Beach Break: Swim in the Adriatic

My dip in the Adriatic Sea was one of my favorite parts of our Dubrovnik, Croatia adventure this past November, over Thanksgiving. So I decided to give it its own little "beach day" photo-rich blogpost..

B e a c h D a y. We had just finished a morning photoshoot with Flytographer. The photographer had us up at 6am to catch the 'good light.' The shoot was about 90 minutes of strolling around the shiny, knobby limestone streets of Old Town Dubrovnik, snapping shots as the local kids walked to school in clusters. A few times the young kids, backpacks slung over their shoulders, would stop and let us shoot in their pathway. It was the sweetest innocent gesture.

We had set up the photoshoot to capture some memories of our European trip, because iPhone selfies and asking strangers to snap pics, can only get you so far. It was also a sort of belated 10th year wedding anniversary gift to ourselves. (A year late..) We did the same thing (a travel photoshoot) for our 5th year, it is a fun little tradition.

And like any good photo session, especially one at sunrise, afterwards, we were famished and tired. We went back to our hotel, the Hotel Excelsior, and had breakfast. Yup, they were still serving it because it was only around 9am by this time. After breakfast, we hurried upstairs to our room and though we could have easily gone back to bed and slept away the morning and afternoon, we dove into another day of Dubrovnik adventuring.

The sun was sparkling over the sea and everything felt warm and glowy, like a spoonful of glitter had been shaken across the clouds and waves and sandy Banje Beach, below our hotel room balcony.

"I am doing it. I'm going swimming now. Ok? Good. Let's go." I was pretty determined, despite the lack of popularity in 'ocean swimming' this time of year.

The ongoing vacancy of Banje Beach was somewhat intimidating. Over the few days we had been there, I only saw a few fully clothed, warm-coat-wearing people walk along the beach. Not a soul went in the crystal blue waves. Maybe a few tourists dipping their toes, but that was it.

Let's face it, once "off-season" hits, beach days find their way out of the city just like the cruise tourists.

But that was fine. The sun was warm, the ocean gorgeous. And I was going in.

Our tour guide from the day before said the ocean never really got any cooler than 50's (F), so that felt like home to me. (Santa Cruz California waves, where I grew up, always hovered at around 50-60 degrees Fahrenheit.)

So off I went. Bathing suit on, two beach towels rolled up under my arm. My husband followed along in his coat and street shoes.

We took the inviting steps down to the beach, rocky cliffs crumbling down the steep slope. We chose a cozy spot on the side of the beach, along the white-sand, grey-stone speckled shore.

And go. I was a bit self-conscious at first, like any girl in a bathing suit .. especially the only girl in town, on the beach, in a bathing suit. And I felt like all the passing locals, on the heavily-trafficked sidewalk above the cliffs, were staring at me. But then again, who cares, right?

I sunk into the waves and it was like sinking into a pool of melted sapphires and diamonds. Cool and brisk, yet clean and so refreshing. I wanted to swim out far and just fully immerse myself, but I stayed on the sensible side of things and just played in the waves.

I stayed in the water for about ten minutes, hopped out, giggled as I wrapped a towel around my chest, adrenalin in full swing, and proceeded to sunbath the dampness away for a few minutes. I felt quite satisfied of my beach day triumph.

Not a typical Banje Beach beach day, but one I loved and will never forget. Maybe someday I will return when the sun is hot and wild, and the waves crowded with bodies, the beach crammed with chairs and umbrellas, tourists and locals, laughter and cold drinks, a mess of life.

But for now, I'm pretty cool with having those waves all to myself, for a heartbeat.

The day before..

First look at those teal and turquoise ripples.


Let's do this.

H a p p y.

Some fun facts..

The Adriatic Sea contains over 1,300 islands, mostly located along its eastern, Croatian coast.

There are dozens of marine protected areas in the Adriatic, designed to protect the sea's karst habitats and biodiversity. The sea is abundant in flora and fauna—more than 7,000 species are identified as native to the Adriatic, many of them endemic, rare and threatened ones. - wiki

Mission Accomplished.

Beach with a view of King's Landing? Yes please.

M o o d.

Dreaming in pink and periwinkle.

H i g h l i g h t.

Stay tuned for my full Dubrovnik post!
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