Day 2: Mali Lošinj and Veli Lošinj
The ferry from Pula to Mali Lošinj on the Lošinj island started early at 7 a.m. So we had to skip breakfast at the hotel, as we had to leave about 6 a.m. When we arrived at the dock next to the marina, there were people already lining up because boarding starts at 6.45 a.m. The catamaran, which costs 100 Kuna per person for a return ticket to Mali Lošinj – about 13 Euro – takes 2,5 hours with a little stop in Unije (depending on the day) and continues to Zadar. At every stop, the smokers can go out for a few minutes, which was very welcomed by my friend.
When we arrived in Mali Lošinj (*literally means small Lošinj and veli mean big Lošinj, nowadays, the Mali Lošinj is actually the bigger one) we went right for the nearby tourist information which was very helpful, because they give out maps and the bus timetable for buses to Veli Lošinj. We wanted to see both – Mali Lošinj and the smaller Veli Lošinj – so we waited for the bus to Veli Lošinj. We used the time for a pancake breakfast in a restaurant at the harbour. They seem to like pancakes a lot in Croatia, as it was offered in many places. When the waitress didn´t speak English or German and wasn´t in a good mood anyway, the young and English speaking cook personally came to take our order! He was a bit disappointed though when he realised that we just wanted a pancake. He at least talked us into taking marmalade with the (crepe) pancake.
After our breakfast, we walked to the bus station which is not far from the ferry pier and went on a short drive to Veli Lošinj. We heard it is smaller and more idyllic than Mali Lošinj. From the bus station, we walked our way in the direction of the church, which we already saw in the distance and made a short stop by another church, before we came to the Tower of Veli Lošinj through narrow alleys. Inside the Tower is a museum and you can go all the way up to get a 360° view?
We continued to the bay, where most restaurants are located, but before we tried one out we took a look at the huge church in the little town. The church was said to be financed by prominent boat captains. If you stay there longer, you can also take a lot of excursions by boat, which is offered at the bay. Behind the church is a little bathing zone – not exactly a beach, but some rocks to lie on. We skipped that and went on to dine at some nice restaurant at the waterfront, where they seemed to take the fish on the menu right out of the bay. Only my potatoes and fish were a bit of a let-down.
With renewed strength we still had some time, until our bus back to Mali Lošinj was scheduled, so we took a look at the very little Lošinj Marine Education Centre, which wasn’t bad but is probably more interesting for families and kids. Near the bus station, we waited in a little cafe outside the centre.
When we came to the bus station, there was a “hotel bus” (not our scheduled bus), which we hadn’t really on the radar. The accommodating driver told us the route, and it fits nicely in our plans, as we wanted to go the beaches in the south of the island and had assumed we would need to go back to Mali Lošinj by bus and then walk. The bus driver allowed us into the bus, and off we go. The bus stopped by the many hotels located there at Aurora, so it spared us a walk, and we went directly down the cove next to the big Hotel Aurora.
From there you have beaches (well gravels and rocks) in both directions. The area was a bit too crowded for us, so we decided to walk further west. There we had our perfect spot with not many people around. Anyhow, there’s a lot of bathing options all along the coast away from the mad crowd. Swimming there was great in the crystal clear and fresh water. But we underestimated the rocky beaches – we forgot to bring our swimming shoes from Germany, and my friend cuts his foot on a stone in the water. It wasn’t really a problem, but he only realised it when he saw blood on the rocks. Fortunately, I had my compeed plaster in my bag.
After our refreshing swim and sunbathing time we walked along the beach, there is an excellent way around the “Punta Annunziata” to the Cikat bay. We enjoyed the magnificent views, while others enjoyed surfing in the bay. Then we walked back to Mali Lošinj. Thinking that nearly all beaches in Croatia are rocky ones, we bought swimming shoes in Mali Lošinj later that day. (You can purchase the shoes in Croatia for a fraction of the money). After getting our bathing shoes and finally having a bit of a look around the pleasant Mali Lošinj, which is bigger than Veli Lošinj but seemed equally attractive, we visited a nice restaurant near the ferry pier, where we got fish and the local specialty, the Ćevapi, before leaving by ferry back to Pula. We got back around 9:00 p.m.