The old town of Budva and the Riviera

July 14, 2018

One of the oldest settlements on the Adriatic coast,first mentioned in the historical records as the “Town of Illyria” more than two and a half thousand years ago,this is a place that must be visited during as tay on the Budva Riviera.

Budva was established by Cadmus, a son of the Phoenician king, Agenor, and his Queen,Telephassa. Cadmus was the ruler of the Greek province of Boeotia and, when he was exiled from the city of Thebes, together with his wife Harmonia, he found refuge with an Illyrian tribe, called the Enchelei. According to the legend, Cadmus arrived with a heard of oxen, which is where Budva got its name from (bous is Greek for ox). The older names of Budva were Butua, Buthos, Butoba and Civitas Antique (the Old Town). Throughout history, it has been a target of different conquering nations (Greeks, Romans, Slavs, Saracens, Turks, Venetians, Austro-Hungarians, French…) and as a result it has belonged to many different states. Thanks to the immigrants from different parts of the world, who gradually came together with these changes, the structure of the original Illyrian population also changed.

The Old Town presents a unique architectural and urban unity, surrounded by medieval walls, with a fortress, towers and gates. During the course of its history, the Old Town suffered the most damage in an earthquake in 1667, while the consequences of the 1979 earthquake were also severe. Along the narrow streets and at the small piazzas and squares, there are lines of cafes, boutiques, bars, restaurants, galleries etc. while the town becomes a genuine “Theatre City” during the summer months, thanks to the numerous plays, concerts and exhibitions which Budva hosts too. This is also the name of the festival which has been enriching this old costal town since 1987, giving it a special note and charm.

Its many religious buildings – the oldest Church Santa Maria in Punta, the Catholic cathedral Sveti Ivan and the Church Sveti Sava Osveceni– have the special value. Next to the Church Sveti Ivan are the remains of an early Christian basilica while the remains of the Church Santa Maria are located on the Citadela. Between the churches is a stage which is where the plays of the “Theatre City” take place. Original Roman columns, set into the walls of Budva’s oldest gate, can also be seen in the Old Town. The main cultural institutions include the City Museum of Budva, with its archaeological and ethnographic collections and the Modern Gallery.

Sveti Stefan, one of the most exclusive summer resorts on the Mediterranean, is a result of a modern refurbishment of the stone houses on the island, built more than five centuries ago for the population of the nearby villages who sought shelter from the attacks of pirates and the Turks. According tooral tradition, the Pastrovici tribe used the spoils taken from Turkish galleons to fortify the island in 1442, building 12 houses, one each for every family in the Pastovici. For nearly 300 years, it was a trade and transport centre for the Pastrovici and the seat of the Bankada – the tribal court of the Pastrovici. The village was named after the church located on the highest point of the island, dedicated to Sveti Arhidjakon Stefan. The island is also home to Church Preobrazenja and Sveti Aleksandar Nevski.

Sveti Stefan has remained a fishing village for several centuries, until its depopulation began in 1950 in order to build a series of luxury suites and rooms in the old stone houses. The new hotel-town was opened on 13 July 1960 and it has since been a holiday destination for celebrities from all over the world – including Sofia Loren and Carlo Ponti, Alberto Moravia, André Malraux, Richard Widmark, Kirk Douglas, Klaus Kinski, Monica Vitti, Sylvester Stallone, Yuri Gagarin, Boris Spassky, Bobby Fisheretc. and members of royalty and numerous politicians.

Reddish sand prevails on the Petrovac beach, which is, together with its neat coastline and a promenade, the town’s connection to the sea. Along the promenade, next to the beach, there are houses with rooms and suites, hotels, cafes, restaurants…

What makes this beach especially attractive are the islets of Katic and Sveta Nedjelja located a few hundred metres from the shore. The sea between the beach and the islets is a protected natural preserve. The beach is 600 metres long, and covers an area of 9,525 square metres.

Hotel Rivijera in Petrovac is one of the best hotels on Budva-s Riviera surrounded by pines, palms, and cypresses, it is immersed in greenery, with the mountains on one side and the sea just 30 meters away. The hotel has 49 double rooms and 42 suites, totaling 231 beds. Hotel is an ideal holiday place for individual guests, for families and business people, people who know to appreciate the high comfort and exceptional quality as well as those who wish to relax.

Hotel “Rivijera” is not only during the summer time, but also during the spring and autumn, because of mild climate, extremely suitable for unique recovery-holidays.A fabulous park of the “Rivijera” spreads over  15,000 square meters and hosts a large landscaped swimming pool, jacuzzi and two tennis courts. On the beach, at the disposal of the hotel guests there are basketball and volleyball pitch. Between the pool and courts there is a big playground, where kids can enjoy at any time of the year. All the territory and facilities of the Hotel “Rivijera” are exclusively for the benefit of its guests.