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Chasing a Dream - Part I "Two roads diverged in a wood, and I— I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference" - Robert Frost

The Dalmatian Coast

CROATIA | Sunday, 29 May 2016 | Views [392]

What do you get when you combine 1,800 km of turquoise coastline, pirate costumes, a wicked case of the sways, and 24 awesome people? An amazing 8 days sailing the Dalmatian Islands of Croatia from Dubrovnik to Split with Busabout. Once again the group was all Aussies, minus one Kiwi, one Londoner, and myself. Knowing how much Aussies like to drink and get rowdy, I thought I might be in for another booze cruise like the Topdeck tour had been. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find that even though a lot of alcohol was consumed in those 8 days, the atmosphere was way more chill and easy paced, and I had an equally fun time not drinking. The first few days were fairly mellow, everyone hanging out on the deck getting to know one another. Although we were a diverse group of personalities, by mid week we were all the best of friends.

It was mostly blue skies and the vast majority of the time was spent on the deck, soaking up the sun and seas, and rocking it to the beat. We caught the beginnings of a storm on Monday off Hvar so we anchored off the back of the island in the hamlet of Stari Grad and took a bus into Hvar to tour the town and hit up the popping nightlife at Kiva Bar. What started as a fairly chill dance club, soon turned into a raging mosh pit; the majority of the patrons all Aussie or American tourists determined to outdrink each other. I had a great time dancing, but made a quick exit once the crowd surfing started as it was a bit too rowdy for my taste, not to mention I was the only one sober. The party spilled out into the alley and I found a perch to sit back and watch the drama unfold, deflecting a number of pathetically drunk advances. Then it was a 1am mad dash back to the bus in the midst of a rain and hailstorm. It was a pretty sorry state we were in both mentally and physically when we loaded up, and a civil war nearly broke out when a group of drunk Sail Croatia folks joined us on the bus and started mouthing off. There were some close calls, but surprisingly we managed to escape the night without an outright bar brawl.

As to be expected, Tuesday morning was subdue, most folks nursing a hangover. The weather matched the mood as storm clouds broke open, dumping a torrential downpour. There wasn’t much to do, so we watched an episode of Game of Thrones, then spent the rest of the afternoon just lounging. Later in the evening, we took a tour to a farm, where we sampled local wine and cheese and ate a traditional home cooked meal and watched the sunset amidst the tranquil surroundings, before it was back on the boat for a quiet night.

Though most days were spent lounging on deck or beachside, we did have a couple of great outdoor activities. On the sleepy island of Mljet we rented bikes and rode through the National Park to a secluded swimspot, and in Omis we had a steep hike up to the former Pirate fortress, for a stunning view of the coast. It was with melancholy we arrived into Split, our final destination, but we made the most of our last night and went out with a bang. It was a week of hilarity, good company, and fond memories that I will carry with me as I continue on my travels.

Tags: croatia, dalmatian coast

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