Dubrovnik. One of the most heard-of town in the world since Game of Thrones. I am not saying that Dubrovnik is overrated. It is beautiful, believe me. The citadel is absolutely gorgeous, both day and night. But my summer vacation, which was started on 31 August 2014, was actually based one thing: I wanted to swim in the Mediterranean Sea. I didn’t care where, I didn’t care how, I just wanted to swim in that hot, hot summer days.
So Croatia was my destination. It was kind of accidental. I had a Croatian colleague during my summer internship in the Netherlands, he took a 3-week off during my days there to go home, and when he returned we talked about his trip. Then I browsed about Croatia, even bought the Croatia Lonely Planet Book, and found out that there are lots and lots of things I can do in Croatia. One of them is, of course, to swim.
I took a flight to Dubrovnik and God-it-was-so-hot. From the city center, I walked directly to the hostel that I have previously booked. On my way to the hostel, I found this.
People swimming! Swimming! It did not take long for me to check in, have a little chat with my roommate, changed to swimsuit, and went back to that very spot. It was not that easy to reach the spot, apparently. It was at the bottom of a cliff with no exact path. And when I finally reached the place……… I was the only one with color.
OK, is this some secret swimming point, or what?
I did not care. It was so hot and I needed to cool off. I jumped to the water only to find out that, the water was not that salty! And you do not need to ask about the current nor the waves. It was so calm. No wonder a lot of people called the Mediterranean Sea as the “European Swimming Pool.” I did not get how much time I actually spent only to swim here and there.
My other swimming destination was this island called Mljet. According to some sources, this is one of the most underrated tourist destination in Croatia, so I just went to check it out. This island offers something called “Salt Lake Swimming.” Well, geographically, from a bird-eye view, you will see that the “Lakes” are not actually “Lakes.” They are seawater trapped in Mljet’s morphology. It is kind of hard to find beautiful pictures of Mljet – that is why, I guess, it is so underrated – but you can take a look at this island from up above here and here so you will see what I mean.
It is not hard to reach Mljet. You simply walk or take a bus to the harbor and find ferry providers that has return trips to Mljet. They are normally small ferries, for, like, 100-200 people? Of course it is not something like this..
Once you reach Mljet, you need to pay an entrance fee and they will take you to a starting point to explore Mljet. Oh, if you were a student, please bring your student card. Especially if you were under 26. You will have student discount almost everywhere in Croatia.
There are two lakes in Mljet, small one and big one. I headed to the big one and there was no one there. Almost no one.
So there I was, swimming, and swimming, and.. swimming!