Plitvice Lakes National Park

Croatia is famous for its coastal towns. Yet it's winter which Ricky and I didn't plan to visit the coast. Then this UNESCO nature heritage site is our prime exploration in Croatia. The minerals in the lake paint the water into 50 shades of aqua blue. Still we can witness a variety of aqua blue amid the snowy weather.

This is what the national park looks like in summer

Here is what we see during winter time

Yet we shall always enjoy whatever is prepared for us in life. So during winter time, the frozen water falls, frozen lake, icicles, snows are the protagonists of the magnificent scene.

It's only during fall/winter we can clearly see mistletoe on trees. Kiss kiss kiss

Red leaves and green ivy with frosted silhouette are still blossoming in the sub-zero environment

We sailed across one of the lakes, which a part of the shore was already frozen

A bird has been dancing by our side on the boat. Later realize she is after the flakes of the cheese bun we just consumed. haha

A goose swimming in the crystal clear lake.
Going down a bat cave toward a path separating two lakes. In this cave, we didn't see any bat. After the fresh snow, the passage was so slippery that I know my flat sneakers had reached their limits. I honestly had slipped 2 or 3 times in this trip. I dared not bump my spine or slip myself to the frozen water. I walked 3 quarters of the way down this cave with the help of Ricky, then he ventured the rest from there.

Somewhere trekking in the snow. The full gears did keep me warm. Green tube from a London friend, down jacket from another London friend, scarf from sis, mouth piece from Taiwan, hootie from Primark. Actually this set of attires is what I wore everyday there.

Ricky was my cane guiding me down the slippery slope to the shore of the lake. Thanks so much

Yet I didn't venture this path along the raging current. Once I slipped, I don't know how to come back...
Jan 6, 2016  -  I'm now at Plitvicka Jezera National Park, sipping a cup of black tea (writing this post card)while it's snowing outside. Happiness can be as simple as this, inside a sheltered environment while enjoying life. Also I have a good friend/ travel companion, Ricky, with me thru out this Slovenia & Croatia trip. What's more can I ask for. Of course, a lover, haha.
I learnt my lesson - life, happiness and love shall be my higher priority.


Zagreb - the capital of Croatia

St. Mark's Church at St. Mark's Square, right at the heart of Upper Town of Zagreb. This church is one of the oldest buildings in Zagreb. The roof tiles decorated with the coats of arms of the Triune Kingdom of Croatia, Dalmatia and Slavonia. This is perhaps the signature of Zagreb. We were lucky that on the last day we left Zagreb, snow starting to melt and the beautiful roof mosaic was on display.

Christmas tree at St. Mark's Square of the Upper Town

The gas streetlight dated back to 1800s at both Upper Town and Kaptol

Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Kaptol
Ricky and me at Tkalciceva (the most vivid street of Zagreb) which was a creek in between Upper Town and Kaptol. The two districts were actually within 3~5 minutes walk.

Ban Jelacic Square is the modern square of Zagreb, which is also where the fashion outlets locate. Beside the square is Tkalciceva, where the pub, club, cafe and restaurants are.
The Stone Gate marks the entrance to the Upper Town. It's the only remaining town gate intact in the city.

Under the arch of the gateway is a chapel dedicated to Virgin Mary as a painting of her survived during a fire in 1731.
The Art Pavilion

Ice skating at King Tomislav Square

marshal Tito Square

The Croatian State Archives

The Kallina House

Mirogoj cemetery. When there is nothing much to see, a nice cemetery can be an escape place...

The arch on the left is where our hostel locates. As Croatia hasn't joined Euro, the spending here is quite cheap. Notwithstanding being at the heart of Zagreb, the hostel was like half price of Ljubljana. On the right is a 66m cable rail connecting the Upper Town and the Lower Town. The height difference was around 30m, which is also the shortest passenger cable rail in the world.
The pebble path was covered in black ice at freezing temperature. People literally cannot walk up or down the alley. Somehow the gutter path resolved the problem and people are waiting in line to walk.

Zagreb tram is ultra convenient especially we stayed at the center. The staff at hostel told us don't need to pay at all at the tram. So that's what we did having free rides through out our journey in Zagreb.
Dolac Market - opens every day of the week selling fresh fruits, veggie, fish and meats. To me, I think there isn't much an industry in Croatia, so agriculture would be among its main industries.

An extinct cabbage species re-grown back from rediscovered seeds
Things are quite cheap in Croatia compared to the western Europe, so of course we are trying the local delicacies. From recommendations, this Vincek has the best confections and cakes. The signature would be the chestnut cake. However, I have tasted that taste before (it's just like the normal chestnut cake in bakeries of HK). Yet, the nuts (almond) ring is quite unique as its hardness is like breaking your teeth. Quite an eastern European feel.

Bakery are so cheap. All the bun with meat and cheese are like around US$1. A slice of pie and pizza are like US$1.5. They just taste like Eastern European bakery. We were so satisfied.

Didov San. A Croatian signature restaurant

Snail and fried toad with bacon

The son or the grandson of Didov San. Despite his chub look, he is a nice person

Mango risotto and a type of fish

This boy, 23, looks so cute but is a boring machine I've ever met.

A restaurant right opposite of the main cathedral. We were like the only guests there. We spent total of US$25 without wine.

We had all meat platter and cheese pie. Sausage, meat and cheese are indeed the local Croatian specialty.

January 7, 2016 - When Ricky is gone, I am finally alone on this Balkan trip. Then I went to the main church of Zagreb to have a heart to heart talk for myself. I know I know I 'm already a blessed man. What's more can I ask for? A bf perhaps. But now I know I need to love myself first before I love another person. I will strive to be a completed man. My guardian angels, please look after me for a fulfilling life.
The after thought of Croatia: Despite the beautiful old town, Croatia has its recent dark history as it went through a civil war 25 years ago which they repelled all non-Croatians out of Croatia. On a tourist point of view, the surface of Croatia seems wonderful. But as we dig little further down from the surface, we could sense that Croatians are not that welcoming. While Ricky and I saw a quote from Times stating that "Zagreb is a diverse city with immigrants from all over Croatia", we know it is sarcastic... Anyhow, everywhere has its own history and culture.