CBiH 3

 

Arrived in Croatia after a short journey through Slovenia and a longish wait at the border. First stop Rovinj. General plan is to stick to the coast. Already a different feel to Italy. A bit more tourist oriented and geared towards a German audience.
Next day off to Selce. We spent some time in and around Opatija, all very lovely and riviera-ish. Headed inland to Plitvicka Lakes. World class, stunning lakes!
Inland Croatia is very different than coast. More ‘real’, rustic and much less populated.

Back to the coast and stopped off at Zadar before continuing down the coast and our next stop, a short distance inland at Lozovac. Croatia forces you to use campsites, no free camping, which is quite restrictive although there are a lot of campsites.
After a visit to Sibenik continued along coast to Stobrec just outside Split. Split very nice city with the ‘best preserved’ Roman palace which has been integrated into modern use … brilliant. Our campsite at Stobrec has been the best yet. Shaded spot near the bar/restaurant/facilities beautiful clear Adriatic waters to swim in, just a great feel to the place. I hope to return to pitch 82 sometime in the future!

Headed into Bosnia Herzegovina (BiH) next. Wow what a contrast to the Croatian coast. The border guards tried to hit on us for some money on the way in. We played dumb and got through without parting with cash. Similar to interior of Croatia – but different (sorry that’s the best I can do!). Mostar bridge, iconic but touristy. Stayed at campsite at Zitomislici. Memorable night for couple of reasons. The Herzegovian host, Sandra, greeted me with ‘cead mille failte’, first Irish I’ve heard in a long time (she worked with some Donegal women in Mudugorje, a famous Catholic shrine down the road), gave us drinks on the house and chatted for a few hours. The other reason was being woken in the middle of the night with the loud rumbling, van shaking effects of a 4.1 earthquake. No damage done and on we go. Made a detour to impressive waterfalls at Kravica. It was a highlight swimming in these waterfalls.

On the map the route to BiH’s only main port on the Adriatic seemed like a sensible way back to Croatia. In fact it turned out to be little more than a dirt track across a high mountain pass. After a fairly hair-raising drive and no further run ins with BiH border guards we made it back to Croatia.
Stopped at Orasac, about 16km outside Dubrovnik, for relaxing few days. Visited the city by bus. Spectacular old city but ‘ram packed’ full of tourists.

Made judgement call to skip Montenegro (see Kath’s blog) and head back to Italy via Dubrovnik – Bari ferry.

Those of you interested in the detail, stopovers, mileage, costs, etc click Croatia and BiH

Ignatius