Thursday, August 16, 2012

Croatia - Part 3

Swimming in the cool clear water from the boat
Find - Part 1 - and - Part 2 - of Croatia is the last two blog posts.

Peaceful mooring
Like many of our holidays, this holiday was sandwiched around a bit of boating. Our next destination was in the direction of - Zadar - where we were to collect our boat. Getting to the harbour was a minor challenge as the bus driver and his pal didn't speak a word of English. But we showed them a map and luckily for us they dropped us off on the side of the road next to the harbour at Zadar. Kind as the driver and his friend were, they virtually chain smoked the whole way. Public smoking laws have a way to go.

View from the galley
We were a bit early for our boat handover so we had a bite at the harbour cafe. I'm not a language expert but I recognised a good few Russians at the harbour cafe. I got the feeling Eastern Europeans flock to Croatia for sun and sailing holidays. Once we got our boat, we shopped for food at the harbour supermarket and the next day we left to explore the coast and islands.

Everyone deserves to do this trip. Basically we went off and found island upon island. Some islands have shops, markets and cafes. When we weren't boating, we swam in the ocean, tanned on the deck of the boat and relaxed with a glass of wine under the stars at night. We slept with the windows and doors open listening to water lapping at the side of the boat. One night we discovered what we thought was phosphorescence in the sea water. I was mesmerised and played with the water in my hands watching it sparkle. It was a magical and relaxing holiday.

Another peaceful mooring
Our favourite island was - Hvar. If you are not boating it is still possible to get to the bigger islands by ferry from the mainland. On Hvar we found a bustling market where we bought lavender oil, honey, fresh figs and yummy cheeses. Some must-sees recommended by other travel sites are - here and here.

There are 1185 islands off Croatia's coastline. Some islands were smaller and finding food was harder. But then they were so peaceful and the remoteness was a big part of the attraction. We managed to anger a donkey when we dropped anchor next to his patch. He was most upset with us. Obviously not a lot of people came past.

The only advice I will give if you decide to go boating is to make sure you have maps. We didn't get much from the boat hire companies. Here are links to a few of the boat charterers in Croatia - SunsailBareboat and Sail Croatia

Sunset at Marina Agana
No matter how much time a person puts aside to travel there is always more to see and not enough time. We never got to see the capital Zagreb and the northern inland areas which are very different to where we were in the southern coast. But then we did get to see some of the most beautiful coastline and islands on earth.

You will find more tips and travel information on other destinations on the Greenie Travel Archive Page - here.