I hope you’re all doing well. Welcome to my first ever travel post!
As I mentioned in my last blog post, I’ve turned 21! And as a present from my boyfriend (BF), he planned a surprise trip away for us both.
I honestly had no idea where we were going until they called us to boarding at the airport, and that’s when I found out we were going to DUBROVNIK, CROATIA. It’s one of the places that I’ve dreamt about going for a long time and we finally were.
Within about 4 hours of me finding out where we were going, we arrived at Dubrovnik airport. I knew nothing about this trip because my BF booked everything. It turned out we were staying just outside of the main city, in a little town called Cavtat, and since returning, it’s become one of my favourite visited places.
So here’s a little rundown of the holiday and everything we got up to. I hope you enjoy!
Name: Hotel Croatia, Cavtat.
Rating: 5 *
This is hands down THE nicest hotel I’ve ever been to, baring in mind I’ve never stayed in a 5* before. They had everything that you would want in a hotel – an indoor and outdoor pool, a games area where you could play volleyball and table tennis, and a quick walk down to Cavtat. They boasted two private “beaches” for the residents of the hotel. But they are not regular, sandy beaches as you would expect. The hotel is built right on the sea and so what they have in some flattened rock surface with a number of deck chairs and parasol with steps going down to the sea. It doesn’t sound like much, but for where you are and they way it looks, it’s great!
On the first day we took advantage of this side of the hotel and went snorkelling. What I didn’t realise is that I have a massive fear of deep water and started to panic when I couldn’t see the bottom. I ended up chilling by where the little fish were so that I didn’t panic myself too much. But I love the sea and how calming it is. As long as I know I’m safe, the sea is one of my favourite places to be.
**DISCLAIMER: AHEAD I TALK AND SHOW IMAGES OF PORTIONS OF COOKED MEAT. IF THIS TOPIC OR IMAGE UPSETS ANY PLEASE SCROLL DOWN TO “BEING A TOURIST” **
We were able to stay “half board” at the hotel, which means that they provide food for breakfast (6:30 – 10:30) and dinner (19:00 – 22:30). So everytime we’d go down they had a massive variety of food and had different areas for different diets and food groups. They had a section for the main courses where you usually had different meat, pasta and fish dishes with little sides of veg and potatoes in between (this is where we headed straight to!). In other areas they had vegetarian and vegan options and also gluten free, so they made sure they catered for everyone.
The hotel also had their own steak house, which you had to book for, and as steak is one of my BFs favourite meals, we just had to go.
As you can see from the picture (left), the portions there were massive. Included in each price you got the meat, a side of your choice and a sauce as well. The prices were decent seeing as everything they had was fresh and cooked to order, and with both sides included in the price it was kind of a perfect restaurant for us – and most importantly, the steaks were AMAZING.
But one of my favourite aspects of going somewhere that I’ve never been before is trying all of the local food – and Croatia’s was beautiful.
I am a big lover of fish and Cavtat is a town that is built on a harbour. So, as you can imagine, the fish they sold was all freshly caught. They had all sorts on the menu, from mussles and little prawns to big steaks of tuna and fresh lobster. I honestly wanted to try it all but we didn’t have enought time or money.
Another favourite of mine, which the Croatians blew me away with, was the pizzas. In most of the restauraunts, pizza was the cheapest main meal they had, mainly because it was also freshly prepared and cooked. Naturally, it was my go to if we ever went out for lunch.
Being a Tourist
This is something that me and my BF do ever so well. We love going out for the day and just exploring the places that we visit. The Old Town of Dubrovnik was THE place that I had to go and see as soon as I found out that we were going there.
We ended up travelling over, by sea taxi, on our second day.
The Old City was more than I ever thought it would be. It’s mad to think that it even is a city because it’s all little old side streets, cobbled paths and small shops that seem to get bigger whenever you go inside.
If you’re a film and tv geek, like myself, you’ll love it there. They have so many shops dedicated to Game of Thrones and Star Wars that it’s a delight if you ‘re a fan – seeing as you’re literally walking through King’s Landing!
If geeking out isn’t your thing, however, then there is still plenty to do.
One of the main tourist attractions is “The Walls of Dubrovnik”. This wall is one of the largest and most complete structures of its kind in Europe and you see loads of people walking it when you’re there. Once you’re at the top, the views of Dubrovnik and beyond are stunning.
when you arrive and the Old Town, beware of the massive hoards of tourists that you may encounter if you go there through the summer months.
As Dubrovnik has a port, cruise ships tend to have a drop off point there. Because of this, the Old Town can get very busy and I would recommend walking about on your own (instead of taking a tour or a guide) because you don’t want to get caught up in these massive groups.
Other than that, Dubrovnik is such a wonderful place and it is definitely a place to visit!
The People (and the World Cup!)
As my last section of my post, but the most important after our trip, is to talk about the Croatian people. After the first day was over, I was truly surprised by how lovely all of the locals were to us.
Everyone was so inviting, whether it was the supermarket cashier, waiter or just the hotel staff walking by. There was always a quick “Hello” followed by a smile and it just made you feel welcomed. They were really lovely.
The one occasion that truly showed how amazing the locals were with us was during their World Cup matches. We ended up being there for the Quarter Final game against Russia and the Semi Final against England.
At both games the atmosphere was incredible, and probably my favourite memories of the trip! We managed to watch the games at the main square of the town where there was a big screen hanging for everyone to see.
When the games started you could feel the tense atmosphere but soon lightened up with some Croatian chants and shots at goal!
When the Croatians won both games the town went mad! There were flares being set off, yachts blowing their horns, firework and just a massive street party. The memories from these nights are ones that I will never, ever forget!
So, just in case it wasn’t clear, I would recommend anyone and everyone to go to Croatia – even if it’s just for a long weekend. The place is absolutely stunning and the people and food there are even better!
It truly is as good as they all say!
I hope you’ve enjoyed my first attempt at a travel post! I loved writing it and it was very satisfying to go through all of our pictures and memories to write it up!
Any tips to improve would be much appreciated!