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Don’t get me wrong, Croatia is a wonderful country. But this:

1. We were travelling with two other people. Even Don and I have to do some negotiating about where, when, what. When it’s four people there is so much more negotiating needed every day to keep everyone happy. After a while it gets to be a little stressful, especially when we’re used to it being just the two of us.

2. We ate oysters. All four of us. We all got norovirus, aka food poisoning. It was not pretty. We were able to continue but didn’t feel too good for several days.

3. Don has a health issue that unexpectedly flared up because we’d both gotten lackadaisical about it. The upshot is that he is generally healthy, and as active as ever, but he can’t lift or carry anything, leaving me to carry all our bags, and him being stressed that I’ll overdo it, and us both being stressed about his health issue. We have him strapped together with duct tape (jk).

4. The flight from Dubrovnik was easy, getting a taxi from the airport to our hotel was easy (and we weren’t ripped off too too much). Half an hour after arriving I discovered I’d left my laptop on the plane! Devastated! Fortunately the solution was to throw money at it. Ninety Euros later for taxis to and from the airport and I had my precious back. But still! I’ve never done anything like that before.

5. Athens is brutal. Grubby crowded loud smoggy screeching. We were not charmed. Maybe because we were still in recovery from the previous three weeks.

6. We splurged on a 4-star hotel for Athens that was not 4-star. Paper cups in our room for our coffee. Really? It’s a 4-star hotel and all you can provide is paper cups? There were other issues but for me the paper cups say everything. And by this time we just wanted to be grumpy!

Now we are in Chania on the island of Crete and all of this is behind us and joy arises every day. We are happy.

I’ll expand on all these stories, and the fabulousness of Croatia, over the coming weeks, but for now this: panorama shots of the beauty of this country that is at once so young and so ancient.

The utterly charming walled town of Dubrovnik.









The ancient fortifications at Ston.



Driving on the Peljesac Peninsula.



Bacvice Beach, Split.



Split from Marjan Hill.



Split Harbour at night.



Hvar town on the island of Hvar.



Milna Beach, Hvar.



Stari Grad, Hvar.



The town of Bol on Brac Island.



The town of Supetar on Brac Island.



The incomparable Plitvice Lakes National Park.









The view of Vis town on Vis Island from the balcony of our airbnb.



Dinner on the balcony.



More views of Vis: the town, the beach, the hidden bays.







Returning to Split – Vis through the ferry window.










All words and images by Alison Louise Armstrong unless otherwise noted
© Alison Louise Armstrong and Adventures in Wonderland – a pilgrimage of the heart, 2010-2022.