The final part of our amazing holiday was in Budva; we got another bus down from Kotor to spend our last couple of days, which took around half an hour. Although there is a lot more going on here in terms of nightlife, both of us preferred the tranquil beauty of Kotor, however it was good to experience this side of Montenegro too.
Budva is further south than Kotor and Tivat, and instead of sitting in a bay it sits along the coastline. There are plenty of buses in and out of Budva, so depending on your direction of travel, I’m sure you won’t have too many problems! We managed to walk around Budva and never used a taxi, so it can be done – it’s not too big!
What to do
Go to the beach – The beaches in Budva are mostly pebble, but there is a huge stretch of it all the way along the coast with loads of bars and restaurants.
Water sports – We hired a pedalo and pedalled out to a little island not too far out to have a look around, but there’s also quite a few other water sports there too, such as jet skiing and parasailing.
Paragliding – For this, we got picked up outside a hotel and driven to the top of the surrounding cliffs, with our guide/pilot. Scott ran off the cliff first to tick off his bucket list, and I was left to stand up on the top of the cliff on my own and wait for my pilot to come in the next car. Two or three different groups of paragliders came and went before mine turned up (which wasn’t fun as I had no phone, no water and no idea how to get back into town had I needed to!). I really loved the feeling of ‘floating’ down through the air, but Scott wasn’t quite as keen. It made his tummy feel a bit funny, especially when he started doing tricks over the sea! This might have just been down to the fact that we were told to only have a light snack before hand, so what did we do? Sit down to a 2 course meal of whitebait and dumplings, followed by large portions of stodgy carb-enriched pasta. Whoops..
Old Town Budva – This was very similar to the other old towns we’ve been to (Kotor and Dubrovnik) in that it was a little walled town on the edge of the water, filled with places to eat and drink, as well as boutique shops. It was much smaller than Kotor and had less to do, but it was nice to wander around (and buy our shot glass). Just outside the old town is a much more modern square with some other places to eat and drink.
Lake Skadar – We chose to do an excursion out to Lake Skadar for a boat trip – it is a large lake stretching across both Montenegro and Albania, covered in beautiful lily pads. The trip we went on told us a bit about the lake and the area, and took us onto a tiny beach with a restaurant where we ate fresh carp – caught from the lake, and river trout. We had a bit of time here so went for a little swim in the lake, which was an experience. The water is cold and not very clear – lots of plants and debris floating around, as well as the odd water snake. We decided to give up, and instead sit in the shallows of the water with lots of little fish swimming around us. Little did we know, those were the ‘foot nibbling fish’ that you find in some places, and before we knew it we had dozens of little friends suctioned onto us, nibbling away at our dead skin. It didn’t hurt, just tickled. A lot!
Where to eat
One of the places we went for an evening meal was a restaurant just outside of the Old Town, called Restaurant Porto. It was quite a ‘posh’ place on the waterfront, with lovely mood lighting, but the selling point was the pool of slipper lobsters that swam/scuttled around at the entrance. Again, we were lucky enough to get (what seemed like) the best seats in the house (image and video below). The food was lovely, serving both fish and meat, and we had a really peaceful evening here. Another place we ate whilst in Budva was at Restaurant Astoria, however we did NOT have a good experience here. We saw that it was recommended on Trip Adviser, so we thought it would be the perfect place to end our holiday! I ordered the duck breast with some sort of vanilla sauce (I think it was a special that day as I can’t find it again on the menu), and it was absolutely revolting. Not only was the duck hugely overcooked, but the sauce smelled and tasted like crepes which, believe it or not, really doesn’t go with duck. The rice was cold and all stuck together in one big clump, the vegetables were completely different to that advertised, and Scott’s steak (despite him explicitly telling them he wanted it super rare) came out as tough as leather. This is obviously based entirely on our own experience, and judging by a lot of other reviews, the place in general is meant to be nice, however we wouldn’t go back there!