Dubrovnik and Cavtat Croatia in the Adriatic Sea
I first wrote this piece about visiting Dubrovnik and Cavtat in 2015. In light of the coronovirus pandemic I felt the need to put pen to paper to tell you about how fabulous a Croatia holiday is again. I follow many sites providing information of the region and I;m delighted to discover that European Destinations has recommended it as one of the safest destinations to visit in 2020
Many European countries are opening their borders and flights and hotels are also reopening now. After weeks of confinement you want to travel to Europe but do not know where to travel and what safety measures are being taken in countries and regions.
We have selected for you some of the destinations least affected by Covid-19 (up to 600 times fewer Covid-19 cases). These destinations have also implemented very specific protocols concerning hygiene in accommodations, restaurants, shops and measures such as the change of air conditioning filters between each traveller stay, availability of masks and social distancing.
These destinations also benefit from proximity to hospitals and have a higher number of hospital beds per inhabitant than the majority of European countries.
We absolutely love this country and have only seen a small part of it. My interest in the country stems from my love of football (well that’s a surprise!). During Euro 1996 the Croatian National Team entered a team for the first time following the Baltic crisis. I thought they were a great team, some great players including Davor Suker and Slaven Bilic, once manager of West Ham.
At the time I said to John – I want to visit there some day and watch that team play!
A holiday in Croatia
It took a while but in 2010 we finally got to visit. We stayed in Dubrovnik in a fabulous hotel called The Grand Villa Argentina, just outside the iconic City walls. A beautiful hotel in a stunning location. Most hotels in Croatia are not located on beaches but have naturally formed bathing platforms on rocky outcrops next to the sea. This hotel has a fabulous pool on the edge of the Adriatic and breakfast is served on an outdoor terrace. A fabulous recommendation for a Croatia holiday.
During our trip we visited the small town of Cavtat 14km away by boat . A trip recommended by friends. On arrival it was love at first sight. A small resort built around 2 horseshoe bays, which are visited by spectacular yachts, the quay sides are edged with fabulous restaurants and cafe bars serving great local beer, wine, cocktails and produce.
Having stayed in this resort 5 times now, we find it perfect. Dubrovnik itself is very busy and crowded within the walls during the day from visiting cruise ship tourists. Cavtat in contrast is laid back, picturesque and less busy. There is a great crowd there, a mixture of the locals and tourists. Disliking karaoke and traditional English bars. I love the European laid back Cafe culture. Many of the tourists who stay here are 40 plus but that does not mean it is dull. In the bars at night a lot of the locals come out to drink and eat, many young in their 20’s. It has a real ‘trendy’ vibe and the locals are so friendly. Visitors are enthralled by their fabulous manners and chat.
Even though I am addicted to football, I really dislike the loud, brash English football shirt wearing tourist, I don’t mind seeing football shirts being worn, after all football is a great conversation opener, but I dislike the loud, drunken behaviour that sometimes goes with it.
On 3 of our visits now there has been a football tournament on. 2 Euro’s and a World Cup. In Cavtat, all the bars and restaurants put up outdoor TV screens when games are scheduled. The sound is unobtrusive but visitors and locals alike can watch games. I have enjoyed watching the Croatian National Team play whilst visiting there. The locals appear in their team colours with their flags. They are quite vocal but not too rowdy, although it is handy that you cannot tell what they are saying, but it all looks friendly enough!
They have lost 2 tournaments when we have been there, but here is the difference that makes me warm to these fabulous people even more. There are no histrionics, tears or acts of frustration, they just shrug their shoulders and carry on their normal business, continuing to enjoy their evening and chat as if nothing had happened. I commented to one of the waiters how well they took defeat. His reply was “tomorrow is another day, the sun will still shine!” A great response and attitude.
Croatia is a lovely place, with wonderful people. Don’t be put off by their dour faced exteriors – engage in conversation and they come alive – great wit and humour. Getting to know them is a highlight of any Croatia holiday.They appreciate you visiting their wonderful country – after all tourism is their biggest earner! The views and scenery are delightful, a lovely mixture of the clear Adriatic , framed by Mountains, beautiful flowers and Pine trees. Friends always comment how beautiful it looks when they see my photographs on my social media pages.
Why have a Croatia holiday?
It is an ideal destination for the over 50’s who wish to experience a chilled, relaxing holiday with beautiful scenery and a friendly welcome.
And finally I cannot end without mentioning the beer and wine! I think two of their local beers Karlovacko and Osujszco are 2 of the best I’ve ever tasted, plus their red wines aren’t bad either, Plavac and Dingac. Such a pity they don’t export, although I know M&S stocked a Plavac for a while.
I really recommend a Croatia holiday if you love fabulous scenery, Cafe Culture and clear waters.
If you’re tempted to visit how about looking at some recommendations from the local tourist board
If you’ve visited or are planning a trip what are your thoughts – let me know your experiences I’d love to hear from you.
If you want to know more about how I am loving life in retirement read more