Budva

budvaBudva is located on the coast in Montenegro. The coastal area of Budva is called the Budvanska Rivijera and is the very center of tourism for the region. It is a popular vacation destination due to its beaches, Mediterranean architecture and nightlife. The town is more than 3,500 years old. There are fewer than 20,000 total inhabitants, making it a quaint and small region with much to offer visitors.

Evidence shows that Budva has been inhabited since the 5th century BC. Legends claim that Cadmus the Phoenician founded the area. Cadmus was a hero who was exiled from Thebes in Greece and sought shelter in the region. After the Roman Empire was conquered, the defensive barrier separating Rome from Greece happened upon Budva. During the Middle Ages, the region was reigned by Doclean kings followed by Serbian and then Zetan aristocrats.

Venice ruled Budva for almost 400 years, until 1797. Budva was during that time a part of the Venetian Republic of the Bay of Kotor and walls were built to protect the city from conquest by the Ottoman Empire. Most of the population at that time spoke Venetian.

During the following decades, Budva fell under Austrian, French and Russian rule. A union in 1813 joined Budva with Montenegro but this lasted only one year. from 1814 until early in 1918, Budva was part of the Austrian Empire. After the Second World War however, the Serbian army took over and Budva became part of the Kingdom of Yugoslavia. It was not until 1944 that it was annexed from Yugoslavia by the Kingdom of Italy. Finally, after WWII, Budva was liberated from Italian rule and after another brief ruling by Yugoslavia, became part of Montenegro, independently ruled.

Earthquakes wreaked havoc on Budva in 1979. On April 15, 1979, the old town was all but completely destroyed. Today however, most of the town has been rebuilt and little evidence of the disaster remains. Budva today is the center of the Budva municipality which encompasses the nearby towns of Petrovac and Bečići.

Most of the ancient architecture in Budva has strong Venetian influence. There are three main churches located in the older section of Budva. St. Ivan’s Church dates back to the 7th century. St. Mary’s of Punta was built around the mid 800’s and The Holy Trinity has been standing since 1804. The Venetian walls of Budva are popular tourist attractions to this day.

Budva is a hub for tourism in Montenegro. There are more than 500,000 visitors during the summer months every year which makes it the most popular destination in all of Montenegro. Outside of the old town, there are few sights to see. Inside the town however, architecture is plentiful and the beaches, mountains and sights surrounding the town are what draws in visitors from all over the world every year. The Tivat Airport is located just 12 miles from Budva and offers flights to Zurich and Belgrade. Podgorica Airport is located 40 miles away and provides flights to various European destinations. The Adriatic Highway connects the town to other coastal regions of Montenegro.

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