Life on the Mekong and Other Rivers

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blog, including strong statements in support of weinerdog-riding monkeys, are our own, and not those of the U.S. Department of State or the U.S. government.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Jack's trip report

Ljubljana was a beautiful, small European capital in an equally beautiful country. The nicest thing about the city is that bands play in the streets and you can stand in front of everyone and dance.

Lipica is a nice place, too, and just 45 minutes from the capital (just like pretty much everything in the country). Lipica is home to the Lipizzaner horse, which are fun to look at.

And just south of Lipiza, just past Trieste (ed. note: oh, how I wanted to go to Trieste. It seems such a city of intrique) is Piran, a beautiful Adriatic town with a very Italian feel to it. Perfect for exploring small lanes and stairs to strange places.

Or running around the town square.

We stayed a few days in Zagreb with Patrick and Rami and their two kids, then headed to Dubrovnik. The old city there is also good for running.

And running.

But sometimes it's easier to just get a ride.

Luckily there was a small playground near the place we stayed just north of Dubrovnik on a beautiful bay called Zaton Mali. Even luckier, we stopped there pretty much daily to do some sliding, swinging and climbing.

If your traveling companions are flexible, you might just get to go to Bosnia on a whim. Mostar is an interesting old city with a tragic recent past (like so many places in the area).

The road from Mostar to the Croatian border follows a beautiful river valley and passes an old town called Pocetelj. Perfect for a stretch of the legs while others climbed to the castle high above.

On to Montenegro, another meal at a restaurant in Perast on the Bay of Kotor, and an opportunity to charm a free piece of fruit out of the staff. Oranges are particularly easy to get if you point and whine loud enough.

An entrance to the old town in Kotor. A smaller old town than Dubrovnik, but more real, more just a part of town.

Again lucky to find a playground near the Palazzo in Kotor. QT on the swings is always a good thing.

So is just sitting and taking in the view of the bay.

But sometimes you've got to get up and get out on the water.

A beautiful drive through Montenegro takes you to Kolasin, a mountain town north of Podgorica. Plenty of dandelions to pick there.

And even though about 13KM of the mountain road was under construction, causing incredible delays and making for a long day in the car, everyone pretty much kept their cool and made the best of the car time.

But we had to get out in Budva once we hit the coast again to stretch our legs, get some lunch, spend a bit of time out of the car and try to catch things that not everyone can see.

Did we mention the delicous chocolate ice cream? Kotor is a perfect place for a first cone.

And vacation also means that plenty of time was spent hanging out in bed in the morning. Pretty fun stuff.

So yes, we're back. Jack was a trooper as we country-hopped our way through 4 former Yugoslav Republics. Some other pictures of actual people and places we visited and maybe a few stories later.

One note, I successfully avoided 2 tickets during the trip. One a shakedown on the highway in Bosnia, the second a parking ticket in Kotor, Montenegro. Yeah for me!


At 5:56 PM, Blogger BergerandDeFries said...

Looks like an amazing trip! And~Jack is such a big boy. Gretchen misses him! Hope all is well.


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