Monday, 25 July 2016

Mon 25 Jul 2016. Around Dubrovnik

Mon 25 Jul 2016. Around Dubrovnik 
Rang Dad - he was so pleased to talk to us, our niece Kelsi has had a healthy baby girl. Talked to our Dutch neighbours Hans and Cecile (teacher); they will send us recommended campgrounds and places to visit in Italy. GirlRob went into Old City (a UNESCO site), BoyRob content to stay in campgrounds and have a day off. Bus too crowded, stood uncomfortably face-to-face with strangers.

Never leave home without one's sports car
Liner crossing in front of Franjo Tudman Bridge 

Crossed stone bridge to enter through Pile Gate by Bokar Tower. Watched people trying to stand on a (slippery) owl gargoyle face flat against the stone wall. Tradition has it that those who can take off their shirt whilst remaining balanced will be lucky in love.... 

GirlRob's aim was to walk the Castle walls, considered one of great fortifications of Middle Ages as they had never been breached (including during a 15 month invasion by Saracens in 9th Century!) Almost 200 mtrs in length, up down and along; 25 mtrs at highest point. 

Great Onofrio's Fountain
Buses bringing more and more to Old City

Flag of Croatia

St Lawrence fortifications

Looked across to imposing St Lawrence Fortress (Dubrovnik’s Gibraltar). The very pleasant walk with its fabulous views in all directions took 1.5 hrs in occasional rain, down stairs, up into turrets, casements, and towers.

Going up, up, and up, like the Great Wall of China!

Looking out to sea from Fort Bokar

Lokrum Island

Municipal bell tower
Ancient bellringers - renowned "green" twins

Came down the final steps; reckoned the experience was worth the money. Having seen the queues for food and exorbitant prices the day before, GirRob had packed a chicken salad bread roll, and now added a freshly squeezed lemon juice to lunch, pushing in along the bench outside the Rectors Palace to watch the passing parade. Re-energised, called into the less-crowded Cathedral. 

Bronze bust of Michael Prazatto, prominent Ragusan
Central Courtyard Rectors Palace

Contemporary Stations of the Cross

Went in to high quality exhibition War Photo Limited which had 3 dedicated displays - current refugee crisis, Ex-Yugoslavia, and Balkans at War. Amazingly, photos of photos were allowed ("happy you share with world"). The exhibition was quite moving.

Walked out through Old City gate, (admiring door mechanism). Stood in heat on lengthy queue for public transport, three packed buses passed before could squeeze in. GirlRob found it too tight even to get phone out to check stops, and missed it! No fun walking back uphill in heat. Arrived back in camp overheated with throbbing feet and wobbly knees (but would do it all again!)

Sitting on kerb in shade, waiting for bus

Lightning, thunder and a little rain cooled place down. Aussie girl Tanya introduced herself in passing, parents Croatian, she's bought house here and can't insure it without getting citizenship. Have to live for today, she said, you never know when your number is up.

Hmm. Interesting mechanism...

Used washer and dryer whilst BoyRob tried a vacuum-packed meal. Given he couldn’t read instructions the meat and mushy pea "soup" wasn’t bad. GirlRob took her sore feet to bed!

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