Today started out as a nice casual day but everytually turned into a bit of a stressful rush. When we woke the heavens had opened up over night and it was still pouring down. We had a amazing brekky spread by our wonderful host at Dada House - omelettes, cheese and cold cuts, fresh fruit, toast, croissants, juice and a large variety of teas. The boys grabbed some umbrellas and loaded the car. We departed for Split at 10am. A 3 hour drive ahead of us. Thankfully we were driving away from the rain. The beautiful lush greenery of Plitvice started to disappear as grey mountains emerged. It was eye opening looking at all the houses along the way. Many still with bullet hole remnants from the Yugoslav War. Not just single bullet holes but a massacre of holes. Many of the houses had been fixed up and were rendered colours of yellow, orange and pink. Our drop off point for the car was the Split Airport. I was under the impression we could get a bus direct from the airport to Makarska. Nope. We had to drop the car then make our way back to the bus terminal. Half hour each way. Calling Sixt to try change the drop off point to city centre was a waste of time. They tried to sting us with another 100€. We made it through the border no hassles even though we went through the EU passport line not the all passports. Whoops. Passing through a couple of toll ways we made it to the last turn off to split - 20kms away. We will be there in no time. According to the navigator we were still an hour away. Surely not. Well this was actually the case as the traffic was completely banked up and not moving. We had booked our bus to head to Makarska at 5.45 so we were on a time limit. It was now 2pm. Next exit we could find we turned around and went to find an alternate place to park and walk into the old town. Phew 6 car bays left and 2 cars infront. Desperate to go to the loo after an underestimated drive time we headed into the city. The boys were hangry so we found a pub and got them settled. Once the bladders were relieved Loz and I left the boys and went wandering. We found the delicious smoothy bar we frequented regularly on our last stay in Split. The boys met up with us at the Diocletian Palace. Making our way to the promenade we enjoyed the last 15minutes of our 1hour in Split. Departing at 3.45 we got to the airport car drop off at 4.20 to be greated by a guy asking for paperwork and how he doesnt know that the car wasn't stolen because apparently the person at the border was supposed to ask for the cars papers. Who returns a stolen car?! Buses to the bus terminal left every half hour, but the bus times are very unreliable. The 4.30 bus was full. Knowing well and truly the bus would get stuck in the crazy traffic around the old town we forked out for a taxi 320HK later we jumped out at the start of the congestion and walked the rest of the way. We made it with 10mins to spare. Phew we can relax now!
If you're ever on a bus from Split to Makarska or anywhere down the coast make sure you sit on the right hand side of the bus. We had beautiful views the whole hour and a half (more like 2.5hrs due to delays) sun setting and all.
Dida greeted us at the bus terminal. Loz, Blake and the bags got a taxi with him to our apartment. Scott and I walked with his kite bag. First impressions were good. We took note of a few land marks on our way but basically its one turn off the main drag. Great location! Dida showed us around and explained everything about 3 times. For someone who doesnt visit us at home he seemed super excited we were there. The house is basic and could do with some sprucing but other than that its a pretty cool holiday home! Time to get some dinner and explore a little. Dida bid us farewell saying he would come over the following morning and see us off on our bus to Dubrovnik. Next minute he is running down the street chasing us. "Louise, Louise". He wanted to make sure we would be ok and we didnt need him to come back later tonight. "No thanks Dida I'm a big girl". Ha.
Cute streets with lots of bars and little shops. Plenty of restaurants. We picked wisely and ended up with a massive feast. Unfortunately for Loz they were out of mussels. She has saved her seafood binge for Croatia. The mussels would have to wait for another day. We shared a margarita pizza. Scott and I had mixed grill, it was huge!! 2 cevapi, a normal sausage, beef patty, whole chicken breast and a huge pork chop with fried potatoes and mixed veggies. Loz had some grilled squid and Blake had Cevapi. Prices not too bad here. Expecting a price hike in Dubrovnik. After dinner we continued to wander around making our way to the main square. The Makarska free jazz festival wa set up and about to start at 10.45. Cocktails and free festival why not. The Bura was blowing like crazy. Hair and not to mention chairs blowing around all over the place. We had to make sure we held onto our cups. All in all a good quick introduction to Makarska.