Three countries in one day

A beautifully clear morning greeted us, and we could see the fantastic view from our pitch which had previously been hidden in the haze.

We headed out with a 4 hour/150 mile journey to do and almost immediately left lovely smooth, EU tarmac roads for bumpy narrow Croatian ones!

The van bumped and twisted for the best part of an hour. Roads narrowed and hairpin bends appeared. Luckily, in all that time 3 cars, a coach and one lorry passed on the other side. We were too busy watching the road to take photos but it was lovely. John wants to return in something sensible, like a Porsche or Ferrari.

As we drove around Rijeka, the Adriatic reappeared on our left, it feels a lot longer than two days since our drive along the coast.

Heavy rain and dramatic lightning faced us as our route took us up over the mountains and back inland towards Slovenia.

30 minutes from the border, we joined long queues to enter Slovenia where recent hailstones had been rather ferocious – luckily before we arrived.

Slovenia, not surprisingly, was much like Croatia, with rolling forested hillsides but instead of cheese and honey it was pig roasts which were frequently available at the roadside.

Then we were back in Italy with great views across the Gulf of Trieste.

Our plan was to stop at Castello Di Miramar. As we drove out of Trieste, it appeared in the distance on the headland.

The satnav delivered us to within 100m of the castle, down a very narrow road with parked cars and pedestrians. A parking attendant waved us down and told us to turn around. Scenes reminiscent of last year’s accident came flooding back. We had to turn around in a confined space full of parked cars. Luckily a lovely Italian came to our aid and, with lots of exaggerated gestures described the best way to turn around! There was a queue of cars waiting to follow us out. We’d failed in our attempt to do ‘culture’ and so headed to our overnight stop at Sistiana. The campsite runs alongside the Rilke walking trail and has great views back towards Trieste.

Ken’s back is still bad so John stayed at the campsite, keeping him company with a beer while Kim and Jacky walked the trail out to Duino to see the castle. There are many fortifications along the route created during WW1 and used by the Third Reich in WW2, that have been converted to viewing points across the bay.

Tomorrow were heading to Lazise on Lake Garda.