Saturday, May 19, 2012

Croatia: North VS. South

I met Mum in Zagreb and we stayed for 4 days. Zagreb is Croatia's capital and has a distinctly Austro Hungarian feel. The difference between here in Dalmatia and the North is huge. The culture, architecture, food, and even the language is different. I think it has to do with the fact that down here in Dubrovnik we are so Mediterranean. There isn't a lot of land you can build on because the sea is on one side and the mountains are on the other.  I think the best thing to do is show you what it looks like so here are a few pictures:

Houses in Dubrovnik are made more or less the same way with little to no ornamentation. This picture is from my balcony because I live halfway up the mountain. This is just Ploče neighborhood and an extreme example of what I described (the land and see squish). The other parts of Dubrovnik are wider but with the same problem.

Up in Zagreb there is way more land so buildings can be larger and taller.

The other difference is that Zagreb is much greener and Dubrovnik is dry and rocky.
Here are aerial views of both:

Dubrovnik: The green is mostly cypress type trees and scrub brush. You can see Old Town and Lokrum on the bottom right and to the left and behind Old Town stretches the rest of the city. Most tourists don't go further then Old Town so the rest of the city has a very local feel.

Zagreb: You can see that the city is stretched out much farther and has lots and lots of space. That green is all lush grass, trees, and bushes. The kind that need lots of water and rich soil.

Here are some pictures of Zagreb's greenery from the ground.

Croatia is a funny shape...

Is it just me or does it look like Croatia is eating Bosnia-Herzegovina? Great now I can't unsee this.

If you look down towards the bottom of the country you will notice this odd bit of land stuck in-between the Croatian coastline.

Yes this bit...

That my friends is Bosnia-Herzegovina. The Herzegovina part is important to the Croatians so you can't leave it out when you're talking about the country. The difference between the two is that Herzegovina is where all of the Croatians in Bosnia live. Bosnia needed a sea port so they where given one.

The problem? It means to get to anywhere from Dubrovnik by car you have to go through two checkpoints. The hope is that once Croatia is officially part of the EU, sometime in the next year, they will build a huge bridge highway thing that will connect the country.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

We went for a walk and found a festival.

This is part of Zagreb's Time Machine. An event that takes over all of Upper town, the idea behind it being to show Zagreb's cultural history in a fun and interactive way. This is the Promenade Concert in Zrinjevac park, just a block off of Ban Josip Jelačić Square. I was glad to get such a good recording of the orchestra playing. The band was playing in the music pavilion which has been standing since 1891. The event will be every Saturday this spring with the last performance on the 7th or July.

This is a reenactment of the Croatian Light Cavalry from the 17th century. This was part of the Changing of the Guard, which takes place even Saturday and Sunday from 4/21-9/30 at 12p.m.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Back Logged

Hey everyone!! I'm 4 months behind so I'll try to make it up to you before I leave Croatia. Thats right, I have only one more month left in this beautiful country :(

But the good news is the blog will go on. I will still be and Expat as I will be in Italy all of June, France for two weeks in July, and back to the US for the end of July and all of August. Yet I stay an expat as I will finally park my butt in beautiful West Yorkshire, England. Thats right! I will be attending The University of Bradford for a degree in Archaeology!!!

Heres the link if you want to check out my new school: The University of Bradford

So I'm going to skip around just a bit. Its going to be this April as Mum came to visit me for 10 days. Then I'm going to do Jordan, Istanbul, Ljubljana and Budapest.