The affluent coastal town of Budva is rapidly asserting itself as Montenegro’s number one beach destination and as one of Europe’s new summer hotspots. The beautiful beaches, the charming Old Town and the proximity to the famous sea fortress of Kotor have catapulted Budva’s tourism industry to new heights and a large number of shiny new hotels and high rise apartment complexes are redesigning Budva’s cityscape.
The days of Budva as an insider tip are long gone and the town is already beyond its tourism capacity during peak season. I would therefore recommend a stay right at the beginning (May – June) or right at the end (September) of Budva’s high season.
Friday morning: Experience Budva’s beautiful beaches before they get too crowded
Start your weekend in Budva by relaxing on one of its many beaches, the two recommended in this guide are Mogren and Slovenska Plaza.
Mogren is one of the most beautiful beaches in Montenegro. It is located close to Budva Old Town and received the blue flag for extraordinary clear water in 2004.
Slovenska Plaza is situated in the heart of the new town centre and contains a sandy and a stony part. This beach moreover offers various sports and water activities, such as jet ski, boat trips and beach volleyball. Be aware of the fact that both beaches become very crowded in the afternoon which is why early birds will be able to enjoy the crystal clear Adriatic sea in peaceful serenity.
Friday afternoon: Visit Budva’s medieval Old Town
Budva’s Old Town is a hidden medieval gem where cobbled alleys lead to ancient stone houses which contain little restaurants, bars, cafés and small shops. The many bars are in fact the perfect place to enjoy a coffee or a cocktail after a day at the beach and the small streets are an excellent place for a casual stroll or a romantic walk.
Friday night: Enjoy a night out in Budva’s amazing beach clubs
Start your evening at Parma Grill (Mainski put), a restaurant outside of the main beach area which specializes in mixed meat platters and Cevapcici (Balkan sausages made out of a mix of veal and lamb). The restaurant has a lovely terrace on its top floor and its platters are so large that some travellers organize contests to see who can eat the most Cevapcici.
After a hearty meal at Parma, continue your night in one the many clubs that line Budva’s central beach area. Most of them are open air and play different kinds of music. Miami (Setaliste promenade) is the one that this guide recommends because of its fantastic atmosphere, its diverse crowd and its relatively well priced high quality drinks.
Saturday morning & afternoon: recover from your hangover at the hotel pool before hitting the beach again
Wake up in one of the amazing rooms at Hotel Montenegro, one of the best hotels in Budva that offers everything you need in terms of wellness, pool and gym facilities and beach access. The hotel’s pool is the ideal place to relax in order to get rid of the inevitable hangover that will be the result of a night out in one of Budva’s seaside clubs.
When the batteries are recharged, head back to one of the two beaches, preferably the one you haven’t been to yet in order to experience both main beaches in Budva to decide for yourself which one is best.
Saturday night: Party in Budva’s famous Top Hill club
Top Hill is the largest and most famous club in Montenegro and frequently hosts world renowned Djs but also famous singers and bands from the region. The club is enormous and resembles an arena with its half circular shape. Be aware that this is a genuine hotspot which inflates the prices in the club and also increases the grumpiness of the bouncers and the presence of scammers. Apart from that it is a fantastic club though and an absolute must visit when spending a weekend in Budva.
Sunday: embark on a day-trip to the nearby Unesco World Heritage site of Kotor
The ancient sea fortress of Kotor lies just a stone’s throw from the city of Budva and is an absolute must if you are visiting Montenegro. The little town contains various well maintained parts of the old fortifications and cobbled alleys that remind you of medieval towns in Italy. The best time to visit the town of Kotor is in the morning or the evening as hordes of tourists flock in during the day. The medieval alleys moreover provide an excellent opportunity to buy some local delicacies, albeit at an inflated price.