Zagan the motorhome is in the waiting area outside the ferry ticket office at Ancona, and he’s excited (N43.61307 E13.49985). Normally these blog posts come from where we’re sleeping, but since we’re kipping in a luxury cabin (we’re hoping for our own shower!) aboard the SNAV Aurelia this fine evening, I’ve gone a bit early. Our ferry for Split in Croatia sails at 8:15pm, costing us €245 (for our 6m long, 3m high, 3.5 tonne motorhome with a pet-friendly cabin). Ju’s research didn’t throw up any camping on board options, even in April, so we’ve gone down the rent-a-room route. Expensive, but awkward otherwise with our beloved pooch. We need to wait here until 6pm, then we can go sit next to the ferry somewhere and wait to board.
But for a bit of roof-beating rain in the night, we both slept well and left our freebie beach-side spot in Numana refreshed. Using some (again free) WiFi we’d downloaded the All-of-Europe maps for the CoPilot Caravan app on Ju’s Android phone (win a copy for yourself here!), and ran it alongside our TomTom for the trip here to Ancona. Testing will continue over the coming days, but our very early assessment is: it’s taking us a wee bit longer to select our destination in the CoPilot app, but its routing made more sense than the TomTom. Ju normally checks the map and takes somewhat longer routes to keep us on wider roads, preserving my sanity by equal measure. The CoPilot app chose the same route as Ju, while the TomTom would have had us heading up a 18% hill which we drove yesterday, and we know is slooooowwww. So far, so good.
It’s Easter Monday today, and everywhere but the market at Numana is chiuso, closed. Ju fancied stocking up on a few more Italian goodies, but no chance, the supermarket we headed for was chiuso, along with the entire retail estate around it, tutti chiuso. If you’ve seen ‘I Am Legend’, you’ll know what I’m talking about: post-apocalypse dead, devoid of the usual wasp’s nest of cars and vans, not a person to be seen. Giving up, we headed here, bouncing along some fairly serious ‘ploughed field’ tarmac and around the usual whacky lay out of roads you seem to find at big ports.
Arriving daft-early, Ju dragged me out for a walk around the port. I’ve mentally left Italy now, I’m already on my way to Croatia (20 degrees and sunny, oh yeah) so wasn’t fussed about seeing it, but I was just being lazy really. I’m glad she made me go, as we had the good fortune to bump into Pete and Judy, who we last met four years ago (FOUR YEARS!) at Lago d’Orta. By incredible co-incidence, they’re here in their Hymer heading for Greece (I confessed my jealousy – but we’re heading for Nordkapp and to Nordkapp we must go – not further south)! After a good chat, we left them to go get a brew before heading onto their boat, have fun guys! If you fancy heading to Greece, Pete and Judy put together this fab list of places to stay when they were last there – hopefully we might get an updated copy after this trip.
A few photos from Ancona below guys, the town is well worth a wander, just a few minute’s walk from the ferry ticket office.
Right, that’s it, time for Ju to start taking her sea-sickness pills. Our month in Italy is up, although there is talk of possibly sneaking back in up at Trieste (we’ve been there before though, so would need to find somewhere else to kip!). As ever, it’s been a ride. If there’s one thing Italy can pretty much guarantee it’s this: you will have to try hard to get bored!
Oh, one last thing (mostly intended for my Mum and Dad): our Internet SIM won’t work in Croatia (well it would, but would cost the Earth). We’ll see if we can get a local one for a decent amount of money, otherwise we’ll be using WiFi so posts might not go up every day. THIS DOES NOT MEAN WE ARE DEAD, BEING HELD HOSTAGE OR HAVE GONE NATIVE. :-) Love you guys.