So here we are in Camping Kate. Last time we were here we stayed at Camping Solitudo. What a difference two camp sites are. Camping Solitudo very popular. Very expensive . We paid with Camping Cheques. A bus journey into Dubrovnik. Camping Kate - on the other side of the city. A boat trip into Dubrovnik . An ACSI site with no amenities. Very flat pitches, a small reception , a long walk down to the harbour. The showers left a lot to be desired . At this time of year we could park anywhere we liked. We pitched up next to an empty pitch which was later filled by a family of Lithuanians. They set up two tents , the mother wore pink PJ's and wrapped a blanket round herself. Our other neighbours were in a motorhome and large awning. The sun was shining but the weather was poor with a cold wind blowing. I go into reception to ask about the boat. It will cost 200 euros for the return trip. Come back in the morning at 9 and I will tell you if the boat will run. The problem with that is that if we don't go tomorrow
we won't go at all.
We walk down to Milini . It is a lovely little harbour with sympathetic hotels and building work. A large tree with a sign telling us how old and venerated it is. A tat shop and a bar where we sit drinking wine and Aperol Spritz. A desk with touts selling boat trips to Dubrovnik and Cavtat. A polo club and a number of old mill stones brought in from the many mills in Milini which no longer exist .
Next morning we don t wait until 9 to find out if the boat will run . The sky is overcast. It is cold and a touch windy but we guess there won't be a problem. How wrong could we be? The 9 o'clock boat did not turn up . We waited for the 9.30 breaking the time up by drinking coffee in the small bar . We are joined by three Brits. We could not work out their relationships. Were two of them married? Were they Just friends ? They talked about a 60th school reunion. One was born in Manchester but had lived in London. He was a would be comedian.
The female said nothing. We left them only to be told that the 9.30 boat was cancelled due to the weather but the 10 would sail. They were sending a bigger boat. When it arrived we wondered what the small boat must have looked like. This was not exactly large by any standards. As we boarded the boat the captain told us that the sailings were being curtailed and that we would only be able to get back on the 2.30 or 4.30. By the time we had struggled to get to Dubrovnik he told us that all sailings were cancelled and we needed to find another way home. No refund offered . Just use your return ticket tomorrow. Fine if you go in again but given we had been before we would be moving on tomorrow.
Dubrovnik like Venice is one of those cities you really have to approach by water and not by land. It has that magical theme that can only be seen from the water. The cruise ships spoilt it as they do many cities. The disinterested tourist followed the umbrella waving guides. We sit and drink yet another coffee people watching. Watching the umbrella
waving guides who almost poke the eyes out of other visitors. Last time we were here we walked the walls early in the morning. Had them to ourselves before the tourists hit town. We did not want to walk them again. In fact they looked so good from outside in the new town we walked in search of another fort with a good view of the old city and a bakery. Picked up cold pizza and fresh bread . Cakes are more difficult to come by. Donuts with jam, donuts sprinkled with hundreds and thousands, cherry or apple pastry slices. That is the choice. Take it or leave it. The pizza was good for lunch with the fresh bread followed by half the slice covered in cream.
We walked up the many steps to Fort St Lawrence which we had missed on our previous trip. It was impressive and quite expensive to go into. We chose not to see inside although we were told the tickets would have covered the walls too. The fortress lies just outside the western entrance to the city and is reached via a steep set of steps. It sits on a steep cliff some 37 metres above sea level . It doubled up as the Red Keep in Game of Thrones . Another one of the must see locations if you are a G. O. T addict.
So now come the time to find a way back to our campsite. As by now it was pouring down with rain and the promised storm had arrived we decided to shell out on a taxi. It did not take us long to get back to Camping Kate where we hunkered down for the night .
Tomorrow we head north. There seems little point staying here in such awful weather. Perhaps we can outrun the poor weather.
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