June 2007 and May 2014
Croatia, formerly part of Yugoslavia, was one of Europe's most popular tourist destinations in the 1980s until ravaged by bombs during the 1991-1995 Balkan conflict, leaving much of it in ruins. Today it has been greatly restored and is a hot travel destination with stunning beaches, islands, national parks and some castles. Its cuisine is a melting pot of Italian, Hungarian, Austrian and Oriental foods. At present, their currency is not the Euro...but the Kuna.
The Adriatic Coast with crystal blue water/rocky coastline and spectacular scenery is a vision of unsurpassed beauty. The Romans
settled here in 3rd century, building villas, palaces, towns....
basking in the beauty of the many islands, bays, coves and beaches
gilded with sunshine. These handsome-walled coastal towns with
terra-cotta tiled roofs are Mediterranean jewels, reflecting
medieval architecture. Take a boat out to the Island of Kolocep
or to one of the many other beautiful islands off the coast.
A sun-drenched, seaside medieval city known as the Pearl of the Adriatic coast. Its coastline is amazingly beautiful, as is its harbor. The marble streets have been mended and the Baroque-era buildings restored since the Balkan War. It is surrounded with gigantic limestone walls and stone fortifications that encircle the town and provide a most striking view upon its harbor. Walk the wall for great aerial views and photos. The wide piazza is 13th century, paved with polished white stone. The pedestrian only area allows strolling and browsing the alleys of old town, cafes, boutiques, restaurants. On some week-ends in the summer, entertainers stroll and dance in the street.
Home to the fortress-like, spectacular marble palace of Roman Emperor Diocletian...one of the most impressive sites in Central Europe. Today it is considered a UNESCO world heritage site with terraced homes, outdoor cafes and is a leading tourist destination. Take a ferry from here to an off-shore island.
Croatia's oldest seaside resort, famous for glamorous end-of-century hotels and beautiful gardens. Another charming coastal town with an eight mile walkable promenade along the coast with shops, cafes, restaurants. Pebble beaches surround the promenade. Boardwalks jetty out with ladders to access the water. There are playgrounds for kids and swimming is free...as in all of Croatia.
Port city near Opatija...a transportation hub to connect to Italy, Hungary and Austria. third largest city in Croatia. It was Italian territory until 1943. Home to a university.
Another charming coastal town on the Istrian Peninsula. It hosts a sizeable Italian community...two hrs. from Venice via boat. Walk up narrow, winding cobblestone streets to St. Euphemia Baroque Church...along the way are art galleries and home-made jewelry shops...some coral. There is a wonderful fruit market near the harbor area. A favorite little town.
Strategic port city with a 23,000 person Roman amphitheatre overlooks the coast...dates back to 1st Century A.D.
City of 1,000,000 and capital of Croatia since 1991. Interesting medieval city reminiscent of Budapest, Prague or Vienna. Popular with Europeans but not yet discovered by Americans. It's a business center, university city with art, entertainment and culture, theatres, museums and art galleries, green parks, promenades, open-air markets, shops and restaurants with a variety of cuisines....worth a visit! Don't miss the Croatian Museum of Naïve Art in the upper area or a ride on the funicular.
Baroque city known for its castle (now a museum) and Baroque bldgs.
Former capital of Croatia until it was destroyed by fire in 1776. Nice grounds for walking.
The site of the worst artillery shelling of the Croatian-Serbian War in 1991. This battle was an 87 day siege by the Yugoslav People’s Army. Before this war, the town was a prosperous, mixed community of Croats, Serbs and other ethnic groups. The city was defended by 1800 soldiers and volunteers against 36,000 soldiers with heavy armor. It was the fiercest battle in Europe since WWII and was almost entirely destroyed. Much has been rebuilt, but so many traces still remain.
During the war in Croatia, the city sustained heavy damage, especially to the center and cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul. About 800 people were killed in the shelling of the town. Overall, a total of 1,724 people from Osijek were killed over the course of the war. While some buildings still have mild damage, artillery and mortar fire marks still are evident. The city's façades are generally in good shape, due to extensive restoration in recent times, preserving the charm of its intricate Astro-Hungarian Baroque architecture in the older quarters of town. Osijek is the fourth largest city in Croatia. It is the largest city and the economic and cultural centre of the eastern Croatian region of Slavonia, as well as the administrative centre of the county. It is located on the right bank of River Drava.
We had an organic lunch at a Croatian family home…
All food was from their gardens. This home had
been completely destroyed during Croat-Serb war
Croatia Photo Gallery
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