Day 2: Visiting Korčula Island, Croatia
On the second morning, rain was coming out of the sky in Dubrovnik. I had arranged a trip to the island of Korčula for this day, and after waiting awhile in the wet and cold for our transport, we were finally on the bus to take us to to the island. I did not feel very well, and the drive through the mountains along the coast made it worse until we stopped at a cafe outside of the village of Ston, and the hot chocolate I had made me feel better. I met a couple from Ireland on the bus, while sipping my chocolate in the cafe, but the bus consisted mainly of German tourists.
We travelled through the peninsula of Peljesac, which is a region known for its vineyards, to get to the passenger ferry to take us across the sea to Korčula town. The ferry was packed with many other tourist groups, so we stood by the side of the ferry so that we could look out to sea and take photographs. Luckily, the dark clouds mainly cleared by the time we boarded the ferry, and we had sunshine when we got off the ferry on the island of Korčula.
After arriving on Korčula, we had a quick guided tour of the town, followed by free time for lunch and photographs. Korčula town is a walled city, and the old town can be discovered in a couple of hours. The seafront is lined with restaurants, and wonderful views can be had from the outdoor tables that line the seafront. We had lunch at one of the restaurants where we could look out to sea and watch ships sail past. The views are beautiful, and the mountains on Peljesac peninsula make a perfect backdrop.
After lunch, we explored the old town and climbed the Marco Polo house. Explorer Marco Polo is rumoured to have lived in Korčula, and one of the buildings there is credited to being the explorer's house. There's not too much about the explorer to be seen on the island, but they are planning to excavate the area as the building is mainly in ruins, but you can climb the tower to the top and see amazing views over the sea. Unfortunately, the main cathedral was being repaired, so we could not see the façade.
On the ferry back, we took in the amazing views again, and on the drive back through Peljesac peninsula, we stopped off at a winery to sample the regional wine. Croatian wine is too dry for my liking, and the percentage of alcohol is strong for wine. The vines on the peninsula do not get very large, and they are low to the ground. I assume this is due to the variety and dryness/rockiness of the landscape. Olive trees are also common on the peninsula.
On the way back to Dubrovnik, we had a quick stop at Ston. Ston is an impressive ancient village built around a mountain, it is known for its salt. The village was protected by steep city walls to protect the salt fields. Unfortunately, the the salt fields and factory were shut, but I managed to look at them through the gate. We did not have enough time to walk up to the city walls, but I imagine that the views from there are beautiful.
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