We left Betina & the coast & headed inland through the mountains. We had about 250 k's to travel & as a result of the car I knew I would have to drive it hard. That didn't matter though as we had a sunny day, good music on the iPod & beautiful countryside to keep us entertained. The mountains here are very rocky which was a nice contrast to the last couple of countries we have visited. We enjoyed driving up & over them & stopping every now & again for photos of the valley that stretched out to the horizon. As we rounded one bend we caught a glimpse of some ostriches in a cage by the side of the road. Of course we had to do a quick u bolt & go back to check them out. It seemed like a small zoo with some llamas & ducks, but it was the big birds we wanted to see. There were 6 of them locked up in a pen which probably wasn't big enough, no room for them to run. Jac got out & started taking pictures but when I walked up to the fence the male let me know he didn't like me. How is that even possible? He puffed his feathers & started hissing at me. When I walked away he was happy but when I came closer again he started his display. He was pretty intimidating though, they really are big bloody birds. So we left him too it & continued on our journey. We climbed over the mountains then along the plains passing through the towns of Gracac & Gospic, as well as quite a few other smaller ghost towns that bore the scars of the war. By the time we went through Otocac we had delved into thick forests punctuated by small villages. We were now in bear country. Leaving the main road we followed a tiny winding track to the town of Kuterevo where our destination was a bear sanctuary I had come across on the Internet last night. The info was pretty old & we weren't even sure it would still be operating, so we were happy to see some painted bear signs when we arrived at the town. We followed these & arrived at the sanctuary to see that it was in fact in operation. We were the only ones there & when we turned up a white cat came over to shower it's love on Jac. The biggest problem, we would find out later, that the cat faced was not from the bears. It was actually at war with a chicken who steals it's food. We were met by a young Russian guy who showed us around & answered all our questions. Our first bear was Marco, a 1 year old male who was found abandoned by his mum. We got pretty close to his enclosure & spent most of our time watching him. As cubs in the wild they spend a lot of time playing with their mum or siblings & they need this companionship in captivity too. As a result there was a dog in with him & they are best friends, always playing around together. We wish we could have seen this. The dog will remain for another 12 months before he is removed for his own safety. The next enclosure was a couple of middle age bears who were sleeping close to the fence. The male was so close we heard his breathing & snoring & we could see his long claws. Really he could shred you with one swipe. It was then on to the mature bears enclose but unfortunately they were hidden somewhere in the undergrowth. In fact their 5 enclosures are amazing. Very large with all the vegetation & structures necessary to recreate the wild. The sanctuary was built to house abandoned bears that can't be released back in to the wild. People from all over the world can come & volunteer at this private venture which is amazing. They don't ask for money but you are welcome to leave a donation, which of course we did. We found out there are only about 1000 bears left in the wilds of Croatia, & they still allow hunting of these magnificent beasts. Very sad. We said our goodbyes then had about 80 km's to cover before we arrived at our accommodation. We checked in then went & grabbed dinner. When we returned we started talking to a lovely Polish couple at our guest house, where we chatted & played a board game until late. Eventually we retired to bed to get some rest before a big day tomorrow. So in one day we have seen ostriches & brown bears. Apart from visiting a zoo there are not many people who can say they have. But we can.