ISLAND HOPPING CROATIA
Posted on October 30, 2013 by Trace
— C R O A T I A —
The Country with Endless Appeal.
Take us back to the European Summer of June 2006 ~ hot, balmy days, with barely a whisp of wind, the sky so blue, the water in every bay, ocean, inlet; crystal clear in every shade of blissful turquoise.
Where on our return home, we have never encountered such powerful ‘post holiday blues’. The Country takes you by the heart and grips tight, and when you are released and the romance must end, back to your everyday life & work; your thoughts keep returning to that month of carefree Island hopping, the salt drying on your skin as you move from water hole, to cafe, and to swim some more.
Above : Buza Bar a hidden spot found through a hole in the ancient city walls of Dubrovnik.
Best spot for Cliff Diving.. if you dare.
The Country was in the grip of World Cup Fever, and we were lucky enough to witness the battle of Croatia vs Australia; with TV’s in each courtyard, Old Town, main street, restaurant, coffee shop & bar, to join with all, into the excitement and frenzy of every goal kicked.
Then there is the history, of this so recently returned to peace Country; in 1995 the war ended with Croatian Independence and preservation of its borders.
However, much of Croatia was devastated and at a great cost to many lives on both sides. Signs of the battle can still be seen in many places.
High above the Old Town of Dubrovnik the obvious colour distinction in the roofs; the old roof tiles, and the new ones from war-torn destruction to the return to its former glory.
The people are proud and charming, and can they ever cook a mean seafood BBQ! I longingly yearn for their squid and the Fish BBQ on most Restaurant menus and offered on the day-trip Island hops, from Hvar to neighbouring Brač, where the narrow white pebble beach of Zlatni Rat beckons and the Blue Grotto at Bisevo captivates.
The Country is super easy to explore, most of the Coast can be discovered without the need for a hire-car. Simply pickup your backpack and board a boat bound for another Adriatic Island, with no particular place planned to lay your head, and miraculously at the other end, you acquire a heavenly location to call your own for a night or two.
Above : one of the Sobe’s we stayed in
The locals meet you at every bus and boat arrival Port, with pictures of their homes where they rent a ‘Sobe’ or room to tourists, often with stunning views and ideal locations. We had a lot of luck with these accommodation offerings, met some great people & were able to have freedom with our plans, no check in/out times, coming and going as you please.
For its appeal of the fortress walls with bars & water holes on the other side and its polished-look limestone Stradun – Main Street [often mistaken as marble, due to Geologists using the term “marble” to refer to metamorphosed limestone].
All photo’s above of Dubrovnik
Red image above in a courtyard cafe, of flares being lit in celebration of the World Cup : Croatia vs Australia.
It was a draw 2-2.
Images above: [top] Crystal clear water at the Hvar Port.
[middle] Along the waterfront Promenade.
[bottom] View from the Fortress above the Port of Old Town Hvar.
Our favourite Island – Hvar [above]
Do yourself a favour and stop here for at least a week. It’s a great place to base yourself for the easy option of daily Boat Hops to nearby smaller Islands.
Life is tranquil here, the pebbly beaches & turquoise water are inviting, there are hills to climb & history to uncover. And at the end of the day, there are many bars + cafe’s on the Promenade to enjoy.
Best Island Hop –
Too many to list, you can’t go wrong, take a few – from Hvar you can take a Fish BBQ Day Trip to see the Blue Grotto and Zlatni Rat (on the Island of Brač)
Or a lazy wander around Komiža on the Island of Vis, a quaint and in places somewhat desolate (buildings with walls but no insides) fishing village, where it seems time has stood still for Centuries.
Above: The quaint fishing village of Komiža on the Island of Vis.
Best place to stay for a night or two –
[you won’t need longer] get off the boat at Korčula Island on the Southern Dalmation Coast – between Hvar and Dubrovnik.
Also Makarska won us over with her pretty beaches and sand-under-your-feet beach bars.
C R O A T I A
still high high on our list of must-see places to holiday, in this stunning World that beckons to be explored. We’d go back in a heart beat.
All images by Handsome Citizens