Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro
I usually don’t use magazine articles as the basis for my trip planning, but one time I was reading a plane magazine, and caught an article about Plitvice Waterfalls in Croatia. The place was so alluring, that I decided to plan a trip there. We also included Zagreb and Dubrovnik on the itinerary, and once in Dubrovnik, discovered we were quite close to another two beautiful and significant cities in Bosnia and Montegro, so we unexpectedly got three countries in one trip!
#1 - Plitvice Waterfalls
#2 - Walking the old city of Dubrovnik in Croatia
#3 - Bridge of Mostar in Bosnia
#4 - Walled city of Kotorin Montenegro
#5 - Seeing the yachts of the Montenegro Riviera
#6 - Cheap key-filled escape room
What I would do next:
#7 - Go to Slovenia
#1 - Plitvice Waterfalls - Plitvice is a landscape full of limestone, which has been cut and carved away by the flowing water over millenia. It has left an absolute wonderland of breathtaking waterfalls, which flow from cascade to cascade, each one more beautiful than the next. They have built a series of boardwalks and stairs to traverse the series of falls, and it was delight to turn every corner to see what the water brought. It certainly lived up to the expectations brought on by the article.
#2 - Walking the old city of Dubrovnik - Dubrovnik is an old fortified city built on the coast, and it has retained its charm and original walls throughout all the wars in the former Yugoslavia region. It is small, and fully walkable in a day, including a must-do perimeter walk on the city walls, from parapet to parapet. Within the city, it is easy to get lost in the tiny alleyways, and one finds charming stores and restaurants squeezed into the old spaces.
#3 - Bridge of Mostar - Dubrovnik only needed a day of sightseeing, so we looked outward through a local tour company and hired a car and driver to take us to Mostar, the home of a very symbolic and important bridge. This bridge had been shelled and destroyed during the war, cutting up the main link between the two sides of the city, with were ethnically separate. The rebuilding of the bridge had been a way reconcile the two sides. Here too, in Mostar, the walls and alleys of the inner city were charming and called out to be explored. Plus, the local men stripped down and dove the 50 or so feet from the bridge to the waters below, for a nice donation from the viewers.
#4 - Walled city of ?? - Who can get enough of old walled cities? Certainly not us on this trip. This time we drown to Montenegro to walk the inner alleyways, and arches and narrow roads of this ancient city. I just love getting lost in old inner cities.
#5 - Seeing the yachts of the Montenegro Riviera - a few miles from the old city, the atmosphere totally and completely changed, and instead of old Europe, we were now standing in new, rich, expensive Europe, with multi-million dollar yachts, and a gleaming port with Rodeo drive-like stores and shops, and port facilities like we were standing in the French Riviera. It was an eye-opening contrast.
#6 - Cheap key-filled escape room - Our family loves doing escape rooms when we have a free evening, especially in foreign cities. Sometimes they are great, but this one was lousy. There was very little creativity or “story” and we chased one key after another. Pretty boring.
What I would do next:
#7 - Go to Slovenia - Croatia next door neighbor on the west side is Slovenia, and we have plenty of friends who have recommended that we spend time in that beautiful country. We’ll try to oblige.