All Posts By

Tylee Shay

Europe

A Day In Dubrovnik, Croatia’s Enchanting City

When you think of European destinations on your travel bucket list, Croatia might not come to mind. This is precisely what makes it one of the best places to visit on the continent. Dubrovnik, Croatia is one of Europe’s best kept secrets, and one of the few places where you can experience European flair without brushing shoulders with hundreds of tourists.

If you are fortunate enough to spend a day (or week) in Dubrovnik, here are 8 things you must do!

Walk The Wall

The Old Town of Dubrovnik has magnificent cobblestone streets, orange shingled rooftops, and a mighty fortress wall surrounding the city. You can frequently hear live music echoing off the walls and floating through the streets, and every shop within the fortress has their doors swung wide open like a welcoming hug.

If you want to see the city squares and secret side streets from 80 feet up, you can walk atop the wall that perimeters Old Town. Not only will you take in the entire town and people watch from above, you’ll also score unobstructed views of the beautifully blue Adriatic Sea. This picturesque walking tour can take up to 2 hours if you choose to walk the entire length of the town, but you’re free to hop on and off at any of the entrance and exit points.

Double Scoop

European gelato is all the rave, but Croatian ice cream is on a whole new level. Experience flavors unique to this area, such as the extremely popular Cinnamon flavor, and give traditional flavors like Pistachio and Cookies And Cream a whole new meaning. Croatian ice cream shops line each street and the scents of their homemade cones will lure you in. If you attempt to get a single scoop, you will regret it.

Sea To Plate

Being a seaside town with a thriving fishing industry, Dubrovnik is known for some of the most exceptional seafood dishes in Europe. Whether you choose a 5-star candlelit experience, or a stop by a low-budget cafe, nearly every restaurant within the town contains are array of seafood items on the menu and you can rest assured that your cuisine is both fresh and locally-sourced.

Splish Splash

Take a dip in the Adriatic Sea, Croatia’s very own body of turquoise water. The Adriatic is known for its spectacular color and crystal clear waters, as well as it’s bold, rocky shorelines. With such enticing colors, you truly can’t visit this city without taking a dive below its surface. Be sure to pack a swimsuit and even some snorkel gear and an underwater camera for crystal clear views of the marine life.

Drinks & Cliff Diving

Enjoy the hunt of finding this literal hole-in-the-wall spot that gives ‘dive bars’ a whole new meaning. The Buža Bar bar in Dubrovnik is a cliffside spot where you can get a cold drink and lounge in your swimsuit, however the bar is not advertised in any way. There’s no signage outside of the bar, you won’t find the information for this destination in any brochure, and you’ll be lucky if you can get directions out of a local.

You simply must walk along the South perimeter of the wall along the street level and hope to find a hole in the wall. Walk through the stone hole and you’ll quickly realize why this place is kept on the down low. Resting on the rocky edge of the Adriatic Sea, the Buža Bar is known for being a prime cliff jumping spot. Purchase an ice cold beverage, and with this liquid courage and a bit of friendly peer pressure, you’ll be cannonballing off of the edge.

Kayak Tours

Another great way to take in the city is by paddling around it. Kayak tours go out all day, every day. You can choose to do a guided tour for varying durations of time, or opt to simply rent a kayak and venture of on your own. Guided tours are recommended, though, because your guide and lead you to fascinating sea caves and stoney cliffs only seen from water level.

Island of Peacocks

That’s right. Dubrovnik’s neighboring island, Lokrum, is inhabited with wild free-roaming peacocks. Don’t worry, they aren’t aggressive or mean, in fact you’ll be lucky to get a picture with one they scurry around so quickly. Take a quick, easy ferry ride over from Old Town Dubrovnik, and you’ll most definitely see a few peacocks wandering around. If you’re lucky, you may even see one with its feathers in full display.

Take It All In

For a bird’s eye view of the entire city and a thrilling ride, take the Cable Car up to the top of Mount Srđ for an aerial view of Old Town and the Adriatic Sea. Feeling bold? Follow the zig-zagging switch-back trail on a 90 minute active hike leading to the top of Mount Srđ. An excellent time to take on this trail is just before sunset. You’ll watch the sky fill with color as the sun dips into the Adriatic Sea, and you’ll be glad you chose to visit this exclusive town over all the European clichés.

 

Advice Journal

How To Be A Millennial But NOT Travel Like One

Wanderlust is more than a trend. We are a rising generation of young globe trotters who are growing up with a greater global perspective than most of our predecessors. We’ve seen more places than most people get to see in their whole life time, and for some of us (myself included) the number of countries we’ve traveled to exceeds our age.

But let’s not let that get to our heads. Let’s be mindful of the extravagant privilege we have, let’s not take for granted how easily accessible the world is today, and less steward this opportunity well.

Here’s how to be a millennial, but not travel like one!

Be Present, Don’t Post

For real, put the phone down. Your followers don’t need to follow you here. Let your trips and travels be for you, not for likes and comments and attention. This doesn’t mean don’t take photos, you definitely should take pictures and videos so to commemorate the trip and remember it for years, but I challenge you to not post until you’re home.

If you can’t manage that, or your mom demanded that you post at least once every few days to let her know you’re alive, don’t you DARE scroll through the feed of other people’s posts!

I guarantee you, there is nothing happening back at home that is more exciting than where you are right now. It took a lot to get where you are, you invested time and money into this trip, don’t dismiss this opportunity to truly leave home behind and embrace this new part of the world, this new reality.

Everything happening to everyone back at home will still be there when you return. Be where your feet are. Don’t let social media rob you from fully experiencing a place or enjoying a trip. Choose to be present over posting.

Ask Locals, Not Google

If you ask Google or Siri where you should get dinner in Rome, you’re not going to be directed to the best food.

We all know about the power of digital marketing nowadays, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that SEO (search-engine optimization) and paid ads are causing the money-making businesses to come up first in our online searches. I hate to say it, but these places are not the ones with the best food. You’re far better off asking a local.

Ask your Uber driver where to drop you off at their favorite restaurant. Find someone on the street and ask them to point you towards the best street food. Go into a local business and ask the worker where all the locals hang out.

You’re guaranteed the most ethnic food and exciting experience, plus it will most likely be less busy than the ‘tourist trap’ restaurants that show up online.

Take Advantage Of Your Youth

Do it all. Even if (especially if!) it scares you. From experiences to food to adventures to cultural traditions, just do it all.

Try the paragliding in the Swiss alps, sleep in a hostel and meet other travelers from countries far and wide, do the advanced hike for the best view, taste the street foods that you see all the locals eating, and most importantly: walk! Avoid Uber and taxi as much as you can. The best way to explore a new place and feel like a local, is to travel by foot. There will come a day when you aren’t as mobile, aren’t as daring, and aren’t capable to do all the things you can do right now while you’re young. So just. do. it.

Be Considerate

It’s up to us to preserve places for generations to come. By being a considerate traveler,  keeping the natural wonders natural and free from litter, respecting the reverent sites that hold ancient history, and contributing to the efforts that are in place to conserve them, we can give generations beneath us the chance to enjoy them as much as we have.

Take Home More Than You Left With- And I’m Not Talking Souvenirs

Go out into the world on all your endeavors with an open mind and receptive spirit. Go with the intentions of learning, growing, abolishing stereotypes, and overcoming bias. Press into the things that are different from what you know, lean into things that are outside your comfort zone, and really foster the chance to come home with a broadened perspective.

Take this mindfulness with you back to your home town, back to your university, back to your office, back to your family and friends. Let’s be the generation that makes empathy and inclusivity the norm.

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