The Western Balkans and Italy will be my 2013 spring trip. I’m looking forward to enjoying the cultural variety while travelling along the Adriatic coast as spring warms up, then heading into the mountains for their spring. It also gets me out of Hua Hin for the hottest time of the year. The trip fulfils a promise to myself to visit Italy again. It isn’t the return trip I’ve had in mind for decades, but Venice will do just fine. Finally I’ve never been to the Balkans so it will be a case of what Monty Python described as ‘And now for something completely different’.
The trip will start in Zagreb, Croatia in mid May. The day after arriving I’ll head to the Istria peninsula (A on map). Some describe Istria as “Croatia’s Tuscany” but they’re selling real estate and packaged tours. Yet it was part of the Venetian Empire and was part of Italy between the ends of WWI and WWII.
Next is Slovenia’s coastal region, then Venice and as much north east Italy as the budget will allow. I’ll backtrack to Slovenia and decide if it’s warm enough to visit the mountains for a couple days. If not I’ll turn south to Croatia, following the coast and island hopping, taking my time as this is one of the major motivations for the trip.
Land travel means passing through Bosnia and Herzegovina so I might as well spend a night there (Mostar on the map) before reaching Montenegro, the next major destination. Should be warm enough now for my tropic thinned blood to venture inland without anything turning blue and falling off.
Montenegro will be followed by a train to Zagreb via Belgrade. If I passed on the Slovenian mountains earlier it’s another 2 1/2 hour train ride to Ljubljana, Slovenia. Either way its back to Zagreb in late June for the flight home.
If you’re not an American baby boomer , this rest of this post won’t make any sense.
To the tune of the theme song from The Beverly Hillbillies.
Come listen to a story about a nerd named Bill
A restless expat, of Hua HIn he’d had his fill.
Then one day he was chatting with a dude,
And out of the din came a new attitude.
Rovinji, Pula, Rijeka.
Well the first thing you know the idea disappeared,
But a nagging thought said May heat is bad here.
An Adriatic spring seemed a good place to be,
So I whipped out the card and booked a flight for me.
Motovan, Mostar, Korcula.