In the hostel in Zadar I met Jasiah, who was also coincidentally travelling to Silba, so we went together. Silba is a lovely, simple place. For a start, there are no cars allowed, only bicycles. It’s hard to see why you would need a car anyway on an island that’s only 15 square kilometres. Its highest point is an astounding 83 metres and its population, a mind-blowing 250 people. Its only town, also called Silba, lies in the centre of the island and we walked across the narrowest point from coast to coast in only 10 minutes. There’s not much here to be honest, apart from nice beaches, crystal clear water and lots of trees.
I’ve heard most people that live here permanently are retired because there’s not much to do here in terms of a job. I guess it’s true – the same guy working at the tourist office was also the gardener and also tied up the ferries! It’s like an old fashioned village, where everybody helps everybody else.
The island is still big enough to get lost. We found a quiet spot just south of the town, and made some food over a camp fire before sleeping next to the mellow sounds of the Adriatic.
The following day, after some back-flips off the pier, we caught the ferry to Lošinj. Jasiah was actually supposed to go to a festival in Pula, but found out only when he got to Silba that there was no ferries there for another 4 days. So he decided to come to Lošinj and hitchhike to Pula. The views of the islands were great. There’s more than a thousand of them in Croatia!
The whole trip was pretty much sunbathing on the top deck for a few hours. At Lošinj we said our goodbye’s and Jasiah left in some German woman’s car, hopefully for somewhere nearer to Pula. I munched some food and cycled north across the rolling landscape through forest and past seaside towns. In an hour I arrived at the swinging bridge across to the more northerly island of Cres.
South Cres was fairly uninteresting. Camping behind some trees next to the main road was the most exciting thing that happened. Thankfully further north I found the small town of Cres, an enchanting place. The harbour was lovely, there were nice buildings and nice people. I couldn’t walk anywhere without people saying good morning or asking what I was doing with my bike. The surrounding coastline is a plethora of beaches, coves and rockpools.
I reached the north of the island by midday and took the ferry back to the mainland. On the ferry I parked up next to another touring cyclist, Nils, who has travelled from Germany to Bosnia and now Croatia. The first touring cyclist I’ve seen in a while and he is also going to Pula (I can’t stop meeting people going to the same places!). We got there in no time but some of the hills were insanely steep! Unfortunately, Pula is a rather boring city. There’s not much to do here, the beaches are too far away, our apartment is dirty and expensive and there is an epic amount of tourists, although I’m failing to see why. A somber end to an otherwise amazing trip in Croatia – tomorrow I’ll be heading in to Slovenia.