Jasmine, Pam (girl from Toronto staying at our hostel) and I headed to Split, Croatia today. The bus left at 11:10 and was pretty uneventful. The bus wasn’t full so we each got a pair of seats to ourselves and at the border, the driver just collected the passports and took them to the office and returned about 10 minutes later and we were off. The drive along the Adriatic coast is beautiful. It reminds me of the drive from Kahului to Lahaina on Maui.
We got to Split around 3:30 and headed to our hostel and got checked in. Then Jasmine and I headed out to explore the city. We went to Dalmatican’s Palace and bought a ticket to see the cathedral, crypt, Jupiter’s temple and climb the bell tower. The only thing worth it was the bell tower. The crypt, cathedral and Jupiter’s temple were all pretty much a let down and a waste of money. The view from the top of the bell tower was pretty and we were there just before sunset, and although it was cloudy, it was still pretty.
We walked the streets of the palace some more- the streets within it are lined with cafes and stores. Then I grabbed some food to go and we headed to a beach to have dinner. Since it was a little stormy, the beach wasn’t exactly worth it, but it was a nice view to enjoy dinner. Then we just went back to the hostel and hung out.
I went out to explore the city this morning. There’s an open air market where everything from souvenirs to fresh fruit and veggies are sold so I walked around that for a while and bought an apple (not that great). It was sprinkling at this point so I stopped in a cafe and had a hot tea to try to wait out the rain. The rain didn’t stop so I continued anyways. There’s a park call Majran on top of a hill in the middle of the city that locals go to to escape city life so I decided to check it out. The views from the path I took were nice, but there’s not a whole lot in the actual park. There’s mostly gravel paths surrounded by vegetation, so it’s a nice place to walk around, but there’s not much else to do. Granted I only explored a small portion of it, so maybe there’s more to do elsewhere.
On the way back to the city I stopped in at a local wine and food shop and got to try all of these jams and cheeses with truffles in them! I didn’t know truffles were popular here, but apparently they are! I ended up buying a pear and truffle jam because it was delicious (sorry Sterling)!
Then I headed back to the palace to find somewhere to eat and ended up at this fancy wine bar cafe. It was a bit expensive, but I had a lovely meal so it was worth it. I had a glass of wine, pea and mint soup and baked Brie. So good! Then I walked around a little bit more and headed to the hostel to figure out how to get to Kotor tomorrow.
The internet told me I could take a bus at 6am that got me into Kotor at 1pm, which sounded early, but like the best option. I don’t totally trust buying tickets on the internet here so I walked to the bus station (about 20 minutes away) just to confirm. Sure enough, the lady selling international tickets said the only one to Kotor tomorrow was leaving at 2:30am. No thanks. So I bought a ticket to Dubrovnik for 8am and am hoping I can get a bus to Kotor from there in the afternoon, but if not, I’ll just spend the night in Dubrovnik and head to Kotor the next day. Then I stopped and got some food for dinner and the trip tomorrow and headed back to the hostel.
Jasmine and 3 of our roommates (2 French girls and 1 Canadian guy) were playing cards when I got back to our room so after I sent a quick email I joined them. Jasmine taught us a game called Shithead which is really fun. We played for a while and then some of them went and got some food and wine and we continued playing. I got a free bottle of wine from the hostel as it was my fifth stay at the family of hostels known as the Balkan Backpackers and on your fifth stay you get a bonus. Every hostel is different, some it’s free laundry, some it’s alcohol or food. I just had my laundry done in Mostar so I was glad it wasn’t free laundry!
After we finished playing I quickly showered and got packed up so I could be ready to leave early.
**Photos to come, the internet is not being cooperative