Sunday, May 6, 2007

Start of Travel

May 3-6, 2007

Work is behind me and the unknown path lays ahead.

I stated by flying to Zagreb catching the bus to the center and than walking in circles looking for my hotel. I was surprised by their English but in the days to come I have found out that it seems everyone seem to speak at least some English. Maybe English will not be as common when I get more away from the really big cities. I walked through the city visiting a couple of big churches and the main city sites except did not have time for any museums. There is a lot of green areas in the city center and I enjoyed watching some of the locals using these areas. There was a dad teaching his daughter to ride a bike and I found this really funny. She did not have the hang of getting started but once going around and around in circles she went.

I was not really impressed with Zagreb. It is a pretty city but seems small and not a Prague but than again what city besides Prague is. I did like the beer and found it to be a good price.

On to Dubrovnik and from the first site of the city from the bus from the airport I was really impressed. I have been looking forward to seeing the walled city and it has not let me down. I arrived at the bus station and as the guide book said their were people there trying to rent out rooms. I talked to a little old lady and am staying in a room of her sons house. In talking to her about the room it was a real mix of English and German but I found this funny but seemed to understand almost everything. Zeer Goed (Very good dutch spelling but means the same in German). I find it strange staying in someones house I don't know but they are friendly and seem to want me to feel at home.

After getting my room I walked down to the old town and the walls are huge. Since I really like castle type of places I was in love. I got a little bit of a feel of the city and headed back up the hill to try and find my room. I stopped at a park bench with a great view down a cliff out over the sea. I thought I was looking west towards Italy but when the sun set I found that Dubrovnik is a weird freak of nature and the sun sets in the north here. Even with my great sense of direction I made it home without a problem.

The following morning I walked down toward the old town stopping in a cemetery with a church to look around. I think they use the graves more than once or people here must be rich because the grave stones are huge.

On down towards the town stopping in a car park looking over the sea and also Fort Lovrjenac. The fort was for protection of north west side of the city. It surprised me this great location was used as a car park but at least I was able to use it to take a few photos. On to the fort. I walked up to the fort which seemed like it had a hundred stairs but by the end of the day I felt like I had done a million stairs. The fort over looks the city and is 4 or 5 stories to the top from sea level where they begin.

From the fort it was onto the city walls. What does this mean more and more stairs. The city sits on a hill and it is 3 or 4 stories from one gate to the main street of the old town. The top of the wall is about 2 to 3 stories above the gate and the towers are even higher. The book says it is 2K/1 1/4 Miles around the city on the wall. Since I did not see the sign saying recommended way I walked this 4 miles in the wrong direction going up stairs, down stairs, up stairs, down stairs. My legs were fried by the time I got off the wall.

After lunch I took a boat out to Lokrum island. This is only a short distance from the old city and figured this would be relaxing. Once I got to the island I saw there was a fort at the highest point of the island. You know what they say "it would be a shame" if I came all this way and did not go to the fort. Up, Up, Up. Not many stairs but a big hill. I made it to the top and it had a great view but my legs did not seem to be very impressed. I did make it back down and than via boat and bus back to the room. I was ready to crash. My land lady had other plans the lock on the door to my room was not working and they had been working on it for 2 days. Today they had someone else to have a look at it. Not a big deal just found it sort of funny. They were really concerned about the lock and I could care less but after about 45 minutes it was fixed.

Sunday after a long needed sleep I was ready for more but figured not a huge number of stairs. Down to the bus station and ferry station to check on times for moving on in the coming days and than onto Cavtat. I caught a boat in the old town going to a small town about a half hour boat ride from Dubrovnik. The boat ride was bouncy and a little bit wet and about half way we made a detour to save a boat. We went slamming into a dock where a man jumped on. Out to where a boat was that seemed to have broken lose from the dock. Once along side the man stepped from one boat to the other. I am always impressed to see people do this with both boats bobbing up and down and for them it seems to be no effort. I have problems getting from the boat to the dock or the other way around. YEA the boat is saved.

Cavtat was a pretty little place on a bay/harbor/cove not sure what it is called. It has a couple of churches and I visited both of them. I also took a walk up a hill across from the town and took a few pictures. I kept walking on up hill where there was a path on a cliff above the sea. Great place to set and enjoy the view.

On the way back from Cavtat no escaped boat. Darn!

More later,

1 comment:

  1. This is your sister. Enjoyed reading your blog and your pictures. Like how you talk about things you see(like the dad teaching the girl to ride a bike) and how you feel (like your legs were fired). This shows how somethings are the same all over the world. Would like to see you talk about interesting foods you try.