The jewel of the Adriatic
Trip Start Oct 18, 2006
93Trip End Oct 19, 2007
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Where I stayed
Our bus arrived and we were wisked away by Milo our host for the next evening up to our little garden apartment, in which we shared a garden and courtyard with two old women who were so sweet and who bought us juice and wafer biscuits when we arrived which we quickly gauged down as we were starving after our early morning bus ride from Korcula. Our host was lovely, our little apartment had the most modern and confusing shower l have ever been in....let me tell you appearances can be very deceiving when it comes to showers! Some of the best showers l have ever had in hostel are often the ones that don't look the best. This one looked amazing and Sarz and l oooed and ahhhed over it when we arrived. It had a built in radio, fan, light, mirror and three different types of jets which surrounded you and you could choose from. But it was so modern that me and Sarz couldn't even figure out how to turn it on, let alone work out how tontrol the water temperature which was BOILING hot
Due to the climb home we decided to try and stay out as long as possible on Friday and set off down the hill and stairs to the Old Town of Dubrovnik. I used my charm- more like pleading skills to get us the student discount (as l had left my ISIC back at the apartment) into the Old Town walls (20 Kuna instead of 30Kuna). Sarz and l almost skipped the walls due to such a tight budget. But thanks to the Lonely Planet recommending it as the must do thing in Dubrovnik and you would regret it if you didn't we decided we had better do it and it was definitely a highlight of the trip walking around the wall! The view was simply spectacular which ever way you looked, with the Old town steep streets and alleyway houses below adorned with red roofs as far as the eye could see, domed Church's stretching out to your left and then the port and Adriatic sea and its brilliant colours and yachts on your right. (Just a tip if you are climbing the wall begin by going to the left when you reach the top of the stairs from the main entrance by fountain this way you will get the best views at the end and will avoid a lot of uphill stairs). Dubrovnik instantly became one of my favourite cities l have ever visited- l think its even more beautiful then Prague! Add Charles Bridge and it would be perfect! It took us a good two hours to walk around the wall as every step and lookout was more beautiful than the next
Everywhere we had been in Croatia felt like brand-new, the remains of the freshly painted houses and apartments were always splattered everywhere, construction was always going on around us- the country seemed to be rebuilding itself and we had arrived just before the rest of the world also discovered this hidden gem in the Adriatic that for so long has been closed off to visitors and tourists. Having finished our lunch and finally getting down from the wall we decided to walk through the Old Town without a map and for once just get lost in a place. Somehow though we always seemed to end up at a major tourists site as Dubrovnik Old Town is not that big and we ended up walking through the Palace and its museum for free, an Italian Baroque inspired Church and around most of the Old Town wishing that we had more money like all the rich cruise boat passengers that surrounded us and who were only there for a day and were spending up big time
On our final day in Croatia we slept in, checked our emails again and then went and bought local raspberry pastries we had grown to love here and ate them on the sea wall overlooking the Old Town. We climbed the rocks around the coastal wall in pursuit of the lovely Brela Brela pebbly beach. Here we laid basking in the sun, our towels and bodies laid out over the rough big pebbles. The water was crystal clear and the sun when it wasn't hiding behind a cloud was sizzling. I stood with my feet in the water and the ocean gently lapping my ankles as l read my book which seemed to be describing the exact opposite of the paradise l was experiencing around me. I was reading about Shanghai during the time of Pearl Harbour and the Japanese invasions and at that moment about a raid and peoples arms being blown off etc! Never again will l take such a heavy read on a beach holiday! Yet it definitely had me engrossed for the rest of the morning and early afternoon we spent on the beach as did the amazing scenery surrounding me- with the beautiful island in front of me and one of the most gorgeous old city's to my right and stretches of emerald coastline and rugged mountains to my left- it was a moment l wish never to forget.
We had to leave Dubrovnik at 3:30pm, after having returned to our apartment and eating our left over and trying to decipherer the shower once again and getting BADLY burnt in the process while having the radio on full blast and singing YMCA
We found our accommodation in Split with the help of some of the old women who try and get you to stay at their apartments when you come off the ferry and boat
The next day- the one on which lam writing this on is not worth mentioning- its been hell with a 5:00am wake-up, German wings flight to Stuttgart Germany and then discovering my train ticket had been stolen their were HUGE problems at the DBahn train station in Germany and on the train. Two months later they have finally dropped all charges that they made on the train that day (all 200 Euro worth!!!) but it was a HUGE process and a terrible end to an amazing trip! Thank goodness l bumped into Cat at the Zurich train station that evening....she was my saving grace!!!! But l can safety say that l loved Croatia and Roma and had a wonderful weeks vacation and at least one good think happened through the mess of today- l got to speak to and sit next to the most gorgeous German boy ever who has been helping me on the train trip with the inspector while l help him study for his up and coming anatomy exam for the next three hours
(Just a word of warning about DBahn (German train company)- if you have booked online your ticket then they cannot access your booking or give you a new ticket (ie. replace your old one) if it has been lost or stolen as the online tickets and counters at train station are separate! You must always print out your online ticket or get it sent to you in the mail....otherwise you will be faced huge charges on the train like me and it took over two months for charges to be dropped and many phone calls and letters. They are a cheap company if you book early, but always make sure that the ticket has all the stations and stops (ie. vias) that you require as once they also misprinted my ticket and l had too pay extra on the train even though it was their fault and they never refunded me.)