Trogir to Krk,
April 22 - May 2, 2002
Travelog 3 of 2002
April 22, 2002
Kathy, Daline (our granddaughter)
and I left Phoenix for Trogir, Croatia. We have a specific trip
and destination so it is a pre-programmed trip. We need to be
in Izola, Slovenia by May 16. We will meet our broker and a mechanic
who will address several items that need to be attended prior
to the expiration of certain parts of the warranty, and most
certainly before we sail across the Atlantic to bring Traumerei
to US waters.
I am getting smarter regarding
seat selection and now know that I need to check in very early
to get seats 30 A and D. These are emergency row seats and there
is a great deal of legroom for the taller person. I got 30 D
and Kathy/Daline got the row behind me, so we each had an aisle
or a window. There is nothing to see on the way to Frankfurt,
you leave and it is dark in about two hours then it is dark until
you are near the coast of Europe and you are asleep. This was
a very nice and seemed somewhat quick trip. In Frankfurt we enjoyed
the Lufthansa lounge with the free drinks and eats. The trip
from Frankfurt to Venice was but an hour and a half so we did
not sleep just looked out the windows and enjoyed the splendor
of the Alps. They are really beautiful to look at. I don't ski
or enjoy winter sports so the scenery is the extent of my enjoyment.
We arrived in Venice after only having been gone from Phoenix
for 15 hours. We went to the lagoon in Venice where we intended
to catch a train for Trieste, Italy. We intended to stop traveling
at about 6 PM in Trieste and be somewhat ready for a final leg
to Rijeka and Trogir.
You might have guessed by the
writing that our plans were changed. There was a group of strikers
at the rail station at the Venice Lagoon. They had the tracks
blocked and no one had any idea how long it would be before they
relented and allowed traffic flow. We are a bit too tired to
play these games so we went to the Hotel Ducale, where Pete and
I had stayed only three weeks before. The receptionist looked
at me and said I think I have seen you somewhere before,
do I know you? She soon recalled and we checked in to freshen
up and a short stroll about town and a little TV then to sleep.
We earned the sleep we were to get for the next 10 hours. Up
at 7 and on the way to Trieste.
We were on a semi-express train,
only 5 stops in two hours. There was a young man, who Daline
said kept staring at her, changed seats and eventually ended
up across the aisle from us. In a short while he asked me for
the time, and I answered. Later Daline is to observe that he
had a cell phone with the time of day displayed. I guess he forgot
about that. He is from Jerusalem and was reading a novel written
in Hebrew. We got engaged in a conversation and to hear him I
invited him to sit in the foursome of seats that we occupied.
He kindly accepted the offer and we were off and running on a
varied topic conversation. He was amazed that Daline had never
seen the written Hebrew language and shared some of the differences
in the writing of English and Hebrew. We had a very enjoyable
ride and he said that if Daline wanted to extend her visit to
Trieste he could be of assistance in finding her a room. How
nice he was. He has just finished his mandatory service for Israel
and is now going to the university. He was truly an interesting
person and a good conversationalist Once in Trieste we boarded
a bus for our ride to Trogir. This is not the fun part of the
trip. There is no train service and the plane fare to Split from
Venice is the same as the plane fare from Phoenix to Venice,
a bit outrageous. The highway is very scenic and much more pleasant
in the daytime. It is right along the coast. And no matter what
mode of transportation, one would be required to go very slowly.
We arrived in Trogir very late and had a welcoming walk to the
boat. We each needed to stretch out and get the circulation going
in our lower bodies. The boat was a welcome sight and was very
comfortable for a first night in Croatia.
For the next two or three days
we wandered around Trogir and took a side trip into Split. Split
is one of the larger towns in Croatia. The old town, castle and
sea side restaurants keep us busy for the afternoon. The bus
ride back to Trogir is one to remind us of the trip in southern
Mexico, there were 100 people on a bus built for 60. We walked
all of the small crooked streets in Trogir and found several
grocery stores. We ate at two different restaurants and in general
had a very god time in Trogir. It rained very hard on the day
and night before we were to leave so we delayed one more day.
We luckily did so as it rained all the next day also. We finally
departed and motored to Rogonizica where Kathy , Leroy and I
had visited in October of 2000. We were able to tie up to the
city wharf and in front of Antonios Café, where had been
before. It is clear that the sailing season is beginning; there
are several boats at the wharf and more that are turned away.
It will be very crowded by the time we return through here. The
three of us walked the small village, saw the new marina, had
a great supper on Traumerei then a gelato and to bed.
April 29, 2002
We got away fairly early and
sailed all of the way to Murter Island where we are now tied
up. The wind is blowing from about 150 at about 15 and the dock
master wants me to back in from an upwind position, Ho! HO! HO!
The bow blows off so quick that I only try twice and ask to be
on the downwind side of the dock, he agreed with me so here we
are safe and sound in a new anchorage. The next 5 boats that
came in were directed to the downwind side also. It is a very
small village but has a nice marina and facilities. We just used
the last of our propane so we get to eat out tonight. A fine
local restaurant TicTac where the food is primarily Italian.
That is the situation along this entire coast. Remember we are
less than 100 miles from Italy and they like to travel.
Have in mind the Dalmatian breed
of dog. This part of the Adriatic is the Dalmatian Coast, which
is the length of Croatia. I am not sure but it is highly possible
that the dog name came from here; the islands are as numerous
as the spots on the dog. There are more than 1400 islands with
only 67 of them inhabited. Many of the islands are very small
and lie less than 1 meter above sea level. It would be crazy
to sail here unless you had excellent visibility. There are also
numerous buoys that mark shoals and rocks that are just below
the surface. We passed about 5 of them today in a 17-mile trip.
We sailed all the way to Kukljica which is on the island of Ugljan,
across from Zadar on the mainland. The references that we have
are less than 3 years old and are already so out of date as to
not have the largest marina in Croatia listed. It is in Sukosan
just south of Zadar. The bay that we are in has also added slips
or pontoons as they are called. This country is really spending
a lot of money to entice the boater to come visit. It will work
also, this is a beautiful country with excellent sailing and
clean water. They also have a great many fine places to eat.
We made a very short trip NW
about 4 miles to Preko where we again find a place to tie up
in the town center. Kathy has read of a castle like fortress,
which is, but a 4-mile hike inland and we have arrived early
enough to not hike in the heat of the day. This is May Day and
the locals are observing it. All of the businesses are closed
and all of the schools are out. St. Michaels castle/fortress
is our goal and we find ourselves walking with a steady stream
of kids. This is like our spring break. There must be several
hundred of them and the ones not carrying bread are carrying
wine or some other beverage. They intend to have a party. The
hike takes about an hour and a half, with the last part being
rather steep. By the time we arrive there are several hundred
teenagers and they are in a party mood. From the castle one can
see the outer barrier islands and several miles inland. The view
is grand and we take about a half hour to enjoy it. Now it is
the long walk home as it is very clear adults are not needed
at the scene of the party. As we are about a mile from town there
is a couple tending their garden right beside the one lane road.
We engage the gentleman in conversation and in that he has a
picnic table and a large umbrella with a beer logo over the table,
I assumed he had a small beverage stop for the hikers. He understood
my request and invited us to stop for a beer. He is retired and
his wife is a nurse. They attend this garden for their vegetables.
It is truly a beautiful setting in that it is in and out and
between some very large boulders. He invited us to stop and drink
a beer or water as we chose. The man joined us but his wife who
is a nurse continued to pull weeds and other such chores. It
was a wonderful stop where he spoke German and Croatian, she
spoke Croatian and English an we speak English and Spanish. Kathy
knows a bit of German but does not get to practice it very often.
It was a refreshing stop and he invited us back next year.
May 2, 2002
We stayed for a second night
in Preko due to the proximity of Zadar. This morning we walked
the town a bit and sailed to Zadar, 2.5 nm so it wasn't too tiring.
The sail was nice but as soon as we got to Zadar the wind picked
up so as to make mooring the boat more difficult. It is a very
small and crowded marina. The distance between the bows of opposing
boats is no more than 50 feet, and the boats are almost all 40
ft plus. When you enter the marina there is an office building
on the starboard side that has walls flush with passageway. You
could easily take cups or anything from people in their office.
I have never seen it as close. It is even closer than the canals
of Venice. We have wandered the town and found the spots of interest
plus a place for supper. We are now back on the boat for the
I keep having this thought of
what a game of Scrabble would be like if you could use the Croatian
language. There would hardly be a time that one could not play
all of the letters. The abundance of consonants is amazing, especially
the letters J, Z and K.
This marina is right in the heart
of Zadar and most of the charters are based here. Last night
was the end of the week and most of the charters are due back
on Fri night or Sat morning.. This place was a zoo. There is
so little room between the bows of opposing boats that it is
very difficult to park a boat. I am certain that there is no
more than 45 feet between the bows of boats. It is very tight
and there is a 15 to 20 kt cross wind to deal with. One has to
start somewhere and get a little momentum in reverse prior to
turning sharply into the assigned spot. It is a real sight to
witness. We are now finished visiting Zadar and will move on
We are going to the Island of
Pag. This area of the Adriatic is just south of the area to the
east of the Istrian Peninsula, the bay of Rijeka. It is south
of the island Krk. That would be a good scrabble word. We are
able to sail in that the wind is about 20 at the beginning increasing
to 35 and at the end of the 23 miles we have only 10 kts of wind.
We are in Simuni Bay. The entrance is a 200-yard long channel
that turns 90 degrees to the port and is now only 250 feet wide
and about a half mile long. We are in a very protected place.
It is quite, rural and a rather long way from the closest shopping
of any kind. It appears to be the place of choice for the residents
of Slovenia, Austria and Croatia to leave their private boats.
There appears to be no charter operation, just people and their
own boats. We will not be here long but it very good to have
been here, it is a place that one could come to in a storm.
We have sailed to Rab just 16
miles north of Pag. It is difficult to keep the island names
meaningful in that they never have a familiar sounding name.
Tomorrow is Krk, so you have three islands in a row where each
is a single syllable word and there is but two vowels in the
three words, Pag, Krk and Rab. We find this to be a really charming
stop. The town is very small and green. There is a center of
town, which is one street from the bay. There are no blocks so
to speak. There are many souvenir shops and gelato stops. There
is a very long pine tree shaded walk about the top of the hill.
Behind the town, to the west and away from the bay there is a
fairly large hill. The hill is also the top of the town, not
too wide of a place. There is at least 2 miles of shaded paved
pathways with occasional benches and ramps for those that find
a ramp easier. The trails lead to the bay on the other side of
this peninsula and along the shores of the bay. We are directed
to eat at a particular restaurant and find the recommendation
to be a good one. This island is joined to the mainland on the
SE end and that is some miles away. Thus those who want to visit
as tourists find that the easier way to get here is by tour boat
from Krk. There must be 6 or 8 of them tied up along the town
quay. We are clearly tied where another one would like to tie
up, so we move closer to the center of the square. The quay is
long enough for the 8 charters and al least 15 more boats. Before
the evening is done there will be 9 boats tied up in front of
the town square.
It is a comfortable night and
we awake to find that a new wind has arrived, from the NE, which
is our direction for today. It is but 15 miles to Krk so not
to worry. While sailing this part of the trip I am thinking of
my sailor friends in Tucson and San Diego. This area is great
for day sailing. One is never more than 2 or 3 hours from a harbor
or safe bay in which to anchor. There are more than 1400 islands
in the Dalmatian chain. The outer, Kornat Islands, act as a buffer
to the inland waterway. In the north there are the islands of
Losinj and Cres, which also act as a barrier to bad seas in the
inland waters. I have said that the waters of the Ionian were
great, and that is a fact, but there are not as many and the
great sailing ground of the Ionian is but 40 miles long and 15
miles wide. This area is about 300 miles long and 50 miles wide
with a greater density of islands marinas or bays in which to
anchor. The seas have will have no more than 15 miles of fetch
in most cases so that regulates the height of waves. The primary
charterers come from Germany, Austria and Switzerland. It is
very close by car to any of these three countries. It is closer
than it is for us in Tucson to go to San Diego.
We have arrived in Krk and found
an Internet café, which will be open at 5. Krk is our
last stop before we sail around the island of Cres and journey
SW down the Eastern shore of the Istrian Peninsula.