Tuesday, May 20

Budva & Ulcinj, Montenegro

(see on map) trin: Budva is being developed at an exponential rate. There are Russian funded cement hotels and apartments going up everywhere. A home purchased in 2006 for 100k Euro is now worth a whopping 600k and we thought the Bay Area was bad.

It is also the "spring break" destination for young Russians and Serbians. Although "spring break" isn't really our thing anymore, we enjoyed our time here. We stayed at a great hostel, Happy Hippo. It is owned by a couple our age. She is from Russia and he grew up on the Peninsula. Small world. We spent quite a bit our time just hanging out in the garden visiting with other travelers. The recent college grads were starting to show up on the backpacker trail.

The city walls in the background. We spent about twenty minutes walking around the interior of the old city. At this point we were kind of over it.

We spent two days at the small beach just north of the town. Although Mike had already swam several times, this was the first time I took the plunge. Supposedly, people cliff jump here. We heard a lot of talk but never saw anyone actually do it.

The main beach resembled Cancun. There was a foam party going on as we walked back to the hostel. We stopped, watched and remembered days gone by. I think foam parties are disgusting but I've always thought that. So, it isn't a sign of age.

On the bus to Ulcinj, we passed Sveti Stefani. A perfect example of a walled city along the Adriatic.

Ulcinj has a very short tourist season, July & August. Some beach resort were starting to prepare but the majority of the beach was deserted and still strewn with debris that was washed ashore all winter.

We met another couple at our homestay and shared a ride with them to the eight mile long, Long Beach. Mike and I walked and walked down the beach. We stopped to ask a lady if there was anything around and she informed us that we had nearly walked into Albania. So, we walked and walked back to Montenegro.

After the beach we came across this elaborate fishing area. The picture doesn't quiet do it justice. While we were there two artists were painting landscapes of the chaotic scene. Ulcinj was a bit of a snooze. In part do to the time of year we were there but in sharp contrast to Budva, it has yet to polish its tourism trade.

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