I love it when the plane lands and you find yourself in a new country – alien landscape, different language, strange people. This is the last leg of my four months trip (but my travelling might not be over quite yet…) and I’m now in Dubrovnik, Croatia with some old friends to celebrate our 20th anniversary of first meeting each other at university.
My accommodation is far removed from anywhere my journey has taken me so far. I am staying at a fancy appartment at the Radisson. It pains me to say that a week here is the same as a month or more in Thailand :os
Even though I am very sheltered in the resort with it’s 9 restaurants, 4 pools, spa, all day activities to keep you entertained, I am very keen to see more of the real Dubrovnik. It is crazy to think 20 years ago when me and my friends were studying hard and partying harder, this place was being bombed to buggery. Thank goodness peace has now bestowed Croatia and the country has recovered from its troubled past.
On Tuesday Het and I did a walking tour of the old city’s walls. We had a fabulous guide who parted his knowledge of all the tragedy this city has had to bare over the years. Most facts go in one ear and out the other, but one haunting fact he shared with us, as we look down on the roof tops of the old city, every new orange roof represents a building that was bombed during the conflicts and has been replaced.
Thursday, Het and I did a bike and wine tour in Konavle. Again, we had a great guide. My cycling skills weren’t so great, especially going uphill :os It was lovely to see some of the Croatian countryside and interesting to hear more about its chequered past. This area was completely bombed in the 90′s, but now life goes on and people have returned to their traditonal life. One house remains untouched, from those terrible times, as a memorial and reminder to the locals of their past.
Info: We did the cycling with Adventure Dalmatia. It was a deal which was 490 kuna for 2 tours: biking and kayaking. There were 3 companies that offered similar trips at the Pile gate in Dubrovnik, but this was the cheapest and also included hotel pickup for the bike tour.