Dubrovnik – Croatia Day 4 Mljet


As I said yesterday, the alarm was set for 6am, lovely, I woke up… take a guess… go on I dares ya… yep spot on 5.59am. Who would have guessed it hey?

So that meant we were up, and had no excuse not to get up and get going. The benefit of such an early start walking down to the Old Town is much more pleasant due to the reduced heat, still tough on the calves but less sweaty (yummy). Down at Old Town we grabbed some bus tickets and had to wait only minutes for the bus to the ferry port. Still not entirely believing that we really needed to be there this early I was quite surprised to see a 30 person queue at the ticket shop already. I somewhat ate my words of sorts, so in true English style we joined the back of the queue and behaved ourselves. After nearly an hour the Catamaran arrived and the ticket shop opened, what the tourist chap had neglected to tell us was that the 50 KN only gets you ONE way, so its 100 KN to get there and back, cheeky! This put potty to our idea of hiring a ‘Mini Brum’ for the day and ragging around the island, in hindsight a brilliant decision.

We jumped on the Catamaran to Mljet and got sat, now something you need to know about me, I do not like boats/ferries/catamarans/being a long way out at sea. So this was most pleasant for me, it really didn’t help that I felt rough anyway and the cabin area was like an oven. Reading, eating, drinking didn’t work, leaving me with basically two options, get off and go for a rather long swim or sleep. I strangely enough chose option 2. We arrived, and you would suspect this to be the end of the transport carnage, but oh no! The ferry port was 3km from the National Park, walking is possible but advised against due to the crazy driving and the steep hill. So the only way we had to get there was on the park mini bus, no problem, well one, they only had two six-seaters for the 200 people who just got off the ferry. And once again, as is the custom in Croatia there is absolutely no queuing system, more on this later…

Once in the park things got a lot better, we took a wonder aimlessly around the coast of the park and we were hit by seemingly endless tranquillity, very easily we found a spot to swim where we could not see or hear another sole. What more can you ask for?

More snorkelling without drowning, and some attempted photos (I still don’t know how they came out, waiting on Paparazzo Barbie to put them online). Lunch was however rather expensive, being only one restaurant on the entire island this was always going to be the case! But it was good to eat some veg I guess… and as ever the beer was adequately cold and refreshing. There was also a chap there who was showing off his Mac Air and Iphone, he seemed to disappear after we loudly discussed the Grinder app… strange.

After lunch we headed onto the salt lakes, aptly names Big Lake and Small Lake (ish). Another chance for a swim, this time it was a fair bit busier but still lovely, and we saw clams on the bottom, which was definitely something new.

The other thing to see on the island was the old monastery, this was kinda weird to me, as the refurbishment is only halfway done. Couldn’t always work out what was new and what original, either a sign of good refurbishment work or that they’ve done nothing! Clearly I was thinking about it too much as I fell on my arse going down some steps, that sprung a chuckle from the mouths of some onlookers, grr! Stone steps and flop flips not a great mix, which is weird because so far I had managed all the steps down from the apartment without too much carnage.

With there being only one Catamaran off the island each day we wanted to make sure we made it, which meant giving ourselves plenty of time to get the mini bus back down to the port as well. As we arrived at the drop off point there were approximately 20 people waiting, in the customary semi circle style system, which basically meant if the van stopped near you jump on and thank your lucky star. However, this was not the case for everyone… as the second van opened it’s doors a frantic woman in a white top came barging through everyone and started ranting back and forth with another woman in a white top demanding that HER family had been here for ages and WERE getting on this van. Neither would step down, there was swearing, waving and general embarrassment for the families involved, their countries and themselves. It ended with about 12 people in the 6 seats and god knows what happened on the drive down…

On arrival back at Dubrovnik we had a little wonder down the harbour front, looking at the massive Yachts etc which were moored, and some which were being moored at the time. One was ridiculously big, called Galactica, what a beast. However there was another beast, of a Pug variety on one of them…

With little idea of what to do for dinner it felt only fitting to head the Irish bar, who had the cricket on! Perfect, and we brought the wicket of Katich. Woop. After dinner we went and grabbed a couple of cans of beer to take into the open air cinema we were attending that evening. The film – Gangster with Mr Depp. Sat down and it suddenly struck me, how the hell am I going to know what is going on? Luckily it was an English rip (yes I say rip – I have downloaded better quality movies) with Croatian subtitles. They had to keep it quiet I guess for licensing laws etc… if there are any, maybe just bad speakers. Either way it was quite, but not a terrible film. We walked back up to the apartment and passed out after an extremely long day!

See you tomorrow, for the last day.

All of today’s pictures here, and as ever the growing bulk here.
[Disclaimer – this post was written on Thursday 30th July]

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