We wake up far earlier than we expected to which is a great thing really as we have our first big drive ahead of us. Now don’t get me wrong it ain’t the 10 hour drive we once drove from Nashville to New Orleans but it is 4 hours from Pula to Plitvice National Park and we are only there for two nights so we need to get our butts moving!
We finishing packing our belongings, again, and are thrilled to discover that our car was not broken into over night! We pile in and off we go! Our first stop is the service station to grab some lunch. There are so many vegetables, something that we have desperatley been missing, so we pile our salad plates full. With happy tummies Bobo suggests getting off the motorway and hitting up the local roads instead. So off we go through all the windy roads. They must have some superhuman bees and goats around here as we pass cheese and honey shop after cheese and honey shop. Literally must have been 150 of them! It is like the cheese is chasing us!
Thumbs up for queuing for tolls!
But onwards we go and it becomes more and more beautiful as we start to enter the National Park. We notice that the queues for tickets are the longest that we have ever seen at entrance 1. We pray that entrance 2 will be kinder to us.
We make it to our hotel, quickly get changed and marvel at the decor in our room. It is so huge so that it has room for every single inter decor style that has ever existed. It has one wall that has two shades of brown striped down it, the world’s most pointless step, Marilyn Monroe on the dressing table, a green and red bathroom, wine glasses filled with sand and my personal favourite- a painting of two people kissing opposite the bed. I’ll try to show you some photos tomorrow.
We don’t hang around for long and manage to find parking under a sneaky little tree and get tickets in under 10 minutes. Bossing at life! We also buy the world’s most expensive bottle of water but you gotta hydrate or die!
So we enter the park and join a ginormous queue to cross the river. Bobo buys us ice creams- hers is an interesting take on a cake ice cream and is bloody huge. I go for the Croatian version of a chocolate cornetto and it trumps our cornettos in every single way possible! We eventually make it onto the boat and onto hiking trail E which is 5km long and uphill which passes through dozens of lakes and waterfalls. We both can’t quite believe just how clear the water is and it is the most beautiful shade of blue, green- I think they call it turquoise!
The water is so clear that we can see all of its inhabitants. I squeal every time I see a fish. Bowen squeals when she sees a sea scorpion…it was a lobster and for how many people visit this place there was virtually no rubbish at all- except for the cheeky water bottle on the floor that I pick up and put in a bin…leave nothing but footprints people!
Off we go on our first hike of the day. I quickly decide that this would be a banging location for a new version of Peter Pan and we spend a lot of time deciding where the mermaids cove, pirate ship, and lost boys’ hideout would be (notice my correct use of the apostrophe Bobo, I did it just for you.) We also notice that there are a lot of people here, although our sneaky photo snapping makes it look like there are just us. It’s great that so many people want to be outside and doing some exercise but at moments it becomes a little crowded.
Each turn reveals another beautiful spot. I think it is fair to say that we sing the classic TLC’s don’t go chasing waterfalls the entire way around and other aquatic based songs. We make some friends as we go around too, main mentions must go to Emma Watson, the couple that dragged a buggy the whole way around, my American best friend who wanted a photo with me at the waterfall and to the little boy who must have been no older than 2 or 3 who walked every single step of it.
We get to the top and see another big queue for the bus down so we decide to skip it and walk down a different route. This time we do route H and it is another 5km. This was a great decision as we saw only 3 or 4 groups as everyone else decided to bus it. The walk was less beautiful but it did truly feel like we were there alone and if you ever find yourself in Croatia than you must come here!
We forget that there is a good 20 minutes walk to get out of the park which was delightful on the way in as we were fresh legged and it was downhill. This time the only way was up and there were so many stairs! We are so hungry that we do it pretty quickly and speed our way down to the restaurant that does the best grilled vegetables in the area except the veggies never turn up! Instead I devour a plate of tomato spaghetti that tastes a lot like big spaghetti hoops and Bowen has the famous Eastern European trout! Not a single piece of cheese all day!
I didn’t eat it all…honest!
With full bellies we brave it outside as it is not only now torrentially raining but also thunder and lighteninging. We make it back to our love palace. I quickly shower and write yesterdays blog whilst Bobo enjoys the jacuzzi bath! Never before have there been so many bubbles in one place. I thought that Bobo may actually turn into one and I would have to carry her around in my pocket and be scared that she would pop! I will defs be having one tomorrow after our full day of exploring the park some more. I have threatened Bobo with a Blunt family style 7am wake up call but as I sit and type this it is already 8.20am and she is still asleep. So I gotta go. I have a Bobo to wake! We got some walking to do!!