Hello again! I forgot to tell you about my first accident on this trip! The last day in Albania I wanted to tip my chair away from my bag to pick it up whilst still sitting on it -but it fell with full power back on my foot! Studpid I know, but just one of those incidents..My poor second toe('index toe;)) got all the weight on the tip and the pain was so insane I almost threw up! This resulted in me wearing flipflpos all the time, even when riding. This picture is taken over a week later and now 16 days later its just totally black. And dead, getting ready to fall off I hope (not the toe itself!)
Not to mention Xaviers close -up combat with one of the many stray dogs(!) - in Greece this time. He is usually riding too fast for the dogs to catch him, they keep on waiting for me but I have learned a trick; I just stop and they stop and lose interest right away: anyway, this time the dog didn't give up hunting Xavier down the street and in the end managed to get a big taste of his leg. After this Xavier stops as well.
We got closer to the border between Montenegro and Croatia and were looking for a place to camp before crossing, I like to enter a new country in the mornings for some reason, but suddely we were actually out of Montenegro. I mean, we had to go through the border post so we knew, but we didn't have a choice since we didn't find a camp spot before. Just up the road we found a hidden spot behind a closed down duty free shop and camped there. We were quite hidden, but a man in a car stopped for a long time in the main street looking at us, it was a bit freaky, but eventually he left. In the morning something dawned on me; 'Xavier, did you notice something strange with the border crossing yesterday?' '..Noo?' 'Did we actually see a welcome to Croatia sign?' Haha, we had spent the night in No man's land, between Montenegro and Croatia, that's probably why the man in the car (bordercontrolperson?) was checking what the #¤%& we were doing..It's not easy with all these countries and crossings, it gets mixed up.Well actually, as we crossed from Albania to Montenegro we delivered the passports through one of the windows in a booth (Albania) and we got them back through the next door window (Montenegro) so it's not really our fault we might get confused :p
Xavier and a Montenegro mooing cow close to the border
So finally in the morning we came to the Croatian border. It's hot, it's early and we are back in the EU. Here I must squeeze in an apology to the people who have been sending me text messages and trying to call; I am not answering outside the EU, the prices are too high. I have a Norwegian mobile with a prepaid card and it costs 10 NOK per minute to answer and 4NOK to send a sms. So, sorry, I'm on a budget.
Anyway, the man in the booth hardly looked at our passport/ID card, but there were some other border guys hanging around watching how another border police man was more or less dismantling an Albanian car whilst the three men from the car patiently waited for him to find all or nothing..(we didn't stick around to see the outcome) Now we got talked to again, by one of the hanging around men; he reacted to Xavier's appearance:'don't you know this a border crossing?! You cannot wear that! You should be wearing shirt and pants!' What the heck?!! It's 30something degrees and Xavier is usually riding in his shorts, now he's trying to handle holding and maneuvering the bike and Bob to put on his shirt AND get out of the way of the cars behind us. Not easy. I try with an understandingly uplifting joke to ease the tension, no reaction from the border guy. He shipped us off without a smile. Welcome to Croatia.
Back in the EU. Croatia, the land of tourists.
WIKIPEDIA: Tourism is traditionally a notable source of income, particularly during the summer months, but also more recently during the winter months as well, due to an increase in popularity of snow sports such as skiing. With over 14 million tourists annually, tourism generates revenue in excess of euros8 billion. Croatia is ranked among the top 20 most popular tourist destinations in the world, and was voted world's top tourism destination in 2005 by Lonely Planet.
We ride towards Dubrovnik. About 19km outside we pass the airport and I get the idea to make a stop to see if there are any planes from Norway landing soon; it's a popular holiday destination and maybe we will meet someone we know? A plane from Oslo landed 10 minutes later, but then we just lost interest and left.
We reach Dubrovnik early afternoon after a lot of climbing. As we reached what seemed to be the top, we saw Dubrovnik far far down there. Tempting to just pass the town all together to avoid the hard work climbing up again, but we wish to make a stop here. It's pretty:
Oh man! People everywhere! Cars, traffic, people, people and more people, and we park the bikes and sit down in the middle of a square next to the old town wall. Xavier goes to get some currency, croatian konu, and I watch the bikes. A man sitting next to me is curious about the solar panel I use for charging my phone and we start talking; it turns out he has a sales stand and he suddenly pulls out a pair of golden sandals he wants to give me! Perfect! I have been looking for something like that for some time :)
Xavier and the nice man with the golden sandals
Now it's time to hit the beach! But we got a bit too hot on the way and made a stop in a marina area, where we made a picknic in the park. Suddenly a couple came up to us and started speaking Norwegian - they saw Bob and his flag and wanted to make contact, and complimented us for living like this -thank you, it's really inspiring to meet people like you, who fully give your support and smiles! I wish i would have remembered to make a photo, I can only blame the heat I guess ;) And thank you so much for your water funding, it has been very much appreciated and needed!!
Dubrovnik has alot of tourists. But also a lot of beaches. We try to find a place that fits both us and the bikes without stress and in the end we find a place on the little penninsula which is built up of camping and hotel resorts:
I found a pink donut in the water by the marina! And no, there was no little kid crying having lost it, I triple checked!
To see life upsidedown is always benefitial
We ended up camping here behind the changing rooms. I was a bit uncomfortable with it but it turned out fine
..and who can resist this sunset?
We go to bed late and get up very early so noone will see us 'camping' and in the morning we are normal beach people again, works surprisingly well. We still automatically wake up at 5am anyway and get time to go for a walk and wait for the grocery shop to open at 7am, do yoga AND swim before anyone comes to work! In the afternoon we leave the bikes and go to explore the old town of Dubrovnik:
Xavier walked through the city wall, to see another beach.
It's not been easy following all the series people watch these days, but we HAVE heard about Game of Thrones, yes, but I have never seen what it is, and did not know that this is the big thing here in Dubrovnik. So I was a bit confused when I saw all these 'medival'looking figures walking around:
And everywhere people tried to sell us Game of Throne walks, in all kinds of packages. This is probably not news to you fans, but if you are real hard core fans you can go to Dubrovnik and really sink into the feeling of being a part of the show.
'Dubrovnik was the main filming location in Croatia for King?s Landing, a fictional city in Game of Thrones, the famous television series based on the series of fantasy novels ?A Song of Ice and Fire? and distributed by HBO. For those who have seen the series and are passionate about it, a visit to Dubrovnik will become a beautiful déjà vu because of the way in which it was so well integrated into the setting of the series.'
We have a sunset chillout at the neighbour resort who are advertising with DJ's, ballett and Circe de soleil performance, I am not going to bother telling you anything about it besides it was awkward, sexist and nothing to write home about. I just wanted to leave but hung in because Xavier likes these chillout DJ sessions. And the sofa was comfy
We leave Dubrovnik 5 am the following morning. Now we go slower then ever, we stil have 1 week before our meeting in Split and we take the opportunity to visit more beaches, beautiful places, and I keep on thinking about suggesting this and this place to family members. Of course it gets totally mixed up after some time. But one place stands out, Slano, for the nice mixture of things to do, see and both a small town center and the extended beach area which is perfect for families with small kids. We have a nice encounter with the girl at the tourist information who is doing her research in local food, culture and environmental awareness, and we ill in a VERY detailed questionaire (which was right up our alley btw)
We talked a little about the last war and ex- Yugoslavia and this place had been bombed to almost nothing so the people who remembered where not that into the Serbs(who are a big part of the tourist crowd in Croatia..bummer)
I had to make a photo of the dominant 'new'built hotel after the war. Not really, eh, fitting in.. is it.
Selfies on the bridge
Xavier starts climbing the trees at this point..he has observed some Caroub trees, yummi!!
Should be enough for some time..?
The Great wall of China? No, a smaller one in Croatia.
BOB is looking like a summer beachparty animal these days!
#reise #travel #sykling #cycling #changeyourlife #montenegro #croatia #gameofthrones #dubrovnik #adventuretravel #cily #xavier