Rich and I were the luckiest people on earth and got to travel KID FREE to Dubrovnik Croatia this summer. We had heard tales of beautiful scenery and fresh seafood. For Rich, it was the number-one-top-of-the-list place he wanted to go in all of Europe. Flying to Croatia is not cheap and neither is a good hotel, so we knew we weren’t going to be able to go with the kids. Therefore when mom came to stay for the summer, we jetted off for a quick weekend on our own. And by quick – I mean two nights. I don’t even think Rich took off work.
Our hotel was clinging on a cliff like barnacles on a ship. It felt more like we were sleeping on a boat than a hotel. It was beautiful and fancy. Almost too fancy for corn-land me. I mean, I did ok… But I definitely felt like I had to behave myself. And, while eating our pretentious meals on the hotel terrace, I was a teensy bit self conscious and felt the need to whisper and stop all fidgeting. I can’t fault the hotel, the staff was great. And if we traveled there again – I would stay there again, because it was perfection. But I don’t know… just not home-y cozy comfortable, that’s all. And the OPPOSITE of kid friendly. We didn’t see a single child in the hotel. I have to admit, though – that was nice.
I’ll just keep talking about food now.
If you would like to dine outside in the most perfect of weather with the most perfect seafood risotto, then Dubrovnik is the place for you. Outside of our hotel, the atmosphere was more relaxed and I felt like I could speak at a normal volume. The rumors were right, the food was amazing. But here is my tip – when you are in a city, surrounded by the sea – like Dubrovnik – look around yourself. What do you see? Do you see cows? Or pigs? Or do you see the sea and the boats on the bay? Think to yourself – what do these people know how to make? I’m not going to mention any names, but ordering beef in a seafood town might lead to disappointment. Order from the sea and avoid disappointment. Trust the people by the sea. They know how to do it.
From the bay, they are running all kinds of tours off to different islands – of which there are many. But, we had heard from a travel blog that there was one island that mostly locals go to. It’s not on any of the tours and you can just take a ferry there. She said it was worth the visit and she was right. The name was Lokrum Island and while leisurely walking around the island you will run into cliffy crags, caves, a secret lagoon, a monastery and wild peacocks. I didn’t go to the other islands, but I can say that Lokrum is the best one.
And because we like to think of ourselves as adventurous, we signed up to go kayaking around the bay! We underestimated the skill level and stamina that were required for such a trip – but as least we didn’t tip our kayak over like one of the other couples, or have to be pulled by the speed boat to catch up with the rest of the group. Just keeping up with the guide and staying afloat meant that we were amazing. Despite the stress, our guide was great and we loved the tour. And afterward we ate a huge meal.
Dubrovnik is an ancient walled city. There are no cars. Walking around is fun. We didn’t do anything else recommended on the travel sites while we were there like take the “Game of Thrones” tour, or a walk around the top of the city wall. I think we were too busy eating and leisurely walking around on our own.
Since we’re an old married couple who prefers sleep to partying, I cannot report on the night-life of Dubrovnik. I know there is one though. Because as night fell, these truly beautiful women starting popping up on the walkways promoting their night clubs and handing out cards to people walking by. We passed… I don’t know… 5 beautiful-women-club-girls. And not one of them invited us to their club! And we weren’t like dressed all schlubby or anything. And come on, we are two people who are taking care of ourselves, we don’t look that bad! I mean…. I didn’t want to go to the club anyway. But I would’ve like to have been invited.
It didn’t hurt our feelings that bad. It’s not like we still talk about it or anything…
I’ve recovered from not being invited to the club, and it in NO WAY spoiled our night. If anything, it gave us a good laugh.
Where we stayed:
Even though Croatia has a native language… which I don’t even know what it’s called…. English is not a problem because Dubrovnik is super touristy. English is everywhere. Shop workers and servers all spoke English flawlessly. Most menus looked like this, friendly to many languages:
Getting to Lokrum Island: This one is a little tricky. A lot of the tours heading out advertise that they are going to Lokrum. But they are only driving by it. If you want to take the ferry directly to Lokrum and get off and walk around, it’s literally just a guy at a table on the dock. Ask around. If nothing else, I think the ferry’s ran every half hour. So, just watch one come in and then try to board it.
On the Kayak tour: Kind of the same thing. Outside of the city walls, there are all kinds of tour groups advertised. There are friendly people with signs and clip boards, as well as other tour groups meeting and leaving. We just caught one of those guys and checked on trip advisor before paying. Easy peasy.