Neretva and Cetina

 Rivers are for me the epitome of wild. I still stop with Marcel on the side of the road, on a bridge, or while walking or trekking and we just watch. We try to find lines. We marvel.


I remember how I marvelled at Neretva River from the old walls of Počitelj /I have a thing for turquoise rivers/. The only thing I could do this time around was sigh when the ‘Mostar’ sign appeared on the motorway.


‘So close’ … ‘This world is so upside-down that you can’t even travel some tens of kilometres from one country to another.’

We didn’t know what we had then, how our Earth would crumble under the wrong hands… and minds.


Fortunately, we did know how to keep our spirits high. We were close, on the Makarska Riviera, so we went to see the delta that Neretva River forms while flowing into the Adriatic Sea. ‘Once we could paddle all the way from Mostar to this point’ I remembered again.

Neretva River delta, Croatia


There was a soft heat in the air, still summery – odd, after the high winds of the previous night. I wished we had bicycles or kayaks with us. But we didn’t, so we walked. A mix of reddish colours reminded us that the cold was coming, while the bright water reminded us that we were very close to the sea.

Summery-autumnal Neretva River delta, Croatia


We had to leave, at a point, trying to reach Omiš and kayak Cetina River – although this had seemed highly unlikely in the cold, windy, and damp morning.


The canyon that ‘hosts’ Cetina River before this turquoise wonder flows into the sea is visible from the road as you descend to Omiš, which is unpretentious but lovely. Adventure Omis was closed, but its incredibly kind owner came to greet us (we had exchanged many e-mails) and get us a double sit-on-top kayak to go and see the canyon from the water. She spoke so passionately about her childhood and about how she thought that Cetina was the only river in the world. ‘What a lovely universe to grow up in!’ I thought to myself.


We had already changed into our gear and we ended up not taking the vests because the water was friendly. It was also warm. But the wind wasn’t. We did struggle to paddle when gusts were rough but the beauty around rewarded us.


Passing fishermen and getting away from town, the walls of the canyon started to show. Almighty. Different. I felt grateful to be there even though Marcel was scolding me for not taking good pictures. J I didn’t care, I felt at ease and free. 

So, Marcel took the picture! :-) Kayaking Cetina River, Croatia

'I'm free!' -- Cetina River canyon, Croatia

‘I don’t think I ever paddled along cypress trees.’ J

Cypress trees along Cetina River, Croatia


There was an eddy where we stopped, took some pictures from the drone, and listened to the noise of zipliners.


‘Next time!’

Cetina River canyon from the drone, Croatia


The wind and the later hours of the afternoon drove us back to our starting point. As the colours of Omiš showed, I felt the joy settle in my heart. ♥

Reaching Omiš, Croatia


My wish to paddle this beautiful canyon, to extend our paddling season, and to not let summer get away had come true.

No comments:

© Olivia-Petra Coman, 2019 | Photographer: © Marcel Bancila. Powered by Blogger.