Croatia, and later you’ll see Slovenia, are major destinations for RVers. We passed so many on the highways heading to the coast. These RVers come from all over Europe. While we were in Slovenia, we saw a Bigfoot slide-in camper on a RAM 3500 — no doubt, they were Canadians. We couldn’t see the license plate.
On the way to Rovinj, we stopped in at a small town on the Adriatic called Senj for a break. That was our first glimpse of the sea.
The next time we come to Croatia (and we will come again), we will travel in an RV.
We stayed on Katarina island in Rovinj. We took a water taxi over to the island. It ran once per hour, so it was easy to come and go to the mainland. Our resort was lovely! Every room had a sea view and a balcony. Our room also overlooked the bird pool — yes, it was a pool for the seagulls! There were also pools for humans, but we chose to swim in the Adriatic instead.
The town of Rovinj on the mainland was like Venice, without the crowds and odours. We loved it! The cobblestones were very smooth and polished from years of use, so walking was tricky downhill.
WWII “pill box” bunker:
It’s amazing that a civil war broke out in this country in my lifetime. There is such a air of peace and tranquility, yet some old animosities still flare up. As we drove through small towns between Plitvice and the coast, many buildings were pock-marked from bullets. Some buildings were so badly damaged that they’ve been left to rot. Also, the homeowners refused to return to them out of fear.
Back in 1919, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia joined to form Yugoslavia, but this early union didn’t work because Serbia was the majority. In the 1930s the Serbian king was killed by a Croat.
After WWII, Tito gave them peace and prosperity. He is still greatly regarded in this part of the world. The Yugoslavians had a greater standard of living compared to their neighbours. They could also travel abroad. Tito gave them a new identity, so that the old divisions weren’t ruling them. He got rid of religion and nationalism, so they stopped fighting. They became Yugoslavs, and not Croatians, Serbians, or Slovenes. He also gave autonomy to certain groups within the country, so there was a good balance of power.
When Tito died in 1980, it all started to fall apart. In 1991, Croatia and Slovenia announced independence. However, Serbia wouldn’t let them go. Slovenia left easily without much bloodshed. It wasn’t so easy in Croatia because 1/8 of the population was Serbian, so the army helped the Serbs fight the Croats. What an ugly war.
Today, Croatia is one of the poorer nations in Europe. Of all the ones we visited, it is poorest. The people are very friendly despite their history.