Croatia joined the European Union in 2013, still keeps its currency: Kunas, although you can also use the euro. In fact, they prefer that you pay in Euros, probably they win something extra exchanging the money.
It is another country of the former Yugoslavia and which most suffered in the Balkans war, only 20 years ago!
But this post is going to be about the route:
Croatia route part 1 + part 2:
Total Kms 714,4
4 stages were cumulating 2.592,2 Kms by bike.
This is the continuation of the first part in Croatia, we left the coast again to get a quiet countryside road for the two of us. In this way, we went towards Skradin, a small town that is the gateway to the Krka National Park.
As we liked a lot Plivitce Falls, we had clear that we should visit the Krka Park, where we read here there was a swimming area.
We had booked for only one night, however, as we liked a lot the atmosphere in this little village and the family hotel, we decided “in situ” to stay one extra night!
In fact, we needed. Since we had entered Croatia even our characters changed and everyday we had tense moments. My navigation system didn´t find the addresses, the driving, the heat…in Skradin we had time to relax and reconsider how to continue the route.
That same afternoon, although Evert was pretty tired, went straight to the bath area of the Krka falls. It was very easy to get a boat that leaves every hour to the park.
With this heat, we did not want to do or see anything else, just swim!
It was the best decision, even going in the afternoon. The last boat back was at 9 in the night and we already realized that during the day-mornings this was completely crowded of people.
The water was nice and cool and that color as turquoise, we tried to swim to the falls and it cost a lot, the force of the water dragging you down. It is not allow to swim until the waterfalls, really would be dangerous, although very attractive ;-)
It is a park about 2 kms, perfect distance for swimming and to continue with a walk around, it was beautiful!
Compared with Plivitce, in Krka about 7 pm it was quiet, you had the paths half-empty. Waterfalls and water on all sides, time and space enough to take your photos.
Then, you take the boat back to Skradin!
The next day, although there were two other natural parks to visit highly recommended, we decided we would not do anything. We needed a day without any plan or go anywhere.
Here we redefined the route. The heat of recent days, at 9 am and were nearly 30 degrees, the roads, how Croats drive and advance cars in curves without visibility, etc, we decided that from now instead to stop several days in one place we would try to go faster and to reach Athens in the less time possible.
From Skradin we went towards the coast again and stayed in Podstrana, a beach area on the outskirts of Split.
From here, taking a bus from the hotel you arrive within 20 minutes to the center of Split. When you’re coming to the town, it does not look like anything special: industrial areas, suburbs of high buildings, dormitory town.
However, a few meters from the bus stop you find the Golden Gate, one of the entrances of the wall surrounding the center. You cross it and … ohhh how wonderful.
We were in the Roman Empire! Or in the Middle Ages! Or near the Nile!
As the guide explained us later, effectively, all the cultures of those times passed by here. And as it is still now, the fact of being in the middle of the Adriatic Sea, turns the city into a hotspot of power to control the area.
From Split we continued along the south coast to Ploce where we did a overnight, we had to get to Dubrovnik at the next day, but curiously, Croatia is divided by 12 Kms of Bosnia.
Crossing the border was easy, and we come to our final stop in Croatia: Dubrovnik.
As we did in Split, we chose an accommodation outside of Dubrovnik to have access to swim at the beach and went to the city by bus when the sun went down.
So far, this city was the most touristic we had seen in all the trip, and also one the most beautiful cities.
All surrounded by a wall to which you can enter and do a walk. You find the best spots to take photos and see the city from above. You will see how it has been rebuilt after it was one of the hardest hit cities in the Balkan war.
Many things to explain about this topic, but better to be discussed in another post.
Now is a beauty city that is well worth visiting.
Here we had two excellent days to say goodbye to Croatia.
A country with a lot of history with many very cruel episodes in the, at the same time has a combination of green nature, river water, rocky coast and turquoise waters of the Mediterranean.
It is a country that left us a bittersweet taste, I guess because of the characteristics of our bike and driving trip, so better going by plane ;-)
See you at the next stage: Montenegro.
Nos vemos en la próxima etapa: Montenegro.
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