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    • Day 34


      April 2 in Croatia ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

      Dubrovnik did not disappoint and a good job as it has been on Richard's list for many, many years.
      The persistent winds of the last 4 days (up to 52km/hr yesterday) have finally abated and we have clear blue skies and seas.
      We went by local bus and managed a nice scenic tour en route as we jumped on #16 instead of #10! Beautiful elevated view as we approached from a high, coastal road.
      Blown away by the sheer size of the walls and the city crammed within. First stop was a coffee and get bearings on The Stradun (main street running from one end to other). Cruise ship walking tours started appearing by 0930 - thankfully only one ship in today. In July there are 70+ pulling into port and on one day alone, at least 7. That's easily more than 10,000 pax flooding this place! Nearly the whole of the walled city is given over to B&B - they are now stopping licences to curb over-tourism.
      We started our day with the walk around the city walls - 3km and pretty warm. It was amazing! Never done anything like it before.
      You can still see some bombing damage from the Separation war from 1991.
      We were still on the walls at noon so the bell ringing from various churches was quite beautiful.
      We found shade in a tiny street and enjoyed pizza, salad and cold drinks. Outdoor seating allows for 3 bistro tables(with a cigarette paper between each) across the width of the passageway plus room for single file walkers! The first place we sat down at wanted 8E ($12) for a cola!
      Exploring further we wandered into a wedding! It was the beautiful singing that drew me in. The poor couple and guests had all these hangers-on!! We quietly left and found the correct entrance for the Franciscan monastery and beautiful, serene cloisters.
      By this time we decided to head home by bus.
      Just over an hour later we were on the beach and I was cooling off in the water. Perfect end to a fascinating day.
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    • Day 30

      Mlini/Kupari the abandoned city

      March 29 in Croatia ⋅ ☁️ 18 °C

      We have spent a very relaxing Easter weekend chilling in this delightful spot. Sea views, ocean dipping, slowing down on our private terrace, infused with the scent of orange blossom. We have braved warm winds up to 52km/hr, day and night since Friday. Hoping for reprieve tomorrow (Tuesday) when we head into Dubrovnik to explore. We are just 20 minutes south by bus.
      Easter Sunday was a delight to see well over one hundred locals streaming from the church, dressed in Sunday best; men in suits, little girls in pretty dresses and straw hats.
      Our landlady brought us a basket of mini eggs and a lemon drink - yet to be sampled!
      In addition to Mlini we also walked around the coast to Kupari, an eerie reminder of the Bosnian war, a mere 30 years ago. About six hotels including The Grand, built in 1920, lie in total disrepair after the war. This also explains some other derelict buildings we have seen locally.
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    • Day 29

      Mlini, Croatia

      March 28 in Croatia ⋅ 🌬 15 °C

      Not quite such an early start but we were at the bus station by 0745 for the 3.5 hr bus journey with Flixbus. The torrential rain and lightning of last night was replaced with lovely sunshine.
      We had booked front row seats on the coach which was great for pics but a little alarming to see the driver who never had two hands on the wheel and was often reading stuff on his phone or making calls! I buckled up.
      The scenery was amazing and again so varied and highways looked really new. Lots of tunnels and loved the planting on overpasses (reminded me of Teletubby Land!).
      Arrived in Dubrovnik and, seasoned travellers that we are now, opted for another bus rather than taxi to Mlini. It was fine and totally doable.
      We can't stop beaming at our good fortune - a lovely spacious apartment overlooking the sea (a stone's throw) and a private terrace, complete with orange tree. The blossom scent is divine.
      It's Easter weekend and most things close Sunday and Monday so we will just sit back and relax!
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    • Day 27

      Zagreb Croatia

      March 26 in Croatia ⋅ 🌧 13 °C

      A lovely day. Walked to train station to check our depart time tomorrow and then on to main square to meet Eva our tour guide for the next 2.5 hours. We had a fabulous tour with so many interesting insights to this lovely city. The cathedral, Dolac market and its history, the upper town and beautiful St Mark's Church, flanked by Parliament buildings and the shrine where people give thanks by way of wall plaques to The Virgin Mary, for prayers answered. In a fire during the early 1300's, the portrait of Mary survived unscathed as surrounding wood buildings perished.
      From there it was on to the tower where a Canon is fired every day at noon. We were warned it was loud - ears were ringing at 130 decibels!! And then down the shortest funicular to walk some of the underground tunnels built as shelter for thousands during air raids in 1944. Note how spotless they are - they are swept every day!
      Our final stop - sampling of Slivovitch. That's a form of brandy, in many flavours - plum, fig, mistletoe and more.
      Apres tour we opted for a long coffee break in the square, people watching. Then back to lodgings via the bakery to relax and prepare for tomorrow's early start.
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    • Day 25

      Basketball in Dubrovnik

      May 16, 2022 in Croatia ⋅ 🌙 21 °C

      Mit dem Taxiboot von Mlini nach Dubrovnik erweist sich als gute Idee, bequem, schnell und ohne Parkplatzstress. Dann auf die Stadtmauer, der Rundgang wird in jedem Führer als das Highlight schlechthin angepriesen, ist es auch, kostet allerdings beachtliche 35 Euro pro Person. Da fällt das Mittagsmahl kleiner aus, Holy Burek, einstmals eine osmanische Blätterteigspezialität, heute fest in vietnamesischer Hand. Und nur noch 222 Tage bis Weihnachten. Außerdem: Bei Platzmangel kann man Basketball auch um die Ecke spielen. Ihr seht: Dubrovnik hat auch seine humoristischen Seiten. Dass sein Stadtbild beeindruckt, ist hinlänglich bekannt. Trotzdem die obligatorischen Bilder, die jeder Besucher schiessen muss.Read more

    • Day 24

      The fish looks so miserable

      May 15, 2022 in Croatia ⋅ ☀️ 23 °C

      Mlini ist schon in Kroatien, klingt niedlich und ist es auch. Von hier aus wollen wir morgen mit dem Taxiboot nach Dubrovnik schaukeln. Aber Mlini bietet mehr als „Camping Kate“. Nämlich einen sehr pittoresken kleinen Hafen mit einem einzigen, gleichwohl sympathischen Lokal. Im Grunde ist es immer eine gute Idee, nach dem Catch of the Day zu fragen, so auch hier. Häufig gibt es Dorade oder Seebarsch, und gegrillt schmecken diese oft etwas traurig aussehenden Fische einfach prima. Das erinnert mich an einen sehr alten, sehr britischen und sehr lustigen Spot von Tesco, der in keiner Präsentation zum Thema „Servicequalität“ fehlen sollte. Hier der Link, die Minute lohnt sich:
      Kotor streichen wir heute kurzerhand von der Besichtigungsliste. Einfach zu viele Steine. Stattdessen schieben wir ein paar Stunden Strandleben am Plavi Horizonti ein. Auch hier sind angenehme Besichtigungen möglich. Und eine nette Fährfahrt mit beeindruckend großem und muskulösem Personal gibt es auch noch, damit alle Reisebeteiligten auf ihre Kosten kommen.
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    • Day 36

      Perast & Kotor,Montenegro

      April 4 in Croatia ⋅ ☀️ 18 °C

      Passports at the ready and up at dawn for 0710 pickup at the bus stop. Montenegro here we come!
      It's about a 2 hr drive including possible delays at the border. Apparently the Albanians cause the longest delays as they either have no paperwork or are smuggling!
      We were in a mini shuttle for 20 so could go thru the small border crossing without delays; in the summer they can be stuck for hours!
      Lovely scenic drive to Perast with very interesting commentary from our driver on culture, war, economy. Luka was fluent in English and quite the history buff. Perast is notable for a man-made island (made in 15th C according to legend) home to the church - Our Lady of the Rock. Short boat crossing and visit plus a bit of free time in the village before heading on to the town of Kotor - mini version of Dubrovnik.
      Lovely old city and interesting walking tour. We tried to walk the city walls but came to a dead end so headed down for a leisurely lunch - lovely arugula salad with local cheese and blueberries. Note - many cats here and even a cat museum!
      Kotor and Perast are situated inland but are still accessible by fjord-like stretches of the Adriatic. A yachter:s haven! The scenery was lovely and all with the backdrop of severe grey mountains. Montenegro means black mountain.
      The war still affects both countries - people fled, understandably - and made new lives in other countries. Very few return to endure the toil of rebuilding and tending vines and olive trees for little return.
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    • Day 28


      March 27 in Croatia ⋅ 🌬 18 °C

      An early start - train departs 0707. Quite comfortable train and interesting scenery. From rocky, barren to wooded and flat bottom valleys. We were struck by the station masters who appeared at every station we passed thru like weather-vane figures. And the stations were often just a tiny building in the middle of nowhere! Guess it's a non-automated system.
      The ticket collector/guard came round with a tray of coffee - coffee sachets and water from the kettle in his hand! Well it was only two very long carriages.
      Arrived in Split some 7 hours later, exhausted.
      Found our accommodation which thankfully was nothing like the exterior!
      No point unpacking so dropped our bags and set off to the old town, just 5 minutes walk. Our pics don't do it justice as the weather was so awful. Narrow streets opening onto lovely squares. Found a lovely restaurant for comfort food - served by Macedonian waiter who spoke excellent English. As we left he wished us "enjoy the rest of your life"!
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    • Day 13


      May 25, 2023 in Croatia ⋅ 🌧 23 °C

      Trotz der langen Autofahrt hatten wir heute trotzdem noch einen schönen Tag in Dubrovnik. Die Stadt ist zwar schön und eindrucksvoll, aber irgendwie nicht du unser. Alles völlig überteuert und nur auf Tourismus ausgelegt.

      Nun sitzen wir gemütlich direkt am Wasser in Mlini, keine 100 Meter von unserem Stellplatz entfernt.

      Das Wetter ist schön, der Wein schmeckt, was wollen wir mehr. 🍷😊
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    • Day 7


      August 24, 2022 in Croatia ⋅ ☁️ 29 °C

      Vandaag om 8:30 uur vertrokken naar Dubrovnik (Mlini). Een rit van 318 km. Om 13:20 uur kwamen we aan in Mlini. Vooral het laatste stuk was heel mooi. Geen snelweg maar een mooie kustweg. Onderweg zijn we ook over de nieuwe brug gereden die het vasteland van Kroatië met een Kroatisch schiereiland verbindt. Op die manier wordt de kuststrook van Bosnië Herzegovina ontweken en daardoor ook twee grensposten. Smetje is wel dat de brug is gebouwd door een Chinees bedrijf en dit ligt gevoelig in Europa want de brug is gefinancierd met Europees geld.Read more

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