Croatia Trip September 2015 Post 1

Day 1 Wednesday 09/09/2015 – 91,102km
Hi, if you are subscribed to this blog or have stumbled upon it, we are the OldAgeTravellers, Steve & Judy. We started writing it as our own diary to remember our travels then many friends said “email us to let us know where you are” and we realised we would be spending our whole time sending emails so blog was born
We finally left home at 10:00, 91,102km. After a stop for some wine at Pepieux Cave we were on our way. A couple of days late leaving because of jobs on the van running over a bit and quite a bit of paperwork to finish off for the business. But hey-ho there was a bonus, Steve had ordered a new GPS dongle for our moving map on the dashboard as the old one would not work on the new Windows-10. It arrived in the post early afternoon on Tuesday so good time to set it up and finish off the last few letters before bed. We would have really missed our moving Autoroute map which we run on an old eeePC with solid state drives so no damage with the bumps. The computer sits on our massive front shelf against the windscreen and the map records a trace of our route and also gives an idea of our general route and position saving Judy having to have her head in the map and missing the scenery and gives her a chance to take photo’s as we go albeit many of her knees as we hit the bumps!  It also has a very accurate speedo so she can say if Steve misses a speed limit sign.
Today is a motoring day to get us on or way towards Croatia, however we want to make a stop at Venice as there were some places we missed last time especially a resteraunt pointed out to us on a free walking tour we did which was mentioned again on a recent Rick Stein program. Also Judy is nearly out of her favourite perfumes which we bought at a very cheap price in San Marino so a stop there even though about a hundred miles out of our way is essential!!!
We did pass through some beautiful scenery today, we skirted the Comargue which is beautiful and well worth another visit, and the Grand Motte which is an enormous lake and we drive along a very narrow spit of land with water each side which we first see on our moving map. 
After Avignon which we have visited before but would be worth another visit, perhaps on the way back. We start to see the Rhone Alps in the distance then spend half the journey driving on good roads with incredible scenery all around us with magnificent mountain views, especially in the late afternoon when the sunlight is highlighting them beautifully.
After Gap where our TomTom tried to take us down a narrow shopping street which we just noticed in time but got shouted at by an impatient French man because we sort of cut in front of him, we found a nice picnic spot to stay the night.
We spent a bit of time on Autoroute and see we are not too far from Italy and it looks worth taking the Motorway to San Marino tomorrow as it will save about 100 miles travelling so probably cost effective on fuel.
Stopped 19:30 Lat: 44.52976  Lon: 6.333236 Near Lake Serre-Poncon.  466km

Day 2 Thursday 10/09/2015 – 91,568
We left our nice parking place at 08:15 as workmen had just arrived with a lorry full of tar to fix the potholes. As we drove round the lake we saw there were many more picnic spots most of the others with a beautiful view of the lake. Never mind we had a good night but worth remembering not to pick the first one if we come again. The Alps around us were getting bigger and the buildings more alpine looking. There were many signs for walking, biking, canoeing and skiing so obviously an all year resort.
The road got very twisty as we climbed over the mountains to the Italian border with spectacular views. Then after a very long tunnel we were in Italy and on to the Autostrada where we would stay for the next 560km. For the first hour we had to stop and pay a set toll many times then we were presented with a ticket which turned out to be the only one till we exited at Rimini. The first four tolls for the tunnels I presume was 16.60 euros then the next 500 km cost 33.90 for about 500km of driving, not bad compared to France considering the driving time saved and probably fuel saved.
Arriving at San Marino we drove right through the narrow streets of the tiny city, looking for the Camper Spot we had found last time. We found a pay one but couldn’ figure out what the charge was but it was on a slope so wouldn’ be very comfortable but just about a kilometre away we found where we were looking for exactly as before, still free for 48hours but no facilities which we don’t need. We had obviously taken a different turning and come the other way round the town. Unfortunately while manoeuvring into the best level spot between the trees Steve caught the front of the van on a low wall, no real damage except scraping the gell coat off but the same wing as we hit on a rock in Morocco last visit. So another job for our great garage in Taffraoute next time we go to Marocco.
After a quick drink to get over the annoyance we walked fifteen minutes up the hill to the town and manages to buy a special San Marino postage stamp to post our Granddaughters Birthday card. Apart from a pizza resteraunt and an English Pub little was open so we headed back for a light supper then bed. Steve had a problem with our moving map refusing to save so spent an hour and found a way to get round it so happy that this great gadget would carry on working for us.
Stopped 19:30 Lat: 43.92177N  Lon: 12.45209E Free Aire de Camping Car, San Marino
 638km today

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