Croatia. More beautiful than I ever imagined. Part VI.

DUBROVNIK | 2 DAYS

After thinking that life could not get any better after ‘paradise place Mljet’, we arrived in Dubrovnik. We had little expectations and definitely didn’t think it could top our experiences we had had to date.

Arriving at our apartment late in the afternoon, which was close to the port, we had a few hours gathering ourselves towards ourselves before preparing for dinner. Being in a ‘city’ again, I felt it appropriate to maybe brush my hair, for the first time in 5 days, and splatter on a dash of make up.  I felt civilised again.  Whether this was a good or a bad thing, I really wasn’t sure!

Whilst one can easily take the bus from the port over the hill to the main old part of town, we decided to walk. The ‘stroll’ was longer than we expected in our ‘not havianas dinner sandles’ however, allowed us to explore areas of the city we may not have seen otherwise.

Once reaching the main part of town we found our way to the Old City wall. We were starving so found the first restaurant we could lay our eyes on and found a seat. The food was good and we started to adjust from the quiet chilled out tranquility of Mljet to the enigmatic energy of Dubrovnik. And feeling revitalised after our meal, we ventured off to explore the Old Town. The notion that life could not get better was swiftly washed away as we explored the cream marble streets and baroque buildings.  It’s no exaggeration that you feel as if you have just stepped off the set of Games of Thrones!

Not wanting to leave, we finally dragged our tired bodies back for a good nights rest.  Keen to try restore as much energy as possible for the 2 days that we had left.

With a few things on our bucket list for Dubrovnik, we were up early with a busy day ahead of us.  We had cut down our time in Dubrovnik for an additional day in Mljet and we now wished that the lost 24 hours would magically reappear!  Alas, with no wand at hand we plotted our next day with an itinerary that could rival any complex shoot production schedule.

First on the agenda was walking along the Old City Wall.  In two minds as to whether to pay the 10 pounds to enter (as one could see we had become accustomed to our cheap penny lifestyle!), we did not regret our decision as we walked along the wall with the most magnificent view of the red tiled roof top city.  As the sweat drenched our clothes, we rounded the corner atop the narrow walkway to be greeted with the azure sea and dotted red and yellow kayaks snaking their way across the bay below. The water sparkled and once again we pinched ourselves, not believing that life HAD just got better.  As we winded down the Old Town Wall, we started to keep our eyes open for the inlet to Cafe Buza, a bar that sits half way down the wall, situated on the rocks that jut into the sea.  As a tip from my sister – this was a ‘not to miss’ spot!  Eventually finding our way there (with a bit of getting lost and asking around), we were delighted to find they served Aperol Spritz amidst a dreamy location that allowed cooling off by means of some high jumps off the rocks into the sea. The bar had a relaxed and welcoming atmosphere, with both locals and tourists sprawled out and tanning on the cascading rocks below.

After maybe just one too many Aperol Spritz, we missioned along to catch the beginning of our sunset kayak tour!  Whilst you can book online, we had been approached by a key operator in town the night before and promptly arranged our tour with them at that point. They took our mobile numbers and were very accommodating throughout the next day, keeping us up to date with our booking and whether we were running on time for our tour.

Arriving at the spot to depart (below the old city wall), we were handed our life jackets and pushed out on the water. Ever the competitive pair, Lou and I were determined to be heading out front! Definitely not ones to be left behind!  Thank goodness for Captain Steyn or else I would not have never even been in the running, despite my budding competitive nature! Our tour took us out to a quiet enclaved beach where some crazy folk (mostly mad Aussies!) did some extremely high jumps off the cliffs and the rest of us powered up on bananas for the next segment of our trip.

We did a loop of Lokrun Island where our guide tried to scare us with the legend of the Lokrum curse…of people who went there at night and were never seen again – secretly I was happy to be safely seated on my kayak with a simple wave to the island and any suspected inhabitants, dead or alive.  As we passed the island, we faced Dubrovnik and the Old City Wall. Once again, the deep orange Croatian sunset surrounded us as we headed in to shore with inspired spirits from our intrepid adventures passed and the memories of a trip so special that it had wedged it way safely into a permanent place in our hearts…

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