Our day started started early with a 4:30 taxi to Chania Airport to catch a flight to Athens Airport then a 10:30 flight to Split, Croatia. Our flight to Split took a little less than two hours. I managed to get some pictures of Athens from the air as well as the place we stayed and will stay again when we layover for a day on our way back. You can see how close the eastern shore is, a quick ten minute shuttle from the airport. Also you can get a good idea of Athens and how it is situated in sort of a bowl surrounded by mountains. I also took pictures of the port of Piraeus where the ferries and cruise ships dock. By sheer happenstance,I took a picture of Trogir as the plane was descending. Trogir is on our list of places to visit as it is a Unesco heritage site.
Again it was interesting that we didn't have to fill out any typical questionnaires required by many countries we have visited but we just had to pass through passport control with no customs checks. When we were lined up to take the bus to the old town we instead took an offer to share a taxi which ended up being an enterprising young man with a van. Nice guy. He took us as close to our accommodations as possible. We hauled the rest of the way up two long sets of stairs and thanks to a young lady, we found our tiny but adequate modern renovated apartment which has no car access. Our host was there to meet us and gave us a good rundown of where things were and a map.
The night before, we looked at typical phases in Croatian and I was surprised at how many I used as a child, as my first language was Slovenian. Our place is minutes from Diocletian's palace and we couldn't wait to get the lay of the land. The palace was built for Diocletian, a Roman emperor, at the turn of the fourth century AD. As soon as we passed through the palace walls, we were in the crowded market which runs from 7 to 5 every day. We were tired, thirsty and hungry and found a quaint restaurant. The special was a dish which was a staple in our home when I was growing up, polpette with restani krompir, basically seasoned meat patties with potatoes and gravy. It was so good. We both thoroughly enjoyed it. We also had a couple pints of the first craft beer produced in Split, a pale ale called Barba, a name they would fondly use to describe an old fisherman. It was an excellent beer, one that my friend Adam Shaw would surely enjoy. The price all in $35 CDN with tip.
The alleyways in the palace are amazingly old. We are looking forward to exploring and have planned a walking tour. We walked to the ferry docks and the bus station to get schedules. What a busy bustling place this is, we had no idea. The adventure begins.