Tom & Shirley's Page -- 2008 Croatia Trip
 Where? Croatia?  Just where is that again?  That was the response we would get when talking about our planned trip to Croatia in fall of 2008.  Most don't know much about the war that ensued in the early 90's, a war of independence from the old Yugoslavia.  The war is long over, the country is rebuilding, tourism is back, and Croatia is a safe place to visit. Being monolingual we were pleased to discover English is freely spoken everywhere in Croatia.  We were also happy to discover how welcomed Americans were in Croatia.
  The big draw to Croatia is the coastal towns and islands.  The capitol is inland and considered a bit off the beaten path.  It does offer a wonderful old town though and that is where we decided to make our first stop.  We are very happy we decided to visit Zagreb.  It has a wonderful old town, interesting markets, good public transportation, is friendly, safe and quite affordable.  Lodging in the downtown area would be the exception to affordability.  For that reason we chose to stay in the outskirts.  This did prove to be ideal for day-trips out of town, while convenient to old town via public transportation.  There we had a parking space we didn't need to worry about.  We would recommend Madi, a wonderful place at the end of the bus line, owner occupied; modern, clean, and complete with a terrace, kitchen access and reasonable pricing.  For a good time head to Upper Town and seek out the Ro-Do Bar (near St. Catherine Church) and hash over politics with owner Dominic.  Maybe he'll even offer you some Medovca!  Tip: If driving in Zagreb a GPS is quite useful.  We found the Zagreb streets to be poorly marked, if marked at all.  Our GPS guided us to our accommodation without a hitch, a true stress reducer on your trip into town.  After 4 days in the big city we were ready for a bit of tranquility, so on to Plitvice.
  You may as well leave your camera in the case when you visit Plitvice National Park as pictures cannot adequately capture its natural beauty.  We did take a ton of pictures but none really show how crystal clear the emerald-green lakes are or how tranquil the waterfalls that connect them are.  Hum, can something be both crystal clear and emerald-green?  You get the idea.  The trails are well groomed and offer a variety of walking lengths.  There is an electric boat that traverses the largest lake as well as buses that go from various points.  We enjoyed our two-day stay with the Krizmanic family located only a five-minute walk to the main Plitvice Park entrance.  The Krizmanic guesthouse provided clean, nice rooms with friendly service.  And now...on to the coast!
  We chose to stay in Trogir versus Split and in the end felt this decision was right for us.  We did a day trip to Split and although it is larger and a major departure point for island excursions, we just prefer the smaller and more compact towns.  Trogir was clean, fun, and had its fair share of nice attractions.  One of our outings was a day trip to Omis where we did a raft trip down the Cetina River with the guys from  This was a blast and highly recommended for any age and skill level.  We stayed at Apartments KASALO while in Trogir.  The apartment was wonderful, and offered a stunning view of the harbor from the walkout terrace.  This is another owner-occupied accommodation we were well pleased with and recommend.
  Since our Croatian adventure was quite varied, it is hard to rate one place better than another, but we absolutely loved Dubrovnik!  We did all the tourist things; walked the wall, visited the Buza Bar, attended a concert, went to a folk dance and did some island excursions.  We spent many hours contemplating life while sipping wine and enjoying views overlooking the city and coastline on our terrace.  We stayed at Simply Angelic Apartments (another GPS direct hit).  Immaculately clean and with all the conveniences, including a terrace (did I mention we are terrace/balcony people), we definitely recommend it.  Beware that you need legs for this place; many steps down and many steps back up.
  This trip offered something for everyone.  See our detailed trip report on Fodor's titled 'Croatia Trip Report-Getting there day one'
  Feel free to email us at with any questions that you may have.  We highly recommend Croatia and all of the places that we stayed at.
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  Bon voyage! Bon, Shirl, Tom, Rollie Our apartment 'MADI' in suburb of Zagreb was great Really! No strings attached. At Trg Bana Jelacica
  Street performers in Zagreb Shirl & Bon taking a little break. It's noon somewhere With Dominick the charismatic owner of RO-DO bar in Zagreb
  The colorful Dolac market in Zagreb We happened upon this Canadian search & rescue team in Samabor Our B&B in Plitvice National Park. The Krizmanic Family. A Great place!
  Just one of the many tranquil pools w/waterfalls in Plitvice We call these planning sessions These little roadside stands offer cheese, olive oil, home-made hooch, etc
  View from our terrace at Apartments KASALO in Trogir. Highly recommended Shirl doing a olive oil taste test in the Trogir market This is in courtyard of Diocletian's Palace in Split
  Rafting down the Cetina River near Omis View of Dubrovnik from out terrace at Simply Angelic Apartments. Wonderful accommodation! A bit of R&R on Lokrum Island near Dubrovnik
  'Walking the wall' is a must when in Dubrovnik Us at entrance into Dubrovnik Public beach with Dubrovnik in background