Have you ever sat in a traffic jam on the M25 for 4 hours and thought ‘screw this, I’m outta here’! Maybe it took you 4 hours to get home once just because the train company decided there are leaves on the track, or the track is too hot, or too cold, or whatever the hell else might be slightly wrong with that day. Such is the fun of living in London, but maybe you could have used that 4 hours in a slightly more productive way. Like for example, getting you to paradise!
If you don’t think it’s possible then let me tell you – you are wrong. In fact, it’s a mere 2 hour flight and then a 2 hour drive on arrival (OK probably more like 5 hours once you have you luggage and have got your car), but still, it’s close and hardly ANYONE know about it. And I’m going there in October
My original plan had been to go to Prague for a few days to wipe away the cobwebs and spend my birthday doing something fun. However, my summer holiday wasn’t really all that relaxing this year, spending 2 days here, 1 day there for a total of 3 weeks, so I really just wanted to find somewhere away from it all where I can strap on my hiking boots and see some amazing scenery. In complete silence.
I didn’t really want to walk around a city for 3 or 4 days. Don’t get me wrong, I love a bit of culture, but my work has been super stressful recently and I just want somewhere I can explore at my own pace and not see crowds upon crowds. And so my search led me to the most incredible looking scenery I have seen this side of the Atlantic.
I’m talking about the Plitvice Lakes National Park in Croatia. If you’ve never heard of it, that makes 2 of us (until around a week ago) when a google search for something as simple as ‘Croatia’ brought up images of this whimsical place which looks like it’s straight out of a dream. The park is made up of 16 individual blue-green lakes all flowing into one another, surrounded by mountains. Sounds good, right? Oh, you have no idea. It is just quite simply one of the most incredible looking places I have ever had the pleasure of googling, and with bear and wolves roaming the park, one of the most exciting too!
Oh, and did I mention it’s CHEAP? We managed to find flights with Ryanair in October from £39.99 return (Stansted to Zadar), car hire for £70 for 5 days with Fleet Rent a Car (through rentalcars.com) and some super cheap accommodation too. The place we chose is called House Osana and is a local guest house where you stay with a family. I can’t wait to ask them all about their little slice of paradise.
Now, I don’t know about you, but whenever I’m feeling down or I can’t sleep, I think of my ‘happy place’, which just so happens to be Iguazu Falls, on the Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay borders, and everything just seems to feel better again. The combination of flowing water, spectacular scenery from every angle and wildlife occupying the trails was just something I feel like I was meant to experience.
And I can’t believe this incredible place which bears such a resemblance has been hiding itself away for so long, just a hop over from London. Not much is written about these amazing lakes so I’m going to have to find out more. Purely for research purposes of course. Stay tuned I may have found my new happy place.