Published: May 26th 2010May 26th 2010
The road from Mostar to Split was amazing, it made the Great Ocean Road in Oz look not so great!! It followed the coast right on the edge of massive mountains. It was a fairly big drop down the edge of the cliff but for once the bus driver didn't have a death wish. We arrived in Split with the usual scurry of people trying to fill their accommodation and we ended up in a ok apartment in town. The weather was horrid so we wandered the Roman ruins which they have developed into a market and the old part of town. Croatia is very expensive in comparison to every where else we have been so we tried to eat out on a budget on the first night and ended up with some half rate pasta. The second day we woke to thunderstorms and it rained most of the day so we used this time to catch up with our blogging, which cost us a small fortune as internet was 4 quid an hour, extortionate. We only escaped the internet joint to get some dodgy soup which seemed like it was just a dissolved stock cube and to buy groceries to
make a cheap dinner in our very small one pot kitchen. I'm not sure if it was the weather but J and I really didn't like Split very much and would say avoid it if you can and make your way to the islands instead. The lonely planet raved about it but as we have found the Lonely Planet can be very wrong about stuff, or not to our taste. We escaped from Split and caught the early slow boat across to Hvar. We managed to get an even better apartment by another persistent guy waiting at the harbour. It was pretty miserable weather again so we got supplies to cook with and bought a cheap hand line fishing reel and went off to see if we could catch our dinner. The bait we got cost about the same as one main meal and it didn't help our fishing skills as we didn't manage to catch anything on our first day. We actually woke to sunshine so we thought that we would make the most of it and walk around the coast to the beach the apartment guy suggested. It was a really lovely walk and we discovered a little
cove with two restaurants and we were the only ones on the beach. They had kayaks to hire so we decided whilst the sun was out to go for a paddle. We weren't really dressed for the occasion, no swimmers etc. as we didn't think it would be that warm. The kayaks had holes in the seats and as soon as we sat in our arses were wet through. It was so calm as we set off, I was all happy singing row row row your boat until suddenly the wind picked up and J and I were battling against the wind and waves. We reached another cove but I just wanted to get back. We kept hitting waves and I just had images of us capsizing. When we finally managed to get back I was soaked through, cold and swore to never kayak again unless it is on Moore River thats more my style!! By the time we had walked back to our apartment we were dry and warm so we decided to spend the afternoon on another beach near the old town. We weren't brave enough for another swim after the mornings events so just relaxed and read
our books. We were chilling out when we heard a commotion and wondered what was going on and there was a big octopus right near the shore suckered to the side of the jetty. It was so cool to see but it hid after seeing us all peering at it. Hvar old town is really pretty the sea is so turquoise and with the fortress looming above you on the hill makes it even better. We attempted to catch our dinner again, we even tried to copy the 13 year old locals who were catching masses of fish but all we managed was a finding nemo type of a fish and I felt really bad for doing so. After our miserable attempt at fishing we treated oursleves to an ice cream. As we were sat at the harbour we saw and heard a huge group of school kids singing and walking our way. Im not sure what was going on but it could have been schoolies or something similar and they were all pushing each other fully clothed into the harbour. One poor girl looked like she had copped it and hurt her ankle badly. They were drinking and properly
running a muck, it was certainly funny to watch.
Our final day in Hvar we had to kill time before catching the ferry to Korcula island at 5pm. The sun was shining again and we had not climbed the hill to the fortress so we set off to do this first thing, in case it clouded over. It was a fairly steep climb but not as bad as things to come. It was definitely worth the walk for the views all over Hvar town and the other islands. That afternoon we plucked up the courage and went for for a swim but it was rather bloody nippy so we didn't stay in it long. We caught the ferry to Korcula and decided to try and haggle a bit better with the room touts and when we got there it paid off. We managed to get the best apartment yet with access to a balcony and views over the city walls and sea, at the best price yet. We booked two nights as we arrived late. We got awesome pizza takeaway and a bottle of local Korcula red wine and sat on our balcony to watch the sunset. The wine was
good until the next day when we went to drink it, it tasted like it had turned into Sherry! Korcula town isn't very big but it is worth seeing. The old red roofed town is situated within the old city walls and defensive towers, a bit like a mini Dubrovnik. It didnt take long to explore so we went for a walk along the coast. That afternoon we had another go at fishing but we didn't catch anything we blame it not being dusk and not our skills. We had a beer and read our books whilst fishing so I couldn't be more relaxed and happy. (Just to side track a bit I have finished my book now and I feel rather lost as it was another great read. For anyone who loved Shantaram you must read Papillon if you haven't already done so.)
We had another early start to catch the bus from Korcula to Dubrovnik. The bus was packed and they still kept picking people up along the way. The whole isle was full of people standing and J was a gentleman and let an old guy have his seat. The bus again followed the coast along the
most amazing mountains and islands which made the cramped ride much more enjoyable. Our room in Dubrovnik wasn't as amazing as the others and cost the same. The old battle axe who worked their tried to scam more money out of us and say it was more than the lady who flogged it at the bus station, we just threatened to leave and she piped down. Our room was in the centre of the old town which was good though. Dubrovnik is pretty amazing, it is a massive town nestled amongst the ancient city walls with alley way after alley way of shops and restaurants, but attracts mass tourism which after about 10 minutes J and I couldn't cope anymore. You can walk all around the top of the city walls, we were going to do this until we discovered that it was 8 quid each so we declined and went for a walk up to another round house which had views over the city. Again you had to pay to get in but being as tight as us we just used their steps to get free views and photos. Near our room was a cheap local restaurant, we decided
to give it a go we each got the fish dish of the day and couldn't believe it when it arrived. I'm not sure how they managed it but it was like fish chewing gum. You could chew and chew and it still did not dissolve. Not sure if it was a local delicacy or just what you get for going cheap which doesn't work out that cheap when you are in Croatia!! We spent the afternoon on the beach away from all the tourists. We decided to splurg on dinner and we went to one of the fish restaurants on the quay. We both ordered the fish risotto, it was ok but it only had a couple of bits of cuttle fish in it and the rest was lots and lots of shrimp heads which wasn't too delectable. Dubrovnik was worth seeing but we each had had enough of the tourists so we caught the bus to Kotor in Montenegro the next day.
There are more photos below