June 6 – June 12, 2015
One week on a yacht. Seven days in island paradise. 168 hours cruising the Adriatic sea. On one of our last nights, I met an Australian and fellow solo traveler, Katie. She asked me one question that reminded me of my 5-week journey’s objective, “What is on your pre-30 bucket list?” The first thing that came out of my my mouth was
“This is on my bucket list! Sailing on a yacht through the Croatian Islands.”
When I wrote the first draft of this post, I was sitting on a yacht sailing in Croatia. How amazing is that? While I am fortunate, I also worked very hard to get here. I’ve pushed myself beyond what others thought I was capable of, beyond what I thought I was capable of. It was only last year when I decided I wanted to sail the Croatian islands before I was 30 and I made it happen. If you want something enough, you can make it happen. Growing up, my mother always said,
7 Day Itinerary
Daniela and I decided to book our trip with MedSailors because they seem to cater towards people our age and travelers like us. We took the Voyager route from Split to Dubrovnik and along the way we stopped at several charming little islands.
Day 1: Split, Sesula
Departing from Trogir port, we were paired with five Finnish men and it kind of felt like the first day of college. There were sign in tents all over the docks and everyone was loading their sailboats with luggage, beer, food, and of course water toys.
For dinner, we ate at Sismis, a secluded restaurant at the top of the hill on Sesula, where we had peka, a traditional Croatian dish cooked in a clay pit oven in the ground.
Day 2: Vis & Hvar
Beach day! From the marina and through the woods, we found a lovely little beach cove lined with restaurants, sunbeds, rocks, and sea urchins! Hvar was one of my favorite islands – its lively, large enough to spend a day in, and the sunsets from the Hula Hula Beach Bar are unforgettable. At night, everyone met in the center of town at Kiva bar for shots, dancing, and more shots.
Day 3: Vela Luka
Located on the western side of the island of Korcula is Vela Luka, a quiet and quaint fishing town. I finally had cuttlefish pasta (black ink pasta) at Skalinada restaurant.
Day 4: Korcula
Korcula is a charming and beautiful fortress town and beyond the walls further into the island are fields of grapevines and wineries producing local Croatian wines. Digby, our skipper, came into town with us that evening and he took Daniela and I to the Marco Polo bar located in one of the watch towers. From watching the sunset on top of the tower to dinner along the water to capping off the night with drinks at a little cafe bar with live music – this was one of my favorite nights along the Adriatic Sea.
Day 5: Mijet
The island for hikers and bikers. They told us the bike ride was only 15 mins to the lake! Unfortunately, we never made it but at least my hours of spin class finally paid off outdoors. The ride was hard (with my injured hamstring) but still doable.
Day 6: Sipan
A quiet, small, and intimate island. Our last night together as the first Medsailors Croatia crew of the summer.
Day 7: Dubrovnik
Arriving in Dubrovnik was like a breath of fresh air. By this time, we were ready to be on land and Dubrovnik was the perfect city to explore, relax, dine, and just take in the moment. Our apartment was perfect as well as we had the BEST view in town! Located inside and just at the edge of the town walls, we didn’t need to walk the walls in the summer heat for the jawdropping city view… we just had to step out onto our balcony :).
Spending seven days on a sailing yacht sounds quite amazing, doesn’t it? I mean, this has been on my bucket list so why wouldn’t it be? Well, add five Finnish muscle men to the mix and things may not go quite as expected. For some girls, this situation would put them in heaven but for others who like a clean boat and for those who would rather not swim in poop, maybe not so much. Daniela and I tried to make the best of the situation and in hindsight we did have a blast. I even found a “husband” – totally kidding but there was an ongoing joke about it.
After spending a few days battling internal emotions of frustration, I came to a reflection point about halfway through our trip. Life isn’t always easy, even when you are on vacation! Life will throw you turns, bumpy roads, medical emergencies, and different types of people. What matters is how you deal with it. How do you deal with life? People? Difficult situations? Accept and embrace. Accept that people are different. Embrace differences, listen to understand, and learn from others.
My favorite spot on the sailboat was sitting up on the bow. It was my quiet zone and I just love the feeling of wind hitting my face. Even when I am on a wakeboarding boat, sitting up front makes me feel alive. I feel happy. I feel invincible. Invincibility. Ha, that’s a funny concept. I used to think I was invincible but I’m now 29 years old and I am just straight up getting old and injured – and sometimes at no fault of my own but by freak accidents! Despite my attempt to exercise and take care of myself, my body will eventually wear out. Right now, it is broken all over, from my rotator cuff to my newly pulled hamstring to my old MCL injuries. When will I slow down? Will I ever slow down? It is so hard because I love being active! I love being outdoors! Most of all, I love being on the water! So like I said five years ago when I started experiencing the after affects of my multiple head traumas… I am not going to live my life in a bubble, I am not going to live my life in fear of getting hurting, I am just going to live.