Friday, 6 October 2017

Tourists Everywhere in Split & Dubrovnik

When my plane landed in the Croatian city of Split that September afternoon, the first things I noticed were the cool weather, beautiful landscape and the large number of tourists that come to Croatia.

Take a look at these photos of tourists at the Diocletian Palace in Split:

What's up there?

There were a good number of tourists from Asia too.

The tour groups that come to Split were endless. Bus load after bus load they come to admire the beauty of the Old City. 

Tourists are generally good for the local tourism industry although there have been reports that the locals in top tourist destinations in Europe are getting fedup with the 'invasion' of tourists in their homes and some are even calling for a ban on tourists. 

For a fellow tourist, crowds are never good because when crowds are big,
... moving around becomes a hassle especially in the Old Towns where lanes are narrow
... queues become long at the stores and washroom
... getting a seat in a popular cafe or restaurant may take forever during peak hours especially when patrons want to sit longer and do people watching
... trying to take a photo with less people in it becomes almost impossible

On my second day in Split I made a day trip to the historic city of Trogir which is a 45 minute bus ride from Split, hoping to get away from the crowds. Unfortunately it was no different in Trogir:

Most of the time I will step aside to let tour groups pass.

The sheer number of tourists in Split had prepared me for Dubrovnik where the number of tourists was even bigger!

If you've seen photos of Dubrovnik and its magnificent, well preserved wall surrounding the Old City, you'll understand why tourists come in droves to Dubrovnik. 

This is the Pile Gate which is the main entrance to the Old City of Dubrovnik:

To ensure an orderly stream of people walking in and out of the Old City, the authorities had divided the walkway into 'In' and 'Out' lanes.

Outside the Pile Gate is the meeting point for tour groups:

If this is the crowd in September, imagine how it would be in the summer!

Ivana from Kings Landing Old Town Hostel in Dubrovnik informed that the September crowd are mainly from the cruise ships that dock at the Dubrovnik Port. Therefore they will return to their ship in the evening.

If you're planning to take photos with less people in it, you'll need to start early like 7.30am before the crowd arrives, and hopefully you'll be able to take photos like these:

 The Stradun or Placa is the main street inside Old Town Dubrovnik.

Compare this photo of the Pile Gate with the one above ... a vast difference.

So if you decide to visit Croatia especially its popular cities of Split and Dubrovnik, expect to jostle with other tourists. Just tell yourself that patience is the mother of virtue.

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