Our last days in Dubrovnik were slow and lazy, making the most of the beach weather. We would usually start the day with tea which always came with honey and lemon instead of milk.
Cycling in Croatia is hugging the white line with no shoulder, sweat dripping down your nose, climbing hills and getting cramps in your fingers from grabbing the breaks. It also has an incredible landscape, rocky and mountainous, with tiny bays, fishing villages, and gorgeous beaches one after the other filled with restaurants serving freshly grilled seafood.
We thought we would share some updates on how some of our gear is holding up (bikes, tent, humans) along with some encounters with nature and statistics on the trip to date.
Croatia in summer means an enormous array of fresh produce ready for the picking. I’m totally crazy for summer fruit. In our family fruit reigns as dessert with big bowls of fruit salad, berries and cream, stewed plums or peaches with ice cream or big inviting fruit bowls front and center in the fridge. Also in Australia summer fruit means Christmas and with that holidaaaays. So imagine my excitement when we started riding past cherry, apricot and fig trees laden with heavy branches! It felt like Christmas had come early.
Croatia was our stopover to extend our Schengen visa. Now with unlimited time (well, up to three months) and long sunny days we slowed our cycling right down. Basically we would ride 30-50km as early as we could before the heat set in and stopped with long muti-day rests in-between. The Croatian coastline is filled with beautiful inlets and marinas, tiny beaches, old stone towns and hundreds of campsites and apartments. The difficulty now was deciding which gorgeous spot we should stay at!
As soon as we began riding in Croatia everyone seemed to mention Plitvice as a must see. From Croatian friends back home to apartment hosts to shopkeepers, all fingers seemed to be pointing us straight to that direction. But nothing could have prepared us for the incredible natural wonder that is Plitvice.
Standing at the international counter in Budapest’s Central Station we met with an interesting hiccup. Most people take a direct train to Croatia, arriving a few hours later with barely a delay. Most people do not have loaded touring bikes. And the two daily trains from Budapest, Hungary to neighbouring Croatia did not have bike or luggage carriages.