Click on title of post to view photo in large format: Stari Most (Old Bridge in Bosnian), was built by the Ottomans in the 16th century and is considered to be one of the best examples of Islamic architecture in the Balkans. It was shelled to bits during the Bosnian War, but rebuilt to its original form after hostilities ceased. For generations, male teenagers were expected to jump from the bridge Read More
Click on title of post to view photo in large format: Cobblestone streets of Mostar, on the western side of the Neretva River. This former war-torn city has recovered to become one of the most attractive and popular tourist destinations in the Bosnia-Herzegovina. The city was named after Read More
Click on title of post to view photo in large format: Old town of Mostar, seen from the top of Stari Most, the famous arched stone bridge over the Neretva River. This bridge became the dividing line during the Bosnian War, with Croatian Bosnians occupying land to the west of the bridge and Serbians occupying the mountaintops on the eastern flank of the city. Moslem Bosniaks, trapped in the small area of land on the eastern side of the river, suffered Read More
My introduction to Budva, Montenegro was anything but auspicious. I chatted with the owner of my guest house as she checked me in, explaining that I’d been touring the ex-Yugoslavian countries all summer, perhaps with an eye to finding a place where I might establish a base in the future. “In that case, you’d have been better to visit the town of Bar in the south,” she commented wryly.
I’d originally planned to stay in Kotor Bay to the north, but so many travelers I’d met on the road had raved about Budva that I decided to make a brief stop in the city dubbed the Montenegrin Riviera. Later that evening I walked down to Stari Grad, the Old Town of Budva that is enclosed by thick stone walls. Following an inedible dinner at the Hong Kong Restaurant, I picked my way through the crazy maze of streets. Harsh light spilled from storefronts offering gaudy souvenirs and resort wear. The rubber hose of a sewage truck snaked through the reeking streets, emptying septic tanks. Except for the walls and turrets of the old fortification, the Old Town felt bereft of any historical significance.
Disappointed, I returned to my guest house to enjoy the lovely view of Budva Bay from my private balcony, but even that was soon spoiled. As darkness fell, the bah-boom, bah-boom of club music drifted up from the open-air nightclubs that line the shore. Luckily, my guest house had insulated windows and doors, or I wouldn’t have been able to sleep for the racket. Read More
Click on title of post to view photo in large format: Sun worshipers flock to Pizana Beach in Budva, Montenegro. This popular beach on the shores of the Adriatic Sea is wedged into a protected cove between the walls of the old city and Dukley Beach Club, which has Read More
Click on title of post to view photo in large format: Medieval walled city of Budva, Montenegro, as seen from the Citadel, the ancient fortification that protected the city for centuries. The Church of the Holy Trinity is seen in the foreground, beyond which rises Read More