A road trip
Coast of Croatia
Follow the road Trust the journey Enjoy the view
Sunrise & Arrival
Sunrise at the river Drin / Albania on the morning of the fourth day. And finally, after a rush along the coast, our souls have time to catch up. We have arrived.
Stone Upon The Stone
The castle of Shkodra, or Rozafa Castle, in the light of the morning sun. A rather gruesome legend describes how a young mother had to be immured by her husband and his two brothers to guarantee the completion of the castle. Whether there is a true core to the legend or not. The amount of human labour required to build the castle on top of the hill is hard to imagine today. During my reading into the castle's legend I found an English interpretation of the legend's poem which captures the sadness of the story quite well: Building Skadar by David Kelly
Lagoon of Patok
The huts built into the lagoon look like a scene from a long forgotten time. Yet they make up the rooms of a fish restaurant built in the shallow waters. And rich waters they are. Just close to the shore you can see small fish and crabs trying to get their share of the nutrients provided by the special conditions of the lagoon.
The sun was already low on the horizon. Mergim looked at his watch - ten minutes to seven. Since morning he had been wondering who his last customer would be.
It is generally thought that about 2-3 million years ago the river flowed underground, but over time the rock above the river disappeared, creating the current form of the gorge. (Wikipedia) Thankful to be alive now and having had the opportunity to visit this wonderful natural monument.
A new day is born
It probably was a beautiful scene once, with the gulf of Vlore surrounded by rolling hills. Is this our legacy?
Ruins in the archiaelogical park that shows the remnants of the ancient city of Byllis. The city was founded in the 4th century BC and located 500m above sea level on a hill overlooking the Vjose river. Walking among the ruins and stones, made me think of the people that lived, struggled and died here some 2000 years ago. Some inscriptions in stone all that remains of whatever they felt was important back then. I wonder: what will our legacy be 2000 years from now?
The Last of Its Kind
In all of Europe the river Vjosë is one of the last wild free-flowing rivers in Europe. Fortunately the government of Albania has committed to protect this untouched river ecosystem.
The Bridge in the Middle
The Ura e Mesit - the bridge in the middle was built in the 18th century and spans the river Kir. It is impressive to see this monument still standing after more than 200 years. I wonder if our modern buildings will also last that long?
Graveyard With A View
Somewhere between Albania and Montenegro. Many charches and their graveyards were located on hills.
In only a little more than two weeks, we passed through six countries and travelled almost 4000 kilometers. We learned a little about the regions turbulent history. We saw ancient cities and castles, fish in the sea, gorgeous canyons and wild rivers. We encountered poor yet proud and friendly people. Greatful for being able to have made this experience and thankful for having shared it with you.