenegro. We originally decided to go to Budva for a night because there was a direct bus from there to Skopje. However, one night turned into two when we realized the bus only went every other day. Not a big deal. Two days at the end of the trip to enjoy the beach- sounds lovely, right?

Well, let me say, while Montenegro is a beautiful country with lots of coast and mountains, Budva is not so lovely. I take that back, it is a nice town, but for the right kind of person. Mike, Phil and I are not the right people. I admit our judgement was a little clouded by the fact that the 3 hour bus trip from Dubrovnik actually took close to 8 hours, so we arrived late and in the rain. That didn't help. We made our way to our hostel (that was near impossible to find) that had been chosen because Phil liked the name- the Littlest Hobo. Never choose a hostel based on it having a "fun" name. It was the most disgusting place I remember ever staying. The entire house was a hobo that had been living on the streets for awhile. We had booked three beds in a four person room hoping we would be lucky and have it to ourselves. Not the case- we had a Croatian man who had been living there for two months in the room with us. The entire place was filthy (we're thinking they hadn't cleaned in the two months he had been living there). There was moldy food in the fridge, dirt and nail clippings all over the floor, and the bathroom was a whole other story- it probably should have been condemned.

We were starving, so went in search of food and this is when I came up with the perfect description of Budva- it is like a county fair in America, you know, the real rural ones, but replace the American country folk with Russian country folk. The town was set up to be a Balkan Jersey Shore. As I said at the beginning, that might be the prefect place for some people, however, we are not those people. We ate in the rain, then went back home hoping to get a good nights sleep and wake up with a better mindset in the morning. Instead, we woke up feeling dirty and wanting to leave, but we still had 36 hours until our bus out.

We made the most of our time and did a few fun things, including a boat ride around the bay with a local and a microbrew at the Chinese restaurant. I only took pictures on our boat ride as nothing else seemed photo worthy.
View from Old Town
Our captain took us around a few of the caves in the bay.  
The entrance to a cave.
Inside one of the caves.
We realized after day 1 in Budva that we couldn't spend another day there, so we hopped on a bus and went back up the coast about 30 minutes to the town of Kotor. We are Kotor people. The Old Town there was lovely (much more similar to the other Old Towns we had been in). We spent the day wandering around and eating good food before heading back to Budva to catch our 9:30pm bus back to Skopje. While we were sick of being on buses, spending the day in Kotor left us with a much better impression of Montenegro.
Walking towards the entrance of the Old Town.
Looking into the bay.
Inside Old Town- this was our view while we ate lunch.
View of the Bay of Kotor from the old fortress.
Part of the fortress walls.
Upon our return to Budva, we had a few hours to kill before the bus, so we wandered to the grocery store, ate some dinner, and went back to the hostel to collect our belongings- hoping they hadn't been eaten by bugs or sold to pay the electricity bill. Our bus was long and filled with lots of loud Macedonian teens and twenty-somethings who thoroughly enjoyed making fun of the fact we spoke English. Our arrival in Skopje was much appreciated as we were that much closer to home!

The entire trip was a lot of fun, but it was long and it felt good to be home....for a few days!

1 comment:

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