Looking out the plane window as we approached Croatia, we got excited, seeing all the islands that we were going to be seeing (as well as the caves) on the day tour we booked. The Airbnb we choose was amazing! Our host Ivana even collected us from the airport, she was very sweet. The penthouse terrace provided panoramic views of the town. The first night we took it easy, knowing our tour the following morning would be exhausting. We headed to the nearest supermarket for food supplies. It was a bit confusing that the “supermarket” close by was basically a convenience store. We visited 2 more looking for some fresh veg and herbs to put in our dinner. Produce was scarce at the supermarkets. When I checked my email in the evening I saw that the tour group had written to say the tour was cancelled because of “bad weather.” I responded asking if we could take the tour the following day and possibly go on another tour that day instead. In the morning we headed straight for their office, despite it being too late to join another tour. They told us there was a 7-10% chance of the tour going the next day “because of wind.” The weather seemed perfectly fine to me!
We discovered the Green Market which runs until 2pm every day in the centre of Split, where everyone buys their produce. Still no sign of herbs (with the exception of parsley) I had checked for health food stores where we could find some vegan staples (and chocolate) and was thrilled to find Bio&Bio. We made up some sandwiches for the next day’s excursion. With our tour cancelled, we went for a hike up Marjan Hill, which I had read had stellar views of Split. It was a lovely walk, and went much quicker than I expected! There was a lovely path through a forest and we continued to walk until we were nearing the edge of land. We discovered a few old ruins and what turned out to be St. Jerome Church and hermitage caves, built into the rock. What a find! We spotted a beautiful beach (Kasjuni) and headed towards that.
When we returned from our hike, we decided to try out one of the few vegan restaurants in Split. I had read many positive reviews of a place called Makrovega. It was a bad choice. The soup was good, but the rest of the meal was gruel at best.
For our last day in Croatia, we had planned a road trip to Plitvice National Park. Our flight departed at 10:40pm, so we had a good amount of time to make the 3+ hour drive there and then to the airport. We woke up late and rushed to pack up and make our way down to the rental car place (Avax). I had a pretty good idea of where it was located, thanks to google maps. It wasn’t there. It wasn’t anywhere! We asked a travel agency and the woman sent us back where we started. We asked several others who also sent us in various directions. No luck. We were both pretty cranky by this point so we sat down for an espresso and to regroup. We were already 2 hours behind schedule and had exhausted all possible directions. I emailed them to cancel and we caught the next bus to the airport. The final kick in the shin was while were aboard the bus, as we were leaving Split, we saw the sign pointing to the car rental company, high above pedestrian level.
With many hours until our flight, and no actual airline representative to help me switch our flights, I paid for a brand new flight that left 3 hours earlier. So we sat for about 6-7 hours in the airport.
THE HIKE UP MARJAN HILL