A Travellerspoint blog

Sarajevo

An amazing city!

Thanks for the feedback on the blog. This is really a nice way to keep in touch with you all. Today we arrived in Sarajevo. I have to admit that I was hesitant to leave the croatian coast. I was probably even more hesitant to make the journey into Bosnia as I wasn't sure what to expect. The drive from Brela on the coast was quite stunning, mainly through mountains. Arriving in Sarajevo was a little shocking, burnt out buildings and buildings with gun shots. I truly wondered what we had gotten our family in to. Arriving to the old part of the city is both magical and wonderful. We found a hostel in the Austro-Hungarian part of the city and we have just come back from the Turkish part if the city. As most of you know this city has a rich and varied history. This is also a city that is coming to terms with its' past and re- defining itself. If any of you are planning a trip this year or next we strongly encourage you to visit Sarajevo. It is so incredibly rich and dynamic. The restaurant scene is amazing!!!! Having just had 2 weeks in Croatia with only cheese pizza to select from the menu we are so unexpectedly surprised. We just ate at a vegetarian organic restaurant, and not just any vegetarian restaurant. It is part of a collective and Eco village vision. So unexpected!!! Absolutely fabulous!!!
I am really looking forward to tomorrow, I feel great here and so does the rest of the family! The kids think this place is cool - this is truly what traveling is all about ... Discovering the unexpected.
Love, meera

Hello everyone out there in the real world. Woke up this morning and went for a swim in the Med. A long drive through absolutely stunning scenery in Bosnia eventually landed us in Sarajevo. This place is thumping! Dad went from zero to hero as soon as we were unpacked in the hostel. There was a lot of reluctance to leave the beach - not that I blame them as Brela on the Croatian coast is the stuff of which postcards are made. If you've seen a picture of the Croatian coast it was probably taken near where were staying. I will write more about Sarajevo as we discover this city of culture and mystic.

Peace, mike

Posted by The Flying Five 12:59 Comments (2)

Mike.s first post

Hello everyone out there in the real world. Just got back to home base after an ice cream. It is now eleven at night and I'm wearing just a pair of shorts. The Mediterranean climate is really my style. On a different note I stepped on a sea urchin today. A very big ouch. For those not in the know a sea urchin is about have the size of your first with too many spikes to count. They attach themselves to rocks under the surface of the ocean. Some of the tips are still stuck in my foot. Don't cry for me as as far as injuries go this one is not to bad - trust me I should know. Life is good and I am happy. Peace, mike.

Posted by The Flying Five 14:25 Comments (1)

Home schooling on the go

When we first started telling people about our travel plans one of the first questions that arise is, "what are you doing about school?"
I thought to write this blog entry to illustrate a day in the life of our home schooling on the go. Solstice has appropriately named our school, The Flying Five Grade School of no fixed address.
The world and our travel experiences have become our classroom; our snorkel gear has replaced our textbooks.

Typically the boys do math everyday. We have brought an assortment of grade appropriate and higher math workbooks. We try and do 20 minutes everyday. One of our favorite "on the go" activities is reciting the multiplication tables up to 15. Aleix is a whiz kid! Solstice continues with her multiplication skills for practice. She has the good fortune of already having completed her grade 9 math thanks to her Nana's help last year!

The kids write in their journal every day (so do I). They reflect on their experiences thus far. In their journals. Hey include information from parks or cities that we have visited. We love to cut and paste in our journals! We also do Art in our journals. Manas gave us a very informative lesson yesterday on the proper use of water colour pencil crayons. Each of the children illustrated their entry yesterday with water colour.

Today the boys started some creative writing. They are each writing a story and began to plan their characters, setting and other elements today. Solstice is writing a book report at the moment as she as already devoured the reading material that we brought. She began her plan today, utilizing a mind map.

The kids have brought their instruments along. Solstice has been practicing her violin almost daily. She is getting used to a different violin and is becoming more pleased with the sound. The boys are reviewing their guitar pieces and are also learning Iron Man. They enjoy this part of the day, I am Iron Man .....

For gym class, Solstice and I went for an early morning jog which we followed up with strength training. Mike and Manas joined us for this part. Aleix is still not sure about this! After breakfast and music/reading, we headed to the beach. Today we learnt how to cliff dive into the ocean. The children Also snorkeled and admired all the beauty the ocean has to offer.

Time to skype with one of Solstice's friends, I guess that could be considered technology class!

If you have any suggestions for The Flying Five Grade School please address them to Meera, the Head Mistress.

Peace and love

Posted by The Flying Five 07:29 Comments (3)

Kicking back on the Adriatic coast

We are so glad to be spending a week on Croatia's Adriatic coast. Life for us has gotten very easy! We are eating very simple, fresh food, and swimming in the ocean right across from our villa. We have ventured out a bit and have had even more terrific Croatia experiences. Our Riverdale friends, Janet, Nils, Max and Angus are in Primosten as well and we have been enjoying their company. We had a lovely dinner out the other day. We all enjoyed a swim together yeterday.

I just mentioned eating simply. We are really enjoying picking up our fruits and veggies from the small local markets. Manas bought a basil plant yesterday for our patio and for a fresh pesto. The kids are eating really well. We were definitely tiring of restaurant fare as there are not many options for vegetarians. Even the kids are tired of cheese pizza. When you order a green salad, you really do just get a GREEN salad- a small bowl of lettuce. With the availibility of great produce and the use of a kitchen we have prepared some delicious food. The family's favorite so far was a spinach pasta dish with a fresh tomato,basil,garlic, cheese sauce. We just can't get away from the cheese!

Today, we had the good fortune to visit another National Park. We visited Krka park and walked down a lovely boardwalk under the canopy of a lush forest. At the end of the walk, we were rewarded with a magnificent waterfall and a spectacular swim in the sun.

The kids all got their own snorkel gear today and the boys are entertaining themselves quite well. They practice breathing techniques in the apartment and sound like they are on a science fiction show. I guess we can forget about skis, skates and boots for one year. The snorkel gear has been the least expensive sports gear that we have ever bought!

Yesterday we visited the exceptionally lovely coastal town of Trogir. The centre of Trogir is very old and it contains splendid examples of Roman architecture. You can get lost in the labyrinth of lanes and small squares. It is so well preserved and no surprise that it is a UNESCO world heritage site. We love theses sites! The other fairly interesting fact about Trogir is that some of the world's most elite dock their yaughts there. We were dreaming about boarding one for awhile...

Sorry about not posting any photos, I have had no luck uploading from my iPad to this site.
Love to you all

The kids are just back from the beach where they were snorkeling. They have reported many fish sightings and a good time was had by all.

Posted by The Flying Five 10:01 Comments (1)

Varazdin

A marvel of culture, scenery and way of life

We arrived in the Baroque town of Varazdin yesterday. We were so excited to find out that there is a festival going on! The festival is called Spancirfest. When I asked the locals what Spancir means they found it difficult to translate the term. Apparently Spancir is a local term only and means to walk, to gather, to see. It is most interesting. The festival takes place in the centre of town, and continues down windy cobblestone streets. The entire centre of town features buildings with fascinating Baroque architecture. The town would like to be recognized as a UNESCO world heritage site. There are at least 5 stages that feature live music. It feels like the entire town is out celebrating the history of this place. The festival features tradespeople that have stalls throughout the main square and beyond. There are shoemakers, beekeepers, soap makers, hat makers, designers and artists of all sorts. There are street performers too and the best part is that the entire festival is free!!! There are food vendors spread throughout and it is commonplace to pop into one of the restaurants for a bite to eat or arrive at one of the drinking establishments for a beer or two. I have even had a few Croation beers since arriving.
This place is alive and I feel so lucky that we are here for this very special festival. I would definitely recommend this festival and place to anyone traveling in Croatia. I would also tell some of my friends to make the trip! (Shannon and Chris!!)
Today, we visited the much anticipated castle of Trakoscan. It is impeccably maintained, well restored and said to be the best specimen of a castle in Croatia. The castle houses much of the old furniture, family portraits, armory and other artifacts mostly from the 19th century. The family had the castle restored in the 19th century but it was abanoned after the war, cerca 1944. You can certainly sense the greed of the aristocrat class as well as there effort in securing their place in society. Nonetheless the grounds are beautiful and you can have a nice walk around the lake. We took a paddle boat around the lake. It was very pleasant but stifling hot! We busted a move to get going early and we finished by noon. We are back at the hotel now, completing journal entries and napping.

Posted by The Flying Five 06:24 Comments (0)

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