Day 09- Last Day at Sea

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June 3rd 2018
Published: June 5th 2018
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Last day waking up on the boat. Kirsten of course got up and hit the shower. When she returned we were hoping to have a nice breakfast prepared for us today, but this island had no real breakfast spots, just coffee shops. However, they served our favorite breakfast: chocolate croissants. So Dan got his coffee and Chester and Kirsten added on a few more pounds. We made our way back to the boat and Kirsten was summoned by last night's waiter to where we had our drinks a few hours before. The waiter asked her if she had had drinks here last night, and she said yes. He responded, "We have a very big problem." Kirsten is thinking WTF, we paid our bill. Then the waiter held up a credit card. Actually it was her debit card that fell out of her purse last night and we never saw it since it was midnight when we were drinking in the dark. Disaster averter!!!

We didn't stay at port long and started to ready the boat for our last voyage. We were going to sail to one last swim spot and then get back to Split by 3 pm. We sailed maybe an hour and a half and were in another beautiful spot with lots of boats anchored into the cove. We compared this to the Ozarks and Party Cove. There were a bunch of boats, big and small, all anchored about the bay. Most were families with lots of kids swimming on floaties and snorkeling. There were two huge catamarans that had, what we thought, a weird dynamic of people. There were about 12 guys and 2 women on the two boats. All were very young, mid-20s and very fit, but darn it, no speedos. That's how we knew they were American. They drank and jumped off their boats for awhile and then left. We thought that our entertainment was gone. Not so. A new boat anchored in about 30 yards from us. It was a couple of families enjoying the Adriatic. Soon after they docked one of the mothers decided to go topless and sit at the end of the boat. Kirsten could not let this pass, so of course she acted like she was taking pictures of Chester and Dan, when really she was getting the boobie girl. They were huge too. And it was not the first time they had seen the sun.

Bartul finally pulled the plug on our fun and said it was time to return to Split. We readied ourselves for the last hour of a great trip through the Adriatic Sea. There were a lot of firsts for Dan on this 4 day trip! First time for him driving a scooter, snorkeling in the sea, and wearing a speedo! You're a man now Dan! Congratulations.
We made it to the port right at 3. Bartul was a great captain and we enjoyed our time in the boat. We are pretty sure Bartul has now forgiven Dan for calling him Barstool the other night at dinner. We were greeted by our new guide who would be with us the rest of our trip. Toure loaded up our bags into his car and we said goodbye to our sea legs and headed inland. We were informed we would have a 4 hour drive to the our hotel that is located right outside the national park with all the waterfalls - Plitvice Lakes. We were actually excited to be back on land and little more active than we had been on the boat. We had to stop once on our way to the next place, Dan had to use the restroom. Really Dan? On the drive, Toure was explaining many things. If you ask Chester about what he talked about, forget it. She was asleep the entire time. Kirsten, who usually always sleeps in the car was wide awake and she and Dan conversed with Toure the whole trip. Since there was not much traffic and we only stopped once, we made it there in record time, under 3 hours. Toure couldn't believe it so our first round was on him. We made it to our accommodations, dropped our stuff and hit the bar. More conversation ensued and then it was time for dinner. We said goodbye to our guide and arranged for him to pick us up the next morning for the waterfalls.

Dinner was traditional fare at one of the hotel restaurants and we ate, drank and headed back to our room. We were tired and knew we had an active day ahead of us tomorrow.

Dan's final day! We had an early morning wake up call so we could beat the huge tourist groups to the lakes. Toure said that by the afternoon, as many as 15 buses with tons of tourists will be unloading and starting their trek through the park. We had showered, ate and were ready to go at 9 am. It was a short drive to the park from our hotel. We were excited to start the hike to the waterfalls.

It was another warm and sunny day and we were ready to be active. The park is massive and beautiful. We hiked down to the first lake and took a ferry across to the upper part of the lakes. We started on the paths and hit several waterfalls right away. We were blown away by the different colors of the water and how clear and clean they are. You can see the fish swimming and everything all the way down to the bottom of the lake. It took about an hour and a half to walk around the first part of the upper lakes. We didn't even see all of them. We made our way back to the ferry and took a different boat to the lower lakes. It was on this 20 minute ferry ride that Toure got a phone call. During the call he said "Dan Boler". We turned and looked at Toure who just informed Dan that he had left his passport back at the hotel. Really Dan? Really? Rookie move! Wow, but another disaster averted!

We toured the lower lakes and the waterfalls are just amazing. The scenery was incredible and it was really just an amazing day. We walked over 8 miles looking at this beautiful national park and all its glory. We shared a drink at the end and headed to our new city. Oh wait, no we had to stop off at the hotel first to pick up Dan's passport. We had a few hours drive from the park to our new city: Zagreb. This is our guide's home town and he is vey proud of it. It is a beautiful city. Since it was Dan's last day he asked if we wanted part of a city tour today. We said sure and then we were parked and walking around another incredible Croatian city. We walked all around the "new part" of town. There are many Catholic churches, public squares, markets, coffee shops, restaurants, and bars. The architecture is a mix of Communist and Baroque. There are several buildings that our guide described as horrible and ugly- communist style- and then the European style. Lots of yellow buildings, they painted all their important buildings yellow.

We made our first shopping stop at a souvenir shop and got everything we needed- lots of t-shirts. We informed Toure that we are one stop shoppers and don't need to worry about more shopping. We continued to walk through town and through the Catholic Church at the top of a hill. It was huge and beautiful. Toure explained everything inside the church and how there was a wall all around it at one time to protect it during the late 18th century. The last thing he pointed out to us at the church was the chandeliers. They were very ornate and very gold. He asked us a million dollar question to see if we could guess where they came from. We had guesses from France, England and China. All wrong. They were from Las Vegas! One of the casinos there was getting renovated and a Croatian man bought the chandeliers and donated them to the church since they needed new ones. No one really likes to talk about where they came from.

We continued to walk around in the late evening sun and had a beer and one of the best breweries in town. Dan had the sampler of beers and we all kept getting to know each other. We continued on and had dinner together too. Dan was on a quest for a donner kebab, but Toure convinced us otherwise and we had local food- which was a lot like the donner kebab. It was really good and cheap.

From dinner, Toure took us to our hotel and we settled in for the night. We were pooped. We walked a ton and were sad that it was Dan's last night. Plus he had an early wake up call to catch his 6:45 am flight. Toure, unfortunately, was also Dan's ride to the airport and set his pick-up time at 5:15.

The day was really incredible to see all the scenery from the parks to the history of the capitol city of Croatia.

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