Croatia was the country we spent the longest time in, so it seems right to collate the cities we visited together into bumper blog post to finalise this series!
First stop in Croatia was Zagreb, the capital city. Although it was about an half an hour walk from the train station to our accommodation, it was worth doing as it helped us find our feet in the city to begin with. The airbnb we stayed in was perfect for what we needed, with a balcony to sit out on, a traditional bakery across the road and only a short walk to the centre of Zagreb.
Exploring cities in the first evening definitely became a routine for us and Zagreb’s evening walk didn’t disappoint as we found an incredible pizza restaurant for dinner and in the centre, there was a music festival on at the time, which was really interesting to watch.In terms of things to do in Zagreb, there is a decent amount of museums and similar to our experience in Vienna, it can be difficult to choose from! The Museum of Broken Relationships is really interesting as it displays artefacts, memories and stories from “broken relationships”, showing the many different layers of relationships. But the Museum of Illusions is also worth a visit as the illusion demonstrations are really intriguing and can require quite a bit of thought to figure out!
Zagreb is also home to the oldest botanical gardens in Croatia, as it was founded in 1889, making it well worth a visit. It is definitely one of the best botanical gardens that I have visited and as it homes more than 5000 plant species, there is more than enough to explore. The greenhouses are really impressive, one was dedicated to lily-pads which is amazing!Next stop in Croatia for us was Split, where we were based for 4 nights. It was planned as a relaxing end to our trip and we definitely spent time at the beach, but being in such a gorgeous country meant it was too hard to resist exploring! We took day trips to Trogir and Braç to experience more of the Croatian culture.
The city of Split is rich in history with Saint Domnius Cathedral and Diocletian’s Palace, which is perfect to explore when the weather is cooler in the mornings and evenings, but there are plenty of beaches close by tohead to when the heat gets a bit much!
The closest beach to our accommodation was Firule Beach which is quite a bit smaller than Bacvice Beach, the beach closest to the centre of Split.
We stayed fairly close to a local harbour and there were plenty of nice restaurant and bars located around Firule Beach. The best restaurant we visited in this area was called Kalafatić, and as it is located so close to the harbour, its a beautiful setting to watch the sunset.
When a day of thunderstorms was predicted for Split, we caught a bus to Trogir, which probably only took about half an hour, making it a good day trip to do from Split. There’s plenty of history to explore here, such as the St. Mark Tower which originally connected the two sides of the towns walls that ran towards the Kamerlengo Fortress. The marina is located close to Kamerlengo Fortress and after few hours of good weather, we sought out one of the beaches along Trogir’s coastline. Unfortunately, the thunderstorms hit Trogir later in the afternoon so we ended up in the closest cafe for cover, before heading back to Split for the evening.
With better weather predicted for our third day in Split, we decided to visit one of the close islands. There are plenty of ferries that leave from Split port throughout the day, but we deiced that visiting the island of Brač for a day would be best for us, price and ferry time wise. The ferry goes directly from Split port to the city of Supetar, taking about 45 minutes and as we caught an early morning ferry, we maximised our time in Supetar. We took our time to wander around the town to begin with as there are plenty of historic cobbled streets and monuments to visit such as Church of the Annunciation.
Supetar’s pebbled beaches are just a stones throw (ha) from the centre and offer stunning views of the mountainous landscape and Split in the distance. This makes the beaches perfect for a chilled afternoon, but I would recommend some kind of water shoes to protect your feet if you plan on going into the sea as flip flops did not work for me!1
Our final evening of the trip was spent back in Split at Karaka, a restaurant located on the Bacvice Beach promenade that was perfectly suited to our needs of a final mediterranean meal. We did manage to have some time relaxing at Firule Beach the next day before heading to the airport, as the interailing adventure came to a close and we caught a flight back to the UK.
Croatia was the best way to end our European adventure as although I adored interailing experience of regularly moving from one city to another, it was good to be able to go home feeling fully rested after a few days relaxing on Croatian beaches! Now it’s time to plan the next adventure I think…