Our 13 day trip to Croatia and Bosnia

Jun 29th, 2019, 11:30 AM
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Our 13 day trip to Croatia and Bosnia

It has been a little over a week since we've returned from our trip so I hope I can recall the names of everything .

FYI: I always write my reports in an effort to answer some of the questions I had when planning for our trip. I will add that these are our opinions and unique experiences. Two people can go to the same place and have very different experiences. That said, donít look for poetry and prose I hope you find this helpful when you're planning your own trip.

Our trip started in Zagreb, Croatia where we arrived by plane (United wasnít too bad this time) early June. I was very surprised at how small and empty the airport was in Zagreb. There was only a small snack shop and a coffee cafe with multiple car rental counters. My husband was meeting me from an incoming flight that was delayed so I spent an hour waiting for him (he was in a different country previously).

We picked up our car rental from Sixt. I was pleasantly surprised by our smooth experience with them as I had read some horror reviews online. They seemed not to know that credit card companies (some) offer full car protection. Anyways, we got a brand new Opal and we were on our way. The roads are easy and the drive to Zagreb (and later to the Plitvice Park and finally dropped it off at Split Airport was a breeze). Renting an automatic car in Croatia and dropping it off (even within Croatia) at a different location is expensive, but sometimes youíve got to go for it. In our case, we stayed one night in Zagreb to relax from our plane ride. One night was more than enough. I debated this and initially had reserved 2 nights at the Sheraton in Zagreb, but Iím so glad I changed it. After pretty much doing most of the Zagreb walk described in Rick Steve's guidebook, we headed to dinner at Vinodol. I had seen this restaurant was highly rated on Trip Advisor and then our hotel also recommended it. We had the octopus salad, the lamb shank, the trout with almond crust, and the pasta with truffles. Yes, we were hungry but I also wanted to try most of these dishes while we were in Zagreb (since I had read that eating out here would probably be the least expensive from the other areas we were visiting on our trip... I'm not sure that was necessarily true.). Anyways, we found the service at Vinodol to be ok (they actually brang out our starters twice instead of our mains but that just meant a slightly longer wait). The food was disappointing. The octopus was very chewy, the lamb lacked flavor and wasn't at all what we were expecting. My favorite were the trout and the truffle pasta, but everything was just ok. I can't recommend this place when I consider its price range. We were expecting much better.

My advice about Zagreb is to get in and out of it as soon as possible. Zagreb looks like what I imagined a typical communist city to look like. We were not impressed. We had a good experience at the Sheraton and although it seemed a bit removed from the old town, it was still within walking distance. As I recall it was a good choice for Zagreb. The next morning, we ate breakfast at the hotel (it was fine, had all the basics). Then we headed off to Plitvice Park. The road trip was very easy and I do believe we passed a toll booth (you pick up your ticket and pay when you approach the park area, credit cards accepted.)

I had reserved our tickets online for the 12:30-2pm time slot and it turned out to be perfect (make sure you print them because you do have to provide them to the ticket booth for the ďrealĒ park tickets (in our case, there was no line). We went to our hotel first (1 of the 4 official park hotels so we couldíve had them stamp our tickets for a second day, but we didnít find that necessary), hotel Grabovac, at noon, but our room wasnít ready. So we headed off to the park. We parked our car without any problems (get your ticket and pay at the counter before you leave). We entered at entrance 1 and followed route c. I never used a map because it was all well posted. We were there on a Saturday in early June and although the most famous part (biggest waterfall) was crowded (mostly by these tour groups), I wouldnít say crowds/tour groups were an issue for us. It was spectacular and anyone telling you to skip this park and do Krka should be smacked a few times to knock some sense into them.

Throughout our travels in Croatia, I was pleasantly surprised at how ďnot crowdedĒ places were! Keep in mind we were traveling June 7 for 13 days (4 days spent in Bosnia... besides Mostar during a few hours in the afternoon, Bosnia was completely empty of tourists). We walked the entire park in around 6 hours (of course we rode the ferry across the lake) and you get into a bus shuttle to take you back to your entrance so you can get back to where you parked your car. There are 3 other park hotels that are inside the park but they had been completely reserved. Bellevue was one that caught my eye and looked nice (from the outside). Our hotel had free breakfast so we took advantage of that the next morning and thereís a supermarket nearby (you need a car) so we made sandwiches for dinner the first day we were there.

The next day, we drove toward Split. We stopped at the Klis fortress (saw it from the outside) and ate lamb at the restaurant below the fortress (recommended by Rick Steves called Perlica). Iím not a big meat eater so my husband and I shared a plate of lamb which came with veggies and we ordered fries (I think we had bread too). It was delicious. I highly recommend a stop in Klis to try this restaurant.

We dropped our car at the Split Airport Sixt car rental without any problems (hooray!!) and caught an Uber to our hotel. Our hotel was more like an apartment building with rented rooms (Priska Luxury Rooms). I think they have 4 or 5 rooms. I highly recommend this place! The staff was so friendly (one of the friendliest we encountered on our trip), the room is so romantic/gorgeous and the location is superb. If you donít mind a few stairs (really there werenít many and stairs are an issue throughout most of the area) youíll love this place. They give you breakfast vouchers you can use at a restaurant on the Riva. Of course we went to breakfast (choose what you want, omelet, sunny side eggs, whatever, got iced coffee and orange juice too). It was just a great experience at Priska!

I was just a little bit disappointed by Split. I understood itís more of a port city, but I guess I had exaggerated my expectations... it happens We spent 2 nights and that was just perfect. We walked around the palace and other Roman remains, walked on the Riva many times, walked around the park (Mejdan Park), ate Cevapcici (Kantun Paulina- cheap, hole in the wall, you can't miss it in Split), ice cream at Luka (overrated, unfriendly staff, icecream was melted even before we bought it), had seafood at Fife (friendly staff, food very functional and portions are on the small side but just right for seafood). I had planned on going to Omish to ziplining, but my husband was more in the ďchilling moodĒ and the more I read about the zipline the more I decided to give up on the idea.

From Split, we took the Jadrolinija catamaran to Hvar. I had booked online and printed our tickets in advance. The departure is very close to the Riva, but keep your eyes and ears open. Initially, we were told the boat was in front of us, but then heard someone else saying they had changed it to another one around the corner. We made a sprint to the right boat (along with 20 other people). Just give yourself enough time to figure things out. The boat is enclosed (I had wondered about that). We got window seats and made ourselves comfortable. It was a nice and relaxing ride to Hvar. You can buy snacks and drinks on the boat (we had bought our own from a grocery store).

When we got to Hvar, we walked to our hotel, Amfora. I highly recommend this place! Itís beautiful with a pool and its own ďbeachĒ area (donít expect sandy beaches in Croatia.. they are all pebbly and rocky and if you are going to swim then definitely get some water shoes). Also, the breakfast was functional, nothing to rave about, but the setting is of course beautiful. When we arrived, I used google maps to get us to our hotel. It took us up steep hills through the neighborhoods. It was a lovely walk, but we later discovered a flatter path next to the water. So just get out of the boat, keep walking left and stay on that pathway. Itís a beautiful walk through cactus plants, lavender, fig and olive trees.

While we were in Hvar, I didnít get the ďpartyĒ impression. Of course there are a few bars near the port but thatís about all I saw. I canít imagine being in Hvar in July/August with all the party animals Iíve read about! For me, it would just ruin the relaxing vibe I got from the island. The island seemed much smaller to me than I imagined, but itís really pretty. The turquoise water, the plants, the views... so pretty. I walked to the fortress to get a beautiful view of the port area too (didnít go inside, didnít look worthwhile to me). We spent 2 nights in Hvar and for us that was perfect. We honestly didn't find the need to rent transportation or to leave the Hvar area around our hotel. We walked a LOT (we always do but we never made it to the other side of the island and didn't really find a need to).

We ate at a Mexican restaurant (Fig Hvar, itís rated highly on TripAdvisor so you can easily find it) and the food was very flavorful (The Croatian food we had during our trip was mostly lacking in spices.. I wouldnít say it wasnít flavorful but it was very basic when it came to spices.) Fig Hvar was a really nice change. The second night we had dinner at the hotel (buffet) which I canít really recommend. It was a solid C+ in terms of quality. To be honest, hotel buffets in Croatia (whether itís for breakfast or dinner were all C quality). This isnít our experience in some of the other countries weíve traveled in so thatís why my DH loves to do his buffet (in other countries, the buffet has been a great way for us to sample a bunch of different foods). The buffets we encountered in Croatia were quite mediocre.

After Hvar, we took another catamaran to Dubrovnik. This time it was with Krilo and we had reserved our tickets online. The boat stops at several islands briefly to allow passengers off before getting to Dubrovnik. The ride was smooth and we got some glimpses of the various islands (Korcula is one island I definitely want to come back to!). When we arrived in Dubrovnik it was hot and very humid. We used Uber to get to our hotel (Hotel Neptune). Our hotel was a 15 minute bus ride away from the old town (the bus stop is the last one when you come back). We took bus 6 I believe and purchased our tickets from the Tisak (looks like a newspaper stand) for 12 kunas (itís 15 if u buy from the driver). I kept debating my choice of accommodations and Iím sooooo glad I stuck to hotel Neptune. It is a part of a larger group of hotels all next to each other so you can use their pools too. I wouldnít have wanted to stay in the very hot, crowded (though not as crowded as I imagined), and expensive old town.

There was a path behind our hotel which we took to walk all the way to the restaurants/cafes in Lapad. We stayed 3 nights in Dubrovnik and I feel like our stay in hotel Neptune was perfect. We walked the old town walls (thatís THE thing to do), roamed the old town and its alleyways, walked along the water and did a group tour to Montenegro. The tour to Montenegro was a good opportunity to squeeze in another country but it was a very long day. You drive around the bay of Kotor, take a ferry to the lady of the Rocks, go to the old town of Kotor and end at Budva. Budva was disappointing and I couldíve skipped it. If you are trying to decide between Montenegro and Mostar (a common question I see on the forums) I would definitely choose Mostar. Itís less expensive, the food is delicious, the old town is unique for Europe (though you may be disappointed if youíve been to Turkey because, in some ways, itís a mini Istanbul but not really). Iím glad I did the tour group to Montenegro but if you donít get a chance to do it, I donít feel like you are missing out honestly. My favorite part of the tour group was actually the lady of the rocks part (I wasn't expecting that). The old town of Kotor was much smaller than I had even imagined (and did I mention to bring cash? Bring your ATM card because most places in the old town only took cash).

After Dubrovnik, we hired a driver to take us to Mostar. I had reserved and bought bus tickets but my husband decided it was too early and he didnít want to ride the bus. This is where travel opens our minds. We are Muslim and I wear the headscarf. Iím also very outgoing and I like to make people feel very comfortable. I feel that when you open yourself to others, others open themselves to you and feel less intimidated by you. Before this trip to Bosnia, I knew very little about Yugoslavia including the new countries created in the wake of its breakup and devastating wars. Of course, I knew about the ethnic cleansing of Muslim Bosnians and I was horrified at the Serb massacres of innocent civilians in the 1990s. I didnít know how complicated the situation was nor did I truly appreciate how an outsider like myself could not distinguish between a Croat, Serb or Bosniak. Unless someone greeted us with the Islamic greeting or was wearing a catholic cross or hijab, we never knew who we were talking to and, to us, they were just a fellow human being. Anyways, Iím going on a tangent, back to my report.

The driver was a Serb from the Republic of Serbia which is in Bosnia and Herzegovina. His regular job was a policeman and we were only his second passengers. He took us through the border crossing meant for only locals (we learned this later) which was great because it meant a very fast crossing (we did spend 20 minutes in which he and the border policeman were talking about something... we think the border policeman was asking him why he was bringing us through the local border but we canít be sure.) We had a lovely, very scenic drive through the Republic of Serbia (thatís what it showed on my google map). I just kept wondering what was going on in his mind. I also kept hoping that my outgoing DH, who loves to ask a hundred questions, wouldnít ask the ďwrongĒ (unknowingly offensive) question. My DH never did and when we arrived in Mostar DH tipped the driver who looked very surprised. My DH did ask him if heís been to Mostar and he said heíd been only one other time (to drop off his first passengers). Then he mentioned something about how hot Mostar is and was soon on his way. I still wonder what was going on in his mind. I like to think he now sees that "Muslims" are just normal people.

Mostar was hot during the day but cooled down quite a bit after 5pm. Iím so glad we stayed 2 nights (though 1 night is enough if you just want to get a taste). We stay at hotel Kriva (the view from our room of the crooked bridge was amazing and the staff was so friendly). Donít do it as a day trip even though thatís what most people do because it really undermines your experience. During the day, it is mobbed by tour groups and you can barely move. Itís also the time of day when itís very hot and humid (at least it was in June). At night, thereís a somewhat magical, sad, but peaceful beauty about the place. Give it at least a night. My husband doesnít like 1 night stays so thatís why I did 2 nights. We walked the old town (many times), poked our heads into several mosques, watched the divers jump from the old bridge (several times), snapped many pictures, and ate delicious food (my favorite place was Sadrvan followed by Divan). We also took a taxi to Blagaj (15 minute drive) for a few hours. This is a Sufi monastery next to a beautiful and scenic waterfall. We had Bosnian coffee and tufaheya at one of the restaurants (and spoke to a young male waiter who gave us a glimpse into how normal life is in the area). Itís a beautiful place to spend a few hours. We also decided to walk through the east side of the river (Muslim) and the west side (Croat).

People have asked me if I felt uneasy stares from the Croats (or the Serbs) and all I can say is if there were any then I was oblivious to them (not to mention I couldnít tell anyone apart, lol). In all of the places we visited, there was a universal Balkan attitude that (for an American at least) can be interpreted as standoffish so I think thatís more the culture. Of course, there were certainly exceptions.

After Mostar, we got another driver (our hotel arranged for him to come down from Sarajevo to pick us up) to drive us to Sarajevo. We could have taken a train but, again, my husband didn't want to wake up so early (it departs at 6am). This time our driver was a Muslim Bosniak and he pretty much was a tour guide throughout the 2 and a half hour road trip. He was amazing (his English isn't perfect but you can understand him). He picked us up in his van and we arrived in Sarajevo. In Sarajevo we stayed at the Courtyard. Again, I can recommend it and the breakfast was superb. It's a short walk from the old town (there's a Residence Inn that's a little closer to the old town). Sarajevo exceeded my very low expectations and I'm glad we spent 2 nights. On the first day, we pretty much walked the old town (ate burek at a small place that makes it over charcoal and baklava, went on a cable car ride (a very very long one I should add) for a spectacular view of Sarajevo and explored the city. On the second day, we rented a car (from the airport, Sixt) and drove to Travnik and finally Jajce before returning back to Sarajevo. Our road trip the day before we left Bosnia really allowed us to get a very good glimpse of Bosnia's countryside. It is very green, lots of mountains and rivers and absolutely beautiful. We ended our trip with dinner at Kibe Mahala (beautiful view of Sarajevo from way up high), almost got a flat tire and hit a car driving down the narrow streets... but "almost" is the key word . We returned our car rental the next day before our flight without any problems.

A few final thoughts..

Although most of us come to these forums because we're planning our itineraries, don't be afraid to be spontaneous. We hadn't planned on renting a car the day before we left Sarajevo but it turned out to be a great decision! We weren't quite sure how we were going to get from Mostar to Sarajevo but, again, it worked out just fine. I was also nervous that I hadn't planned the Plitvice part of our trip with enough time, but, it turned out to be perfect! We hadn't planned on going to the Republika of Serbia but we ended up driving through there .

Would I come back to Croatia? Definitely! There is so much more to see and do. We really enjoyed the country. Would I go back to Montenegro? Nah. Bosnia? Nah. Don't get me wrong. I truly enjoyed Bosnia but I feel like I've gotten a good taste of it and I would highly recommend at least 4 days if you are going to be in the area. We did not do any of the "war" walking tours because we preferred to talk to locals instead. We saw bullet ridden buildings, etc. in Bosnia and grave yards and we learned a lot about the war. As for Montenegro.. I'm not sure but the day tour may be clouding my judgment. Don't get me wrong -- it is beautiful but after Croatia (and the Adriatic Sea) well, it is all relative I suppose.

To anyone planning his/her trip to this area, go for it! You'll have a wonderful time!!!






layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 11:32 AM
  #2  
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I can't believe I left this out but---

You must go to the Taj Mahal in Dubrovnik. Delicious food, friendly staff. I highly recommend!
TuttoBene Restaurant in Dubrovnik was really good too. There's the fast food in the old town and then they have a sit-down restaurant in Lapad too. Highly recommend.

Last edited by layanluvstotravel; Jun 29th, 2019 at 11:34 AM. Reason: Added info
layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 12:22 PM
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Wow! Thanks for your TR. We also recently returned from most of the places you went to. I have to say, our impressions were completely opposite of yours. Gotta love travel boards and the diversity of opinions. Check out our TR, Five Weeks in the Former Yugoslavia, to see an entirely different perspective. Five Weeks in the Former Yugoslovia
yestravel is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 02:03 PM
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Yestravel, I did read your report We did both seem to enjoy the cable car ride and Kibe Mahala restaurant in Sarajevo so not totally opposite. Also, Iíve noticed that the places I see at the end of my trip tend to have the least positive impression on me. Itís not that they are less enjoyable. I think it has to do more with that fact that I become more homesick (especially when my kids arenít with me).

It seems like the weather may have influenced some of your perception? We had excellent weather except for our day in Montenegro which was so hot that I think it was literally hotter than hell. I really think that hampered our experience of the country.
layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by layanluvstotravel View Post
Yestravel, I did read your report We did both seem to enjoy the cable car ride and Kibe Mahala restaurant in Sarajevo so not totally opposite. Also, I’ve noticed that the places I see at the end of my trip tend to have the least positive impression on me. It’s not that they are less enjoyable. I think it has to do more with that fact that I become more homesick (especially when my kids aren’t with me).

It seems like the weather may have influenced some of your perception? We had excellent weather except for our day in Montenegro which was so hot that I think it was literally hotter than hell. I really think that hampered our experience of the country.
Wasn't Kibe Mahala great and the view even with the clouds we had was stunning? Actually, despite the lousy weather we kept running into, we loved our trip. Both of us were surprised at how much we liked everywhere we went. Beautiful scenery, interesting museums, great wine, good food and wonderful people everywhere, not much more we could ask for. Did you get the impression from reading our TR we didn't like it? I was struck by your opinion of Zagreb which we loved and Split. I think Zagreb is underrated and has much to see. Far from all communist architecture, it is filled with lovely art nouveau buildings from the Hapsburg period much like Vienna or Budapest. The sites may not be obvious like the attractions in Split or the bridge in Mostar. We thought Mostar horribly crowded, but had decided not to stay overnight so I'm sure at night it was better. I didn't find it particularly unique as you did. We also managed to get around the crowds and thoroughly enjoyed Dubrovnik. I was glad we stayed in the center. We took ~5 pm train from Mostar to Sarajevo and the ride was splendid. Good that we both enjoyed our trips despite the differences in what we liked.

Last edited by yestravel; Jun 29th, 2019 at 03:34 PM.
yestravel is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by yestravel View Post
Wasn't Kibe Mahala great and the view even with the clouds we had was stunning? Actually, despite the lousy weather we kept running into, we loved our trip. Both of us were surprised at how much we liked everywhere we went. Beautiful scenery, interesting museums, great wine, good food and wonderful people everywhere, not much more we could ask for. Did you get the impression from reading our TR we didn't like it? I was struck by your opinion of Zagreb which we loved and Split. I think Zagreb is underrated and has much to see. Far from all communist architecture, it is filled with lovely art nouveau buildings from the Hapsburg period much like Vienna or Budapest. The sites may not be obvious like the attractions in Split or the bridge in Mostar. We thought Mostar horribly crowded, but had decided not to stay overnight so I'm sure at night it was better. I didn't find it particularly unique as you did. We also managed to get around the crowds and thoroughly enjoyed Dubrovnik. I was glad we stayed in the center. We took ~5 pm train from Mostar to Sarajevo and the ride was splendid. Good that we both enjoyed our trips despite the differences in what we liked.

Yes, Kibe Mahala was wonderful! We weren't even planning on going but decided to go at the last minute. We didn't have reservations, but they still managed to seat us. It was definitely a highlight of our Bosnia trip. I do agree the scenery in this area is beautiful. As for Zagreb, we didn't go into any of the museums (had no desire to do so) and we weren't inspired by the architecture (we've been to Vienna, which was beautiful). Actually, I just realized that this entire trip we were more focused on nature than museums or architecture or art in general. Also, we only had 13 days so we had to make a choice between Zagreb and another day in Sarajevo (which we actually used for our road trip outside of Sarajevo, lol). I think Bosnia is actually underrated. Hopefully, more tourists flocking Croatia will start realizing that too (although nothing compares to that Adriatic Sea).

I can understand your experience of Mostar. Definitely if we were there for a few hours during the day, we would've had the same impression. It was only after 5pm (when the tour groups would leave) that we truly appreciated Mostar. And, like I said, we enjoyed being on the outskirts of Dubrovnik (Babin Kuk, just looked up the name of the area where we were). It gave us more views of the beautiful Adriatic Sea and we could walk on a path to Lapad. We were also close to another beach called the Copacabana Beach which we walked to from our hotel.

Isn't it fascinating how 2 people can go to the same exact places and come out of them with different experiences? It's why, ultimately, no travel guide (or forum or youtube video) can replace you actually traveling and experiencing a place for yourself .

layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 05:13 PM
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Layanluvstotravel, It's interesting reading your trip report and hear different opinions and perspectives. We will be spending 2 nights in Zagreb in September. I assume I will like Zagreb because I like Art Nouveau architecture, and I haven't been to Vienna so can't compare. And the museums sound interesting to me.

Was your tour around the Bay of Kotor on a large tour bus? We have decided to see the Bay of Kotor while we are in Dubrovnik instead of Mostar because Mostar would be a very long day trip for us. And based on my research, I prefer to see Mostar sometime when we can stay overnight. I'd love to combine it with Sarajevo at a future date. Our original plan was to rent a car for the Kotor day trip, but friends of ours did our exact same trip this past April. (We were supposed to meet them in Croatia but I had to cancel because my arthritic hip got much worse, and I had to move up hip replacement surgery.) Anyways, they decided to take a mini-van small tour around the Bay of Kotor, which they said was a better choice because parking was very difficult in the small towns around the bay. So we have decided to hire a private driver, and we can stop wherever and whenever we want. Do you think you didn't enjoy the large group tour because you had no control over where you stopped?

Did you make reservations at Taj Mahal? My daughter also recommended that restaurant.

And thanks for the tip about getting to the ferry dock early in Split. We plan on taking a day trip to Hvar from Split. I haven't purchased tickets yet because I hope we can buy them when we arrive in Split. Of course, we want to visit Hvar on a nice day, so I want to have flexibility in case of rainy weather.
KarenWoo is offline  
Jun 29th, 2019, 07:31 PM
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Karen, yes, our trip was on a large tour bus (I think we were 30 people, not sure). Your idea to hire a private driver is a really good one! I do think the lack of flexibility played a big role in our experience. For example, we would've wanted to get the heck out of Budva and spend more time in the Bay of Kotor or anywhere else to be honest.
We didn't make reservations for the Taj Mahal. We were already roaming the alleys and we just came across it and decided to eat. Don't miss it. The food is delicious and the staff were very friendly. They have a few tables inside and lots more outside (it was hot so we sat indoors).
My mom has arthritis too so I can relate . Hope you're feeling much better! You'll have a great time! Enjoy!
layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jun 30th, 2019, 03:59 AM
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terrific TR, layanlunstotravel and great to have another perspective coming so close after yestravels' great TR too.

And lots of very useful practical details for those who may be inspired to follow your example. Thanks for sharing it all with us.
annhig is offline  
Jun 30th, 2019, 05:27 AM
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Very enjoyable read, thanks for sharing!

Do go back for Korcula yes it is beautiful!
FlyDriveHike is offline  
Jun 30th, 2019, 07:17 AM
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Isn't it fascinating how 2 people can go to the same exact places and come out of them with different experiences? It's why, ultimately, no travel guide (or forum or youtube video) can replace you actually traveling and experiencing a place for yourself.
What I love about travel forums vs just guides, is you do get a personal perspective which helps me a lot when planning. I couldn't agree more, nature and the scenery were spectacular everywhere we went.

Do go back for Korcula yes it is beautiful!
FlyDriveHike -- Korcula was gorgeous and such a laid back, relaxing place. Loved it!
yestravel is offline  
Jun 30th, 2019, 07:57 AM
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Thank you for posting. Would you mind sharing how much you paid for the transfer from Mostar to Sarajevo? I will most likely be taking the 17.05 train (in September) but would like to have a back up plan and sometimes transfers in these countries are so reasonable it is hard to say no.

You were very lucky to get a table at Taj Mahal with no reservation. I have been turned away several times, it is always better to make a reservation there. You can do it online. https://www.tajmahal-dubrovnik.com/
rialtogrl is offline  
Jun 30th, 2019, 12:19 PM
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Originally Posted by rialtogrl View Post
Thank you for posting. Would you mind sharing how much you paid for the transfer from Mostar to Sarajevo? I will most likely be taking the 17.05 train (in September) but would like to have a back up plan and sometimes transfers in these countries are so reasonable it is hard to say no.

Sure, we paid 80 euros. The driver had to drive down from Sarajevo and he had a very comfortable van.

You were very lucky to get a table at Taj Mahal with no reservation. I have been turned away several times, it is always better to make a reservation there. You can do it online. https://www.tajmahal-dubrovnik.com/
Oh, wow. Good to know!
layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jul 1st, 2019, 07:58 AM
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Thank you for giving me the cost of the transfer! I found a company that also makes a day of it (stopping a couple of places on the way) so I sent an inquiry to them.
rialtogrl is offline  
Jul 1st, 2019, 01:35 PM
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Originally Posted by rialtogrl View Post
Thank you for giving me the cost of the transfer! I found a company that also makes a day of it (stopping a couple of places on the way) so I sent an inquiry to them.
That sounds like a nice idea! There was a lamb restaurant along the way that a lot of cars were stopped at. Our driver said it was very good too.
layanluvstotravel is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2019, 01:10 AM
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I'm glad you had a nice stay in my home country Although I'm sorry you had encountered standoffish people, I guess Croatians can be like that sometimes.
monikaCro is offline  
Jul 2nd, 2019, 03:01 AM
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<< There was a lamb restaurant along the way that a lot of cars were stopped at. Our driver said it was very good too. >>
The lamb restaurant was probably in the town of Jablanica along the Nervetva River. The town is known for a series of restaurants specializing in jagnjetinja, delicious lamb grilled on spits over large open fires. The traditional meal consists of lamb, potatoes and cabbage salad. We stopped at a restaurant there three times on our two visits to BiH.
The scenery between Mostar and Sarajevo is very beautiful. The train ride features lots of tunnels which was exciting for my husband, a train enthusiast.
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Jul 3rd, 2019, 09:45 AM
  #18  
 
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The scenery between Mostar and Sarajevo is very beautiful. The train ride features lots of tunnels which was exciting for my husband, a train enthusiast.>>>

Well i for one am very grateful for his enthusiasm, VT, as via you he first gave me the idea to use the trains to get around N America last year.
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Jul 4th, 2019, 01:12 PM
  #19  
 
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layanluvstotravel Thank you very much for an awesome trip report. Both southern Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina feature prominently in my planned Eastern Europe trip for next spring. I appreciate your perspective and insights.
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Jul 5th, 2019, 04:55 AM
  #20  
 
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<< Well i for one am very grateful for his enthusiasm, VT, as via you he first gave me the idea to use the trains to get around N America last year.>>
Fortunately I like train travel, too. My husband has persuaded me to take some trips that I probably would not have planned myself. We did a lot of travel with train passes when we lived in Europe many years ago.
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