After a long day of hitchhiking and a night’s sleep on the beach, I started the day bright and early, catching the 6 a.m. ferry to the island of Korčula.
After a 3 kilometer walk from the port, I arrived in the old town. In personality, I consider myself a morning person, taking great pleasure in starting the day early. However, I can rarely wake up in time to do so, due to my abnormal sleeping habits (some may call it hibernation). This was one of those scarce mornings where I was up with the early risers, enjoying a cappuccino by the water as the city slowly came alive all around me.
Korčula town is a small city on the eastern end of the island, one of the major destinations for Croatians and foreigners alike. The crystal clear blue of the Adriatic surrounds an old city that juts out into the sea, overlooking the surroundings from a hilltop. Tiny streets climb their way to the top, housing impressive stone homes, archaic churches, shops and konobas within the walls of the historic fortified town. Just another example of the beautiful nature that draws visitors and vacationers to Croatia, as well as a fitting layover for a few days of relaxing. If we consider my time on the road as an occupation, this was my first vacation.
And just like most vacation hot spots, Korčula proved to be quite expensive…and crowded. At the cafe, I logged onto the wifi and only found availability for over $100 USD per night. That was definitely not an option.
So I took off in search of the common wooden “SOBE” signs advertising free rooms and apartments, like the one below:
Within one minute of walking, as I ascended the stairway below..
..an old woman from a nearby balcony waved me down, asking “room? room?” When I nodded in the affirmative, she quickly took out her cell phone, made a few calls, and came down to meet me in the street. “Follow” was the second word I got out of her as she led me around a corner to this beautiful courtyard, accessorized with floating, radiant umbrellas.
This is where I met Srđan, a local in his mid-forties who ran a small guesthouse in the heart of the city. He explained to me that he had a double room that had been empty for days, and that if I stuck around for the next two nights, I could have it for three-fourths of the price. Eventually agreeing on half-price, we shook hands and I followed my new host up a narrow stairwell to his lovely home.
This “vacation” gave me a chance to relax, sleep in a comfortable bed, think about the next few days of my trip, and explore the beaches and towns along the stretch of the island with my sleek new set of wheels:
Enjoy the ride!