Tisno & The Island of Murter, Croatia

Settled on the crystal clear waters of the Dalmatian Adriatic, balancing itself half on the mainland and half on the island of Murter, is the little known town of Tisno. My second home. This small town, with a population of a little of 1,000 inhabitants, is the hometown of my father, and my favourite place to spend the Europen summer. I was also furtunate enough to spend a year in this town (I began a blog about my experiences in Tisno –  http://dalmatinka-malakretova.blogspot.com.au – check out the blog for information about the culture and history of the town) experiencing the traditions and simple life of the poeple of Tisno.

Although I had so many places I wanted to visit on my travels this year, I spared a week of my itinerary to visit old friends, and new friends (many of my friends had had children since I was there last) in Tisno. August is also a great time to visit so you can experience some of the traditional summer festivals, such as The Tisno International Donkey Race (usually the second weekend in August) and Velika Gospa celebrations in Jezera (on the night of the 15th August). In Tisno, and on the Island of Murter, there is a lot to do to occupy your time: spend your afternoon lazying about at one of the many beautiful bays, hire a scooter or a boat for the day and explore the island, or just sit back and relax in one of the many caffe bars, gossiping with the locals and watching the world go by.

Jezera, Croatia

Jezera

IMG_7472

Jezera, Croatia

IMG_7504

IMG_7511

IMG_7512

IMG_7528

IMG_7522

Here are a few of my favourite places to go and things to do on the island:

  • Spend the afternoon lazying at the Bay of Jasenovac. This beautiful bay, located on the western side of the island, is absolutely spectacular. The bay can only be reached by sea, on foot from the Bay of Kosirina, or taking the long and windy unpaved road. Don’t try riding your bike there as I did one day in the sweltering heat – I’d forgotten how long the road was and how difficult it would be to navigate by push bike – part of the road is covered in loose pebbles, making bike-riding near impossible. About 10 years ago a father and son from Jezera, who owned the land by the bay, opened a little restaurant/cafe overlooking the Adriatic. It’s a perfect place to have some evening drinks or an evening meal as you watch the sun set into the sea. The food it basic, but if you want something amazing ask for lamb (janjetina) or octopus (hobotnica) “ispod peke” – baked under hot coals. You have to order a day in advance and the “peka”, as it is called, is to die for. If it’s not too hot, spend a few hours walking from Jasenovac to the Bay of Kosirina. This picturesque sea-side walk is a relaxing way to spend the day, get in a bit of exercise and soak in the beauty of the island. A word of warning, there are many nude bathers along this path.
  • Chatting to the locals. There is always some gossip to hear or something to laugh about, a conversation with someone from Tisno is never dull. There will be laughter, crazy hand gestures, insane ideas thrown about, some bizarre story told – although it’s a small town, life never seems to be dull.
  • Party the night away with the locals in the caffe bars. Three of the most popular in Tisno are Caffe Bar Crni, Caffe Bar Kole and Kasiopeja, each with their own cliental. Crni’s attracts the younger crowd – the university students party all night long, every night of the week, soaking in their short-lived summer holidays. Kole’s has the older, more sophisticated crowd – drinking their wine and critiquing the passers by. And finally Kasiopeja, with its ‘alternative’ crowd, entertaining themselves with personal jokes and gags. Wherever you go, you’re bound to have fun if you hang with the locals.
  • Swim at Sveti Andrija (Saint Andrew’s) Beach. Hidden away at the southern end of Tisno, on the island side, is this little protected beach. Although the water is usually colder at this end, Sv. Andrija is one of my favourite beaches, as the water is always crystal clear and you are free from the hoards of tourist you find at Jazina Beach on the opposite side.
  • Festa time! Everyone loves a good festa. And the people of Tisno know how to party. There are many festas (festivals) organised in Tisno during the summer. These are huge outdoor parties, with both local and well-known Croatian bands coming to town to give free concerts. The night usually consists of copious amounts of drinking, singing along to songs in the loudest voice possible, catching up with old friends from other parts of Croatia, Europe or the wider world, and dancing together into the early hours of the morning before staggering home – staying until sunrise is not uncommon.
  • Concerts at Cigrada. Found on the western side of the island, just before you reach Murter is a signpost on the left to Cigrada. This little bay is often the site of concerts in summer, with well-known Croatian artists coming to perform. With only one street in and out of Cigrada, these concerts usually have an entry charge. Many people avoid this cover charge by going cross-country through the shrubbery, trying to avoid organisers searching for them with flashlights.
  • Eating figs! I just adore figs and they grow almost everywhere in Tisno. Take a basket when you go for a walk and collect them as you pass. Just make sure no one sees you – some of the locals might be a bit disgrunted if they catch you ‘stealing’ their figs (even if they themselves aren’t eating them, and they are rotting away on the tree).
  • Summer Festivals! As of this year, Tisno is home to a number of well-known European summer music festivals. This year, and for the following few years (I think a five year contract has been signed), Tisno was home to The Garden Festival, Stop Making Sense, Soundwave Festival, and Electric Elephant. These festivals are held in the Bay of Rastovac, located just outside of Tisno. There is camping onsite, but if you want to true local experience, many of the locals rent rooms and/or apartments in their houses over the summer. So if you like 3 to 5 day music festivals, dancing and listening to amazing music all day and all night, there is no better place than Tisno in the summer. And the scenery is just amazing – there aren’t many places in the world that are more beautiful.
  • I have to put this one down, as all my friends in Tisno tease me about my Linolada obsession. This stuff is amazing. Similar to Nutella, but it’s a half hazelnut and white chocolate spread, it is a necessity when making palacinke (Croatian pancakes, similar to the French crepes).

 

IMG_7541

IMG_7531

IMG_7538

IMG_7535

IMG_7553

IMG_7564

IMG_7567

IMG_7569

IMG_7583

IMG_7588

IMG_7603

IMG_7582

IMG_7622

IMG_7624

IMG_7838

IMG_7868

IMG_7886

IMG_7870

IMG_7914

IMG_7893

IMG_7926

IMG_7920

IMG_7932

IMG_7928

IMG_7933

IMG_7938

IMG_7940

IMG_7939

IMG_7941

IMG_7949

IMG_8201

IMG_8204

IMG_8214

IMG_8210

IMG_8236

IMG_8197

IMG_8243

IMG_8245

IMG_8246

IMG_8249

IMG_8247

IMG_8251

IMG_8285

IMG_8300

IMG_8286

IMG_8290

IMG_8292

Essentials:

Stay:

There is plenty of private accommodation in Tisno and around the island. Many locals rent out rooms and private aparments during the summer to tourists. Prices and standards vary. Ask at the local tourist bureau (turisticka zajednica) for a current list of vacancies. They’ll usually call the host (which could range from being an old grandmother to a young barman) who will pick you up, take you to your room, and usually stuff you with local delicacies of cured ham, cheese and figs. People’s knowledge of English will vary, from knowing nothing to being almost fluent, but through a range of hand gestures, you’ll hopefully be understood. Either way, you’ll have a true local experience.

Eat:

Ok, so I’m going to be a bit biased here and mentioned the restaurants of a few good friends (but they are great restaurants).
Ferali: Run by twin brothers (who don’t look alike), this restaurant is one of my favourites. Roko in the kitchen always serves up great local cuisine and his brother Krste is an enteraining host. My brother swears that they do the best lignje na zaru (grilled squid) in Croatia. He has tried the dish in almost every restaurant we’ve eaten at in Croatia, and he rates Ferali’s as the best without a doubt. Located in the centre of town, as you cross the bridge to the island side, turn left and they are about 50 metres along the waterfront.
Prova (http://www.apartmani-restaurant-prova-tisno.com): Also run by two brothers, Ante and Marko, this restaurant with its beautiful waterfront terrace is located a little out of the centre, towards the bay of Jazina. They have a wide range of local specialities and you must try their pizza – they were the first restaurant in Tisno to serve up pizza on their menu, nicknaming the family “Pizza”.

Getting There:

Like many small towns in Croatia, public transport connections can be a bit irregular. However, Tisno is reasonable well connected to Zagreb, with a few direct connections daily. Just check the route of each bus, as some go direct via the autoput (motorway) taking about 4 hours, whilst others go via Rijeka or other cities, taking 6 hours or more. To get to other parts of Croatia, you usually have to go via Sibenik, being the capital of the county. There are a number of connections to and from Sibenik, the first one being at about 5:30am and the last at about 9:30pm. Hitching rides from locals is commonly done, if the train timetable doesn’t suit. Many people hire cars whilst in Croatia, making travel easier and more convenivent, especially in rural areas.

Advertisements

Ljubljana & The Lakes, Slovenia

If there is only one place you have to see before you die, it’s Slovenia. The country is absolutely stunning with its lush green mountains, crystal clear turquoise alpine lakes, richly cultivated fields, quaint and immaculately clean towns – the list could go on and on. This small former Yugoslav state, squashed between eastern and western Europe, is often overlooked in favour of Croatia’s beaches, Italy’s lakes or Austria’s alps. But little Slovenia has a lot to offer (and usually at cheaper prices too!).

I arrived in Ljubljana, the capital of Slovenia, late in the evening after a somewhat interesting four-hour bus trip from Venice. The bus, on its way to Sofia, Bulgaria, was full of people (most of them Bulgarians) throwing items down the aisle, yelling at the bus driver and even smoking in the WC (by the way, I don’t have any hatred towards Bulgarians, this was actually the first time I met with a group of them, and they seemed to be rather ‘baulkan’ in their manners unfortunately). Once we arrive in Ljubljana, I was rather glad to get out of the bus and explore this quaint little city. Ljubljana, being quite a small city, is very compact and everything in the centre is within easy walking distance). Prior to my arrival, I reserved a bed at The Zeppelin Hostel http://www.zeppelinhostel.com/, located on Slovenska street, about a five to ten minute walk from the train/bus station (located at the northern end of the city). So I on this occasion I didn’t have to carry my increasingly heavy backpack too far. Being rather exhausted from my mammoth day, travelling from Verona, stopping-off in Venice for a few hours, and then the bus trip to Ljubljana, I was glad to go to bed and get some sleep.

I woke up early the next morning and decided to go for a walk around the city, before visiting Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj. Ljubljana is quite safe and easy to navigate, but if you get lost, one of the locals will be more than happy to point you in the right direction. Here are a couple of sights I recommend visiting in Ljubljana:

Ljubljana Castle: Located at the southern end of the city, take the beautiful walk up the hill, through the forest, until you reach the castle. If you’re too lazy to walk, there is a funicular every ten minutes, or you can jump onto the tourist train. But these amenities do not commence until 9am, so if you want to experience the golden morning light of the Slovenian summer glittering through the trees, you have to walk. And once you reach the castle, your efforts are rewarded with a spectacular view over the awakening city below. The castle is open for tourists to explore, but arriving so early in the morning, the gates were not yet open.

Central Market (Presernov Trg): These beautiful outdoor markets sell an extensive range of fresh fruits and vegetables, flowers and traditional Slovenian handicrafts. Being able to communicate with the locals (I speak Croatian, which is a bit similar to Slovenian), I was lucky enough to ask the store owners which were their best fruits for the day to take along with me for a picnic snack at Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj.

Lake Bled

This beautiful alpine lake is located about 60km north of Ljubljana. It is one of Slovenia’s most popular tourist destinations, but thankfully does not seem to have been spoiled by tourism. The lake and its surroundings are so immaculately clear, the air is unpolluted and all you can hear is the twittering of birds in the trees. A day at Lake Bled feels as if you had died and gone to heaven. It truly is paradise.

Most people spend a day at Lake Bled, enjoying the scenery, taking a swim in the lake, enjoying the outdoors, basically just revelling in nature. For those who like to walk, there is a well defined walking path which encircles the lake and takes a few hours, at a leisurely pace, to complete the route. There are a few cafes along the way, where you can have a drink and breath in the crispy, clean mountain air. There is a small island in the middle of the lake, with a baroque church, which can be reached row-boat for about 10 euros. Also, overlooking the lake, is Bled Castle, which can be visited on foot and from which you have a spectacular view of the lake.

The road to Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj from Ljubljana is one of the most picturesque I have seen in Europe. All the fields you pass are richly cultivated, bursting with fresh produce, with the Julian Alps as a backdrop.

Lake Bohinj

Located about 20km south-west from Lake Bled, is Lake Bohinj. Another alpine lake close to the capital Ljubljana, this is a popular spot for picnics, canoeing, sailboating and bathing in the crisp, clear waters of the lake. Being less built-up then Bled, and more untouched, spending a few hours at Lake Bohinj is like finding paradise in the middle of the alpine forests. With the magestic Slovenian Alps as a backdrop, Lake Bohinj, like Lake Bled, seems to come from some heavenly realm, untouched and unspoilt by human interference. I only had a few hours at Lake Bohinj, so I didn’t have much time to explore. But I absolutely fell in love with what I saw, and would recommend to everyone who plans to visit the more popular and well-known Lake Bled to spear a few hours and visit Lake Bohinj as well.

Essentials:

Stay: Zeppelin Hostel, Slovenska 42, Ljubljana. This funky little is hostel located on the second floor of a historic building smack-bang in the centre of Ljubljana. It’s within easy walking distance to shops, restaurants, bars, clubs, the train/bus station and all the major attractions. The rooms are clean and spacious, the staff friendly and breakfast is included. For 20-somthing euros per night, you can’t go wrong.

Eat: Ljubljana: Stara Macka: Located on Korjaska Ulica, beside the Ljubljanica River, this restaurant is set in a popular night spot for both tourists and locals alike. The menu has a selection of international dishes, as well as some local specialities, such as local cured ham, known as prsut. For those who are missing a good Aussie steak on their travels, Stara Macka does a fantastic ‘surf and turf’.
Don’t forget to buy some seasonal fruits at The Central Market, Presernov Trg. As well as supporting local farmers, you are purchasing fresh and delicious produce. The summer grapes I bought were phenomenal!
Lake Bled: As you’re walking back to the bus station, there is a little fastfood outlet to your left. They do amazing hamburgers and cevapi burgers in big woodfire-baked rolls.

Getting There and Around: Florentia Bus (http://www.florentiabus.it) does a route Florence – Bologna – Padova – Venice Mestre – Triest – Ljubljana – Sofia (and the reverse) every day. I caught the bus at 4:10pm in Mestre Venice which arrived in Ljubljana at 20:20. The cost of this ticket is 32 euros. You must purchase the tickets in advance from the website or at the ticket office at each stop. There is also a good train link between Ljubljana and Zagreb. There are six trains a day which run Ljubljana – Zagreb and also Zagreb – Ljubljana. Tickets are about 15 euros and can be purchased at the train station. The train ride between Ljubljana and the Croatian border is spectacular – the line runs along the banks of the Sava River and between lush green alpine mountains.
Getting to and from Lake Bled and Lake Bohinj is extremely simple and straight forward. There is a bus every hour from the bus station in Ljubljana which goes directly to Lake Bled and then onto Lake Bohinj. Don’t forget to purchase your tickets at the station, as they cannot be bought on the bus. From the drop of points in both Bled and Bohinj, it is just a short walk to the lakes. There are no signpost, so just ask for directions (most people in cafes & shops should know at least a little English. Or even ask the bus driver). Bled and Bohinj are small towns, so it’s difficult to get lost. Don’t forget to take note of the final bus for the day back to Ljubljana, as there is no other way to get back to the city, aside fromt trying to hitch a lift with a local famer.

Venice, Italy

I once heard Venice (or Venezia as the locals call it) being described as being ‘hauntingly beautiful’. And it’s true. There is something truly mesmerizing about this place. Walking down the narrow alleyways, crisscrossing over the innumerable small bridges, sampling sweets in the quaint local patisseries, it’s as though nothing much as change over the last few hundred years in Venice, aside from the motorised boats whizzing down the canals and of course, the hoards of tourists. I probably made a bit of a mistake in visiting Venice during August, the height of the tourist season in Europe. Walking down La Ferrovia (what could be likened to the main street of Venice) was like playing ‘try to dodge the tourist’. There were people everywhere. You could barely take one step forward without bumping into something. Enough said. So I’d recommend visiting Venice in the spring or autumn, when you can do the city a bit more justice and appreciate its beauty and captivation to the fullest. But even during the height of the tourist season, you can still find some solace in the back alleyways and canals, which are almost devoid of all human life, except for the patchwork of clotheslines swaying gently in the summer breeze.

My visit to Venice this year could be likened to a marathon. Making a quick stop over (of only a few hours), I raced through the pedestrian friendly streets, seeing some of the highlights of the city, before jumping on the afternoon bus to Ljubljana. I left Verona train station mid-morning, with a new-found friend I meet in the hostel in Verona. She had no plans that day, so decided to come along with me for a day trip to Venice. The train trip took approximately 2.5 hours and we arrived in Venice before midday. Disembarking from Venice Santa Lucia train station, you will find the old city right at your feet. We kept to La Ferrovia and followed the well posted signs to Rialto and San Marco, hoping we didn’t get lost in the labyrinth of street, as I had a 4:30pm train to catch from Venice Mestre (the town/Venice which is ‘part of Venice’ located on the mainland). Luckily, I was able to keep my backpack at the train station in their luggage hold for only a few euros, so I didn’t have to lug it all around the city. We were lucky to have a beautiful sunny day, and the temperature wasn’t too high for the time of year. We had a pleasurable days strolling down the streets in Venice, doing a bit of window shopping, eating some delicious treats and visiting a few of the major attractions, listed below:

A few things not to be missed on a visit to Venice (even if it’s as short as mine):

Piazza San Marco: Perhaps the heart of the city, Piazza San Marco (Saint Mark’s Square), is not to be missed. You can get a ferry from many points in Venice to the Piazza, or if you wish to go on foot, follow the yellow signs ‘Per San Marco’ – it takes about a 30-45 minute leisurely walk. One you arrive you’ll be greeted by an onslaught of pigeons, but aside from that, you’ll see a spectacular piazza, San Marco Basilica, The Doge’s Palace and The Palazzo Pubblico with its impressive bell tower.

Basilica San Marco: A magnificent basilica located on the side of the Piazza San Marco. I didn’t have enough time to go inside, but the elaborated carvings, colourful mosaics, awe-insiriping gold sculptures, lavish Byzantine domes, luminous marble work on the exterior are truly breath-taking in themselves.

The Doge’s Palace: Immediately beside the Basilica San Marco is The Doge’s Palace. Again, I didn’t get the chance to go inside, not enough time and ridiculously long lines, but like the Basilica, this imposing building, with its pointed arches, beautiful stonework and gothic embellishes, makes one wonder why they don’t build just amazing and intricately decorated buildings today.

Rialto Bridge: One of four bridges that cross over The Grand Canal, The Rialto Bridge is the postcard of Venice. It attracts tourist from around the world to marvel at its beautiful design, and also for its practical purpose to cross over to the other side of the canal.

The Grand Canal: This is the major highway of Venice. Being the largest canal that winds through Venice, this is the main transportation route for both Venetians and visitors. At any time of the day it is overtaken by ferries, private motor boats, gondolas and maybe the odd little rowboat or two.

Venice’s Lanes and Canals: And last but not least, take the time to wander aimlessly through Venice’s lanes and canals. Take time out from the tourist buzz and experience the peace and serenity of Venice. You will come across beautiful little squares, quaint houses and locals going about their daily business. Even though I was stretched for time, I did take some time out to experience the true Venice, the hauntingly beautiful Venice.

Essentials:

Getting there:

There are trains every half an hour from Venice Mestre station to Venice Santa Lucia. There are also good train connections to Mestre from other towns and cities in Europe. I discovered a bus line from Sofia, Bulgaria to Mestre, going via Ljubljana (Slovenia) and Triest (where it takes a magnificent sea-side route – the scenery was just spectacular) , and continuing on to Padova, Bologna and Florence which runs daily in both directions http://www.florentiabus.it/firenze-sofia.as. If boarding the bus in Mestre, the bus stop is in a back street close to the bus/train station and is unmarked (it looks a little dodgy). But don’t worry, the bus does arrive in time. There are also good ferry connections to the Istra region of Croatia.
Stay:
I didn’t stay overnight in Venice this time around (I was unfortunately very short on time), but when travelling with my parents in 2004 we stayed in Pensione Seguso http://www.pensionesegusovenice.com, located in the Dorsoduro area of Venice, west of San Marco. I remember it being a quaint little pensione, and our room had a lovely view onto one of the canals.
If you’re on a budget, stay in Mestre not the most prettiest of towns, unfortunately, but the prices are significantly cheaper than in Venice. And the train to Venice runs every half and hour and only cost a few euros.
Eat:
Grom Gelato (http://www.grom.it): Handmixed gelato made from premium ingredients found around the world. Grom Gelato also supports the slow food movement, great for all those greenies out there. Try Fico (Fig) and Crema come una volta (an egg cream) – I did and I wasn’t disappointed.
Stop at one of the many patisseries in Venice. Try the giant meringues or the hideously bright green, yet delectable pistachio cookies.

Verona, Italia.

My 2012 European travels began in northern Italy, with a short visit to the cities of Verona and Venice. When initially planning my trip, I didn’t intend to visit northern Italy, as I had previously visited Venice and the lakes district with my parents in 2004. But I found a ridiculously cheap flight from Sydney to Milan, so I decided to spend a few days travelling overland through northern Italy towards Slovenia and Croatia (stay tuned for some of these photos – Slovenia & Croatia have to be one of the most beautiful placed in the world).

I arrived in Verona by train from Milan (trains to Verona Porta Nuova station depart Milano Centrale station every half hour and the trip takes approximately 1.5 hours). Don’t expect the trains to always arrive on time – Italy is notorious for its unreliable train network. But once you arrive at Verona Porta Nuova station, there are good bus connections to most parts of the city. Make sure you purchase your bus tickets at the newspaper kiosk inside the station, as tickets cannot be bought on the bus. I stayed at Ostello della Gioventu ‘Villa Franscescatti’  http://www.ostelloverona.it/ , a beautiful sixteenth century villa located on a hill overlooking the old town of Verona. To get there, take bus number 91 from platform D to Piazzo Isolo and then follow the signs to the hostel. At 18 euros per night, it’s probably the cheapest accommodation in Verona, and also perhaps the most basic. But the old villa, with its large and spacious dormitories is quaint and usually full of travellers, and being only a 10-15 minute walk from the historical centre, it’s difficult to fault this budget hostel.

Ok, so everyone should know Verona as the home of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. But there is a lot more to this small medieval city than a love story between two fictional characters. The majority of Verona’s attractions can be found in the historical centre, all within an easy walking distance of each other. If you’re strapped for time on your travels, spending a day or two in Verona is quite sufficient. I only spent a day in Verona and managed to see the major sights, as follow:

The Roman Arena: Built in the 1st century, this is the third largest arena in Italy. If you’re lucky enough to visit Verona in the summer, you can watch the Opera with up to 25,000 other people. To see what’s playing when, visit the Arena di Verona website: http://www.arena.it/

Juliet’s Balcony: Probably the biggest tourist attraction in Verona, this house was named Casa di Giulietta, ‘Juliet’s House’, by the Verona tourist board in a clever money-making and tourism boosting scheme. Beside admiring the beautiful Gothic architecture of this 13th century house, you can rub Juliet’s breast for good luck and write your name on the wall like thousands of others before you.

Basilica di San Zeno Maggiore: A beautiful Romanesque church, with a magnificent cloistered courtyard (have a squiz at some of the photos below). It’s a short walk out of the centre, and a little difficult to find without a map, so ask some of the locals to point you in the right direction.

Piazza delle Erbe: One of the many piazzas in Verona, this is perhaps the largest and most well-known (and most full of tourists). It has daily market stalls, where you can buy some fruit and vegetables, if you’re lucky to spot them between the mountains of souvenirs. If you love northern Italian architecture, this piazza is not to be missed. Those quaint little balconies and bottle green shutters – it’s picture-perfect and quintessentially Italian.

Lamberti Tower: You can climb this medieval bell tower, to what I’ve heard, is a spectacular view over Verona. I was sort of time, so I unfortunately, I didn’t climb to the top.

Castelvecchio: Don’t forget to spend a bit of time walking around and exploring this 14th century medieval complex. See the old castle, fortress and ramparts, not forgetting to walk across the bridge to the other side of the river.

Essentials:

Getting there:

The train system, although not always the most reliable, has good connections between cities in northern Italy. The Milan-Verona-Venice line is well-connected, with trains running frequently. Get off at Verona Porta Nuova station, then walk or catch a bus depending on how far your accommodation is, or how tired you are of carrying a backpack or dragging a suitcase.

Stay:

Budget – Ostello della Gioventu ‘Villa Franscescatti’  http://www.ostelloverona.it/ – a beautiful 16th century villa overlooking the historic centre. Eighteen euros for a dorm bed, and they don’t take bookings, however they promise to have a bed for everyone. There are a countless number of dorm rooms, so I suppose their promise is always kept. But I’m not too sure where they’d put you if they happen to be full…?

Splurge: There are countless hotels and bed & breakfasts in Verona, if dorms aren’t exactly your thing. And fair enough, a little pampering never goes astray.

Eat:

Pizza, pasta, gelato. You’re in Italia! Verona has a never-ending list of restaurants and gelaterias. But for the more authentic experience, try to stay away from some of the main piazzas and near the arena, where prices are high and tourists abound.

Europe 2012 via Instagram

Ok, so I’ve been a tad lazy with reporting back on my two month trip through Europe and North Africa this year. Sorry. But here’s a little teaser from my Instagram pics taken during this little adventure. Enjoy. MK x

Follow me on Instagram: search “JADE_MALAKRETOVA”

Goodbye Sydney

Venice, Italy

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Lake Bled, Slovenia

Lake Bled, Slovenia

Lake Bohinj, Slovenia

Lake Bohinj, Slovenia

Tisno, Croatia

Tisno, Croatia

Tisno, Croatia

Tisno, Croatia

Tisno, Croatia

Tisno, Croatia

Povljana, Croatia

Povljana, Croatia

Povljana, Croatia

Povljana, Croatia

Tisno, Croatia

Otok Murter, Croatia

Mostar, BiH

Mostar, BiH

Sarajevo, BiH

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Dubrovnik, Croatia

Skradin, Croatia

Trogir, Croatia

Goodbye Croatia!

Berlin, Germany

Berlin, Germany

Berlin, Germany

Berlin, Germany

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Cadaques, Spain

Tamiru, Spain

Tamiru, Spain

Cadaques, Spain

Barcelona, Spain

Granada, Spain

Granada, Spain

Granada, Spain

Cordoba, Spain

Granada, Spain

Granada, Spain

Cordoba, Spain

Cordoba, Spain

Seville, Spain

Vejer de la Frontera, Spain

Zahara de los Atunes, Spain

Cadiz, Spain

Lisbon, Portugal

Belem, Portugal

Lisbon, Portugal

Cascais, Portugal

Sintra, Portugal

Coimbra, Portugal

Porto, Portugal

Toledo, Spain

Segovia, Spain

Fez, Morocco

Fez, Morocco

Fez, Morocco

Fez, Morocco

The Sahara, Morocco

Marrakech, Morocco

Essaouira, Morocco

Essaouira, Morocco

Homeward bound