November 25 and 26 and 27
Our departure from Split by ferry is at 10:30, arriving at Vela Luka (Big Harbor) on the northern end of Korčula Island, a 2 and 3/4 hour trip. A big ferry and very smooth ride. Then, we travel by bus for an hour to old Korčula town at the southern tip. We thought this would be a good way to see most of the island, and it is.
We passed through several small towns (Blato, Smokiva, Prvo, and Zrkovo), dropping off high school students. They have quite a daily commute. The island is wooded with scrub bushes, vineyards, and lots of white rock. The roads curve through medium-sized mountains to reach Korčula town. At times we are up very high and the views are great. It is dense with dark pines and was called the black island when first discovered. It has one of the best preserved medieval centers in Dalmatia. Sometimes it is called a mini Dubrovnik. Several locals help us find "Accommodations Nena" where we are staying for three nights since many streets are not named. Have a great view of the harbor and of course the place to ourselves. Cute little terrace upstairs where we plan to have breakfast tomorrow.
We had hoped to rent bikes since it is a nice sunny day, but all the places closed for the season. So, we have walked throughout town several times. It's pretty small and contained with lots of twisting and turning and of course stairs.
Lots of shops and restaurants, many are closed now. Some very nice villas and beautiful, aqua colored water all around ! The surrounding hills almost look fake since above the tree line they are covered with white rock.
The streets (walkways really) all lead up to the top of the old town (stari grad in Croatian) to, what else?, THE CHURCH, St. Marks, in this case. Actually, the other big item next to the church is (you won't guess this one!) Marco Polo's home...well, maybe, maybe not. There is controversy because the house is actually newer than when he lived, and other towns claim him, too. We did walk around yelling MARCO....POLO.
At lunch we met a nice Japanese family with a 5-year old boy. The father works in the embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the country next to Croatia. They have bought a home on this island which is easy for them to get to by boat. Saw this restaurant in one of the books and it is always fun and a good way to see the town while searching.
For days now I've been saying I need to go to a Frizerski to get my hair cut. Both Dick and I ended up getting one. The owner of the shop is named Sandra, so we had our picture taken together. The girl that did mine didn't speak English, but we did fine with gestures and she liked my curly hair. There are NO gray/white haired women in Croatia, so I think she thought it was fun. Great place to have a hair coloring concession, but oh what terrible colors.
We ate breakfast on the outdoor patio and walked the streets again. Nena, the apartment owner, is picking us up at 13:00 to take us to Lumbarda, a town about 3 miles away. While we explored the town and walked the seaside path, Nena went mushroom hunting with a friend nearby. She drove us back because there are no buses on Sunday. Sat and had a coffee with her at a local cafe and learned more about the area and her family. She teaches 2nd grade and only has 8 students. Fun person and very nice.
We have to be up early tomorrow to catch the 6:45 bus to Dubrovnik. Just finalized a three night stay there.
Sunday, November 27, 2011
November 25 and 26 and 27