Countries Visited So Far Click Each For More Info

Entries in Croatia (2)

Diggin' Dubrovnik

656867-1010199-thumbnail.jpgA lot of times we ask ourselves if we’re more into a place than we might otherwise have been because the place we were before didn’t impress us. For example, we were really underwhelmed by Spain in many many ways. Now here we are in Dubrovnik, Croatia and thinking this is one of the nicest places we’ve been the entire trip. It’s been three days now and we’re still just as amazed as the first moment we laid eyes upon it, so I think it really is a truly incredible place.

656867-1010205-thumbnail.jpgPlus, Joy’s family has flown out to meet us here! Judy & Steve (the parents) and Jake & Aimee (the brother and soon-to-be-sister-in-law). The only person missing is Josh, whose new high pressure career in the snack cracker industry has prevented him from joining us. It’s a true family affair, with Jake & Aimee sharing a beautiful 3 bedroom place with us right in the heart of the old town. Founded in the 7th century, the old town is completely walled off from motor vehicles and is one of the most striking and unique cities we’ve seen thus far. Words can’t do it justice, and neither really can pictures. A little touristy for sure, especially when the cruise ships roll in, but not overcrowded or mobbed like so many of the places in Spain.

As far as the food goes, seafood is king here. Being on an isthmus jutting into the Adriatic Sea there’s an abundance of fresh fish. Something we’ve been sorely missing. We’ve already had some fantastic meals, including a great family dinner last night. Speaking of family events, we took a day trip to some of the surrounding Elaphite islands today that was nothing short of spectacular. Some of the most beautiful scenery imaginable and a delicious lunch of grilled whole fish that was so good I had to go back for a second. Oh and a few hours on a beach that was half regular and half nudist, with no effective separation between the two.

656867-1010210-thumbnail.jpgHere’s the thing about nudists – they’re never good looking. It’s never a group of hot college girls frolicking around and playfully splashing each other with water. It’s always old men and women – often difficult to tell apart since each have equal sized breasts and no visible penis. There seems to be a direct correlation between the amount of flab and extra skin a person has and their desire to be naked. It was pretty funny to see Steve take the opportunity to “swim laps” and head off in that direction though…

Celebrating 30 Croatian Style!

656867-1022999-thumbnail.jpgThat’s right, Jason has reached the big 3 – 0 while kicking up his heals in Dubrovnik! September 6th was an action packed day filled with all the things my hubby loves. We began our voyage to the Peljesac Wine Region, driving along the beautiful coastal roads. Our first stop was at Ston, a military fort whose defensive walls are a notable feat of medieval architecture: there is a 5 km Great Wall that surrounds the town. We climbed a small section to get up high enough to check out the awesome view of the salt flats below. I figured this was a good way to build up an appetite for our next jaunt.

Our journey continued along the curvy inland roads, passing gorgeous vineyards along the way. We arrived to a little mom and pop mussels/oyster farm in a secluded bay surrounded on all sides by towering mountains. In order to check out the mussels, and pick which ones we wanted to taste, we had to “walk the plank”. There literally was a shaky thin floor board connecting the mussel platform floating in the water, with the walkway, and we all were concerned about crossing the thing. We all made it safe and sound – it was well worth the risk since our feast of shellfish plucked right out of the water was one of the best we’ve ever eaten. AND my mom even tried her very first oyster!

656867-1023010-thumbnail.jpgJason loves a good nap, so we made sure to allow time in the day to rest up before our big night out at Nautika Restaurant. This is the place to eat in Dubrovnik, hosting many famous people in the past, including most notably the Pope! Once I saw the 8 course tasting menu it offered, I knew this joint would make Jason’s big day complete. It truly was a fabulous dinner, including highlights as shrimp mousse, a lobster medallion salad, shrimp scampi, a lemon meringue and vodka sorbet cleanser, and an almond and chocolate birthday cake. No doubt, this was one of our top meals of the trip leaving big smile on all our faces!

Although I wasn’t sure that as a full-fledged 30-year-old Jason would be able to handle the next couple days of somewhat strenuous activities, he managed to hang in there. Climbing the old city walls of Dubrovnik was awesome. If you were to have only 24 hours in the city, this is the one thing I’d say is an absolute must. The views from on top the mile long walls were stunning, looking out onto the Adriatic Sea, as well over the roof tops of the historical city.

656867-1023018-thumbnail.jpgOur last afternoon excursion over to the island of Lokrum, just 10 minutes away from Dubrovnik, was a lovely trip. We just wandered around the island, checking out the botanical gardens, and eventually chilling out for a bit by the “dead sea” (the salt water lake in the middle of the island). Jason even built up enough strength to try and get one of the wild peacocks on the island to open its feathers for us, although it didn’t happen. This final day with the family ended with a nice dinner at a local restaurant, topped off with us kids hitting up a very cool bar overlooking the lit up old city walls!