Category Archives: Croatia

On a very personal note: To the friends that joined us in Croatia

I did not elaborate much on who was where and when with us in my blogs… there were just so much to write about and comment on of what we have seen and done that it somehow was neglected. I really want to make a special mention to the friends that visited Scolamanzi this year in Croatia – a place very close to our hearts!

Lunch in the harbour of Old City Dubrovnik with Quinton, Yvonne and Gayle

I think the fact that we have had such wonderful external company on and off while we were in Croatia made it so much more special! With Yvonne and her son Quinton and her sister Gayle (from South Africa) here shortly after we have arrived, has been absolutely fantastic! We were still super charged about everything: the menus, the shops, the small towns, the language (the blasé factor has not kicked in yet!) … and it was just wonderful to share it with our best friends! It was only for a very short time … But then again, time never seems to be adequate when you have fun! I would have given anything to have our best friend, Gerhard with us too! We did think of and drink to every one we were missing (Willie and Des in particular) over a very special bottle of red Cape Rock wine! Too small those bottles, I reckon Willie!! Get a few 2 litres going! Lol 😉
At Necujam: Sharing a Cape Rock!! Thanks Willie and Des!!

This was just the easiest group of people we have ever had! Light on water (after a week we have only used a half a tank of water between the 5 of us!! With girls in the majority is no small feat!) and power and they were always ready to help with food and cleaning. Best of all – I just loved the dinners ashore sponsored by the guests that almost happened way too often!! (Guilt only got hold of me for a while about all these free-bees before I managed to shake it off! Lol! ) Thank you guys every so much for changing your holiday plans to fit in with us and for all the lovely treats and my special Nespresso coffee, Quinton (that was carted all the way from South Africa!!) I hope you have had as much fun as we did!! This should happen more often, I reckon, Yvonne!!
Rosemarie and Cal – dinner on Scolamanzi

About 10 days later, Johann’s mum, Rosemary and her friend Cal (from Canada) joined us. It has been wonderful to meet Cal (at last) for the first time as he step on board, and I felt for him when the seasickness kicked in only minutes after that! Fortunately, we had some tablets on board and could manage him until he found his sea legs! The two of them did the northern Dalmatia with us and thankfully the weather was very kind to us while they were on board. It would have been terrible to get 80 year old guests up and down a slippery wet dinghy and dock in pouring rain! The winds were steady and no unwanted swells to mention – I am sure Cal appreciate that dearly. So all in all – they have chosen a great weather window and have seen some of the most amazing parts of the Dalmatian area! Rose and Cal’s stay of 12 days were cut short to 8 days, after we realised how far we still have to go to make it to Lefkas in time for Johann to catch a flight to Australia!
Ross, Kris, Peter and Jo on board Scoalmanzi

Then of cause there was the impromptu visit for ONE day only by Ross and Jo from Australia with two of their friends, Kris and Peter! That was just the biggest surprise and a fabulous day to have them on board joining us from Trogir to Vis island. Well Jo and Ross, if we cannot make it happen in Australia, we can always make it happen in Croatia!
Me and my soul mate, my best friend and the love of my life!

I am one of the luckiest girls in the world … lucky to have my very best friend on my side all the time during the tough times when the weather was challenging and the seas testing as well as the lovely moments at anchor or in still smooth waters when its quiet and beautiful! A big thank you to you Johann, for dreaming big, and follow your dreams and making me a part of your Scolamanzi dream! As Jason Mraz would say: Lucky I’m in love with my best friend!

This is my song to you : Lucky

Do you hear me…talking to you?
Across the water, across the deep blue ocean…. under the blue open sky?
Oh my Babe I’m trying
Boy I hear you…in my dreams ….I feel your whisper across the sea…
I keep you with me in my heart
You make it easier when life gets hard
Lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again!!!
Oe oe o o they don’t know how long it takes waiting for a love like this – every time we say good bye –
I wish we had one more kiss…I’ll wait for you I promise you…I will…..
Lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again!!!
Lucky we’re in love in every way
Lucky we to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to becoming home some day….

Dalmatia – the Southern part of Croatia:

A different view of  the Dalamtian Islands
A different view of the Dalamtian Islands

We had a week on our own before our first guests arrive and would love to see some of the southern Dalmatian Islands seeing that we plan to do the central islands with them. We departed Dubrovnik in calm weather and a clear beautiful day, motoring past the Elephati islands while dodging a few local boaties that has absolutely no idea of the rules of the road when at sea!! (You always pass another boat port to port if on a collision path … They have obviously no port side or no idea about this international rule! )
It was quite obvious that a lot of boats have no idea about the rules of the road at sea! Does it make sense? This guy cutting in infront of us even though we had right of way!?
It was quite obvious that a lot of boats have no idea about the rules of the road at sea! Does it make sense? This guy cutting in infront of us even though we had right of way!?
An clearly overloaded ferry cutting in infront of us! Wonder how that will go off in Australian waters! Lol!
An clearly overloaded ferry cutting in infront of us! Wonder how that will go off in Australian waters! Lol!

Whenever we pass an interesting looking place, we will turn in, hang around for a while without dropping an anchor, take pictures and move on. We have tried all through our travels in Croatia, to at least anchor for lunch in a nice protected bay and have a rest before carrying on to our overnight destination.
Only 45 min into our departure from the marina, we were dangerously overtaken by a ferry and thought to follow him … They normally go somewhere interesting. We were not disappointed in the little town of Sudurad which ended up to be his destination. Having taken it all in (and taken too many pictures once again of the little castle and happy looking town, we moved on to our lunch spot at Sepanskaluka. (I know …weird names! You probably think I am making it up with random keystrokes … they are real! Trust me, it is hard enough to pronounce and remember the town you are in at the moment let alone the last week or two!) We were happy to just have a quick light lunch and rest for half an hour. Our early morning starts are usually steering us to a recharge session at about 1.30pm! That is just how long our batteries last!
A typical gulet - wooden tourist boats in Croatia
A typical gulet – wooden tourist boats in Croatia
Sudurad
Sudurad

Dalmatia is the very southern region of Croatia (between Dubrovnik and Split) and include the southern group of islands (called the Dalmatian Islands) too… The Dalmatian dog got its name from this region and has its roots here too. We just love the limestone islands with their similar looking houses – beautiful! I wonder if there are tight restrictions on building styles … it is very soothing of the eye to see their harmonious, uniform settlements around the islands… The typical light grey limestone houses with red tiled roofs and various styled chimneys are scattered in between vineyards, olive groves and mountain valleys. No big glass palaces to be seen – which makes me wonder if foreigners can even buy property here. I don’t know … but if that is the reason it still have that “Croatian” style everywhere – may it then stay the case! Only money from outside can destroy this special beauty for them!
Croatians are the most wonderful people! Loud and robust in their way of talking, but kind hearted and very helpful and eager to make you feel special. Services are overall very, very good (especially if compared to Italy!) Croatians are also very fond of their outdoor cooking and every house, restaurant or holiday dwelling will have a outside built BBQ – often in the front of the house where the social happenings take place! BBQ’s here have a very old fashion style – big opening – at least a meter and a half wide with long chimney and a small roof with tiles and galore! All just made of air bricks and mortar. They are masters of BBQ-ing fish and squid on the fire! Their stews and bread all gets cooked/baked on the fire! It is wonderful to have that real wood-fire-smell around every town or island!! I miss it so much – it is just part of anyone that grew up in South Africa! (or I guess Africa?) On top of that, Croatia has a very rich history of conquests and trade with some spectacular cities and towns plus many old ruins from the Roman times. That and the fantastic unspoiled natural beauty set against the dramatic backdrop of the high Dalmatian Alps will make us come back again.

Dampers / Pobrode !!! BBQ and cooking on an open fire
Dampers / Pobrode !!! BBQ and cooking on an open fire

The Croatian’s simplistic way of living, cooking and the fact that it has not yet become an over-regulated country is making it a great place to travel in! Yachties often wonder amongst each other, where did we go wrong? Here you take responsibility for your own actions to do things like climbing up a tower with steep steps and no rails to have the most awesome view from the top – with no incidences and if there is … That is your own business! You never see rowdy drunken young people around – they just grow up here to think for themselves instead of having the government deciding for them with red tape and regulations and laws that kills the fun! You often find that English is spoken although broken, they are trying very hard to understand you and get the message across. English is a compulsory language at school which makes the younger generation getting more involved in tourism.
Although they are all really pretty islands, half the fascination is the strange names and spelling! My South African friends will find the Island Jakljan quite funny! At least that one we can easily pronounce and remember! Kak and bok is often features in daily greetings together with the ” Dobra Dan” (“good day”) !

There are just so many amazing places around these islands that I had to pick a few highlights that we will post a blog and pictures about. Keep an eye out for the next few blogs …all about the southern part of the islands of Croatia 🙂

Haha!! Funny name if you are Afrikaans! Haha!! Funny name if you are Afrikaans![/caption]

Jakljan
Jakljan
Sipanska Luka
Sipanska Luka
Sudurad
Sudurad
Captain Snooze ...
Captain Snooze …