Sunday, May 27, 2012

A Full One

Since we really had only one full day in Dubrovnik, we started early and made it count. Since everything started from just about the same place and we didn't spend time travelling from one place to another, there wasn't much dead time, though OMG the people from the cruise ships were a bit irksome. Hordes and hordes of dreadfully slow-moving humanity clogging every sidewalk and every walkway, generally stopping in entryways to chat or dig in purses or whatever.

First we took the cable-car up the mountain where there was a phenomenal view of the city (mostly the old city and the harbour).
I really enjoyed the war exhibition, though it seemed awfully one-sided. Still, Dubrovnik undoubtedly suffered tremendously,and in fact there's evidence of it all over: building sites, empty lots with concrete rubble. The fortress on the hill has chunks missing from the walls that obviously were not eroded way, but were exploded out.
After that, we walked the ramparts of old town.
The views were incredible.
I loved the sea of rooftops, as well as the views of the sea and the islands, but I was simply charmed by the glimpses into courtyards and gardens and clothes lines and ruins inside old town.
After walking the walls of old town we went into the nearby fortress. Climbed. Lots and lots of steps. Lee thinks we must have climbed a couple of thousand steps in the last two weeks, and I suspect he's not wrong.
There were steps to get up to the top of the city walls, up to the fortress, p to our hotel, in the salt mines in Poland, up to the fortress in Hvar, the castles in Prague and Budapest - lots of steps.
And all those steps are so worth it, not only for the Smugness Convernng My Glutes factor, but also because the views have all been stunning.
After covering from the fortress we took a boat to the island of Lokrun.
There's a bit of a monastery (I saw laundry hanging in one of the upstairs windows, so it's at least partially in use) and some ruins (I'm weak for ruins).
The island is also full of very noisy peacocks. This guy yelled at me. Or at one or some of his females. Either way, not a pretty sound. Would be effective as an alarm clock sound.
The botanical gardens, on the other hand, are a bit of a joke. The picture below shows the most manicured part of it.
Mostly there are a couple of scraggly eucalyptus and other non-native trees accompanied by tiny cardboard signs tacked on.
There are some perfect sea views though. I'm not sure it gets much better than that.

After the island, Stuart had had enough, but Jennica, Lee and I went to see a Steve McCurry exhibition - he's the photographer who captured the green-eyed Afghan girl in that iconic National Geographic photo, you know the one I mean.
There was a beautiful sunset from the hotel.
These are the steps we had to climb when we arrived in Dubrovnik. They are steeper and more plentiful than this picture shows. Jennica still hasn't forgiven me for them.

I wish we'd had longer in Dubrovnik, but at least we managed to catch pretty much everything at the top of our list.

I'm really not ready to go home, but at least I have the equivalent of a yummy taste in my mouth, and know that I want more!

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