Saturday, August 29, 2009

Croatia pt. 1 - Zagreb and Plitvice

We have less money this year than in years past. Because of the financial crisis we have less money coming in, plus Nate is getting bigger and eats more, and we now have Balázs as part of our family and he needs food, clothing, bus passes, memory cards, etc...
Because of these things, we thought we wouldn't be able to afford a family vacation this summer. We were planning to go to Slovakia for just 2 nights, but had a hard time finding accommodation on short notice.
I happened to write on Facebook that I was frustrated about not being able to find a place to stay in SK, and someone left me a comment, saying: Why don't you just get some tents and go camping? My first response was that I wanted to write him back and say, That's easy for you to say - but I have a baby and a pregnant wife! Then I started thinking about it, and realized that we could actually save a lot of money by camping, and maybe we could even go to the seaside, as Rosemary had asked me earlier in the year to take her to the coast.
So, I mentioned the idea to Rosemary, and figured out that if we bought a bigger tent, then we could fit Nathaniel's bed and Rosemary and I into it, and Balázs could sleep in our other tent with our friend Dani from church, who happened to be off from work that week.
So, on Monday, at 1am we left Eger for Zagreb, spent some time there, and then drove down to Plitvice Lakes National Park, about 2 hrs south.

We got to Zagreb at about 6am, and had breakfast there, and let Nate run around a bit. He slept most of the way in the car, although he was pretty excited and knew something was going on, that we would get him out of bed in the middle of the night to go somewhere.
Rosemary and I had been to Zagreb before, so we knew our way around, which made being there really enjoyable. Its a much smaller city than Budapest, but very nice, clean, and has a lot of parks.

We then drove down to Plitvice Lakes, where we camped the first night.
Croatian food is great, and we ate a lot of Ćevapčići and Ražnjići, but we were on a budget, so we also heated up canned food we brought from Hungary over a fire. Nate liked being in the tent - and it was funny waking up every morning with him standing and watching us, waiting for us to wake up.

Here are pictures from Zagreb:
And here are some from Plitvice:

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