2016 Slovenia & Croatia
And now for something completely different …
On 24th June, 2016, we joined another eight enthusiasts on a 1-week wildlife tour of Slovenia and Croatia, a trip which had been instigated by a friend from the Bedfordshire Natural History Society. It was to be a mixed wildlife tour which went very well with the mixed bag of interests shown by our merry band, which included birds, plants, butterflies, reptiles and, of course dragonflies (guess who that was). This was the morning of the disastrous Brexit referendum result, the beginning of the end, so the mood was dark as we gathered at Stansted airport.
The tour had been planned by Ecotours Wildlife Holidays (beware, there are multiple similarly named companies) and we were very lucky to be placed in the capable hands of our guide, Milan Vogrin, a Slovenian ecological consultant with passions for reptiles and birds. Our trip was split about 50:50 between Slovenia and Croatia. To be honest, there were a couple of locations that were tourist honey pots, absolutely heaving with people, rather than classic wildlife habitats: the Postonja Caves and the Plitvice Lakes National Park. So I think the itinerary could’ve been more sympathetically arranged, in part. Nonetheless, Milan was flexible enough and professional enough to do his best for us at more secluded spots without breaking the terms of his contract.
Despite that minor criticism and the gloomy start caused by Brexit, it was a very enjoyable trip in the company of a sociable bunch of friends with a great guide. We found Slovenia to be the more attractive country but, when it came to the dragonflies in particular, Croatia delivered considerably more.
Not an itinerary as such but here’s my Google Map of the places we found dragonflies. (Well, it gives an idea, at least.)