The phrase “hedonism” derives from Greek word for “delight” or “pleasure”.
The essence of hedonism can be summarized in an old Sumerian saying: Fill your belly. Day and night make merry. Let days be full of joy. Dance and make music day and night.
When I think a little bit about it, it sure wouldn’t be that amusing or healthy to dance with filled belly 24/7. Maybe that’s even the reason their civilization disappeared suddenly.
But nevertheless, their main guiding thought was on point; it is important to know how to enjoy the little things and making every moment count.
I believe, in a certain dose, we all have a little hedonist inside of us who can hardly wait to come out when an opportunity is given.
In Croatia you can come across these opportunities quite easily. Beautiful landscapes, sea, beaches and a fresh breeze on your cheeks; everything in surroundings is inviting that little hedonist to come out.
If you have one as well, Croatia is a suitable destination for you.
If not, no need to worry as the locals here have perfected the art of exploiting every moment to the fullest and are very happy to share their knowledge with others.
Within this premise, we will offer 5 tips for hedonist traveling in Croatia:
1.LAND OF WINE
Magical drink of gods, sickness, and health, sadness, and joy. Of course, this tip had to be on the first place regarding the topic.
Croatia is a country with an abundance of vineyards and wine sorts. Dating from ancient Greece, there were even found ancient coins with imprinted grapes and goblets from the island Vis (ancient Issa). Today we have 697 protected wine sorts out of which 76 are considered to be elite wines.
Coastal Croatia cultivates a varied array of wine sorts; Istria is known for Malvasia, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Dalmatian area has a large selection of recognized wines like Debit, Marastina… And of course, it would be a sin not to mention Crljenak Kastelanski which is a genetically identical twin with the famous Zinfandel wine produced in California.
Wine lovers out there, you have an abundance of choice, and we definitely encourage you to dive into Croatian wine culture. Also, local cuisine would be bare and unfinished canvas without the touch of wine- which brings us to the next matter.
2. LOCAL CUISINE
Seafood plays a big part in the coastal area. With the fresh ingredients from Adriatic sea, it is delicious and healthy as it can get. The spectrum of food and preparations is diverse; you can choose from lighter to more complex flavors depending on your preferences. Don’t be afraid to taste new flavors and prepare to be amazed.
What gives seafood that additional boost in taste is olive oil which is one of the most important ingredients for seasoning. Croatia is considered a small producer of olive oil but produces one of the highest-quality extra-virgin olive oil.
While olives are grown all around Croatia, Istria is the place for truffles and truffle oil which is also a great specialty. One of the world’s most rare and expensive foods, truffles are tuberous fungi found growing along the roots of woodland trees. They are known for their strong aroma and umami flavor. It’s definitely a recommendation.
3. MUSIC- KLAPE
No, I am not talking about music festivals, at least not in a typical kind of way. This type of music is not designed for the dance floor, it’s more of a food for the soul for the locals.
Klapa music is a form of traditional a cappella singing in Dalmatia. The word klapa translates as "a group of friends dressed traditionally and the songs, in general, celebrate love, wine (grapes), country (homeland) and sea.
Main elements of the music are harmony and melody. In 2012 “klapa” was even inscribed in UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity.
So, if the opportunity arrives, pour a glass of wine, lay back, relax and listen to “klapa” honoring life itself.
There is no one who knows about Croatia more than- Croatians. During the last decade, tourism had really blossomed in these parts and locals have adapted. There is great emphasis on courtesy in service activities; hotels, restaurants, shops and so on… so do not hesitate to ask any kind of information you may need. Locals know the best-hidden charms of their area and are, generally, willing to help out.
Also, communication is really open, so don’t get surprised if you see people yelling on the streets just to greet someone or small talking just because they are sitting close to each other in a coffee place. Be open and embrace every moment, might even gain a fun, new acquaintance.
5. GET ACTIVE
It’s easy to indulge in the comfort of a hotel lounge or a pool, but that doesn’t mean it’s always a good idea. With the abundance of sunny days being outside, exploring and absorbing vitamin D is the best thing you can do for yourself.
Enjoy the walks, go to beaches, visit islands, try something new every day!
Don’t get closed up between 4 walls (unless they are UNESCO protected). Croatia has wonderful nature and coast, enjoy it! Cherish every moment so when you eventually go back home, you bring back some unforgettable memories.
Using these simple tips, you shouldn’t have difficulty getting your inner hedonist out, best of luck ☺