January 30, 2014

W.T.F. makes Svinisce so d*mned UNIQUE :-)

(Click to enlarge).

Can anybody tell me what makes Svinisce só unique !
Nobody ?
Ok than, if nobody answers I will :-).

Because it's hére, high up from Omis, and deep down behind the coastal mountains of Omiska Dinara.
About 270 meters above sea level and Omis, hidden from the Adriatic behind 600 meters mountain rig.
A green oasis, sprinkles with grapes, olives, a variety of fruits (cherries, figs, melons, strawberries)
and loads of fresh vegetables.

One tiny village, with normal people, living a social life, gathering in bad ánd good times, 
of which there are so many in Inland Dalmatia.
All of them, by they way, worth to be discovered.
As it's there, ánd here, 
that the true Dalmatian heart is beating.
Nót because of tourists bringing money in exchange for some "genuine" entertainment, 
but because it's the way of life here.

But that ain't all :-) !!
We may be living high and deep,
and in our own paradise,
we're not foolish (in case you might think so :-).
If we want, it's 5 (FIVE !!!) minutes down the mountain by car, and we're in the middle of the Cetina Canyon, where boats are shipping tourist cargo to and fro Radmanova Mlinice.
There we have our "private" little meadow at the river for a quick refreshing hot summer swim.

Still that ain't all :-) !!!!
As another 5 (FIVE !!!) or so minutes, we drive through Omis, turn right into the very first road outside town, and go to our "private" beach at a terrace/restaurant called Zvizdan.
Away from the massive crowds on Omis's beach, we take a dive in the Adriatic, preferably in the later afternoon, followed by some good cooked fish or meat, served less than ten meters from the sea.
And around ten in the evening we return home,
five back, five up, and thán:
as it's still not all:
We enjoy the móst precious we've got here.


Pure, natural, pristine, forgotten silence, with only the sound of crickets and/or an owl.
Plus, and that's not bad after a hot summer's day, in our valley evening temperature is about five degrees lower than at the coast.

So, if you plan to visit Dalmatia, do not try to find what you're looking for at the coast, but turn your head towards all of them tiny villages just a couple of minutes beyond the coastal mountain rig.
As thát's what makes staying in Svinisce 
(and nearby villages) unique.

And if lucky, join one of our many festivities, nót organised because of tourism,
but because they happen to happen.
(-: And there are a lót :-)

And if this ain't enough:
Split - 30 minutes
Omis - 10 minutes
Trogir - 50 minutes
Biokovo - 45 minutes
Dubrovnik - 150 minutes


And (I keep telling) anybody with a question
or remark,
do feel free to send me an email.
The address is in the header of this blog.

January 28, 2014

snow in Svinisce, you'd better know it

(Picture taken from our terrace, 
looking at the nearest neighbours).

Not the typical weather Dalmatia is famous for.
However, it's better I tell you the truth,
the cold, white truth. 
As here it's SNOWING at the moment.
Suppose you prefer those sun baked months
of our loooong hot summers,
but this type of weather also has it's charms.

The story even goes a bear that forgot it's hibernating time, came down from Biokovo Mountain to search for a snack in a village called Zagvozd.

Both about half an hour by car from here, so don't worry, those bears run back again as quick as possible, so I won't be that snack.
But there are bears on Biokovo, as for sure, that mountain is rough, wide and pure nature.
Bears, boars, mountain goats, wolves, they all live in that vast area, being summer or winter.
Normally only those boars show more frequently, even around us here, but when the weather changes, the chance of seeing one of those other wild species increases a lot.
And snowy weather is one of those conditions.

So I prefer to stay inside now,
with an extra log or two on the fire.
Not because of those animals, 
but because snow is nice.....
......on pictures !
As that's where snow is great.

And NOT:
!!!!!!! NIMBY !!!!!!!!

For those who don't know,
nimby means: 
Not In My Back Yard.

January 26, 2014

so close, yet so unknown

(Photo by Antonio Katavic)

Ricice is the name of the nearby village, Zeleno Jezero (Green Lake) the name of this lake.
Many, if not áll visiting tourists go in a straight line to Imotski, to see them two famous lakes.
Ok, not bad, not bad at all, but I prefer this one.

Ain't gonna bother you with the (rich) history of Ricice, not even gonna tell you about the man, his plane and his private airstrip, you can always go to Youtube or Google and search for "Ikarus Kurir".

No not all of that, "just" this unknown Zeleno Jezero is what I want you to know.
If in or heading for Imotski, check for the signs leading you to Ricice, and if you take the right road (there are a couple), one road may amaze you, simply because it does me évery time I drive it.

And believe me (for once) this colour is not photoshopped, hell nó.
Guess it's the colour that always hits me, especially as you don't expect to see it, not here.

But there is more to tell about this lake.
A typical phenomenon for this type of lakes is that they change shape during the seasons.
Summer level may be low, even so low parts of it's bottom look like elephant's skin.
Winter and spring however bring water from the surrounding mountains, especially those from the nearby Bosnian border.

(Do not feel shocked or surprised when the border patrol stops you to check your papers, as the line between Croatia and Bosnia is very close).

I love this place, much more than those famous two Jezero's in Imotski, mainly because they are púre !
And even the way back to our village (about 45 minutes by car) always makes me feel blessed, cause these hidden areas always surprise me with something I didn't notice before.

It's your turn however to discover, so leave that beach for once, forget about those commonly offered excursions to those two Imotski lakes (worth a visit of course, mind you), and get out to experience one of the many unbelievably unknown gems of Inland Dalmatia.
If interested, search for Total Inland Dalmatia, as there are móre such places.

And don't be surprised if a private airplane roars through the blue sky above you.

Dalmatia, always a surprise waiting !

January 18, 2014

who's that clown ?

(do NOT click to enlarge)

Ok, just for once, so you know who's writing all this stuff about Dalmatia.
Yep, it's me, or at least a part of me :-)

Don't look at me to long, better focus on that blue of the Adriatic,
or the green stuff (called "prirode") behind me.

Picture, of course, was not taken in winter, and definitely not today, 
as today it's clouded, with some rain expected (at last).
Temperatures however are still far over normal, with about 15 degrees Celsius during daytime.
Even sea temperature is slightly beyond normal for this season, 
also being about 15 degrees.
Not the pleasant summer temperature of 23 or more, but who cares, 
as we've got a bathroom too :-)

And what about snow, you know, that white stuff.
Sorry, but normally there is at least half a meter on the higher parts of Biokovo, today however there aint, or a tiny bit over night.

So no skiing, not even two hours away in Bosnia-Herzegovina ?
No, not even there, so my skies stay where they are, in the shed.

Than what to do during the winter season ?
Ah, we socialise a lot, eating drinking singing, having a good time.
As that's what Dalmatia is about,
having a good time all year round, even in "winter" ! 

So, one way or the other, Dalmatia is definitely NOT only a summer destination,
If not a (lazy baking) beach person, this part of Croatia is 
a YEAR ROUND destination.

Want to have the old streets of Dubrovnik, Split, Trogir and many more to yourself, better come NOW.
And still, except today, there is plenty of pleasant sunshine to sit on a terrace, sipping from an excellent espresso or a truly good Dalmatian wine, 
overlooking the ever beautiful Adriatic Sea and it's sleepy islands.

If needing tips or details on how to enjoy Dalmatia in "winter",
feel free to send me an email (address in top right side of the header).

January 13, 2014

"svinisceandmore", as all's well that ends well

Looking for móre work behind my pc, hell nó (reason why I hardly use my facebook pages), but recently I experienced a nasty bug in this Google powered blog.
Somehow it was impossible to upload pictures from Picasa to Blogger, and after a lót of worries and searching for why and how to solve it,
I decided to at least create a second blog.
It took me (to) much time, but with the friendly support of the Picasa helpforum today all worked as usual again.
Nevertheless, here it is:

Main reason remains to have a second option in case an other "server-glitch" appears at Blogger.
But, I'll use it anyway, now it's there, to share some pictures taken on our many trips in the neighbourhood.
As second best or bést, I cán and wíll use both blogs to make you see hów very beautiful this part of Dalmatia is !
Plus, now you can react, as I decided to open the option to react on "svinisceandmore".
Not on this blog, as here you can always send me an email, as the address is in the top right side of it.
"All's well that ends well",
or should I say:
"At the end there's always a beginning".

summer ? not yet, however........

(Our dog, the very best dog ever ! )
Ok, you win, summer is the best season to visit Dalmatia/Croatia.
However, you loose, as all them other seasons are equally fantastic, or even better.
Only when you're just interested in sunshine, blue warm water to swim and a cold beer once in a while, you better choose for the (looong) summer season.

although it' winter now in Dalmatia, and we're living behind the coastal mountains, even now when the sun reaches our valley (till about 13.30) I don't wear a coat, but walk around in my T-shirt.
Ok again, when the sun drops behind the mountains, it's chilly, but than again, it's only ten minutes down to Omis, to sit on any terrace, IN THE SUN, nipping from an espresso.

recently received a newsletter from a tremendous website/-blog
called Secret Dalmatia .
Well, to make things easy for me, you better look there.
As the owner, Alan Mandic, is a true pro, and even more,
a true lover ánd specialist of Dalmatia.
He offers the ultimate service, so you get to experience what love is about, and love it you will !!!
(He's a Croat, studied in the USA, and is the BEST).

So if you're still thinking of visiting Dalmatia/Croatia, don't limit yourself, summer is great, but the rest of the year is even greater.

Recently the Huffington Post published an article in which they state Croatia is THE place to be in 2014.
So better hurry, as January is almost over.
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January 05, 2014

free meals: NO THANKS / NE HVALA !

(click to enlarge)
As you may have noticed,
I mention Robert from Malimlin once in a while.
Not only him, just for the record.

So before you get to think, "oh well, so he writes advertorials in his blog", I wish to be perfectly clear:

If I mention him or his agency, it's because he's a good friend with whom I go out on hikes or trips.
We share the same ideas, and we often say
"if only more people knew this, or saw that".

As that's the "problem" with many tourists visiting Dalmatia,
they do what they all do:
1. beach, sea, sun
2. excursion to either Krka, Split or Dubrovnik
3. fish picknick
4. rafting
5. eat a pizza, drink a beer
6. take another picture of the foot of Sveti Duje.

Not bad, not bad at all, but still missing a lot.
As, and I repeat this many times and once more:
there is só múch móre to discover in
inland Dalmatia, called Dalmatinska Zagora.

Recently a new website appeared, called Total Inland Dalmatia and also about that initiative I wrote a blog page, as I am extremely pleased to see the focus is not only on nrs. 1 to 6.

And any good tip, idea, discovery I feel like sharing with you, so you get a more detailed picture, I gladly and 100% for free share with you.

Do I get or ask for a free meal, a romantic night in some hotel, a breathtaking ride on that Zipline or wet hair in a raft,
the answer is 100% nó, NÓ, !!!!

I've spent 35 years in the dental trade branch (for good money)
and even there, my motivation was to share true knowledge with
(sometimes very stubborn) dentists.
Money never did, and never will influence my behaviour in any way.
Of course I earned, needed and need money,
but since I retired I just spend it.
(Also a good reason to live in Dalmatia, as one way or the other, life is cheaper here, if not drinking champagne every morning,
and willing to grow your own vegetables).

And to finish this explanation, I highly recommend MaliMlin.com in case you're still a bit skared to get out into the open of inland Dalmatia on your own.
He does, besides what all agencies do, organise private trips, on which he takes you to some of the so many unknown gems that Dalmatia is so riche of.

As counting from 1 to 6 is just a beginning,
followed by 7 to...........................
And that's what I write about, after Robert and I discovered something special.
For him it's hónest business, making a decent living,
for me it's "I am nót in it for the money".
Hell  Nó

So, if you see names in my posts, just know they are reliable.
Hora Est
(And as always: you can email me on the address in the blog title).
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January 04, 2014

sail that boat, drive that car, but..............

(click to enlarge)

but.............do nót forget to take a walk.
As only when you put on your walking shoes, you'll discover how véry beautiful this area is.
Picture taken from the high opposite side of the Cetina River Canyon, on one of the hiking days me and my good friend Robert have.

Deep down you see two boats passing, each them stuffed with (lazy) tourists, heading for Radmanova Mlinice
(the ultimate lazy people's place).
I can recommend those boat-trips from the town of Omis through the Cetina Canyon, over a clean clear turquoise river.
Them skippers know where and where not to navigate, between some "hidden" rocks under water.
You'll be surprised how shockingly clear the water is, giving you the idea you're gonna hit the bottom any moment.
Be sure, you won't, as those skippers all know very well where to
and where not to go.
And better keep your camera ready, as after about fifteen minutes you'll see some impressive high cliffs where the river makes
a left/right turn.
High above you might see some people crossing the river using the newest adventure attraction here, called a Zipline.
True die-hards and daredevils make the ride of their life, well instructed and well connected, flying high (150 meters) over the canyon from one side to the other.
The guys of that Zipline also organise various wet adventures over, on, through and in the Cetina River Canyon.
True professionals, trained and experienced, ánd nature lovers with respect for this pristine environment ánd your personal safety.
As an adventure must be what it is, a breathtaking experience, but never ever a matter of life and death !
Unfortunately there are also some cowboys taking you out for the experience of your life, playing with your life,
risking to make it your last adventure !

Some advice:
When going for a hike in summer:
-Get up early, them rocks are hót under the sun !
-Take some water and a cellphone with you.
-Let people know where you plan to go.
-If possible, go together, not alone.

And last but not least:

If interested in some sort of excursion/trip/adventure,
ask my good hiking friend Robert, as your pleasure is his too,
as the picture clearly shows.

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January 03, 2014

300, just a number in a row ?

No, 300 may be just a number in a row, followed by 301, but to me/you, this is page threehundred of this blog.

Started on August 4, 2006, in my native language (Dutch), I soon changed into writing in English.
Reason ?
Do Chinese, Italians, Croats, Englishmen, Germans or Canadians understand the beautiful Dutch language !

So bye bye Dutch followers, unless you understand my not even very complicated use of the English language.
There is much to be said about the British, living on an island, driving on the wrong side of the road, drinking beer without foam, but their language always wins.

Ok, there will be some isolated nationalistic die hards who keep believing their food, traditions or language are the very best.
Dream on, this is 2014, most information is in English, from simple recipes to detailed publications, and even cellphones, computers and all those electronic devises first come in English , and for the dummies in some native language, as business is business.
Even in Chinese: 生意就是生意 or Hrvatski: posao je posao.

And let me face my limits, my Croatian is lousy ( da da), and even in English I once in a while use Google Translate to find a typical word.
(Or to have a good laugh, as those translations sometimes are as terrible as English beer or Big Macs).

Let it be, a famous group once sang (in English), and so I decided to become world famous as well :-) and continued to write this blog........ in English.

Back to reality than, as this is only page # 300, so there are still a "couple" to come till you finally understand why a retired Dutch couple (us), decided to live in Dalmatia.
U Engleski, oprosti, in het Engels, sorry.

To all who once visited or frequently read my "little no goods for nothings", enjoy the next 200 pages, as I never run out of inspiration about this fántástic part of Croatia.
Dalmatia / Dalmacija.
Want to respond, react, comment ?
See my email address in the top right side of the header of this blog.

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January 01, 2014

HAPPY 2014 from Republika Modris

At 24.00 CET this crazy bunch was seen in Svinisce 
(centre of Republika Modris, centre of the globe).
Anybody having details, names or information, 

please call the police in your local village !
DO NOT, repeat DO NÓT invite them in, 

and hide away all your booze.

What started last year, and was a great success,
 was repeated this year again.
We invited all friends/neighbours in our village to a joined New Year's party, and boy was thát a success again.
Joining in our gardenhouse, nicely decorated still for Christmas, and well heated from the woodstove, one by one came in around 21.30.
Traditionally I prepare some dishes, all others also bring some foodstuff, and with plenty of drinks and Dalmatian music we made it
a great evening/night/morning.

As the party only stopped at 03.30 in the morning, you can imagine today was a typical "John & Joko" day, spent most of the time in bed.
Only to feed stove, cats or ourselves we came out of it.
And besides, the sky was clouded and rain drizzled down, so what else than that to even think of.

Tomorrow is another day, and the bést Dalmatian word was/is/
and will always be:
Perhaps that's the very best advise for this year,
do things the Dalmatian way, do it polako.
You'll reach your goals anyway,
but enjoy só much more achieving them.

And what about celebrating a new year to come ?
Well, can't wait to do the same again at the end of 2014,
but it's better to first enjoy all days to come.
Ali:.....polako !

Sretna Nova Godina.

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