North America, Europe · 19 Days · 20 Moments · August 2018

Traveling!


13 September 2018

We said goodbye to beautiful Gradac today, and drove back to Zagreb. The drive back was mainly along the Croatian coast, which has gorgeous views of dry Rocky Mountains and blue blue water. We stopped in Split for about an hour and walked around the seaside for a bit. The city is pretty big, and the old city is a lot like Dubrovnik with a wall surrounding it. Split, like Dubrovnik, also appeared to be a popular tourist spot! Tourists like us everywhere!! After Split we drove straight to Zagreb and had Dinner with Igor’s cousin Sanela and her daughter Lara. We then went to the top of the cities newest building, where they have a bar and an amazing rooftop view of the city! It was gorgeous! They are also having burger week in Zagreb, so we went to one of the city squares where they are hosting the event and checked it out. Unfortunately we were too full to have any burgers but it smelt amazing! They even had a donut burger! Next time! Tomorrow morning we fly back to Winnipeg!

12 September 2018

Back in Gradac today! We drove from Stolac to Gradac again for a beach day. This time we will be staying in an Airbnb for the night and heading up the coast back to Zagreb tomorrow. It is always a gorgeous in Gradac! We sat by the beach and swam in the water most of the day, and in the evening we walked along the boardwalk and had pizza for dinner. This place is pretty much paradise, you can also buy local wine for $4 a litre! Unreal! Probably not coming home.

11 September 2018

Dubrovnik! Dubrovnik! Dubrovnik! Today we went to Dubrovnik!! Or Kings Landing for those of you who watch Game of Thrones. The city is gorgeous! It is only about 2 hours from Stolac, where we are staying, so the drive was not long. We did have some trouble with the GPS though, it took us on a one lane road with two-way traffic which made driving a little tricky. The road winds high up in the mountains, so when we were driving around corners, we really had to check to make sure no one was coming, otherwise both cars would be off the road! Lots of white-knuckle driving Anyways we made it to Dubrovnik in one piece and walked over to the old city. The entire old city is surrounded by a huge wall, so to enter there are only a few doors and tons of tourists, so there was lots of squishing. We then spend hours wandering the maze of narrow lanes in the city, eventually we popped out by the seaside and had a beer by the water I would really love to see this city again, there was so much to se

10 September 2018

Drove to Gradac in Croatia, from Stolac Bosnia today. Gradac is right on the coast and super gorgeous! Luckily it wasn’t too busy, so we were able to find a nice shady spot for the day! Pretty low key! So not much else to report. Drove back to Stolac around 5:30.

9 September 2018

Stolac is hot! The town has been very dry this summer (I’m still not sure if that is normal) so the stream that normally runs through town was super low and dried up in spots. Fruit is still growing like crazy somehow, pomegranates, kiwis, pears, figs, grapes, you name it, Stolac has it growing somewhere. We walked around town today and saw some of the old buildings, mills, animals and fruit! Unfortunately, the town has lost a lot of younger people to the cities, so lots of businesses have closed in the past five years which is sad, but the town seems to be doing okay. On our walk back home, we stopped at the abandoned Kostana Hospital aka “Bone Hospital”. The hospital was used as a hospital until the early nineties when it was converted into a detention camp for the Bosnian war. Prisoners were housed, tortured and killed until the end of the war when it was left abandoned. Pretty eerie We also went to the nearby Kravica waterfalls for a short while and took some pictures. 👌

8 September 2018

After saying goodbye to Baba Dara and the rest of the family, we drove 3 hours to Stolac, the city where Igor had spend a year before coming to Canada and where his aunt and uncle live. On the way, we stopped in Mostar where they were having the annual Redbull Cliff Diving World Series. The cliff dive has apparently been a tradition for centuries and involves diving off this super tall bridge into this super narrow river, which I think is a 21 meter distance. We missed the diving for the day, but there were still huge crowds and we saw several people jumping off the lower portion of the bridge (I have a video but I can’t post it on here for some reason). We made it to Stolac around 5:30ish, and chatted with family for several hours. Later we took a walk around the City, but it was too dark to see some of the buildings. We did see a bunch of ducks sleeping though, and they were so adorable! One saw us watching and started quacking to wake the others, so we left them alone and walked ba

7 September 2018

I wasn’t able to post anything yesterday because I was pretty ill with some kind of virus and it was hitting pretty hard last night (which is when I usually write these). Anyways I’m feeling my much better today! To backtrack to yesterday morning (before I crashed) we went to the Vranduk fortress, which is about a half hour from Zenica. The fortress was built in the 14thish century and occasionally housed kings (it’s not that big). The fortress sits beside a large mosque, and we were there during the prayer call, which was really interesting to hear. In the fortress it was possible to shoot a bow and arrow at one of the smallest targets ever (I just say that because I’m a bad shot). You can also tour the grounds. After Vranduk we went to the Zenica Museum where we learned about the turbulent history of the city of Zenica and the country of Bosnia. It was pretty interesting, I didn’t realize how many occupations that the city had (Roman, Turkish, etc).

6 September 2018

Bosnia has Pyramids! 6 of them! Today we visited the Bosnian Pyramid of the Sun, which is the tallest of them all. There were several poster with experts confirming that these are the oldest and tallest pyramids on earth, dating back 30,000 years and 220m+ tall. It’s hard to tell if they are real or not because not much of the pyramids have been excavated. The project lacks government support so there is little funding and a majority of the land is government property so they cannot excavate it. It’s too bad it is such a slow process to uncover the truth because I’d love to know! After the pyramids, Dajo, Mirza (Igors cousins), igor and I drove to Sarajevo, which was only about a half hour drive from the pyramids. When we first came to the city I noticed a lot of the buildings on the outskirts were beaten down and falling apart (lots of bullet holes) from all the wars the poor city had been through. As we drove further into the city it was in much better shape. Ah I can’t write anymr

5 September 2018

Igor and I went walking around Zenica today, and saw the daily market there. Lots of cheap goods. Igor took me to one of the buildings where he had lived before and I took a picture of the roses just outside. There are gorgeous roses everywhere here. I think the climate is just 👌 for the roses. Later we went to Igors aunt and uncles home for a cevapi bbq. Igors second cousin, cousin and great uncle came along as well. The whole family!! They have the cutest lab named Teddy and two kitties! The family all chatted and then we listened to some rock music. I forgot to take a picture of the food, it was so good so I was busy eating it.

4 September 2018

Today igor his cousins and I walked up to smetovi where you can look out over Zenica. They also had a lovely restaurant there so we had Igors favourite, Cevapi. The pita is apparently dipped in broth and barbecued which makes it extra delicious. We walked down Smetovi a bit to a nearby hotel that used to be a ski hotel. There was the cutest dog there, it was an adult but look like a puppy, so I’m going to bring it home. After Smetovi, we walked around near Baba Dara’s (Igors grandma) apartment which is close to shopping parks and athletic facilities. Apparently athletics are super important in Zenica so there all kinds of facilities like tennis courts, tracks, volleyball and basketball courts. Later I went for a run (cause I was feeling athletically inspired) and then when I got back Igors cousins, aunt and uncle where there so we had dinner. We looked at old photos and chatted.

3 September 2018

Today we left Zagreb, Croatia, and travelled 4.5 hours to Zenica, Bosnia, the city where Igor grew up. His grandma, aunt, uncle and cousins live in the city. The drive was lovely, we went from flat prairie landscapes to gorgeous mountains and streams, and from freeways to small winding roads. When we arrived around 5:30, at Igor’s grandmas apartment we were greeted by his aunt and grandma. Shortly after Igors cousins and uncle arrived and we chatted for a while. Later we went for a walk and beer with Igors cousins. Around 10:00 we got back and had a spread for lunch (dinner) of bread with chicken pate, sour cream, smoked bacon and cheese. Delish!

2 September 2018

Today we started our day with a trip to the park where Jarun Lake is (Dave raced there back in 2005). We walked around the park and then had a coffee at one of the lake side cafes. Later we went to the new super mall (like 5 levels of shopping bliss) and I purchased a couple shirts from H & M. We had lunch of Croatian McDonalds, KFC and Mex which is a burrito place. The burrito I had was filled with squash instead of rice, and tasted amazing! In the evening Sanela took us to the country side to a piece of property she owned. There were some huge grapes growing at the back of the property so we chowed down. We took in some more views of the country side, and went to Sveta Nedjelja for some cake and coffee. Delicious! Great day!

1 September 2018

Today we went to Jasenovac to visit the home that Igor’s grandma (Mira’s side) and uncle once lived. After paying respects at their gravesite we visited with the neighbours for a bit then went to spomenik (stone flower). The stone flower is a memorial for a concentration camp that once existed on the site during the Second World War. After the memorial we had an pies and dessert in Jasenovac, then headed back to Zagreb. We were also in a grocery store and they have massive beers here!

31 August 2018

Today was a good day! We went to the old Zagreb city centre and explored an old cathedral and the city square with Igor’s cousins Sanela and Tara as our guides. Igor got pooped on by a pigeon. Later we met up with Igor’s other cousin Dejo for dinner when he finished work. We had dinner in the city centre in an open cafe. We went back to Sanela place and then to drop Igor’s cousin Tara off at a friends.

30 August 2018

Went up to Floyen today with Anbjørn. We waited an hour in line because there were several cruise ships in with tourists (mainly from England). The wait was worth it! It was probably the sunniest day in Bergen today, since we got here, so our photos were amazing. Said a sad goodbye to Anne and Anbjørn who were our amazing hosts for the week. We are now in Oslo waiting for our flight to Zagreb where we will stay with Igor’s cousin Sanela.

29 August 2018

Lots of family visits today! Started with visiting with the aunts and cousins. Then met up with Kristin and Ole at Anne and Anbjorns for dinner. Age and grandson showed up after dinner for a quick visit before we had to drop off ulva with Cecilia (Kristin was flying out to Oslo). Checked out the seaside a bit after dropping ulva off.

28 August 2018

Went with Hans Jørgen and Vera to Rosseland where there is a gorgeous waterfall and fancy bathroom. Picked up Isabella and Adrian and went to a stave church in Bergen. This one had been burnt down by a satanist in the 90s but they re-built a replica that is pretty bang on. Went back to Hans Jørgen and Veras for a ride on the new $120 sail boat! It was a lot of fun. Then Adrian toured us around the yard showing us his fish trap and a nearby cave.

27 August 2018

There are a lot of hills and mountains in Norway, and as a prairie person, it has been tough. Lots of huffing and puffing. The struggle could also be from all the ice cream I’m eating. It’s hard to tell. Anbjørn took us on a walk around Bergen In the early afternoon and then we all went to Hans Jørgen and Vera’s place for coffee later in the day. Hans Jørgen has just purchased a $120 sail boat in mint condition, so we were able to see it! Gorgeous. Visited with Vera and the kids (who aren’t really kids anymore). I slept! I feel like a million bucks.

26 August 2018

Kristin (cousin) picked us up from the airport and took us to the pier to check out all the seafood and all the ice cream. We had to sample everything a little bit, even the brown cheese flavoured ice cream. There was a fish for sale called a breiflabb, which is apparently pretty tasty, but super freaky to look at (see pic). Soooo sleepy. 30 plus hours without sleep. What day is it?

25 August 2018

Packed! I think!