June 16th and 17th
17.06.2014 - 17.06.2014 22 °C
17TH JUNE ZADAR AND PAG
Sun out this morning so we tripped out to see the sights. However, we were not early enough to get parking in Zadar to see the old town. Such a pity. It was so manic and the one car park we found, we didn't feel that it looked safe to leave car with dodgy window in! So doing a quick bit of looking at map, we set off for Pag. Now Pag is on an isthmus jutting out into the Adriatic with a narrow channel between it and the mainland and another between it and the next set of islands. It was about 40 minutes drive and the scenery changed totally to something more like coastal southern Spain. The islands to the west were rocky and without vegetation, the hills to the east were majestic, limestone folds with patterns which I found fascinating and the formation of the clouds atop them, I could have watched for hours, the clouds were white with grey tones, folded into fluffy floating pillows which slipped and slid along the top of the hills. The road goes down the spine of the isthmus, not too much traffic today, but quite a few lorries.
Not long before getting into Pag, I spotted some straw umbrellas on the edge of the channel, reminded me of those in Sharm el Sheikh, perched precariously on a tiny scrap of pebbly beach.
Pag is a biggish resort, so there is need of provisions and merchandise to be shipped in and out. The centre of Pag is typical Mediterranean port village, lots of narrow, narrow lanes weaving around with tall buildings either side. The main square was a bit unprepossessing, though it had a good sized seating area outside the bar. It lacked planters and flowers to cheer it up.
Found a very interesting clothes shop, with some unusual designs, very reasonable, sadly too skimpy for me, but so good to see something not run of the mill, but fun and good prices. Down at the harbour area, there were plenty of places to eat and drink, nicely shaded in the middle of the day.
In my photo subject hunt today, I got all excited at what I thought were a flock of flamingos on the salt marshes, so on the way back we stopped for a photo shoot. OOOPS, it turned out the flamingos had four legs - salt marsh sheep! That booboo tops Sue H not knowing L from R eh? A little further on a flock was shepherded across the road in front of us, just managed to snap the tail enders as we zipped by. Also on the way back we dropped down into Razanac to take pictures of the hills and their formation. It was a darling little harbour, with a few boats and locals having a swim and enjoying the sun. Plus one man painting his boat. We took to the place much more than Pag.
tonight we thought we would go to the Marina at Sukosan where we were last evening and eat at Gusto again. However, we found that others wanted to go there too and we would not have had a table until 9.30!! Back to base, got other recommendations and at Porat a neighbouring restaurant to Gusto. Although we had a nice meal, the staff were more occupied with the football than the customers. At a neighbouring table, there were Brit and Norwegian sailors, lots of talk about stolen boats and hazards at sea! William, you could fetch your boat down here and have a great time, but as for going to sea, please don't suggest we join you! Well you can take Bernie..... Julia and I could go shop.
Our host was interested in the classic cars so we had a long chat with him that evening. He told us something about the war in Croatia which lasted about 4 years, how hard the tourism industry is at the moment. He says that it is really only worth being open 3 months of the year, as any money you make in the other months is not sufficient to cover the costs. When he was a youngster he used to ride bareback all the time, and, as he lived in a forested area, he got used to bailing out by reaching up to the nearest branch when things got too hairy and he needed to abandon ship!