Tuesday, 18 September 2012



It's a well known fact that fuel is cheap in the Duchy, as anyone who has queued behind 200 lorries trying to get into a Luxembourg service station will attest so any trip south benefits from including a visit.

After days of sweltering heat, copious beers and plenty of wine, we were pleasantly surprised to hear that D&M were in Trieste and closing fast.....an ambiguous text which now appears to have been truncated lead us to believe that they had postponed starting yet again due to illness in the family but this was not the case. As we had planned on moving to PULA on the wednesday, it was decided that they would go straight there and we would join them. Rovinj to Pula was only an hours drive but complicated by the necessity to find a decent supermarket as essentials (beer and wine) were running perilously low, as were luxuries like meat and veg. Croatia does not seem to have a terrific supermarket network and the local Kozumo brand is very disappointing. Pula is the largest city on the Istrian peninsular, has a major traffic problem exacerbated by a major roadwork project on the main through route and signposting to supermarkets/trading estates is abysmal. Paul has a Garmin satnav which made a political decision to ignore the existence of Croatia when we crossed the border from Slovenia so he has to follow me closely or rely on Marianne to read a map ...plus alot of new roads have appeared in Croatia since I last updated the Tomtom and in trying to avoid the roadworks in Pula central by attempting to swing round the city to enter via Pula South, the Tomtom had us in the middle of nowhere for most of the trip. The net result of all this was we got separated trying to find the local Lidl (not my favourite but the only super/m of any size) and they ended up in downtown Pula in the roadworks..........We were eventually reunited at Lidl and fully stocked found the campsite and D&M. Good site on the coast (rocky)and great views. Much rejoicing to be quorate and much beer and wine consumed to celebrate and swap stories.
Mass visit to Pula by bus to see the roman amphitheatre which was rather spoilt by it being set up for a weekend of ice-hockey (it is wonderfully preserved and in constant use as a concert venue.......flooding & freezing it for icehockey is a first but it did detract from the overall view and was somewhat bizarre).

3 nights at Pula then a short trip to the KRK on the island of the same name. D&M shot off to the Lidl for supplies whilst Paul followed me, the planned route being to take the scenic coast road (which was indeed very scenic) but he misread the signs at the first junction and managed to get on the motorway heading back to Italy. This road eventually joined up with the motorway to Rijeka so he took the long toll road through the mountains and a tunnel to meet up with us at the toll bridge to the island of KRK, 46 Kune or about £5 for a motorhome. Island not very exciting to start with but when we reached the town of KRK the views were spectacular again, and we stopped 2 nights at a campsite overlooking the town and within walking distance ( bit of a slog back though). Excellent old town, very busy, lovely harbour where we all had a riotous sunday lunch followed by much sleeping off.

On Monday a short trip PUNAT, the other side of the town of KRK to another lovely site on the waters edge of a very pretty bay surrounded by hills.

Beer has now been found to be quite cheap, especially the local Ozujsko in 2 litre bottles 5% and 22 Kune (£2.40) which disappear very rapidly. Wine is perfectly acceptable but nothing decent under £3.....the girls tried some litres of white at under £2 but were not impressed and they still have 2 litres to get through. Paul & I found a wine shop selling red wine in 5 litre plastic bottles at £2 but as they wouldn't let us try it we gave it a miss.

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