Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Montenegro

A recent visit to Przno in Montenegro proved that old habits die hard in these former Yugoslav republics!
We arrived in Przno in the early hours of Saturday morning after a three hour flight and a three hour road journey from Dubrovnik which involved crossing the Croatia/Montenegro border. Now, we would hate to reopen old wounds but it isn't five minutes since these two states were part of the same country but you'd think they'd give something up for the sake of good neighbourlyness wouldn't you?

Not a bit of it.

A queue as long as the Adriatic just to cross the border with forms and God knows what else needed. And when we arrived it was like living in a good old-fashioned pre-Cold War state beurocracy. Not one public servant weencountered is able or willing to break into a smile. A four mile stetch of beach and surrounds is out of bounds due to a Government official having his holidays in the place!

But that was nothing to the return journey to Dubrovnik - which took five hours! The border queue was even longer. A great shame because first and last impressions are so important - and I'm afraid our stay was overshadowed by an unneccessary focus on bearocracy.

Whic is a great shame because Montenegro is a stunning country - worth a try if you can stomach the queues to get in!!

Slovenia - an undiscovered jewel?

The opening up of new low-cost flight routes to Eastern Europe and the Balkan states now offers the business and leisure traveller a host of new destinations to choose from.

Slovenia is a relatively new country - but with a rich history. A recent visit to Ljubljana for a site visit has convinced us that here is a great place for conferences, incentive groups or simply as a short-break destination.
EasyJet flies to LJ on a regular basis and the city offers all the friendliness of a small town and at the same time everything that a capital should offer. Apart from the remains of the Romans, it boasts a medieval castle and numerous old city centre Baroque buildings with uneven roofs and richly decorated fa├žades and portals. The mosaic of Ljubljana is completed by picturesque bridges across the Ljubljanica river and the vast Tivoli park, which extends to the very city centre.

Ljubljana is a city of culture, which, among other things, boasts one of the oldest philharmonic halls in the world. Every year it hosts more than 10,000 cultural events ranging from concerts, theatre performances and fine art exhibitions, to avant-garde events.

One of the delights of strolling through the city on an evening is the almost complete absence of hordes of British youths taking advantage of the low flight costs and cheap drink. In fact, eating, drinking and staying in Ljubljana is still much lower than almost all other European capitals - and that is despite its membership of the Euro.

Away from the capital, one must-visit place for your itinerary is Bled with its stunning lake and castle. A walk around the lake is a pleasnt way to spend an hour - and if you're feeling energetic then you can take a rowing boat to the island in the lake and visit the pretty chapel.

Hotel accommodation in Slovenia is comfortable and there are some great deals available on conference venues.

If you'd like more information on Ljubljana or Slovenia then contact Nice Work today.