In preparation for my upcoming trip, I bought the Kindle edition of Rick Steves’ Croatia & Slovenia guide book today. It’s coauthored by Cameron Hewitt, who led the travel session I attended in Edmonds last spring, and I suspect it’s more authored than coauthored by Hewitt.
In reading various passages, I started second guessing the itinerary. It’s already evolved a bit from what I posted earlier. Here’s the latest version from JayWay Travel, whom I’ve pretty much committed to hire to plan this trip for me:
May 3: depart Seattle
May 4: arrive Zagreb (2 nights)
May 6: get rental car, drive to Ljubljana (3 nights)
May 9: drive to Rovinj (3 nights)
May 12: drive to Plitvice (1 night)
May 13: drive to Sarajevo (3 nights)
May 16: drive to Mostar (1 night)
May 17: drive to Trogir (1 night)
May 18: drive to Split, drop off rental car, ferry to Hvar (2 nights)
May 20: ferry to Korcula (2 nights)
May 22: ferry to Dubrovnik (3 nights)
May 25: fly home
But my reading is leading me to consider some changes. Here’s a quote that I’m sure comes directly from Cameron Hewitt:
You won’t regret splicing Slovenia into your itinerary. Its spectacular mountain scenery, colorful capital (Ljubljana), Germanic efficiency, and extremely friendly natives are a pleasant contract to Croatia. In hindsight, most travelers wish they’d budgeted more time for Slovenia.
A year from now, you’ll barely remember the difference between all those little seaside towns you toured.
So here are some thoughts I’m having:
- Add time in Slovenia (maybe 2–3 extra nights in Ljubljana as a base to explore, or a night or two elsewhere in Slovenia)
- Skip Rovinj and the Istrian peninsula
- Skip either Hvar or Korcula
- Add time in Split
- Add time in Montenegro
In other news, my sister has decided to join me on the first half of the trip. She’ll be flying out of Sarajevo on the 14th, and I’ll be on my own for the rest of the trip. That does lock some dates, but here’s what I’m considering, with some potential variants:
Zagreb (2 nights)
Ljubljana (5 nights) (or maybe one or two nights in Kobarid)
Plitvice (1 night)
Sarajevo (3 nights)
Mostar (1 night)
Trogir (1 night)
Hvar (2 nights)
Korcula (2 nights)
Dubrovnik (4 nights) (or maybe one overnight in Kotor
I hate to skip Istria, but I think I might be more interested in spending more time seeing more of Slovenia.
The Steves/Hewitt book also describes a day trip by car starting and ending in Ljubljana, but it would be an extremely long day of driving (a five-hour route if you don’t stop at all, but with a lot to stop and see). I think it would be better to stretch it over two days with an overnight in Kobarid, or possibly two nights there with a day of enjoying nature.
I may just stick with the original itinerary, but I need to talk to my agent at JayWay.
So many choices! Who ever thought three weeks would feel like not enough time???