Slovenians, we’re a strange breed of people. Every year before summer we start discussing our national travel trends that always show the same result: most of us spend our summer holiday in Croatia.
Next to the Germans we account for the most tourism arrivals to this country. We’ve been taught this way, it’s part of our culture and every summer we’re drawn to the beautiful Adriatic coast as if it was calling us.
Yet at the same time we keep complaining about high prices and poor service. We feel offended that local people don’t understand our language even though we can perfectly understand them. And on top of that there’s the perpetual political teasing between the two neighbouring countries that makes us decide collectively: this year we’re spending our hard earned money somewhere else. Only to find out at the end of the season that the number of Slovenian tourists in Croatia has risen once again.
I, on the other hand, have given up on these internal fights long ago. Not only did we stop discussing whether we’re spending a week on the Croatian coast or not. We’re returning every year to the same place, same apartment and same restaurant. I don’t even know since when precisely have we been doing this. To be honest, I don’t even care. And while I am constantly planning which new countries to explore, every year in June ten days are blocked for our regular trip to Brač island. Those are the most relaxing ten days of the whole year.
- We don’t need a GPS to plan our route as we know exactly how much time we will need for each particular variation of the route, coffee stops included. Of course we also know which service stations have the best coffee and sandwiches.
- Once arrived we’re not under pressure to go sightseeing. We’ve seen it all and we only decide to change location if we get bored reading book after book.
- While all the first-timers are still wondering which is the best beach in town we follow a precise pattern and know exactly which beach to hit after the morning run and which is not too crowded in the afternoon.
- We started noticing small changes like new brand of coffee in this café and ice cream freezer in the other.
- We don’t only know where to go for decent coffee and which bar serves the best beer, but also the names of the bar owners and the birthdays of their children.
- There’s our regular table waiting for us every evening in our favourite local »konoba« and the head chef knows exactly that we only eat grilled zucchini with our fish.
- Soon we will even learn to read the clouds like the locals – tiny white clouds above Split mean wind in the afternoon, clear sky predicts calm sea.
You must think we’re either crazy or showing symptoms of some strange OCD. But I couldn’t care less about all the public debates, travel trends or cultural pressure. Nothing grounds me as much as this annual escape and until this changes we’ll continue returning to Brač.