Croatia. My oh my dear lord have mercy My eyes have set upon paradise. A 6-hour followed by an 8 hour night train took us from Budapest to Zagreb to Split. Hungary to Croatia.
Split and Hvar both are littered with old castles and fortresses. Old Old Old. Full of knowledge and grace is the stone. The cobblestone underneath your feet and the walls and houses are all made up of their original rock from who knows how long ago. It is as though the people from ages past knew intuitively that their architecture was unique and beautiful and would last. Generations x y and z have left the regal stone towns and graciously built around them with new architecture that somehow just works.
Vines, ivy, palm trees, cacti in bloom all grow in and out of the cracks. Cracks in the smooth cobblestone, cracks in the fortress walls. Poppies! Poppies grow wild in between cracks and all along the rocky coastline. Vibrant red bursts against the clear turquoise waters. The beauty of the coast is indescribable. It looks like all of those images you see for 5 star resorts in far off places where the rich and famous run off to. We were there, except it felt as though we stumbled upon a gem of a place that still was undiscovered by the masses. Granite it was slow season, but hot enough to sit out all day on the rocks with the sun beating down and eventually getting enough guts to jump into the sapphire Adriatic.
Every morning while walking to a new bathing spot the beauty of this place would overwhelm us again. Someone pinch me.
The bay was filled with Boats. Small putter boats with names like amour, Rico, Mickey, and Skipper. Large million dollar sailboats dominated. Cruise ships and ferry liners rocked the bay and caused sneaker waves to crash the shore on top of our towels.
Crabs and lizards scurried by.
Main square held bakeries, gelato shops, and lots and lots of high end restaurants.
One night we splurged and indulged our taste buds at Macondo. That night went from one bottle of wine to 5 and ended with a strip dip in the Adriatic sea.
The stars shone bright and the moon cascaded onto the ocean making it look like silver glass.
Croatia is a gem, I hope to return someday soon.