We drove north and across the border into Croatia on the 30th April. We made our way towards Split however there was no sign to say that we were entering the toll highway (very new) and when we realised this we could no longer leave the highway for many kilometres.   We luckily had enough Kune to pay at the toll station when we could leave it.  There are many new highways and state of the art tunnels along the mountains in Croatia and the roads in general are all in good shape.  We then hit a tunnel construction high up on the mountain where concrete was being poured and the concrete truck blocked the road. We therefore had to wait for an hour with many other drivers until they had finished. Thank goodness for Summer time so that we could continue before it got dark and we stopped then just before Split at”Split Stobrec Camping” right on the beach.
It was an excellent camping village but as usual the wifi was iffy except for in the coffee shop.  It seems to be a universal thing. The internet providers everywhere promise the earth and don’t deliver leaving the proprietors of so many establishments as well as their customers  very frustrated .
When complaints are received things improve for a while then return to where they were previously.
It rained all night but we awoke to a beautiful sunny day so we made the most of it and did the washing and cleaned the van. We then caught the local bus into Split and walked for about 4hours around the old city before catching the bus back to Stobrec. There were a lot of tourists
in Split but as soon as you walked slightly out of the old city you were on your own. The Venetian buildings within the old city walls had been beautifully restored and there was a lovely wide seaside promenade lined with palms.
The following day we motored on to Trogir, a very old town where May day was being celebrated with food and music. Unlike Montenegro where you could wander in and out of the local shops without being bothered, it was the opposite here with shopkeepers urging you in to their shops –
very offputting.  We parked our camper in an open carpark and when we came to pay found that they charged campers six times what they charge cars – highway robbery! Of course there was no sign to tell you that before you entered the carpark.
On our drive up the coast we had never seen so many boats in various marinas. Only a very few were out on the water anywhere.

Unlike the smaller villages in Italy where practically no one spoke any other language, the locals in Montenegro and Croatia spoke either some English or some German.
We left Trogir and went further north to the town of Sibelik (another old town) and then up into the mountains to Knin and an old fortress high above the town. It was an immense fortress which had housed a hospital, barracks, a blacksmith’s shop, church, dungeons and church. Some of the fort had been restored but some had not been restored especially
the piece of wall which disloged a large rock about 10 seconds after Maurice had walked below it! Quite frightening.  We did tell the the person at the gate but he didn’t seem too concerned.
We left there as it started to rain and went back to Skradin just outside the National Park and stayed at “Marina camping” for a couple of nights which was run by a very friendly couple. They were there during the Bosnian/Croatian war (almost 20years ago now)and told us how frightening it had been with bombs flying everywhere. We saw a lot of evidence  from the war on the way to Knin (especially around the town of Kosovo (not the province of Kosovo) where there were still a lot of burnt out buildings and ones riddled with bullet holes and others that had since been restored or partially restored. There are apparently still mined areas but they are apparently clearly marked!
The camping village ran tours into the Krka National park so we decided to take one the following day hoping for good weather.
We got our wish with the weather the next day and we went with six others first to the “Skradinski buk” a very long series of waterfalls on the Krka river where a staggering amount of water flowed along travertine islands. A very well constructed boardwalk led you right around the raging waters and we were left to wander around them for a couple of hours. The “tour” was excellent because the husband from the camping place was the driver and he did not talk at all during the transportation from place to place. At each stop he just let us all go our own way for photos and showed us where to walk. We saw “Visovac” island from above where 11 monks live in the Fransciscan monastery. We ate outside at  “Kristian restoran” where we enjoyed a ham, cheese, olives, gherkin and bread lunch and red wine and a grappa with kirsch.Our last stop was at a vantage point for “Roski slap” another stunning series of waterfalls. We covered about 200kms round trip and with park fees and lunch the whole trip came to 44euros – a bargain. We also met a lovely English couple so had a good day all round.

The distances in Montenegro and in Croatia are not vast and it only took us a couple of hours to get from the various places we visited on to the next town of interest.  The following day we drove from the National Park up to Zadar (another walled old town).  It was sprinkling a  bit so we did a quick lap of the town and then decided that we would make for Senj on the coast and then on to the island of Krk for the night.  We tried where possible not to take the motorways so as to see as much coastline or mountain scenery and to get to the large Krk island we  took to the mountains before descending down to the coast and across to the island.  We had some torrential rain on the way but by the coast was a lot clearer.   We paid a 46 kune toll  to get on to the island and there was a tourist tax and a registration tax payable for staying on the island.

The camping village of Njivice was again excellent and right on the beach which was  beautiful.  It was only a 15minute walk around the bay on well constructed pathways to the small town with many restaurants and cafes.

The next morning we even had a schnapps to accompany our coffee as it was only 10 degrees.  Not our kind of Spring weather! We made the most of our day and I did a lot of cooking to last us a few days.

Thank goodness the next day was beautifully sunny when we walked around the bay.  We drove down to the town of Krk on the island which was pretty and the main population there seemed to be Germans holiday makers.  We left the island after lunch to make our way to Rijeka before heading for the Istrian peninsula in northern Croatia.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.