“Those who seek paradise on Earth should come to Dubrovnik and find it.” -George Bernard Shaw
Last week, our family of five packed our suitcases, mounted our Chica (Garmin), and followed the Winding Road to spend a week in Croatia. As it turns out, our trip meant far more than a “beach vacation”, and the places and things we saw will linger in our memories for many years to come. Croatia and its neighboring countries are quite unique.
Bordering the Adriatic Sea almost the whole length from Trieste, Italy, to the NorthWest coast of Greece, Croatia consists of a tireless strip of coastline. For much of the stretch, the Croatia-Bosnia border is only a few miles from the water, and at one section on the road South to Dubrovnik, the traveler by car must cross Bosnia for a dozen miles.
Our destination, the near-ancient and historic town of Dubrovnik, proved to be the jewel on the sea as Croatia says it is. If there were ever a “Pirates of the Caribbean” like the movies and Disney’s setup, it is Dubrovnik. Consisting of multiple bastion-type forts and a continuous city wall stretching two kilometers, Dubrovnik has fought its battles for centuries, and won. The most recent battles fought there were in the Croatian War for Independence, 1991-1995, with lingering battles in Dubrovnik into 1996.
With such a recent devastating war, you can imagine the sites we saw–simple and humbling remnants from this nation who gave so much for freedom. Fresh cemeteries with uniform headstones seemingly stood in every village we passed. Buildings demolished into dormant ruins, mortar marks, bullet holes– all serve to remind only years later of the war.
Reminder of Recent War, Croatia
As the Croatian people forge ahead, FREE, and they create the alluring accomodations and roads to host visitors from all over the world, we can cheer them on. We felt quickly at home–their smiles are gracious, their English impeccable, their hospitality warm. And their country is beautiful beyond mere words.
Endless green-blue Sea
Coastal Charm, Croatia
What leaves the indelible impression upon me is the need for government and people to find a harmonious path, and to give each other the grace we all need in return. For without a doubt, when too much is taken, the human spirit will rise up and embrace freedom.
Starting the Conversation: Croatia has countless islands capped by mountains jutting skyward from the sea–a radiant and unique coastline, dotted with mini-lighthouses and sailing yachts. What is your favorite coast along the sea–any sea?