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Fall 2015 Balkans Trip Report - Mostly Croatia & Slovenia

Fall 2015 Balkans Trip Report - Mostly Croatia & Slovenia

Old Oct 16th, 2015, 03:49 PM
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His_Dudeness, I find it interesting that you visited Klagenfurt. It has popped up on my radar on a few preliminary trip plans, because Klagenfurt is an optional entry/exit airport for Ljubljana due to its proximity. So I had thought about spending a night there at one point but never did.

Ljubljana is one of those towns I've fantasized about spending a week in. I love the fact that it's a beautiful town without many tourists. Then again, I have no idea what I'd do there for a week - it's really not that big. It might be a good base for day trips to some of the places I've never seen (e.g. Klagenfurt). I've also wanted to explore little towns like Kamnik, Slovenia. And the Logarska Dolina (Logar Valley) is supposed to be really beautiful. I wouldn't mind returning to a few other places I enjoyed in Slovenia. I think a return trip is in my future.

If you get back, try to visit Slovenia's tiny coastline. The beautiful seaside town of Piran is a gem. And Istria in Croatia just to the south is really nice too - I loved Rovinj as well (with a similar feel to Piran). A trip to Slovenia, Istria, and Plitvice Lakes National Park would make a nice compact little trip, actually.
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Old Oct 16th, 2015, 04:54 PM
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I've been collecting TR's for this region and you have helped build mine, and Andrew's always excellent reports and photos have had me push this area up my bucket list a bit, too.
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Old Oct 17th, 2015, 12:06 AM
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Thanks for the TR which I enjoyed reading.

Your description of Dubrovnik jived with out experience <almost Disneyesque in its cleanliness and postcard look. It is really a solely tourist destination.> In many ways we were quite ambivalent about southern Croatia far preferring Istria in the North and the Slovenian coast that another poster mentioned.

However, we were deeply affected by our overnight in Mostar. I really think this is an excellent place to take a guide as there is so much to learn about the war, the history and the context of what happened in Bosnia. It helps enormously to have someone to 'explain" the town and the history to you.The afternoon we spent with Alma remains one of the highlights of our traveling life, her story and perspective was quite extraordinary. I highly recommend her to anyone else heading to Mostar and hoping to learn something about what happened here.

http://almasguidedtours.blogspot.com
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Old Oct 17th, 2015, 02:35 AM
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Nice report His_Dudeness, I'm heading to those places next

Do you have any picturesque photos to share?
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Old Oct 17th, 2015, 05:31 AM
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I'm still trying to figure out photo sharing and will post photos when I get that squared away.
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Old Oct 17th, 2015, 06:01 AM
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Fodors don't allow direct photo sharing, but you can post link to your photo website/blog ^^
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Old Oct 17th, 2015, 11:43 AM
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Hi His Dudenes,

Great report. Did you get to see Budva, it is a great small town in Montenegro.

I recommend that you try to organize sailing trip from north Adriatic to mid Adritaic. Islands are the best Croatia has to offer and one of a kind experience. Nothing compares to Croatian Islands not even Greece.

Start north, Visit Cres, Losinj,Pag, Kornati, Hvar, Vis and Mljet.

Trust me this has to be one of most spectacular sailing experiences that you can get. And it is also very safe. Adriatic is a closed sea, no huge storms etc.
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Old Oct 17th, 2015, 04:39 PM
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Thank you for taking the time to post your TR, great read full of information. Just the way I like them! We have booked a week at a lodge in Landol, Slovenia for the first week in June then we head to Rovinj, Mali Losinj, Plitvice, Zadar then onto Split for an 8 day cruise through the islands. You have given us lots of ideas, thank you.
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Old Oct 20th, 2015, 07:16 AM
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Enjoying this report about area that I have never visited, but would love to.
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Old Jul 22nd, 2018, 05:54 PM
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HisDudeness, I hope you are still checking the Fodors forum. I discovered your wonderful and very helpful trip report today. We are hoping to go to Croatia and Slovenia, and perhaps Bosnia & Montenegro in spring 2019, probably last week of April and first week of May.

My husband doesn't mind driving in Europe. I love your descriptions of the scenic drive to Kotor and your drive from Skofja Loka through the Alps. Can the driver enjoy the scenery while driving? Are there enough safe places to pull over and enjoy the views? Would you describe the road/driving as scary? Are you on a cliff? Are their guardrails? Even though my husband will be the driver, I am a bit nervous on mountain roads. For example, I could never have driven over the mountain to Cadaques, Spain, but my husband did. The road was switchbacks and we were on the edge. I was nervous but we survived!

Thank you! And thanks to anyone else who can answer my questions!
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Old Jul 22nd, 2018, 11:25 PM
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Day trips from Croatia to Mostar are a waste of time. Everyone gets herded to the 'must-see' places, and the result for many is that of disappointment.

You need to stay around fora few nights, linger, loiter, and try to get under the surface of the place. Much of it looks like a sanitized war zone, cleaned and tidied up. But that's what it is, a former war zone, that saw awful things in the early 1990s. The people want us to see, and imagine, what they went through. But most tourists just bypass all that.....complaing about the tacky souvenir stalls, and not very good meals.

The same can be said of Saravo, a much bigger place than Mostar, but the evidence of what went on there not too long ago is there practically on every street corner.

That happened while the world stood by, and did very little to stop the daily slaughter of innocents.
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Old Jul 23rd, 2018, 07:01 PM
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@ KarenWoo: Please start your own thread!
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Old Jul 24th, 2018, 12:14 PM
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Originally Posted by kja
@ KarenWoo: Please start your own thread!
Kja, I do not want to start my own thread just yet because we are in the very very preliminary planning stages. I have been reading trip reports, and wanted to ask HisDudeness (if he is still on this forum) specific questions about his trip, specifically the scenic drives he writes about. However, when we have our definite dates and I have a more specific itinerary based on guide books, etc., I will definitely start my own thread. I know you have been to Croatia, so I will look forward to your invaluable advice.
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Old Jul 24th, 2018, 12:21 PM
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LancasterLad, I agree with you that staying in Mostar for at least one night is better than a day trip. When I get my guidebooks and can plan a more detailed itinerary, I will seriously consider at least one night in Mostar. However, if we can't do that, I would see if we can hire alma, the guide that WellTraveledBrit recommends if we go just for the day. That would be better than going on our own, I think. And I would definitely hire her if we stay one night, as well.
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Old Jul 25th, 2018, 11:00 PM
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KarenWoo. Hi, if you're making the effort to get all the way to Mostar, then also consider an extra night, with an easy run out to Medjugorje. It's easy to reach by car or public bus in about 45 minutes, the view are pretty neat as you climb up and along the plateau.

Medjugorje used to be just a small sleep town, until one day some walkers saw an apparition of the Virgin Mary. The place is now a big Roman Catholic Pilgrimage site. The setting is beautiful, some nice walks, and enjoy what's going on with Pilgims from all over the world doing their bit. It's a bit 'cheesy' too with souvenir stalls selling anything they can with a Virgin Mary slant.

We went to Medjugorje twice, as interested sceptics on both trips. We left as sceptics too, but we really enjoyed the vibe up there, especially around the church where several outddor services were going at the same in different languages.
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