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Saturday, 9 April 2016

BACKPACKING EUROPE: Zadar, Croatia

At one with the beauty of nature, Zadar



Thursday 30th April, 2015

Ever since I read that Zadar was famous for its sunsets, I couldn't wait to get there and lose myself in the auras of mother nature. It took three hours to get from Zagreb to Zadar and thanks to our newest friend Abdul (who we met in Zagreb), we were able to ditch a sweaty bus journey and gatecrash his road trip. One thing to note if you visit Croatia, don't even think about trying to catch a train anywhere because that kind of transport is just nonexistent, stick to buses.

So after three hours of gazing out at the Adriatic scenery (I actually slept the whole way), we had finally arrived in Zadar. As the city walls of the peninsular old town stood before us, we waved goodbye to Abdul and Zrinka (Abi's girlfriend) and entered through the venetian gates of this romanesque fortress. We were only here for one night but that didn't matter because we knew that we would be back soon.

We found ourselves standing in the middle of the town square, looking for our host who was showing us to our room for the night. Our apartment was right in the centre and on the top floor, complimented by an amazing view of the town ahead. As I looked out to the Adriatic Sea, feeling the last moments of the sun on my skin, it all felt very surreal. I couldn't believe that we had made it this far, and that my dreams of travelling had actually came true.

A sunset in Zadar

Town Square in Zadar (Not my photo - found on Wikipedia)



Friday 8th May, 2015

On our way out of Croatia we passed through Zadar once again and this time, we got the chance to explore a little. Jack and I spent the day apart but as the Old Town is quite small, we kept bumping into each other throughout the day. I spent my time just wandering through the streets and markets and along the beachfront, impatiently waiting for the sunset. It was really hot so I wasn't to keen on doing much, I just wanted to float about and see where I ended up, which was in a hammock, with Jack, sipping on cocktails at some garden bar.

As the sun began to set, Jack and I stocked up on a few beers and headed to the beachfront. We sat comfortably on the steps of the Sea Organ, yes you read that right, an instrument, which plays the sound of the sea. We must of sat there for over an hour in silent, embracing the sounds of nature together and although it was a little bit cloudy (didn't piss me off or anything), the sunset was still beautiful.

After a quick shower and a power nap, it was time for food so we decided to treat ourselves to some fancy Croatian food at a fancy Croatian restaurant. Bistro Gourmet Kalelarga was incredible. We shared a prawn risotto and a tasty salad and let me tell you, it was worth blowing our daily budget for. It was so good, I almost forgot I was a backpacker on a budget and not on fucking holiday! After food and a bottle of wine we took a walk back to the beachfront to see what all the hype was about this 'greetings to the sun' thing and it was unforgettable, I had never seen anything like it. It's basically this big, circular floor setting thing made out of glass, which collects the sun's energy throughout the day and turns it into a trippy light show... It's pretty awesome actually!

Church of St. Donatus and St Anastasia's Cathedral

Another beautiful sunset in Zadar
'Greetings to the sun' (Sun Saluation) by day
'Greetings to the sun' by night
Saturday 9th May, 2015

So after two trips to Zadar, and a two week holiday in Croatia, it was time to get the fuck out of here and act like a backpacker again. We were heading to Budapest tomorrow and boy was I excited!




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