Saturday, March 24, 2012

A Road Trip through Croatian Cuisine

Summer came and then the question arose. Where are we going in August and only with a month in advance? After a look at flights, prices, hotels and finally, we found our destination. Croatia is a destination that had always caught my attention. At 16.30 we were already in the humid heat of Split.

I admit that I did not know much about Split before going there. And above all, I was far from thinking that this seaside resort, close to the Croatian Islands, was such a historic cradle having seen the Greeks, the Romans, the Huns, the Venetians and even the French. And it's also the second largest city in Croatia, but unlike Zagreb, the country's largest city, Split is much more visited.

We went to the rental company, which we had hired through the web. They gave us a new car with just 7000 km and the adventure began. To be honest it was one of the few trips where before going I had not read almost anything about the city because I wanted to let myself be surprised and that's how it was.

After leaving things at the hotel, we went to the old town. Everything was spectacular, with shops, restaurants, and bars. Every corner was worth seeing or photographing. From the seafront, we cannot miss the great Roman wall, which corresponds to one of the sides of the Diocletian Palace, an imposing Roman building.

On the corners are towers. The access is through several doors called Golden Gate, Silver Gate, Bronze Gate and Iron Gate. We enter through the Bronze Gate, in the port side. We end up in the basement, called Podrum, which is home to many shops. But the majority of basements are grouped into a museum. On the opposite side of the palace is the Golden Gate and the large statue of Gregory of Nin.

Inside the palace, many old stones are still standing. For centuries, Split citizens have rehabilitated the interior of the palace, as well as today. This place is home to part of the old town of Split of Venetian architecture, still inhabited. The access to the palace is therefore free, but access to various interesting places are paid such as museums, the Temple of Jupiter, the Saint Domnius, known locally as the Sveti Dujam.

The old town, as well as the outskirts of the old town are listed as World Heritage by UNESCO. Speaking of the Diocletian's Palace where they were just doing a kind of play, in a word I was absorbed. It was a slap to discover that Split is home to the largest Roman building in Europe.

After getting an idea of ​​the incredible city that is Split we decided to have dinner in one of the restaurants we had read in tripadvisor. It is a restaurant whose kitchen is Mediterranean and where they serve fish and seafood at a great price. Croatian cuisine is Mediterranean cuisine, influenced by Turkish and Italian cuisines. On the coast, fish is at the rendezvous and olive oil is omnipresent.

Italy is just on the other side of the Adriatic Sea, and there are many Italian specialties such as pasta and pizzas. We have the possibility to dine on the street or inside and the place is great as well as the attention, not to mention the food. I ordered some tagliatelle with scampi and some fettuccini with tuna both spectacular dishes with a glass of wine and a beer.

A Road Trip through Croatian Cuisine

Day 2

After a pretty good breakfast (not really much quantity but there was a lot of variety), we took the car and headed from Split to the famous Plitvice Lakes National Park. It was one of the places that I really wanted to see. After 3 hours of driving on good roads and at 130 km/h, which is the speed limit of Croatia, we arrived at the hotel where we would spend the night.

It was 13.30 and they still did not have our room ready. The super nice staff kept our bags and told us where to go to buy the tickets of the lakes. The ticket office was less than two minutes from the reception of the hotel. We took tickets and opted for one of the longest tours of the park.

The price includes the boat trip on the largest lake, and the trip in a kind of tourist train from the parking at the entrance of the park. The frequency of these two internal means of transport is approximately every half hour, and they only work in summer, from April to September. Inside the park there are restaurants, drinks shops and ice creams but we chose to take a sandwich and so we can stop where we would like to.

After about 4 hours seeing lakes, fishes, waterfalls, boat ride and tourist train we arrived at the hotel exhausted. We take a nap. When we woke up it was almost night. We go to the hotel restaurant for dinner. There is nothing expensive and is of good quality. We loved the cevapi, scented ground meat like sausages and grilled and the typical dessert of there and go to sleep.

Day 3

We get up relatively soon and after breakfast we go again to see the impressive lakes to take the last pictures. It took us an hour and a half and being early there were almost no people. So the photos were better than the previous day.

After that we took the car to Primosten. It was worth the stop and so we were hesitating between that and visit the famous waterfalls of Krka, but we read that in August it is almost impossible to visit. There are too many people and it is overwhelming. Perhaps the name is not as heard as Dubrovnik or Split but nothing has to envy them, as it is a small fishing village.

The environment, adds a collection of islands, bays, coves and beaches of turquoise water. Among them, the Raduca beach is one of the most beautiful in Croatia. The medieval center preserves the tranquility of yesteryear, a peaceful fishing village where the construction of a church (Sveti Juraj) stands out on what was once the island, today connected and linked by a street.

We stop to eat. On our terrace, we enjoyed an Olympian calm, only lulled by cicadas and seagulls. We have a bath in that wonderful beach and rent a kayak with transparent bottom and take a ride by the sea. At about 4 we returned to the car heading to Trogir. Although it seemed beautiful it was impossible to park and stop to see the city. We head to the port to catch the ferry to the Brac Island.

Some will ask you why we chose that island instead of the Hvar island, which is famous. The answer is that there is one of the most famous beaches in Croatia called Zlanit Rat, known as the golden horn.

We bought the ferry tickets to Supetar and we took round-trip tickets. Once we got on the ferry we parked the car in the cellar and climbed to the top to enjoy the small cruise. In the cafeteria we have something refreshing. After 50 minutes, we arrived at Supetar and headed to the town of Bol where our apartment would be.

1 comment:

Justine said...

this all looks sooo good! I have never tried croatian food but am tempted now

Kalyan Panja
Kalyan Panja is a photographer and a travel writer sharing stories and experiences through photographs and words