Thursday 19 December 2019

Balkan Travel Part 16: [Croatia] The Elaphiti Islands Of Dubrovnik

I was amazed to know that Croatia has more than 1000 islands off its shores. Among these islands are the archipelago of Elaphiti Islands located off the coast of Dubrovnik. These group of islands are reputed to be some of Croatia's most beautiful. I had a lovely experience exploring the three main islands of the Elaphites on a hop on hop off island cruise. 
It was a day excursion conducted by a company called Regina Maris. The journey started from Dubrovnik Harbour. This cruise took us on a round trip to three of Elaphiti's main islands, namely Kolocep,  Sipan and Lopud Island, allocating enough time at each island for its passengers to explore the place. Passengers taking this island hopping cruise can also opt to pay extra to dine on board. 
The boat I was on is a double decker boat with free flow of soft drinks. It departed Dubrovnik Harbour at 10 am. 

Kolocep Island
Kolocep Island is the closest island to Dubrovnik, located just 5 kilometres from Dubrovnik Harbour. It was the first island I visited and it is also the smallest among the three.This island has two villages with about 300 inhabitants. There are a number of hotels and restaurants serving the daily influx of tourists. Though small in size there are 7 churches dating back to the times of the Croatian kings which is from the 9th to the 11th century. The island is totally pedestrianized. 

Sipan Island
The second island I visited was Sipan which is the largest among the main Elafiti Islands. It is also the furthest away from Dubrovnik Harbour. It has 2 villages with a population of about 450. Even though there are motorised vehicles on the island, it is generally laid back and peaceful.  Sipan is a land of olive and fig trees, vineyards and citrus groves and is especially famous for its wine. There are a number of eateries but only two hotels on the entire island. The landscape of 15th-century houses and quaint marina at Sudurad Harbour where my boat landed is exceptionally beautiful.

Lopud Island
The last island I visited was Lopud which is said to have been inhabited since the 7th century. The island has two ancient monasteries, 30 churches and a number of medieval palaces some of which have been wrecked by the 1667 earthquake. Lopud with a population of just over 200 has only one village. Lopud which is also a car free island is famous for its fine beaches.
The main architectural attraction in Lopud Island is the 15th-century Franciscan Monastery which is located near the wharf and visible from Lopud Harbour.

There is a rustic charming ambiance to this place.

Đorđić-Mayneri family park is located near the coastal road and I took a quick stroll around it.
Saw a quaint stone scuplture on a wall in the park.

Had lunch at Obala Restaurant. This restaurant serves very fresh seafood. 

Grapes grow freely on the island.

The time allocated for Lopud was the longest. My boat sailed back to Dubrovnik Harbour after this.

Related Posts: Click To View
Balkan Travel Pt 1: [ Romania] Bucharest Sightseeing
Balkan Travel Pt 2: [Romania] Bucharest Walking Tour
Balkan Travel Pt 3: [Romania] Peles Castle , Dracula's Castle & Romanian Scenery
Balkan Travel Pt 4: Bulgaria Attractions
Balkan Travel Pt 5: [Bulgaria] Sofia Attractions
Balkan Travel Pt 6: [North Macedonia] Skopje A City Of Mutifarious Statues
Balkan Travel Pt 7: [North Macedonia] Memorable Moments In Skopje
Balkan Travel Pt 8: [North Macedonia] Ohrid Photo Gallery
Balkan Travel Pt 9: [Albania] Glimpses Of Albania and Its Capital City Tirana
Balkan Travel Pt 10: [Albania] Walking Tour Of Tirana
Balkan Travel Pt 11: Montenegro Scenic Drive
Balkan Travel Pt 12: The Charms Of Koto Montenegro
Balkan Travel Pt 13: [Montenegro] The Old Town Of Kotor Photo Gallery
Balkan Travel Part 14: [Croatia] The Charms Of Dubrovnik
Balkan Travel Pt 15: [Croatia] The Old Town Of Dubrovnik
Balkan Travel Part 16: [Croatia] The Elaphiti Islands Of Dubrovnik
Balkan Travel Part 17: [Croatia] Plitvice National Park Photo Gallery
Balkan Travel Part 18: [Croatia] Rastoke Villagel

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