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The Croatian Coast is beautiful & dramatic with a climate that is similar to Greec. The food is typically Mediterranean, featuring seafood grilled in olive oil with loads of garlic. By staying in "Zimmer Frei"s and going in October, we were spent around 65 euros for 5 days of lodging. The people are friendly, the scenery lovely, the food great, and pretty darn cheap compared to the rest of Europe. So why not go to Croatia? No reason that I can think of.

In between our stint in the parks, we visited two coast towns, the ancient walled sea town of Zadar and Senj a bit farther north. Pictures of both are below.


Zadar is one of the larger coastal cities in Croatia with a population of almost 70,000. The walled central area is a gorgeous mix reflecting the different architecture of the groups who have taken over the city. From Romans to Venetians to Turks to Austrian-Hungarian. Its all in those walls.:
Those of you who have been to Venice will notice the Venetian Lion on top of this arch. It was built in 1573 when Venice was in its heyday. While most of the area inside the walls is pedestrian (the alley ways are too narrow for cars), the eastern section of the old town was smashed to bits by Yugoslav rockets during the 1980's, so some traffic is allowed inside.
This wall is the only remains of Roman and Medieval fortifications. Very old & very interesting. As they would say in "I heart Huckabees", this wall rocks.
This modern statue sits on the easter side, where most of the 1980's bombing, and thus renovation occurred. .
This is a main square in the old center. A great place to people watch and have a rest. In the background you get a feel for the city; it hasn't been all cutsie-d up for the tourons.
Boys on the side - The school was having a break as we walked by and I think this pict says it all.....
This is the renovated version of the Square of 5 Wells, a site originally built by those amazing Romans. It contained access to a cistern via 5 wells. This was the only source of of potable water Zadar had up until 1574. Of course wars with the Turks & Venetians destroyed the water system until 1838, when the Austrians took over.
Here is another view of the main square & the town watch tower.(originally built in the late-Renaissance). The building shows a blend of the architecture as the bottom portion was built in 1562, but the clock tower is distinctly Austrian and built in 1798.
Here is the view from our 15 euro per night apartment. It had a lovely deck overlooking the marina and was a great place for sipping wine or watching the sunset. (next pict).
Similar view, only different time of day.
Dale and I on the deck.
Here is the "beach" at Borik. While the coast of Croatia is striking and similar to Greece, it is lacking in the sand beaches department, although there are a few around.
Here is a shot from Borik (where we stayed), looking back at Zadar. Its about a 10 min. bus ride between the two communities.
The seafood in Croatia is great. I ate squid every day and loved it.

This is this very cool old house located the Varos section of Zadar, which dates back to Medieval times. Anyway, what was interesting about the general area was that the layout was "distinctly Medieval" (at least according to the tourist pamphlet that I lost) in that it was comb-shaped. There was one road that led through the area at the west end, and all streets ran from it, looking like the teeth of a comb. No block grid there....

As you walk through Zadar you come across sections of ancient history, from the Venetian column to the medieval wall, to the Austrian-Hungarian church tower.


This is left over from the Roman days, quite cool. Notice any similarities between the two faces?
The narrow streets of Zadar...

A couple walking along some of the small portion of remaining sea wall

This was a unique stopping place identified as a "Sea Organ." Dale and I were quite curious about the name, and it turned out to be a very interesting stop. The geometric blocks in the foreground have these holes in them, similar to the openings in a harmonica. So the wind blows, hits the holes with varying speed & intensity, and you have this very ethereal noise that comes out. To listen to it, here is a sound file....


This is some of the Old Zadar from Roman times that is still being excavated. Quite interesting to watch. Much of it was just buried underneath the town.

You know you are in Eastern Europe when----
On a completely unrelated note, here is old town Zadar with a very typical Eastern Europe poster. Notice it is an ad for Skechers and there is not a foot or shoe in the poster. What do you think the advertisers are trying to say?


Up the Coast

From Zadar, we drove North up the coast to Senj. The coastline of Croatia features grate views of the Adriatic Sea, the various islands just offshore, tiny villages, and striking cliffs. Its a great drive.
This is a dock at the picturesque town of Senj. The seafood was great, town friendly and the a pretty waterfront area that is quite a gathering place for the community in the evenings.
Here's looking back at the Senj waterfront area. Most of the historical larger buildings bordering the harbor are still intact, and there are actually two castles in the picture (one to the far back left, the other in the foreground to the right)
Here's looking North from the waterfront of Senj. A very peaceful place to visit.
And being part of the former communist system, you have the ubiquitous hallmark artwork of the Soviets.
Here's a view of the town center. Lots of cafes & meeting places. I also like this pict because of the guy in the red, pointing at the pointing guy in the statue. Completely accidental.








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