So. I was in Croatia a little over 4 years ago. My husband (then-boyfriend) was living in Germany at the time working for a military resort in the small town of Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Bavaria. Basically, this resort recruits kids right out of college to come and work for them. The employees commit to at least a year, and have the opportunity to take a lot of time off to travel around, which was AWESOME for me since I only got to visit him 3 times. We had a trip planned each time I visited and we took our Croatia trip in the summer of 2012. One of our good friends Kent was also along for the ride.
We drove through Austria and Slovenia, both were amazingly beautiful. I feel like everywhere we went in Europe there were just lush, green, rolling hills and the bluest skies I’ve ever seen to date. I really want to go back to Slovenia and spend some time there, it’s just not a European country that people travel to very often but it looked SO inviting.
We were only in Zagreb for one night, so basically we spent the day exploring the city and of course, eating food. They had beautiful farmer’s markets all over and the city itself was welcoming and vibrant. There are many things to do in the city such as walk down Tkalciceva, a thriving street littered with bistros and little shops; stop by Dolac Market (pictured above) and pick up some some fresh produce, honey, and pastries; take a quiet walk through Maksimir Park and whatever you do, you have to stop by Mirogoj Cemetery. Regardless of where you go there is so much beautiful architecture and rich history.
We were only there for one night before we moved on to visit some National Parks and then catch a ferry from Split to Hvar Island off the coast. We stayed in a really lovely place in Zagreb called Hobo Bear Hostel. The staff members took the hostel guests on a bar crawl each night and they were extremely knowledgeable about historic sights to see and places to eat. It’s also right in the center of everything and I think we paid something like $12 each to stay there, which is AMAZING!
A caution for those wanting a “hostel experience”, most hostels have small, shared rooms and the majority that I’ve stayed in have no AC. It just comes with the territory of staying in a hostel. I always find it odd that people write crappy reviews on hostel websites or trip advisor because there was no AC or the rooms were small or someone was snoring or there were shard bathrooms…OF COURSE THAT’S HOW IT WAS. Just be prepared to sleep with no comforter if it gets too hot and bring some ear plugs, you’ll be fine. Or just don’t stay at a hostel if those amenities are a must. Personally, I like the experience of sharing a space with people from different corners of the world and getting to know them, even for only a short time.
After we explored the city, we had a traditional steak dinner (Croatia is known for their steaks), grabbed some beers at a pub and headed off to bed to rest up for the adventures ahead! I can’t remember the name of the restaurant we went to, but it was certainly more traditional and far from some of the more modern eateries that are there today. At the time, I had no idea that I was ever going to stat a blog and therefore, never recorded or tracked any of that information and I do apologize! That being said, you really can’t go wrong here, every single place we had a meal was delicious.
Keep an eye out for the rest of the Croatia posts, there will be 4 more…at some point! Also, here is a picture of a Croatian pug, just straight chillin’. I like dogs, ok?