From Plitvice lakes to Goulash Disco - road trip Croatia!

Island Life: It's a Comeback!

cetina river with balkan camperscetina river with balkan campers

It's been almost two years since we last did any roadtrippin' in our homeland terroir. We are happy to be back again, especially in September and October, which is our favourite time of the year to go deep into Croatia. Sun becomes gentle and the sea stays warm, it's a divine combination.

We rented Valter, a VW T3 camper van from Balkan Campers. This was our second trip with their legendary VW camper vans. 

We naturally decided to stay off the highways and avoid paying tolls, driving South on the inner side of the Velebit mountain range. Just before National park Plitvice Lakes (which we quickly passed due to the selfie-stick crowd) we ran into our first nice surprise – waterfalls system near town Slunj, which reminded us a bit of New Zealand, with cute houses and watermills on the joining point of two rivers in Croatian, almost hobbit village, Rastoke.

After soaking up the views of Dinara Mountain and Provence-like carst valleys we drove through Knin city and further inland to check the Cetina river spring. It seemed like time has stopped there. Perfect stillness, with not much more than two old churches (one being the oldest standing church tower in all Croatia), and only a couple of elder inhabitants. Mini lake, of a fairly familiar shape, offers revelation of the permanent question: where do we come from? Crazy deep (divers just went to 115m and presumably it goes much deeper) and practically undiscovered with gorgeous colours, it begs for a swim, but since local use it as a source of drinking water, we decided to wait to jump into the sea.

cetina river with balkan camperscetina river with balkan campers

plitvice lakes with balkan campersplitvice lakes with balkan campers

We managed to catch the morning ferry and finally felt the real Adriatic experience – sailing among the South Dalmatian islands. With a bunch of international street artists juggling and doing all kinds of circus-like stuff on the sunny ferry deck, the true festival vibe started kicking in. Goulash disko - a music festival was already in full effect on island Vis and a group of good friends was waiting for us to join them there.

Goulash disco campingGoulash disco camping

komiža Vis with balkan camperskomiža Vis with balkan campers

Around Vis island with a boatAround Vis island with a boat

When we arrived at the festival campsite my first impression was, »this looks like a refugee camp after a natural disaster somewhere in Asia! « Well, after a couple of minutes we found a nice spot for Valter between distorted tents, treated ourselves with a well-deserved cold beer and melted into mellow atmosphere of relaxed festival environment. With perfect setting on the two local beaches (one is accessible only by boat or rock climbing), lots of different genres of music, also some live gigs and hips of daily workshops this event differed itself away from any other (mostly electronic) festival I’ve been to. Everything and everyone seemed to be in harmony. With not many tourists, other than the festivalgoers, the whole town of Komiža was breathing as one. To cheese it up a bit more, we rented a boat and went discovering hidden gems around the South part of the island, tried to catch some lunch, but mostly enjoyed the day of careless ease and Zen. The whole trip was as always a bit too short, anyway, we managed to slow down a little, and the world became even more beautiful.

Thanks to Balkan Campers for a special rental deal on Valter. Van is perfect for two people. Rational with diesel, easy to handle and sexy :).